Spiritual Warfare 201

By November 14, 2010Invisible War

Last week we had an introduction to the invisible war and a great discussion as a group. I personally thank each of you for stepping outside your comfort zone and sharing your personal stories. If you have been reading along with us, we’ve just finished reading about Spiritual Warfare 201 from Chip Ingram’s book The Invisible War: What Every Believer Needs to Know About Satan, Demons and Spiritual Warfare. By now you realize this book was not written to scare us or to turn the enemy into a scary movie character- the book was written to inform us and arm us with the knowledge of God’s Word in Ephesians 6. In our first week of study we developed an awareness for the invisible war and this week we received our basic training. We know victory has been won and we’ve been given a territory to protect. Ingram writes “when we follow God’s instructions, given through Paul in the letter to the Ephesians and through the rest of Scripture-we will be able to defeat Satan in the specific battles in our lives.” This week we learned how to use God’s battle gear in our daily living.

In Spiritual Warfare 201, we pick up the battle gear and put it on.This is an action we do, and should be as natural as our morning routine- when practiced daily and with intention. The enemy waits until you are no longer at the top of your game, and then he attempts to deceive you, discourage you and turn your heart away from the Lord. “We need to be prepared not just to resist when we are strong, confident and on guard but also to resist when we are least able to do it” writes Ingram. He then leads us through the metaphors for spiritual armor as listed in  scripture.

We read about the differences between conviction and condemnation and how the enemy can turn this against us in spiritual warfare. Ingram assures us “God’s desire is never to condemn, its to draw you back into a relationship with the Father.” When we are deceived with condemnation, we respond by hiding, denial and blame shifting. Always filter anything in your heart with the truth of scripture. If you draw closer to God, you’ve been convicted by Him. Rest in Him. If you hide, blame others or deny what you hear…fight back with full battle gear.

Prayer Requests

For the next week, pray Psalm 139:23-24 everyday: Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me and know my anxious thoughts; And see if there be any hurtful way in me, And lead me in the everlasting way.

Please read our Prayer Wall and intercede for those asking for your prayers. Submit your own prayer requests and allow us to pray with you.

Chip Ingram Quotes

  • You can’t win the battle if you don’t know you’re in it.
  • There are only two responses: do nothing or prepare. But the fact of the battle is given.
  • The key to living in victory and making the most of God’s grace begins with the armor we wear.
  • God is not a cosmic cop but a loving Father.
  • God’s grace is greater not only than all our sin, but also all our guilt.
  • When God works His truth into our hearts, we are called to live it out 24/7
  • You do not have to live where the condemnations of your heart take you.
  • God does not want you standing in the middle of an invisible war without any protection over your heart.
  • Satan wants us to fall for an easier gospel, a prettier gospel, or a more socially respectable gospel.
  • Satan rarely temps us with the “big sins”… he takes us down the delicate path of deception, an inch at a time.
  • God has given you the armor. It’s your responsibility to pick it up, put it on, and practice it.
  • Faith is based on fact, not feelings.

This Week’s Memory Verse

Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. Ephesians 6:13-15 NIV

For Next Week

  • We’re reading Spiritual Warfare 301
  • Please read chapters 9 through 12 in your Invisible War book
  • If you are watching the DVD or TV series, please watch session five and six How to Do Battle with the Enemy

Group DiscussionAnswer one or as many as you want

  1. On page 78, Ingram writes “we have His Spirit and His various gifts, we have been joined to the spiritual body of Christ, and we have been promised an inheritance that includes forgiveness, peace and spiritual fruit. All of this territory is accomplished by Jesus and given to us by grace. When we prayed to receive Christ in faith, we received all this as our possession.” Is there any God-given spiritual territory you have already given up to the enemy? How can you take it back? (page 79)
  2. Do you get defensive when God points out the truth? what does that indicate about your spiritual armor? (page 88)
  3. How much of your faith depends on your feelings? When you notice your faith coming and going with your mood, what steps can you take to ground yourself more firmly in the gospel? (page 105)
  4. Share an example of condemnation. When did you experience true conviction and when did you experience false condemnation?


