If the Evangelical world is mired within a Great Disaster (or should we use “quagmire”? :D) – this is part and parcel of it’s second failure. The failure to defend Truth as Truth. This is a battle! Martin Luther once said:

If I profess with the loudest voice and clearest exposition every portion of the truth of God except precisely that little point which the world and the devil are at that moment attacking, I am not confessing Christ, however boldly I may be professing Christ. Where the battle rages, there the loyalty of the soldier is proved, and to be steady on all the battlefield besides, is mere flight and disgrace if he flinches at that point.’

What an utterly damning indictment! Examine yourselfwhere do you flinch? We cannot say honestly that we do not.

Where do you flinch?

Oh yes… the book 😀

And if we have not fail to take the battle seriously, we have certainly failed to use the weapons our Lord has provided.

Once again – refer to Ephesians 6. Then read on.

Note that there is nothing in this list that the world accepts as a way of working, but there is no other way to fight the spiritual battle in the heavenlies. And if we do not use these weapons we have no hope of winning.

No other way! We are defenseless, useless – remember, it is mere flight, if we flinch. Remember what Paul says? “Having done everything, stand firm.” He emphasizes standing firm 3 times!

Stand FIRM!

Take up your equipment – to use it! Of course they are not what the world accepts. They are not the weapons, or the equipment, of the world. They are, however, infinitely better. “And I show you a still more excellent way…

The primary battle is a spiritual battle in the heavenlies. But this does not mean, therefore, that the battle we are in is otherworldly, or outside human history. It is a real spiritual battle, but it is equally a battle here on earth in our own country, our own communities, our places of work and our schools, and even in our own homes. The spiritual battle has its counterpart in the visible world, in the minds of men and women, and in every area of human culture. In the realm of space and time the heavenly battle is fought on the stage of human history.

“We do not battle flesh and blood.” It is not a physical, fleshly battle – not literally. It is a spiritual battle, first. However, there is more to it. It is also an ideological battle. It is also a battle for our lifestyles. Not as the world terms “lifestyle”. Their definition is wildly different. Therein lies the battle. We are to live our faith, show our Lord in our loves. That is our lifestyle!

But if we are to win the battle on the stage of human history, it will take a prior commitment to fighting the spiritual battle with the only weapons that will be effective. It will take a life committed to Christ, founded on truth, lived in righteousness, and grounded in the gospel. It is interesting to note that all of the weapons listed to this point are defensive. The only offensive weapon mentioned is “the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God”. While the others help us to defend against the attacks of Satan, the Bible is the weapon which enables us to join with our Lord on the offensive in defeating the spiritual hosts of wickedness.

Note: There is a “prior” commitment – it is conscious, and requires preparation.

The offensive joins us with God – which He always wants. Not in ourselves, though, I must point out – but equipped by Him, directed by Him, and only with Him. For the rest… I covered that pretty thoroughly in the last installment. Which was why I posted it 😀 I wanted more detail and information than was provided in the book. So, I skipped a small chunk in the middle – and replaced it with a fuller treatment.

But it must be the Bible as the Word of God in everything it teaches – in matters of salvation, but just as much where it speaks of history and science and morality. If it is compromised in any of these areas, as is unhappily happening today among many who call themselves evangelicals, we destroy the power of the Word and put ourselves in the hands of the enemy. Finally, it will take a life of prayer: “pray in the Spirit, on all occasions”.

Everything! Salvation, history, morality, science! “I believe… but…”


Not on my watch, not in my church, not in my community! This is where the world is attacking! Don’t you see? Compromise, and it never stops. Do not relent, do not up any portion of your ability to go on the offensive against the enemy. None. Whatsoever. In any way. “I believe in the Bible, except…”

If you know anything about swordplay, you know that to deny yourself the full range of motion while fighting with a sword is often fatal. If you know metal – and swords, specifically – you know that to compromise the integrity of your weapon is death! A broken or weak sword is useless. In fact, it is often more dangerous in battle to use a weakened sword, than to have none at all. Relying on a compromised weapon is death. There are many who call themselves Evangelicals that are doing exactly that! We try to explain away critical truths to justify our own sin, to rewrite parts we don’t like – to make ourselves more comfortable. To accommodate – to the world! The bastion of the enemy! Suicide.

On the level of human history, however, the battle is equally important. Here too there is a fundamental conflict going on which is the earthly counterpart to the heavenly battle. This conflict takes two forms. The first of these has to do with the way we think – the ideas we have, and the way we view the world. The second has to do with the way we live and act. Both of these conflicts – in the area of ideas, and in the area of actions – are important; and in both areas Bible-believing Christians find themselves locked in battle with the surrounding culture of our day.

In the Mind – Ideas must be within the scope of the mind of Christ. Our thoughts must be in line with His. Our fundamental philosophies must be in accordance.

But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised. But he who is spiritual appraises all things, yet he himself is appraised by no one. For WHO HAS KNOWN THE MIND OF THE LORD, THAT HE WILL INSTRUCT HIM? But we have the mind of Christ.1 Cor. 2:14-16

In the Actions – They must be in line with our thought life. To do otherwise is sheer hypocrisy.

a corrector of the foolish, a teacher of the immature, having in the Law the embodiment of knowledge and of the truth, you, therefore, who teach another, do you not teach yourself? You who preach that one shall not steal, do you steal? You who say that one should not commit adultery, do you commit adultery? You who abhor idols, do you rob temples? – Romans 2:20-22

We know all this – but do we do it? I’m ashamed to say I do not. I want to leave you with a quote I’m sure you’ve likely heard – but probably need to be reminded of.

“The single greatest cause of atheism today is Christians who acknowledge Jesus with their lips, then walk out the door and deny Him by their lifestyle. That is what an unbelieving world simply finds unbelievable.” – Brennan Manning (also heard on the intro to ‘What if I Stumble“, by DC Talk.