SPIRITUAL WARFARE or PRAYER:

How understanding the difference can MAKE the difference when confronting dangerous times


John Erickson


Some people have mistaken "Spiritual Warfare" for "telling God what to do." Faith doctrines have gotten blasted undeservedly because of this misunderstanding. (It's also gotten me into many long and irresolvable arguments.) But the difference is quite simple.

Prayer is petitioning God. It is for requesting wisdom and knowledge about how to handle a situation, for interceding for others, asking for forgiveness, and entreating God for the promises He's made to us in His word.

Spiritual Warfare is what Jesus called "Speaking to the mountain." This is done after we've paid our spiritual "bills" and are ready to stand in the authority of Jesus and address an unGodly situation. With Spiritual Warfare, we speak to spiritual beings - Godly and unGodly - and issue Word-based directions or commands to bring a situation to a Godly, successful result.

The angels of God - "Ministering Spirits" - are assigned to respond to our faith-based confessions in the name of the Anointed Jesus. The fallen angels, conversely, are compelled to submit to these same faith-based confessions. This is a principle that God has given us to live by. He wants us to stand on our own two feet while exercising the authority He's given us over the devil, over an unGodly environment, activity, or circumstance.

Sometimes you will find Believers "praying" over things that God has instructed us to wage Spiritual Warfare against. It's a weak and passive action that is based on the hope that through "submission" God will do all the work. But the Bible makes this point:

  • Matthew 17:20 - for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.

  • Matthew 21:19 - And when he saw a fig tree in the way, he came to it, and found nothing thereon, but leaves only, and said unto it, Let no fruit grow on thee henceforward for ever. And presently the fig tree withered away.

  • Matthew 8:28-32 - there met Him [Jesus] two demon-possessed men, coming out of the tombs, exceedingly fierce, so that no one could pass that way.
    31 the demons begged Him, saying, "If You cast us out, permit us to go away into the herd of swine."
    32 And He said to them, "Go." So when they had come out, they went into the herd of swine. And suddenly the whole herd of swine ran violently down the steep place into the sea, and perished in the water.

  • Mark 11:23 - For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.

We're confronting an age when both Good and Evil are being stepped-up respectively. Our reaction to this as Believers is to step-up our Spiritual Warfare against the satanic disruptions that we encounter whether personally or globally. If we're not quite ready for "warfare", stay in prayer and stay in the Word until God nudges you and let's you know: "It's time!"

Ephesians 6:13-14 - Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;

Then stand in full faith in the name of the Anointed Jesus that God backs His word, and God will back you when you act on His word.

God forbid that this should be thought of as an "ego" exercise. Just the opposite: it is a total submission to the power of God and the unchallengeable power of the name of the Anointed Jesus.

Whatever ferocity the world may show us the days ahead, our God is stronger - and so are His people when they wield the weapons of His Warfare.

© John Erickson

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