“Be strong in the Lord, and in the strength of His might. Put on the full armor of God, that you may be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.” (Ephesians 6:10–12)
Through the years, many dear friends had mentioned the possibility that my perplexing physical issues might have something to do with spiritual warfare. Frankly, these suggestions puzzled and frightened me. I was well acquainted with the story of Job from the Scriptures; however, I believed that after Christ’s resurrection, Satan no longer had the power and authority to torment Christians in the way he tormented Job. I was terrified to think that demons might have the ability to wreak such havoc on a believer in Christ. Furthermore, as a Reformed Presbyterian, I believed this idea attributed more power to Satan than he actually had. My understanding was incorrect. I am willing to die for the truth that God alone is sovereign! Satan has no power except that which is given to him by the living and true God. Yet, the Scriptures do teach that we are engaged in a battle, and it is “not against flesh and blood.” At times, God gives demons permission to buffet us. However, their power is limited. Also, when God allows this kind of suffering, it is always for His glory and our good.
What about you, dear friends? Have you wrestled with the reality that, though we belong to Christ, we still are vulnerable to oppression from the enemy?
Note: This is an exerpt from Chapter 14 of my book.