Beginners guide to spiritual warfare

The terminology I use in this post is there to bring forth and display reality as it is. It is not intended to radicalize opinions or stir up false emotions. Please consider that as you continue to read.

Strong words in the headline. Spiritual warfare. What does that mean? When I look at the world surrounding me I know that all objects that I see with my eyes also has a “hidden” side to them. If I see a stone I recognize it for what it is. But I also know it has a hidden side to it. I know that I can use it either to build a house for example or throw it on someone. As an object without will it is subject to my will, my choice. It is still a stone but the “hidden” side of it, its story depends on the will of another subject, namely man. It is this ability of man, to choose and therefore have dominion over creation, that makes him aware of what he is. It is actually, partially, this ability that makes man able to know himself.

Since we are partially (not fundamentally) defined by choices it is also choice that is the D-day of spiritual warfare. It is our choice that is the “Normandie” of our souls. And D-day is every day for the one that views the world with open eyes. This ability to choose and impose our will on creation places man in the armies of spiritual warfare. In what army depends on the choices you make.  Warfare is the consequence of one (or two or more) entities refusal to communicate. In the common understanding of warfare it is the enforcing of ones will by way of physical pressure (violence) instead of diplomacy (communication). The physical suffering and violence that manifests in war is the manifestation of a spiritual breakdown. It is the end of communication with the goal of eradicating the other.

Have you ever wondered why we are so fascinated by movies that portrays the struggle between good and evil? Well, I would suggest that you are fascinated because you are a part of it. Your soul engages in warfare every day whether your are aware of it or not. You make choices every day. You either choose to join the good army or the army of evil in every single choice you make. Sometimes it may feel like you  can’t make a good decision because you don’t have all the information. But I tell you, it is your responsibility to know. As a “soldier” you communicate with “headquarters” every day. You keep the lines of communication open so that you have access to the information you need to make decisions concerning life and death. The big question though is which head quarter you are communicating with. And if you say that you do not communicate with any side because they “don’t exist” (secularism) then that means that you by not making a choice is like that stone in the beginning. If you don’t make choices everyday you are subject to others will and choices (be it what clothes to wear, helping a stranger or what tv program to watch). By not choosing, you are choosing. And it is not the good side you are choosing by “non-choice”. In “no mans land”, between the frontlines there is corpses everywhere…

No, to keep the “high-ground” in any battle you need to have working communication. You need to tell command about your troubles and needs. You need to acknowledge your mistakes and you need to give thanks for “air support” and comrades. You also need to listen to the information that command send you and act on it. Communication (prayer) is essential for survival and for keeping the upper hand. You also need to check your gear (Eph 6:14 – 17). A blow to the head without the helmet on may be the last thing you experience.

Weather you like it or not, believe it or not, this world is at war. The physical wars of this world is only a reflection of what is going on in the spiritual realm. They are two sides of the same coin. Like in any war there are strongholds and there are different soldiers and powers. I will write about these in the coming weeks, approaching the Global Day of Prayer. But to talk about these strongholds, tactics, battle strategy and the best gear, we need to acknowledge that we are at war. We need to open communication, or at least turn on the radio to listen to “High Command”. A head in the sand will eventually take the better of you. Denying reality will eventually cost you your life.

You need to look behind the curtain that the evil powers of this world has tried to cover your eyes with and prepare yourself to join the fight that has been raging in the world ever since that “brightest of stars fell from the heavens”.

In Christ.

Fr. Jakob

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