Missionaries are aware of manifestations of Satan and demonic activity. Believers in the West also encounter Satan’s activity in their lives and society every day. But we seldom recognize it because it is cleverly disguised and is discounted by our rational worldview. That is what this book is about. While there are those who see spiritual warfare in terms of demon possession, territorial spirits, generational bondage, or perceived outward manifestations of Satan’s power and dominion in the world, the primary focus is what we encounter within our own lives. We need to recognize Satan’s lies and deception and the attacks to which we are subjected daily. We need to understand how Satan defeats us and robs us of the victory and power we’ve been given. That’s where the real battle lies. And only when we resist and walk in victory personally are we equipped to deal with some of the outward manifestations so prevalent in our world.
We are going to attempt to understand the reality of spiritual warfare, the nature and character of our enemy, some of his primary strategies that readily defeat us, and, finally, how we can walk in victory on a daily basis. As we study the truths of God’s Word, Satan’s lies will be exposed, and we will understand why faith, believing what God says, is the victory.
Spiritual warfare is not so much about demon possession, territorial spirits, or generational bondage as it is overcoming Satan’s lies and deceits in our own life.
Spiritual warfare needs to be understood in the context of God’s purpose. He has a specific will for each of us, but basically His purpose and desire is to be glorified in our life. The Bible uses various terms to reinforce this. In Romans 8:29 God’s purpose is that we be conformed to the image of Christ. “For those He foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son.” Why does God predestine us to be conformed to the image of Christ? It is in order to glorify Him. Satan tempts us to sin in order to keep God from being glorified. We have an enemy that is intent on robbing God of His glory in our lives. God is glorified when we are conformed to the image of Christ and live like Him.
Jerry Rankin and Beth Moore, Spiritual Warfare: The Battle for God’s Glory (Nashville, TN: B&H Books, 2009).