Spiritual Warfare

jesus-4779546_1920When people enter into covenant with YHVH, a time of spiritual warfare will eventually arise. Before that time comes, it’s important to understand that there is a both a physical and spiritual realm where powers and principalities wage war over the souls of men in order to prevent them from reaching the goals that God has for them. Not only that, the rise and fall of nations can be dependent on whether or not we rise up and wage spiritual warfare. Are you ready to lead part of a nationwide spiritual warfare prayer team? Keep the possibility in mind as you read. Our future depends on it!

Most people who enter into covenant with YHVH usually don’t fully understand what they are doing. They are usually told that if they believe Yeshua (Jesus) died for their sin and rose from the dead, they can go to heaven when they die. Long ago, the mixed multitude was told that if they painted their doorways with the blood of the Passover Lamb and stay inside their homes, they would be spared death and get to go to the Promised Land. Due to the time crunch they were facing and the plagues that had already taken place, they did what they were told. Because of this threshold covenant, their lives were spared, and they headed out of Egypt without knowing what was about to take place. We can read all about the ongoing historical events that subsequently took place in the books of Exodus, Numbers, Joshua, and Judges.

There are actually several covenants in the Bible. Each one builds on the previous covenant; each successive covenant doesn’t abolish or cancel the one before it. People in the Ancient Near East understood covenants; that’s not necessarily the case today. Covenants were binding, and people were expected to fulfill their obligations to the covenant. The blessings and the curses of the covenants were a way to ensure that people kept their obligations to the covenant.

The mixed multitude which came out of Egypt entered into a marriage covenant and/or suzerainty covenant with YHVH in Exodus 19:8, 24:3,7. This covenant would lead up to the fulfillment of the eternal covenant regarding the Promised Land, which YHVH made with Abraham many years prior. Much took place after the covenant at Mount Sinai, but before the people of YHVH began to conquer the land of Canaan, they were reminded of the terms of their covenant with YHVH in the book of Deuteronomy.

A covenant is essentially a contract with terms and conditions; it doesn’t matter if we call the Sinai covenant a marriage covenant or a suzerainty treaty, although I prefer calling this covenant a marriage covenant. What’s clear is that YHVH’s covenant had terms that were to be obeyed, which included statutes (chukkim), judgments (mishpatim), and laws (toratot). Moses told the remnant who was about to enter the Promised Land that obedience to the terms of the covenant brings blessing and life, but disobedience to the terms of the covenant brings cursing and death.

In the Tanakh, the prophets were frequently calling the people to repentance. We see the same thing in the Apostolic Writings. When Yeshua began His ministry, He called people to repentance just like John the Baptist was doing. Later, the apostles called people to repentance too. To repent, in Hebrew (Hebrew: shuv), means to turn back; the people were being called to turn back and consistently abide by the terms of the original covenant. Repentance in Hebrew does not mean to be sorry for what you’ve done; being sorry should lead you to do works that show true repentance. Yeshua did not give a specific new set of terms for the renewed covenant; He fully preached or explained the original terms of the covenant. Repentance, in these apostolic texts, was always considered to be turning back to the terms of the original covenant.

Again, the new or renewed covenant of Yeshua has the same terms as the original covenant. According to Matthew 5:18, those terms will not pass away until heaven and earth pass away, and that hasn’t happened yet. In Romans 3:31, Paul said, “Do we then make void the law through faith? Certainly not! On the contrary, we establish the law.”

Many refuse to believe this because Galatians 3:10 seems to say those who observe Torah are under a curse; however, I’m not convinced that Galatians 3:10 is correctly translated. I think it contains translator bias. The translation really hinges on how we translate one word in the first phrase. English translations are typical and are similar to these:

  • For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse; for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who does not continue in all things which are written in the book of the law, to do them.” (NKJ)
  • For all who rely on works of the law are under a curse; for it is written, “Cursed be everyone who does not abide by all things written in the Book of the Law, and do them.” (ESV)

These translations are misleading for two reasons. First, the verse, as a whole, conflicts with what Moses taught in Deuteronomy 11:26-28. The idea that Torah observance causes you to be under a curse is a lie that has been passed down to the assemblies for generations. The truth is Moses taught that obedience results in blessing and life, and disobedience results in cursing and death. So, what’s wrong with this translation? It’s how the Greek preposition “ex” is translated; it can mean from or out of. I would be inclined to translate this verse as, “For many who are outside (away from, out from) the works of the law are under a curse for it is written, “Cursed be everyone who does not abide by all things written in the Book of the Law, and do them.”  And this translation conforms to what Moses taught the people.