Love in Christ,

Author Christine Abraham

Founder and Ministry Director of the Womens Bible Cafe™ since 2009, Christine has led 60+ online Bible Studies for women. She completed a Graduate of Biblical Studies from Liberty University. She's an inspired writer, Amazon Top Reviewer and Blogger Follow on Facebook

More posts by Christine Abraham

Join the discussion 38 Comments

  • Lisa H says:

    Golly pete the enemy has been working me over this last week … he has made me so “busy” that it has taken me this long to finish the 201 study … geez …
    I have learned a lot in this one … deception being the key for me … as I look at it, seems I am loaded with acceptance of the deception … just like the “busyness” … looking over the last several days, there was stuff that I didn’t “have” to do right then or take as long getting it done … man he is so messy!

    Share an example of condemnation. When did you experience true conviction and when did you experience false condemnation?

    I recently lost my job. Just before an offer was made, and during the offer process the manager had very high praise for my skill set and abilities as well as the raves he had from the references he talked to. After 16 days working I was all but told I was incompetent and that I misrepresented myself in the interview process. At first I believed it. I had made a couple mistakes that weren’t covered in training, and I asked several questions that after reflection I realized I shouldn’t have. During the “termination” process I was told I should have been up and running at 110% already. This really hurt me because I had been given high praise (from this manager) as well as my previous employer (where I was rewarded for great ideas and process improvements). But after talking to colleagues and reviewing the events leading up to the termination, God let me know that was not the place for me (even tho it was Him who gave me the job). He knew that even though my mom is really sick and needs constant care (she lives with me and I am her caretaker) I would not have left the “good” job. So He gave me the “new” job and then allowed me to be terminated in short order so I would be home to be with my mom. He knew what was going on even though I did not. My mom is pretty sick and she does need constant care that I wouldn’t have been able to provide for her without God’s intervention. When that was revealed to me, I immediately realized that Satan had deceived me into believing I was incompetent and stupid. Once I saw that, I was having none of it and quickly stopped letting him deceive me in that way.

    Peace and Blessings to all!

  • Rachel says:

    1. Spiritual territory given up? How to regain?
    My prayer, Father in Jesus’ name I apply the Blood of Jesus to this website & comments & all participants that the enemy is immobilized & powerless; that he take no retaliation or retribution.
    I feel like most of my adult life up to the last couple of years has been lost territory due to my own ignorance, falling for deception, and false teachings, lack of teaching from the church.
    I have been living John 17 all of my life in that Christ said, “Father who you have given into my hand none can snatch out of it.”
    Our good Lord has always tried to lead me in victory & has salvaged / redeemed what the enemy meant for harm. I have been consciously taking territory back following scriptural instruction. Using scriptural prayer, the Word, working in a prayer group. Interceding for nations, people groups, ministers, missionaries, individuals.
    As we’ve all noted the greatest work is of the HS in my mind, heart, body, speech, habits renewing me & bringing me into closer relationship with God & Christlike living.
    2. Don’t get defensive: His conviction & correction is always bringing peace & joy. Can’t counterfit His Spirit touch. He corrects because He loves and that love is felt.
    3. Feelings; learned a long time ago that feelings lie to us, totally subjective, easily manipulated, are wired to our nervous system, state of health, nutritional deficiencies, etc. Feelings are not who I am and don’t run me.
    When I am having trouble emotionally, I go to Christ, the Cross, or the Throne in prayer & get immediate help.
    4. Condemnation feels, sounds, smells, clearly like what it is- not nice, no peace, no joy, tearing down, destructive…

  • Yolanda /Yanni says:

    1) In 2003, I had death in my family and at the time Id really not had strong faith in God. I had been brought up into church- my grandmother raised me and she was in church faithfully but I was fresh out of high school and lost my way- as people say. In any case in the year of 2003 she passed and my world crumbled… I had lost her and felt I had no one. No one at all. I ended up on drugs, and started drinking heavily. I had lost faith and hope for myself… This is where I gave into the enemy. I let him let me believe that God wasnt there for me… This took place until I got to my lowest point and became an emotional wreck, crying just about everyday for that whole year… I had went to the doctor and they gave me depressants which made things worse. Family members approached me and begged Id stop taking them because they made me zoned out. Id finally had a private conversation with God. I repented and asked him for forgiveness. I asked him to help me, and he did…
    2)At first I do get defensive because Im as stubborn as a doornail, which is something I need to work on within. But when I sit and think about the whole situation- I humble myself down and listen.
    3)When I see my mood shifting and I feel like it may influence my faith- I grab the Bible and pray… If my Bible is not near I just pray to God about how I feel.

    • Christine says:

      I think we’ve all experienced being in a pit at some time in our lives. What amazes me is How patient God is with His children. He does not run to our rescue and give us a quick fix, nor does He enable us. He waits, and when we are ready to return, He lifts us from the pit with gentleness and unyielding love and sets our feet on the path to follow Jesus.

