The Greek word translated "war" means to "execute the apostolate." Apostolate literally means the "office of apostle." The word translated "warfare" comes from the Greek word that means "apostolic career." The word translated "thought" is the same word used in 2 Corinthians 2:11 which says, "lest Satan should take advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devices."
The word translated devices, means a perception, or the intellect, or a device, mind, or thought. Now that.... is revealing!
The real warfare begins in our mind and in our thoughts. Second, Satan's goal is to trip up our thinking. He does this by setting traps in our thoughts and minds and God gave us the apostolic gift specifically, to help with our strategic thinking. Satan's goal is to blow up God's plans in people's lives while Jesus calls us to follow Him and Jesus' purpose is to destroy th works of the enemy (1 John 3:8).
Satan's devices are like the IED's (improvised explosive devices) used by Islamic terrorists to kill, maim and destroy using great violence or the threat of violence to intimidate and manipulate a people to comply with their wishes. Unbridled fear is a very useful tool for the devil and his children.
Paul's admonition in 2 Timothy 1:7 gives insight into how to guard against unbridled fear. He says, "For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind." God did not give us a "spirit of fear." But He has given us love perfect love which casts out all fear (1 John 4:18). He's also given us power and the ability and the choice, to develop a disciplined thought life. When we do that we can pull down strongholds, arguments and every proud that exalts itself against the knowledge of God.
How does he set these traps and what are his goals? I submit to you Satan’s goals and techniques are revealed through his nature and his name. For example, consider John 8:44 which says, “You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.”
Satan is first mentioned in scripture in 1 Chronicles 2:11 and in Job 1:6-7. In Hebrew his name literally means adversary or opponent. In John he is call the devil and identified as a murderer and the father of lies or habitual liars. Devil means false accuser or slanderer. These are the tools of his trade.
The devil sets his IED’s (improvised evil devices) using lies, slander and false accusations. He uses these tools to ensnare people with their words. He wants to trap us in our thinking.
Satan is also a murderer. It’s his nature. It does not matter to him what it is. He’ll murder the truth and people’s reputation. John 10:10 says he comes to kill, steal and destroy. So beware of his "mind" fields. He will deploy as many devices as he can.
How do we disarm these demonic IED's?
We meditate upon God's word to get it from our head to our heart and pray:
- Philippians 2:5 Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus,
- 2 Corinthians 10:5 We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ
- Romans 12:1-3
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith.
Can you think of anywhere in your life where Satan is trying to trip you up?