SWORDS Bible Study: Ephesians 6:12

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    • #43429

      SWORDS Bible Study: Ephesians 6:12

      By Mari


      Eph 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

      What exactly does Paul mean when he says we don’t wrestle against flesh and blood? He means that our fight is not with people! 

      While it may appear that it is (for many reasons) our fight is not with the people themselves, it is with the principalities, powers, rulers of the darkness of this world, and spiritual wickedness in high places that stand behind these people, and motivate them.

      We are in this battle because WE as believers ARE children of the light (1Th 5:5), ARE children of God (Ro 8:16). Those who do NOT believe on Christ are NOR children of light, they are NOT children of God, they are “the children of disobedience” (Eph. 2:2) who are under the RULE of these principalities and powers, these rulers of the darkness of this world, and spiritual wickedness in high places!

      Since these unseen rulers are under the rule of Satan, these people are likewise under the rule of Satan. Satan is “the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience” (Eph. 2:2). These people may not know this about themselves, and others may not be able to see this in them, but it is true nevertheless!

      Even people whom we think are sweet and kind…without having placed their faith in Christ, they ARE of the darkness. How do we know this? By the word of God! The Word tells us that when we were UNSAVED, we too were darkness (Eph. 5:8)

      It is important to remember that we cannot form alliances with those who are in darkness because the word of God tells us this:

      2Co_6:14 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?

      We are unique in Christ! Jesus Christ is our Saviour God, our Lord. It is He whom we look up to with respect and praise. It is the fellowship with our fellow believers that is wonderful and building in Christ. And it is through Christ that we have a heart for the lost. While we may be careful in our alliances, we remember we are not wrestling against flesh and blood, but are witnessing to those who do not have or know the way of eternal life.

      Everyone has a friend, or a child, or a parent, or even a spouse that is unsaved—and we love these dear ones! We must deal with them sometimes on a daily basis, with love and care. Taking great care not to let their wickedness influence us.

      Remember, there are NO gray spiritual areas. There is being in the light of God, or being in the dark of evil.

      1Jn_1:5   This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.

      Jas_1:17   Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

      The Bible’s position on this has always been INSULATION from the world, not ISOLATION. The Lord did not want us to be taken out of this evil world, but that we would be kept from evil! (John 17:15).

      The Lord wants us to know who we are in Him.

      1Th_5:5 Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.

      He tells us how we are to walk as His children:

      Eph_5:8 For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:

      He has told us we are soldiers:

      2Ti_2:3 Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.

      He has told us that we are Ambassadors:

      Eph_6:20 For which I am an ambassador in bonds: that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.

      He has given us a job to do for Him:

      Eph 3:9 And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:

      He has given ALL of us a ministry:

      2Co_5:18   And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;

      We are to take the gospel of the grace of God (Acts 20:24) to everyone we meet. Knowing that living in the Spirit, being in ministry brings us onto the spiritual battle field!

      However, be not afraid! HE has given us armor to put on for our protection in this battle!

      The battle that is NOT ultimately against people, but against Satan and his minions who work in the lives of those who are not saved, even in the lives of our loved ones. Make no mistake about this evil that surrounds us and opposes us.

      And this opposition is NOT just found in unbelievers, but ALSO in believers who have gone the way of the world, choosing to walk in the flesh instead of the Spirit. Choosing NOT to follow God ACCORDING to His word.

      Those who continue to teach a gospel not meant for the body of Christ today. Those who do not even know the only way they are stablish, is according to the gospel of Paul, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, ACCORDING to the revelation of the mystery….having no knowledge or understanding of the mystery that was kept secret since the world began… They actively oppose the word of God.

      Rom_16:25   Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began,

      They have been made of NO effect to the gospel of Christ.

      Are they saved? Yes, but they are of no earthly good to Christ and will lose rewards at the Judgment Seat of Christ.

      1Co 3:13 Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is.

      1Co 3:14 If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.

      1Co 3:15   If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.

      (Let me be clear about “ifs”. Today, God does not give any “ifs” when it comes to our salvation. That is, He does not say “if you do this, then you will be saved.” We believe on Jesus Christ and His sacrifice for our sins, and so we are saved. The “ifs” in these verses are speaking of rewards and loss of rewards.)

      These folks are sometimes the hardest to deal with because they are part of the Body of Christ, yet they appear to be against the cross of Christ. They are those who take no stand for doctrine and the truth of Christ. Instead of the word of God being their plumb line, what others feel or think, or their own feelings have taken precedence for what is right and wrong in their eyes.

      The cares of this world may have overcome many of them, and they may be oppressed by the devil or circumstances, giving way to their old man, no longer reckoning him dead.

      Though the person who believed is saved, they “shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.” They unwittingly allow the principalities, powers, et al, to have their way in their thoughts, actions—or non-action.

      Today we have been given a great blessing and MINISTRY.   EVERYONE who BELIEVES is given this ministry!

      Our ministry is called the ministry of RECONCILIATION.

      2Co_5:18   And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;

      OUR ministry of reconciliation is the one ministry that encompasses both the lost and the saved. Both need to be ministered to by us with the doctrines that make up reconciliation. We minister reconciliation to the saved so they understand how they need to operate in Christ.

