2009 Spiritual Warfare Series, Part 8
The Sword of the Spirit
When I was a Kid on things I loved was the three musketeers – Not the candy Bar
A) The Movies and the Show – Dartanian – Fav
All for one – one for all.
B) Those guys were smooth – great swordsmen
1) Wooden Swords – toy plastic swords
C) Another thing I loved was King Arthur – famous Sword – Excalibur –
1) Sword with great Power
Tonight we are talking about a Sword that isn’t fictional – isn’t make believe
A) Real – an if – Excalibur was real the power of this sword would blow it away!
B) The Sword of the Spirit – The word of God
1) The sword is the part of the armor that is the weapon.
C) The other pieces are for Defending –
1) The Sword is used for both offense and defense.
Again not a literal sword: Can’t buy a sword of the Spirit in the Sporting goods section of Wal-Mart
A) Like the other pieces of Armor – symbolic of our Spiritual identity in Christ –
B) And of the tools that He has equipped us with.
The picture of the Word of God as sword implies its power!
A) The sword wasn’t used in battle to tap your enemy on the Shoulder –
B) It was used to Kill him!
C) To consider how the word is powerful consider four things.
#1 God uses His word to accomplish His Sovereign purpose.
"For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven, and do not return there, but water the earth,
and make it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater,
So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth;
It shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.”
God works through His Word!
#2 God uses His word to save Sinners!
“We have been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever.”
#3 God uses His word to expose our sin and to restore our souls.
“For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. 13 And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.”
“The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul.” NIV
#4 God uses His word to equip us for every good deed.
“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.”
When Paul says that the Word is adequate to equip us for every good deed, he is not thinking primarily of giving us the methods that we need for ministry.
Rather, he means that the Word will impart to us the wisdom and godly character that we need to serve God effectively.
God powerfully uses plain, ordinary people whose lives are in conformity with His Word.
Ministry is not primarily about getting the right techniques or methods.
Rather, it is about being a godly person through God’s
Word and God’s using His Word through you to others.
The idea of the Sword also reminds us that Satan is not content to just shoot missiles at us from a distance but He likes to get close.
A) Here is what we need to understand – about what Paul is saying here –
B) When He says the Sword is the word of God – the word he uses here for the Word is interesting.
1) It is not the Greek word Logos – which is the most common word used to describe the Bible.
C) The Logos refers to the total utterance of God – the complete revelation of what God said.
1) Logos is the general revelation – it is the whole of what God said.
D) Which is symbolized for us in the Armor in the Belt of truth. General Knowledge Scripture.
When Paul says that the Sword of the Spirit is The Word of God. – He uses the Greek word Rhema. Used far less than Logos
A) The Rhema refers to specific spoken statements from God’s word.
B) Specific to the particular attack that Satan is bringing against us.
C) It is not General – but specific –
1) Not just holding my Bible up and saying – Satan I rebuke in the name of the truth -
D) Not quoting –
E) It is speaking specific words of truth that has specific application to the immediate situation.
Just as a small dagger is applied with skill and precision to a vital area of the body, so we must learn to use the Word carefully and expertly, applying specific principles from it to every situation we face.
Note there is power in Speaking forth the word of God into that Situation.
We have a great example of this from the Life of Jesus. Wilderness to be tempted.
A) Jesus spoke with Precision concerning each attack of the enemy –
B) His handling of the word – illustrates for us the offensive aspect of the word –
1) He wasn’t just deflecting the attacks of the enemy but he was going on the offensive.
C) Each time stating what man was to be doing –what man was to be about –
1) Totally contrary to what Satan was suggesting.
His Baptism – Validation from Father –
Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.
God set this up – So Jesus could be our complete High Priest -
2 And when He had fasted forty days and forty nights, afterward He was hungry.
1st attack – Satan is going to attack Jesus in an area that had to do with his flesh – Hunger
3 Now when the tempter came to Him, he said, "If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread."
Now what Satan doing here?
Questioning the Sonship of Jesus - If really God's Son questioning - the FATHER’S PROVISION
Now The Father spoke at the baptism this is my .... pleased.
A) But here Satan is challenging the very words God had spoken: saying: If you are really God's Son - why still hungry?
B) Satan does the same thing in your life - my life - says: If you are a child of God where's Father's provision?
C) Why are bills piling up? Why lacking? Maybe you should take a second job? Why are you sick?
