As believers, spiritual warfare is a term we become familiar with very fast. We understand than when we choose to stand with God, we make a stand against the enemy of our souls. But how do we fight an enemy that has spent eons perfecting his weapons?
The answer is: spiritual warfare Scriptures. God has not left us defenseless against our enemy. He has given us the Word of God to defend ourselves against the evil one. Spiritual warfare Scriptures are our weapon to tear down and dismantle the strongholds of the enemy.
What are Spiritual Warfare Scriptures?
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Here’s the thing about spiritual warfare: it’s different for everyone. Oh, the stakes are still the same–the enemy wants us to lose our eternal salvation. He uses similar tactics but the exact thing that will leave us crumbled on the battlefield varies per believer.
Spiritual warfare Scriptures will therefore differ for every believer. Let me explain what I mean. Hebrews 12:1 talks about the “besetting sin”.
We get that phrase from the Greeķ word euperístatos, (pronounced yoo-per-is’-tat-os); which could have been translated to mean well standing around, i.e. (a competitor) thwarting (a racer) in every direction (figuratively, of sin in genitive case), or which doth so easily beset.
We all struggle with sin. But some of us seem to struggle with a particular one more than others. One possible explanation is that a particular sin may become a stronghold in our lives.
What are strongholds?
The word stronghold showed up early in Scripture. We first read about a stronghold in Judges 9:46,
Now when all the men of the tower of Shechem had heard that, they entered the stronghold of the temple of the god Berith.
One of the words translated as “stronghold” is the Hebrew word tsᵉrîyach, (pronounced tser-ee’-akh). The word could have been translated to mean a sense of clearness of vision, a citadel, high place, or hold. Based on the context in which tsᵉrîyach was used, we get the sense that a stronghold was a place that was meant to be secure.
Another word used for “stronghold” in the Old Testament was the Hebrew word mâtsûwd, or (feminine) mᵉtsûwdâh, or mᵉtsudâh; (pronounced maw-tsood’). Other ways to translate these words are for a net, or castle, defense, fort, fortress, stronghold, or, strong place.
Again, the context clues give the impression that strongholds were meant to be safe and secure spaces.
In 2 Corinthians, Paul wrote the following words to the believers,
For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds (2 Corinthians 10:4 KJV).
By the time of Paul’s letter, the idea of a military fortress would have been a familiar one. Jews and Gentiles alike would have recognized that a stronghold was a place of strength. It was easily defended by the one who occupied it, but difficult to penetrate if you were outside.
Yet, here was Paul giving the church an insider secret that would allow believers to not only infiltrate strongholds but also to dismantle them.
The word translated as strongholds in Paul’s letter to the Corinthians is the Greek word ochýrōma, (pronounced okh-oo’-ro-mah). It could be translated literally to mean a castle or figuratively, to mean an argument.
Ochýrōma is used only once in Scripture and the context suggests that it refers to anything on which one relies. It’s used to refer to the arguments and reasonings a disputant may use in an attempt to fortify his opinion and defend it against his opponent.
You’ll notice that the New Testament word ochýrōma builds on the Old Testament concept of stronghold. Still, it’s important to add another layer of meaning to truly understand what a stronghold is.
The Cambridge Dictionary defines stronghold in the following ways:
- a building or position that is strongly defended
- a rebel stronghold
- a place or area where a particular belief or activity is common
The strongholds that Paul spoke about were the destructive mindsets that had set in among the church at Corinth. The Corinthians were being swayed by Christians who appeared to be “more” than Paul. They were richer, better speakers, and more charismatic, but their doctrine was false.
It’s this mindset of looking at a person’s outward appearance and using it as a measure of worth that Paul was warning against. And isn’t that something we still struggle with today?
Whatever strongholds the enemy wants to build up in your lives, know that you have powerful weapons of spiritual warfare.
How to Pray Against the Attacks of Enemy
Ephesians 6:10-17 tells us that we are engaged in a spiritual battle and that we have enemies in high places. But we’re also told that we have armor and a sword with which to protect and defend ourselves against the enemy.
The most powerful weapon we have in our arsenal is the Word of God. God’s word is living and active and is a powerful weapon for the breaking down of strongholds.
As you engage in spiritual warfare with the enemy, learn to pray God’s Word. If you’re not sure where to start, here are some spiritual warfare Scriptures to get you started.
Spiritual Warfare Scriptures to Combat Fear
Fear is one of the great weapons of the enemy. The devil knows that if he can get us to focus on our fear, we’ll be too weak to stand against him. Therefore, when you feel afraid, meditate on these verses:
Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10
For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. 2 Timothy 1:7
Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you. Luke 10:19 ESV
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. Isaiah 43:2 ESV
‘You shall not fear them, for it is the Lord your God who fights for you.’ Deuteronomy 3:22 ESV
Spiritual Warfare Scriptures to Strengthen You
Fighting against a mighty enemy can make you aware of how weak and puny you are in comparison. Thank God we don’t have to fight alone. When you feel weak, meditate on Scriptures that remind you of the power of the God you serve.
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. James 4:7 ESV
For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. 2 Corinthians 10:4 ESV
“No weapon that is fashioned against you shall succeed, and you shall confute every tongue that rises against you in judgment. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord and their vindication from me, declares the Lord.” Isaiah 54:17 ESV
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. Romans 8:37 ESV
“For nothing will be impossible with God.” Luke 1:37 ESV
Spiritual Warfare Scriptures to Increase Your Faith
Our faith is one of our greatest weapons against the enemy, hence, it is an area that he attacks very often. When you feel your faith waning, meditate on these verses:
Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. 1 Timothy 6:12 ESV
For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world except the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God? 1 John 5:4-5 ESV
Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. 1 John 4:4 ESV
The Lord will rescue me from every evil deed and bring me safely into his heavenly kingdom. To him be the glory forever and ever. Amen. 2 Timothy 4:18 ESV
Don’t forget to download the 3-page Spiritual Warfare Scriptures PDF so you can have a copy on hand when the devil attacks.
Praise as a Spiritual Warfare Weapon
I bet you’re wondering, is praise a weapon of warfare? I can assure you, it is. There is nothing the enemy hates more than when we give glory and honor to God. Use your praise as a weapon against the enemy.
Sing hymns, sing spiritual songs. Read the psalms aloud or set them to music and use them as a way to not only remind yourself of the faithfulness of God, but also to fight the spiritual battle against the enemy.
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