Preaching About Spiritual Warfare

Preaching About Spiritual Warfare

In the last several posts we gained inspiration (hopefully) from some of the masters of preaching from the past.  Here’s the first in that series of posts.  I could go on with such quotes, but another subject has taken my attention.  A friend asked me to teach a class in our church, and we agreed that a suitable topic would be Spiritual Warfare.  One of the attenders asked that I turn what I did in that class into a course for Christian Leaders Institute.  So, I’m thinking about doing such a  class.  The subject of the next series of posts to this blog will be preaching about spiritual warfare in your church.

The Exorcist Spiritual Warfare

One of the most interesting conversion stories I’ve listened to was by a  denominational executive in another denomination.  He said that, as far as he knew, he was the only person converted as a result of going to see the movie, The Exorcist.  His friends told him that he had to see this movie because “a chick’s head spins”.  Such were the special effects back in the 1970’s.

You may remember that movie, or at least have heard about it.  The plot centers around a young girl who becomes demon possessed, and the exorcist priest who has come to cast the demon out.  Their battle forms the movie plot.

The Fear

As the young man, future church official, sat down in the movie theater and the movie began, fear gripped his heart.  It wasn’t necessarily the movie caused the fear.  His fear came because he became aware that there are two realities in the world, not one.  Here is how I recorded the quote as I listened to him:

“I was terrified of this movie.  I watched the whole thing scrunched down in my seat with my jacket pulled up and my thumbs plugged in my ears.”

What was he afraid of?  This was the source of his fear:

“I became aware that there are really two worlds, two realities that exist together.  There is the world of furniture and roads, and cars, and rooms, and walls.  That is reality.  But there is another reality.  There is the temporal and the eternal.  They are very different realms that exist together.”

The Conversion

On his way back to his dorm room, he was afraid of every shadow, every bush.  But he also heard in his head the voice of a youth pastor that he once heard speak explaining the way of salvation.  So, when he got back to his dorm, he got on his knees and said,

“Jesus, if you’re real, come to me now.  I need you.”

And Jesus came.

Jesus Preaching About Spiritual Warfare

Most of the people to whom you preach, I imagine, are also pretty unaware of the two realities as they go through life.  And yet, Jesus made clear that the two realities.  Jesus said in Luke 11:20:

20 But if I drive out demons by the finger of God, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.

Obviously, he believed that there was another reality beyond the one that we are facing.

The Apostle Paul

The Apostle Paul wrote this to the church in Ephesus as recorded in chapter 6:

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

There are two realities to consider as we go through our lives.  Preaching about spiritual warfare in your church will be a help to your congregation.   You can broaden the perspective of your people, and that will help them view their world better.  Stay tuned as we consider this subject in the upcoming posts on this blog.