4 But He answered and said, Duet 8:3 "It is written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.'"
Here is what Jesus was declaring: Goes on the offensive – quoting Duet.
A) Pleasing God is more important and more satisfying than pleasing my flesh!
B) Jesus is saying: There is something more important than the material physical realm
1) More important than the physical food is the Spiritual food.
C) Remember that next time – the enemy is tempting you to indulge your flesh.
1) There is something way more satisfying than indulging my flesh – Intimacy with God.
Receiving from God
2nd temptation: Changes – doesn’t say – Look at that Cactus. Changes the tactic
5 Then the devil took Him up into the holy city, set Him on the pinnacle of the temple, 6 and said to Him, "If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down.
For it is
written: Satan quotes scripture
'He shall give His angels charge over you,' and,
'In their hands they shall bear you up,
Lest you dash your foot against a stone.'"
This time Satan is challenging Jesus to put the Fathers Protection to the test.
A) If you are really God’s son – prove it – through yourself off – it is written …….
B) Now for Jesus to have followed Satan’s suggestion would have been, in the eyes of many Jews, sure proof of His messiahship.
C) According to William Barclay, that is exactly the sort of proof many purported messiahs of that day were trying to give.
1) A man named Theudas led a group of people from the
D) An Egyptian pretender claimed he would lay fiat the walls of
7 Jesus said to him, "It is written again, 'You shall not tempt the Lord your God.'" Duet 6:16
A) Jesus knew to test God is to doubt God. To doubt God is not to trust Him, and not to trust Him is sin.
B) That, of course, is what Satan wanted Jesus to do.
1) To induce Jesus to sin, if that were possible, would shatter His perfect holiness, and therefore shatter His divinity and man’s hope of salvation.
C) Had Jesus put His Father to such a test, He would have separated Himself from His Father and perverted the divine plan of redemption-the very purpose for which He had come to earth.
D) Note again – A Specific word – to the Specific temptation.
8 Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. 9 And he said to Him, "All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me."
What is going on here? Questioning the FATHER’S PROMISE Father promised all things to the Son!
A) Satan was saying the world is mine to give away - It's all yours if you bow down and worship me!
B) Note Jesus doesn't refute this - true - God gave world to man - forfeited to Satan - Jesus redeem back!
A) Satan was SAYING - Don't have to go to cross! Short cut!
B) Satan does the same thing to us - question promise of God - tries to offer us short cuts!
1) Compromise in your business! Tired of waiting? Settle for second best - make it happen now!
C) Quit waiting for husband to get it together - he never will - look at this guy!
1) Single Sister – Quit waiting for that Christian Guy – Forever
What Does Jesus Do? He once again Jesus takes out His sword Duet 6:13 10 Then Jesus said to him, "Away with you, Satan! For it is written, 'You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.'"
There is only one God worth worshipping – and serving! Not even giving this a 2nd thought
11 Then the devil left Him, and behold, angels came and ministered to Him.
So there is a great example of Jesus using specific scriptures - Rhema Word
Now this shows us the importance of Knowing the word. Memorizing scripture.
A) Now you might be thinking – I am in trouble then because I just don’t know enough – never remember
B) Useful tool – The Bible Promise Book –
1) Index subjects – You know the areas where you are most prone to be attacked – Memorize verses.
Write them down have them near by – Bible
C) Use the word:
God is our refuge and strength,
A very present help in trouble.
2 Therefore we will not fear,
Even though the earth be removed,
And though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea;
3 Though its waters roar and be troubled,
Though the mountains shake with its swelling.
“Cast your burden on the Lord,
And He shall sustain you;
He shall never permit the righteous to be moved.”
“For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, "Abba, Father."
"Do not fear, little flock, for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom.”
Psalm 27 – Amazing
Patience to wait on God:
“Wait on the Lord; be of good courage,
and He shall strengthen your heart;
Wait, I say, on the Lord!”
29 He gives power to the weak,
And to those who have no might He increases strength.
30 Even the youths shall faint and be weary,
And the young men shall utterly fall,
31 But those who wait on the Lord
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.
“He has shown you, O man, what is good;
And what does the Lord require of you
But to do justly, To love mercy,
And to walk humbly with your God?”
Using the word – Speaking Rhema –
A) Satan is defeated
B) We must remember – Not fighting for Victory but from a Position of Victory
1) Jesus was Victorious
C) Remember Communion -