Who Are We Wrestling?

Paul presented some excellent guidance for us to reexamine the source of our problems. Remember?

Finally, receive your power from the Lord and from his mighty strength. Put on all the armor that God supplies. In this way, you can take a stand against the devil’s strategies. This is not a wrestling match against a human opponent. We are wrestling with rulers, authorities, the powers who govern this world of darkness, and spiritual forces that control evil in the heavenly world (Ephesians 6:10-12)

Now, most translations render that as “We wrestle not with . . .” or “We do not wrestle with . . .” But the problem is that all we read is, “We do not wrestle . . .” My friends, we do indeed wrestle! But what Paul is saying is that when we wrestle, understand that you are not wrestling with the people (or circumstances) you appear to be struggling with. Does that make sense, to you? When you are facing situations that are overwhelming you; or people who are persecuting you; understand who is truly your enemy. What did Jesus do when he was hanging on the cross and people were cursing him, throwing things at him? Well, He didn’t curse them back; He didn’t wish for a better reception; think ungodly thoughts about them. No, He prayed for them! “Father, please forgive them. They have no idea what they are doing.” That is a whole lot different from how most of us react when we face difficult circumstances.

No, we need to understand that we are wrestling “rulers, authorities, powers who govern this world of darkness, and spiritual forces that control evil in the heavenly world!” This is why we are to “take up all the armor that God supplies. Then [we] will be able to take a stand during these evil days. Once you have overcome all obstacles, you will be able to stand your ground” (Romans 6:10-13)

The Amplified Version gives an excellent rendition of verse 12:

For we are not wrestling with flesh and blood [contending only with physical opponents], but against the despotisms, against the powers, against [the master spirits who are] the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly (supernatural) sphere.

Yeah, it probably would be easier if we were fighting against flesh and blood. I mean, shoot, at least we could see them! But no, Paul was still “convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:38-39). Amen!

I am serious! If Christ has indeed “disarmed the principalities and powers and made a public example of them, triumphing over them in him” (Colossians 2:15), why should we worry about those powers and principalities of evil?

We have nothing to be afraid of or worry about since we will immediately be with our Lord at death! We never have to be afraid of fallen angels, or of principalities, because Jesus has disarmed them! We never have to be afraid of things to come, things in the past, or things in the present. Nope, we can live worry-free and completely unburdened from any of that trash. Our Lord is indeed King!

Doulos Studies

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