Moses warned the people that a variety of curses would fall on them if they failed to keep the terms of His covenant. Deuteronomy 27 states a variety of sins for which an individual person would fall under a curse. Deuteronomy 28, however, states a variety of curses for corporately failing to keep the terms of the covenant. Some of these curses included: affected food-bowl; offspring; produce of land, cattle, and flocks; their comings and goings; confusion; rebuke; destruction; plague; general illness; mildew; no rain; enemies defeating them; mental illness; possessions violently taken from them; exile; consuming locusts; foreigners in the land who would overpower them and eat their food supply; having to eat their own children and placentas to survive; and the list goes on. The purpose of the curses is to cause YHVH’s people to return to the terms of the covenant they made with YHVH. Refusal to keep the terms of the covenant will eventually lead to death and separation from YHVH. God is a covenant maker and keeper; we are not to be covenant breakers. Even now the ax is laid to the root of the trees, and every tree which does not bear good fruit is going to be cut down and thrown into the fire (Luke 3:9).

The problem that we face today is that people do not see the connection between obedience and blessing or the connection between disobedience and cursing. They don’t see YHVH’s hand or that of the enemy operating behind the scenes. They don’t see that what is happening before their very eyes are manifestations of the curses of the law that are affecting their nations. May YHVH drop the scales from their eyes, so they can see reality before it’s too late.

The key to reversing all of this is found in 2 Chronicles 7:14If my people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.

We, just like God’s people in ancient times, have to individually and corporately repent – return to the terms of the covenant of YHVH. Even so, life will not return to normal all by itself. Wicked people are being influenced by the powers of darkness; they love their wicked lifestyles. They want the freedom to live in spiritual depravity, and they want to make you do the same. They don’t want you to call what they’re doing abnormal, wrong, or evil. Therefore, we have to rise up and wage spiritual warfare in order to deal with the consequences of sins and transgressions committed by those around us – whether they be those who are in or outside the covenant – as well as push back the dark, evil spiritual forces that will be retaliating against us in order to bring us back under a curse and under bondage. We have to demolish and remove the footholds and strongholds that were created by the sins and trespasses of ourselves and others. We have to push back the darkness, or it will crush and destroy us.

If you haven’t already done so, get on your knees, then confess and renounce all known sin and trespasses. After that, say, “In the name of Yeshua, I break and completely demolish any footholds and strongholds that were created in my life as a result of my sins and trespasses. I command any demons associated with them to leave me now and forever in the name of Yeshua HaMashiach. Father, please fill me until I am overflowing with the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit). Allow me to be a vessel of honor that will bring glory to you.” When temptations arise, strongly and forcefully resist Satan and his demons, so they will flee from you. Ask YHVH to purify you, so you can be a vessel of honor in these land days. Remember, Balaam could not curse God’s people because they were blessed; instead, many were destroyed because they were led into prostitution and worship of Baal of Peor with the Moabites and Midianites. Don’t let something like that happen to you.

Remember, the remnant who came out of Egypt and survived Baal at Peor entered the Promised Land. This was the remnant who was faithful to YHVH; all the others perished in the desert. They entered the Promised Land and drove out several wicked nations in order to possess it; but they failed to do this completely.

We are living in a situation in which we who are in covenant with YHVH are the minority in many countries throughout the world. We have to push back the darkness and work to reverse the laws that legalize unrighteousness, so it doesn’t lead us into sin or completely overtake us. Remember, man’s laws are not always lawful in God’s eyes; in other words, man’s lawfulness may be God’s lawlessness. We have to enter into spiritual warfare to prevent, change, and reverse the curses of the law caused by the sins and transgressions of the people in our nations. We can’t keep thinking there is nothing we can do about what is happening around us. Our goal is blessing and life, not cursing and death!

We have to believe and understand the truth of Ephesians 6:10-18 — Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.  13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. 14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; 18 praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints.

Frequently, the armor of God is described by believers as comparable to that of the Roman soldier, but there are also similarities with the clothing of the High Priest. We need to be girded with truth, whether that be Yeshua and/or correct doctrine. We need to put on the breastplate of righteousness; we need to be doing what is right according to YHVH’s covenantal standards. We need to shod our feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; we need to be ready to bring good news that YHVH reigns and that Yeshua is coming again to bring salvation and peace. The shield of faith is a believing/trusting faith that quenches the fiery darts of the enemy. The helmet of salvation is a protective piece that reminds us of YHVH’s salvation in the past, present, and future. The sword of the Spirit that we wield is the word of God and/or what is in accordance with God’s will; either way, what we say is a weapon that must conform to the will of God. We can pray for God to clothe us in this spiritual armor daily, but we have to participate in that process.

