Fellowsville AG Faith Begins at Home Twelve Week
There are three reasons we lose our battles:
There are three reasons we lose our battles:
-We are confused as to who we are in Christ. (I addressed this in chapter 6.)
-We are ignorant of how to exercise spiritual authority in our lives. (I explained spiritual authority in chapters 7 and 8.)
-We don’t tap into the glorious riches of our spiritual inheritance, as described in , while we’re going to war in the trenches. This is where we are now.
1 This letter is from Paul, chosen by the will of God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus. I am writing to God’s holy people in Ephesus, who are faithful followers of Christ Jesus. 2 May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give you grace and peace. 3 All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ. 4 Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes. 5 God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure. 6 So we praise God for the glorious grace he has poured out on us who belong to his dear Son. 7 He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins. 8 He has showered his kindness on us, along with all wisdom and understanding. 9 God has now revealed to us his mysterious will regarding Christ—which is to fulfill his own good plan. 10 And this is the plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ—everything in heaven and on earth. 11 Furthermore, because we are united with Christ, we have received an inheritance from God, for he chose us in advance, and he makes everything work out according to his plan. 12 God’s purpose was that we Jews who were the first to trust in Christ would bring praise and glory to God. 13 And now you Gentiles have also heard the truth, the Good News that God saves you. And when you believed in Christ, he identified you as his own by giving you the Holy Spirit, whom he promised long ago. 14 The Spirit is God’s guarantee that he will give us the inheritance he promised and that he has purchased us to be his own people. He did this so we would praise and glorify him. 15 Ever since I first heard of your strong faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for God’s people everywhere, 16 I have not stopped thanking God for you. I pray for you constantly, 17 asking God, the glorious Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, to give you spiritual wisdom and insight so that you might grow in your knowledge of God. 18 I pray that your hearts will be flooded with light so that you can understand the confident hope he has given to those he called—his holy people who are his rich and glorious inheritance. 19 I also pray that you will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe him. This is the same mighty power 20 that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms. 21 Now he is far above any ruler or authority or power or leader or anything else—not only in this world but also in the world to come. 22 God has put all things under the authority of Christ and has made him head over all things for the benefit of the church. 23 And the church is his body; it is made full and complete by Christ, who fills all things everywhere with himself.
Our battles are not against the devil himself; they are against his attacks on our faith. If we tremble in the trenches, he knows we are dealing with some kind of doubt regarding God’s willingness or ability to meet our every need. He hopes that we have believed his lie that we are cut off from our supply line.
A critical aspect of warfare is keeping the supply lines going. Defensively, an army must have good logistics in managing soldiers’ basic needs and the necessary weapons for war. Offensively, an army might disrupt the supply line of its enemy.
Napoleon Bonaparte once said, “An army marches on its stomach.” His army lost more soldiers because of spoiled food than from the battle. In 1795, Napoleon offered a prize of 12,000 francs to anyone who could devise a reliable method of food preservation for his army. This effort resulted in the first attempts to store food for extended periods of time in cans and ultimately led to modern food canning methods.
Napoleon knew what we forget. The supply line must stay strong. Too many of us are ill-equipped for the battles we’re fighting. And although our supply lines have not been broken and our food never spoils, we lose our battles because we fall prey to the Enemy’s lies and live as spiritual paupers when in reality we are children of the King. The King always gives His children more than enough provision to succeed. In this chapter, you are going to discover the glorious riches that are yours for the war.
, a Bodacious Promise
19 And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus.
My God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.
There you have it, a bodacious promise right out of God’s Word. God will supply all that you need. And when He does, His resources don’t even begin to be exhausted.
The problem is:
We don’t know what we need.
We don’t know how to access what we need. (Talk about this in next chapter)
We don’t know how to use what we need in battle. (Talk about this in Chapter 11 Part 1)
Let’s address these problems one at a time.
We don’t know what we need
Sometimes we think we need one thing when in reality we need something totally different. We can pray and pray and pray and even though we think the enemy is having more success than we are, we need to remind ourselves that the plans of the Lord will not be thwarted as says,
2 “I know that you can do anything, and no one can stop you.
(Illustration of being pregnant with Jordan and me being mad)
Many of my prayers are out of kilter. I beg God to give me things that are not what I really need. When He doesn’t do what I tell Him to do, I get angry and confused and all put out with the seeming victory that Satan’s scored. Sometimes I’m like James and John’s mother asking for something I don’t really want. (I referenced this request in chapter 6 in the discussion of the I mentality.)
How often do we pray our children out of trouble or into pleasure or even to avoid the natural consequences of their poor decisions? I think there are many times when God might address us like Nanny McPhee addressed Simon when she made sure he was ready to face the consequences of his decision no matter what they might be. “Are you sure this is what you want? Are you willing to face the consequences?”
How much more
We tend to cut off our own supply line when we ask for the wrong things and get duped into thinking we need one thing when really we need another. I love what Jesus taught us in :
11 “You fathers—if your children ask for a fish, do you give them a snake instead? 12 Or if they ask for an egg, do you give them a scorpion? Of course not! 13 So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him.”
Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!
Notice that the implication is that an earthly father will never give his son something evil when he asks him for something good. And yet Jesus didn’t say the father would actually give his son what he was asking for, He just implied that the father would give good gifts to his children. But the real message here is in these three words: how much more.
Jesus told those listening that when we ask Him for things that we think are good, when we ask Him for what we think we want, how much more will He answer our prayers with what we really need, with all that will continue to supply us with all that we need all of the time!
We need more of the Holy Spirit in our homes
“‘The glory of this present house will be greater than the glory of the former house,’ says the Lord Almighty. ‘And in this place I will grant peace,’ declares the Lord Almighty” ().
9 The future glory of this Temple will be greater than its past glory, says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies. And in this place I will bring peace. I, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, have spoken!”
The Holy Spirit is what you need. And how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him! Perhaps He’s banking on your persistence as He seemingly delays in answering your prayers.
What’s So Glorious About Those Spiritual Riches?
They are delivered in a person, the person of God himself in the form of the Holy Spirit. He is what you need. In the next chapter, I will tell you how to access the riches of God and how to use them in battle.
QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER:
1. Think about the situation you are fighting today. When is the last time you felt like the devil scored a win?
2. Which of your prayers are not being answered right now? What might God be up to? Don’t forget that nothing is impossible for Him.
3. What do you need most on your battlefield today? Can the Holy Spirit deliver that?