      Put your armor on and live for the Lord!

      Do it because you love Him!

      Do it because He commands you to!

      Do it because His word protects you!

      Do it because God can protect others through you!

      Do it because you do not want to give the devil room to prod and poke and use you by giving him a place in your life! (Eph.4:27)

      Do it to stand in HIS word and truth.

      Do it because you would rather live for God!

      Do it so that when you are living with the unsaved, who may be dear to your heart, you understand what is motivating them, and give them the light of God in every word, action and deed! You may be the only light in their life!

      And all the while remember, you are NOT wrestling with flesh and blood. You are not wrestling with that person you love and care about; you ARE wrestling against principalities, against powersagainst the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. You cannot wrestle effectively without the armor of God, especially the sword of the Spirit!

      And make no mistake, that person you are dealing with may not want the light because they cannot perceive, or see, or even know about it…yet.

      If you entered a battlefield without any armor, with no provisions or direction, you would not last long. You would be swarmed by the enemy, taken captive or worse, and have done no good at all.

      There is also the possibility that an unclad soldier is likely to draw away stronger soldiers from their duty on the battlefield, because now they have to protect, carry, or otherwise drag the weak one back to safety!   Putting on your armor means you are fortified and may help to fortify others in the battle. Do NOT be the one that always relies on using the strength of others, because you have not followed the Lord’s directions to put on the armor of God!

      Our God gave us armor, He gave us provision, a weapon (sword of the Spirit) and direction (the gospel of the grace of God)! He has told us that while the war has already been won by Him, we are still in a daily battle!

      So, dress appropriately. (Put on your armor!)

      Know and trust your Leader. (We know Him through His word, the Bible.)

      Follow His directions. (Romans thru Philemon)

      Walk in the Spirit. (Make this choice daily)

      Speak boldly and encourage your loved ones. (Through your love and life in Him)

      Remember, the Apostle Paul instructs us to put on our spiritual armor because our battle in this world is a SPIRITUAL one.

      It is warfare that involves the trickery and power of the devil which is WRONG DOCTRINE, thoughts, ideas, philosophies, worldviews, teachings, traditions, etc. (Avoid false doctrines, thoughts et al by studying the word of God, not the words of men)

      Though human beings will certainly play a role in line with the devil, they are being used for the purposes of accomplishing evil. We need to remember that it is evil that is the true power behind those who oppose the things of God, whether or not they understand they are opposing the Lord.

      Keep in mind that we wrestle not in OUR own might and power, but in the power of HIS might:

      “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might” (Ephesians 6:10).

      Keep in mind that we need to put on the WHOLE armor of God to stand against the wiles of the devil.

      Eph 6:11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.

      Keep in mind that we are not wrestling people, but WRONG DOCTRINE, thoughts, ideas, philosophies, worldviews, teachings, traditions, etc., as well as our old man, and rulers of the darkness of this world, spiritual wickedness in high places.

      Eph 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.



      “I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; by which also ye are saved … that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:”

      – 1 Corinthians 15:1-4 (KJB)

    • #43434
      Sharleen Australia

      Thanks, Mari – after the lunch break I spoke about in the ‘Chat’ section this was like an injection of encouragement. Mind you all through the anti-God discussion I was aware I had the armour of God on. I am befriending one of the main critics and hope to have opportunities to talk with her. It is difficult if people don’t think for themselves and even if you give them a clear answer to their criticism they will jump on another and it’s too difficult to explain in a ‘sound-bite’. For example, at that lunch break, they were all asking how did people come for Adam and Eve having ONLY 2 sons and one killed the other…. I explained that the bible speaks about 3 sons and that also says they had another sons and daughters. Straight from this ‘major sticking point’ being answers was – well that’s incest and the bible tells us we can’t do that… Everyone joins in… So hard to break in and explain genetics and perfection in that atmosphere of ridicule and time restrictions. Also when so many other things are being laughed at. Hence, in the end, I remained quiet – knowing there is a time and place.

      Love this study – will read it again

    • #43457

      Thanks Sharleen….  I am re-writing all my old studies…now that I have learned so much more…want to shake some of the studies out!

      I love these studies too.  They are just the best for me!

      Justin reminded me of something….when I told him that the church here might only have me and Emmie…but at least the truth will be available here…he told me this: “It’s what the Lord would have you do no matter what. Increase may be seen in yourself”

      I sometimes forget that we do not always know the increase or outcome…but we still do what is right and I believe the Lord wants you to answer…whether they listen or understand or not…  HE has His reasons.  🙂  And…I forgot that sometimes it is the work He is doing in us as we do the right thing…not always those we are ministering too!


      I just love you all!

    • #43460
      Sharleen Australia

      Wow, that is a good thought. That sometimes it may be the work He is doing in us. I do see my work as a form of ministry – both to the residents and workers. I will answer when I can but some answers need time to elaborate on and they all know now that Adam and Eve had other sons and daughters.

      I just love this site – it is my fellowship life-line. I laugh at the thought that it is just you and Emmie in your church – all of us in SWORDS are part of the Montana ‘church’. The increase is the encouragement we get being able to ‘speak’ with fellow grace believers in ways we never could before. So be encouraged my sister in Christ.

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