Whether you realize it or not, every moment of your life you are in an unseen, invisible war between good and evil, darkness and light. The reason is that Satan and his kingdom of darkness, lies and destruction are continually coming against God and His kingdom of light, love and goodness. Friction and conflict occur in the spiritual realm as Satan comes to oppose God's prophecies and will for your life.
There is a direct correlation between the natural and the spiritual realms. What happens in the spiritual realm occurs in the natural and the other way around. A collision is happening in the spiritual realm at all times—and you are already involved in it, whether you like it or not. Ignorance is not bliss, and being unaware of the war does not minimize its effects. Satan relentlessly instigates attacks to wear out those who seek God and desire to advance His kingdom. He will attempt to wreak havoc in your life any way he can.
The battle is real, and even though we may not recognize that the attacks coming against us are demonic, we must be aware that we are fighting an invisible spiritual war. We can't see the dark forces behind the negative things we experience, whether they be medical ailments, emotional trauma or witchcraft spirits. This is the essence of spiritual warfare. Whether or not you experience overt attacks, it is important to know that you are taking part in an unseen war. It's not something you choose; everyone is born into it. Everything you say and do affects it, giving power to one side or the other. That's why it's so important to be led by the Holy Spirit.
It's also important to know who you're up against.
Who is our adversary? The devil was once one of God's angels. His name was Lucifer. He was the angel in charge of worship in heaven. Lucifer rebelled against God, and as a result, God cast Him down to earth. Here's what the Bible says about it:
How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How you are cut down to the ground, you who weaken the nations! For you have said in your heart, "I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will sit also on the mount of the congregation, in the recesses of the north; I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, I will be like the Most High." Yet you shall be brought down to Hell, to the sides of the pit" (Isa. 14:12-15).
And in Luke 10:18, Jesus spoke to his disciples: "He said to them, 'I saw Satan as lightning fall from heaven."
"The great dragon was cast out, that ancient serpent called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world. He was cast down to the earth, and his angels were cast down with him" (Rev. 12:9).
Now that we've covered how he became our adversary, let's take a look at three things the Bible tells us about the devil.
- He is a thief. The devil is a thief who comes to steal, kill and destroy anything and everything in your life. "The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life and that they may have it more abundantly" (John 10:10, NKJV). Stealing, killing and destroying are spiritual warfare. The devil tries to make sure we don't have the abundant life that Jesus said we could have.
Jesus wants us to have abundant life. Attacks that lead to a negative result are never the result of the Lord's sending something forth to hinder or punish us. God does not make people sick to teach them lessons. He is a Father who wants the best for His children. It is the enemy who comes to steal, kill and destroy, while the Lord's intention is for us to be blessed.
- He is wicked. "We know that we are of God, and the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one" (1 John 5:19). When Satan was cast down to earth, he was given authority over the earth. We live under the sway of the wicked one until we come to know Jesus and His glorious power! Unfortunately, the enemy has far too much influence on the earth, which is why we see sin, crime, unforgiveness, addiction and bondage. However, Jesus came to the earth to make right what was wrong. He gave us His authority.
- He is a liar. "You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies" (John 8:44, MEV). The devil is the father of lies, and he will lie to us. His lies can appear as thoughts we take hold of, things someone said to us or about us, or manipulation. The devil will use whatever he can to gain a foothold in our lives.
When we haven't been taught about spiritual warfare and how cunning the enemy is, we tend to take in the lies he tells us about ourselves and our circumstances and begin to believe them. After a while these lies become strongholds in our lives, and when we don't change our thoughts and behavior patterns, the strongholds can become strongmen, which are demonic spirits. To ensure strongmen do not enter and occupy our souls, we must quickly capture all the enemy's lies and give no place to the devil. Capturing the lie means recognizing the lie. When a thought comes into your mind, test it by discerning if it lines up with the Word of God. Is it something that would have a result that agrees with Scripture? If not, dismiss it instead of entertaining it.
Give no place to the devil! Take control of your thoughts so the lie does not torment you and cause you anxiety, anger or fear. As we take unproductive and negative thoughts in and they remain in our minds, we entertain them instead of dismissing the thoughts. But when we know God's Word, we can replace negative thoughts that might cause us to feel defeated or fearful with the truth of His Word and meditate on what God says about our situations.
Remember: We have the final victory. No matter how hard the devil tries to defeat us, his fate is written in the Word of God, and he loses! He is defeated! Rest assured that whatever you are going through, it can be overcome. God's Word says that we are conquerors. "Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us" (Rom. 8:37, NKJV). We are conquerors, and the devil is defeated.
Excerpted from chapter 1 of Prophetic Spiritual Warfare by Kathy DeGraw (Charisma House, 2021).
Kathy DeGraw is a prophetic deliverance minister. She is the founder of Kathy DeGraw Ministries and K Advancement LLC. Kathy hosts a podcast show called Prophetic Spiritual Warfare. She is the author of several books; Prophetic Spiritual Warfare, Speak Out, Discerning and Destroying the Works of Satan, and Unshackled. She is empowering people and setting the captives free through her many e-courses at charismacourses.com. You can connect with Kathy on Facebook at facebook.com/kathydegraw or visit kathydegrawministries.org.
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