Spiritual Warfare

spiritual warfare 5

To most pastors in developed countries, spiritual warfare may be just a subject they studied in bible college or seminary. But to many missionaries in the Third World, spiritual warfare is a reality they have to contend with, sometimes at great personal cost.

In the Fall of 2011, the church-planting team in Chiayi province was surveying the towns in search of a location for their church plant. Part of the preparation involved prayer walks to observe the condition of the “land”, to “plough the soil”, and to claim the neighborhood for Christ. One particular community in Beigang with the largest Mazu temple in the area proved to be one of Satan’s strongholds, where a spiritual battle with casualties was fought.

Beigang Chaotian Temple

Beigang Chaotian Temple

The team was engaged in a “Jericho walk”, driving around the temple seven times as the distance was too long to walk. As they drove around the seventh time and prayed out loud for God to bind and cast out the dark forces, one missionary saw black smoke in the form of a Chinese dragon rushing skyward. She was startled but did not know what it meant. However, shortly thereafter the team leader was struck by a strange disease.

He went to preach one evening before Christmas, but the following day lost all memory of what happened the day before. He went through his appointment book, but could not recall any of the meetings he attended or the people he met. Some thought he had a stroke because of work stress, but no medical causes could be discovered. The result was that he had to step down from his position as leader to recover, and the whole team suffered a setback as he was the champion behind the vision they shared.

Some feel the timing was only a coincidence, but others believe that it was the enemy attacking the health of key members to disable their church-planting campaign. However you interpret it, the leadership vacuum did cause the team to lose momentum as temporary measures were put in place until a long-term replacement could be found.

Satan will use any tactic to harm God’s people to hurt His cause. Some Christian leaders fell because of money, others sex, still others power. For those who do not succumb to such temptations, he might use persecution or physical attacks, including illness. Pray for your leaders. They are the target because when they fall, they bring down many with them. Know the reality of spiritual warfare. Put on the full armor of God. It is the only way you can stand and advance.

Whole Armor of God

Whole Armor of God

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