The Messiah wears armor too. Righteousness and faithfulness are the belts of the Messiah. He also wears the breastplate of righteousness, the helmet of salvation, garments of vengeance, and a cloak of zeal. If we are going to be part of God’s army under His authority and be engaged in spiritual warfare, we must be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might, and we must live righteously instead of giving in to the desires of the flesh.

When we fight, we are engaging the various ranks in the spiritual realm to impact what happens in the physical realm.

First and foremost, we must be faithfully abiding in Yeshua and living according to God’s commandments, and we must put ourselves under God’s authority and speak in the name of Yeshua. If we are not living righteously, we may be creating a foothold or stronghold that the enemy can use against us.

Second, we must clothe ourselves in the whole armor of God. We can ask God to simply clothe us in His heavenly armor, but some people go a step further by using hand motions to put on what is spiritual and unseen. In addition, they speak something like, “In the name of Yeshua, I ask that the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit) convict me and cleanse me of every sin that divides us. Make me set-apart for your service. I put on the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, the preparation of the gospel of peace, and the helmet of salvation; I take up the shield of faith and the sword of the Spirit, and I pray in the Spirit. Be my Commander and rear guard. Help me use each piece of armor and weapon effectively to wage spiritual warfare, as well as for my protection and Your glory. Help me hear and obey your instructions and be victorious in each spiritual battle that I am engaged in. Amen.”

Third, we must know who our enemy is; this is often linked to the kind of fruit or evil we see or hear about. However, sometimes additional intelligence or information may be required; this could be revealed in the form of prophecy, word of knowledge, dreams, or visions.

Fourth, we must use the spiritual weapon that is available to us to demolish footholds and strongholds, as well as strike, defeat, and immobilize the enemy. This should cause wickedness to cease, captives to be set free, and justice to eventually take place.

In Joshua’s time, the Commander of YHVH’s army gave instructions regarding methods of warfare in order to win the battles; sometimes these instructions were odd or unusual, but the warriors had to comply in order to have victory. This goes to show that sometimes an action, in addition to the sword of the Spirit, may be required to attain victory over the enemy. In the past, we may have relied on general news media sources to clue us in on how to fight or what to pray for; however, considering that most news these days is unreliable propaganda, what we hear is useless and divisive. Today, we may have to seek intelligence and instructions from YHVH via reputable prophets in order for warfare to be effective, as well as words of knowledge, dreams, and visions; the key is that the intel must come from YHVH in one form or another.

While we ponder this, we need to also remember that the trespass of a single person named Achan caused a battle to be lost (Joshua 7). We must not yield to temptation, but do exactly as we are told.

Fifth, we can’t expect to always wage war against Satan and his kingdom by ourselves. It’s going to take two or more, and maybe even an army to defeat these powers and principalities on an ongoing basis. I think it’s important to remember Matthew 18:19-20 — “Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven.  20 For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.” Therefore, when using our words to defeat spiritual forces of evil, we need to have two or more people agreeing with us by essentially saying the same thing. If we’re thinking in terms of one spiritual army defeating another spiritual army, the more prayer warriors, the better, and persistence is likely key for a successful result. The battle of Amalek in Exodus 17, with Aaron and Hur holding up Moses’ arms, is an example of that.

Sixth, whatever we do, it needs to be done by the power of the Ruach HaKodesh in the name of Yeshua. The disciples and others were casting out demons in the name of Yeshua (Luke 9:49-50; 10:17; Acts 16:18) and healing people in the name of Yeshua (Acts 3:6, 16; 4:10, 30). Will YHVH not manifest His power in this way in the last days like they were in the days of the apostles? Has Yeshua given us the same command found in Matthew 10:8 — to heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, and cast out demons?

For those who are new to spiritual warfare, I hope to provide some examples of warfare prayer in the coming days that are pertinent for our times; however, I’m currently debating how to securely distribute that. I will also create some guidelines on how to create your own warfare prayers for specific issues.

As you move forward, never think there is no sin you would never do. That may be the very point at which the powers of darkness attack you to bring you down in these last days. If you fall, get up! Repent! Cleanse yourself! Get on with the battle!

Prepare for battle! Raise up a regiment of prayer warriors who are willing to enter into warfare prayer on behalf of our nation!

A storm is coming! We must set ourselves apart and get ready now!

Contact me if you want your regiment to be a part of a praying army!

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