  • Lisa H says:

    First let me apologize for tardiness. I don’t like to be late, but my mom was in the hospital last week for 4 days and I didn’t get to read lesson 201 yet. I will complete the lesson as soon as I can, but wanted to share this now.

    I started reading the Introduction: Basic Training for lesson 201 tonight and from just the few lines Chip has listed, the following flowed right out of my head so fast I had a hard time writing it all down!

    Here goes:

    Satan and his minions have perfected the 4 D’s (discourage, deceive, divide, destroy) to aggravate our lives and to tear, push, prod, and pull us away from God. However, Jesus provided us with the most powerful “D” in the arsenal Paul writes about; Defeat. Before he even pulls out his 4 D’s to tempt us, Satan is already defeated and those “D’s” mean nothing when you have Jesus on your side. (I love it when the Spirit talks to me!)

    This is very powerful for me right now. Satan is seriously working those 4 D’s on my mom and it seems she doesn’t have the strength to even call down God’s power to defeat him. Its hard to watch her be so sick and so low. I have not been very consistent in my attempts at intercessory prayer, but I have been trying. And I know personally it works.

    While my mom was in the hospital this body was building up to some serious low back pain. On the third day she was in the hospital I couldn’t even bend over. I know I didn’t pray for myself, but on the very next day, all the pain was gone. Completely. Not even a twinge. A good thing since I had to bring mama home. Which means holding her up so she doesn’t fall and folding and lifting the wheelchair, several times. I don’t know who was praying for me, but when I woke up and realized there was no pain, I knew someone did. And before I even got out of the bed I prayed multiple blessings upon whoever had prayed for me to feel better so I could take care of my mom.

    I will answer the rest of the questions later after I read the material!

    Peace and Blessings!

    • Christine says:

      Praying for your Mom and also for your back pain. Sometimes we are so exhausted we do not have the energy to fight the enemy, and that’s why he has been prowling and waiting. He knows when we are emotionally or physically weak, we are easy prey. Ingram recommends intercessory prayer during this time, and it really works.

  • Peggy says:

    Blessings Christine and all…

    Only sharing comments from an email I already shared with you, Christine…
    for #2 and #3…I’m working on the rest still:

    I am never defensive inside when God points out a truth but I think there have been times I have outwardly reacted defensively. Usually I am humbled. I confess my wrong and repent… I forgive and ask for forgiveness, that He would search me and reveal and ever so gently He has and is… your heart can only take so much.

    Much of my life also was too much emotions and feelings pouring out and I have learned to go more from faith and the facts just in these last years. I had faith throughout all these ups and downs of my emotions but I let my feeling lead instead of my faith. My faith has greatly been increased through the youth here with YWAM and my many trips that God has been steadily faithful and drawing me. Being in His Word and in prayer, in study and in complete worship of Him as Lord has sustained me and balanced me, my emotions and my life.

    I’m thankful for this study and pressing forward!

    Peace in Christ,
    Peggy

  • Marla Saunders says:

    Hello ladies! It sounds like we have ALL had eventful weeks. No surprise there!

    1. Territory given back: I’ve given the enemy my boldness. I’m not sure I ever claimed that, to tell the truth. There are specific tasks that I know God has called me to and I’m just fearful. There are other times when I think the enemy just tricks me into believing the job is “too big” for me. He’s right in one sense, but I have God with me. The job is not too big.

    2. Do I get defensive? Maybe. Or maybe rather than getting defensive I do what Chip says, and increase my activity and busy-ness so I don’t have to listen to God’s voice. Lately God has been wooing me to stop and sit and listen. What an impact!

    4. Condemnation: Oh yes, the enemy is good at this one with me. We have so many issues with our daughter — spiritual warfare, demons, eating disorders, anxiety. We’ve had some of these issues for so long. The enemy convinces me that they will never go away, that I am incapable of handling them, that she will never change. he encourages me to stop the fight. And then, when I recognize that he has tempted me to stop fighting, he condemns me with “You’re such a weak parent and Christian that you don’t even want to fight for your child.” Vicious cycle. No truth is in it, though. God’s truth keeps me from falling for it again.

    • Rachel says:

      Hi Marie,
      forgive my presumption, I want to share an experience.
      years ago as an OT I worked with girls with eating disorders. I started doing relaxation techniques using guided meditation of imagining yourself walking in the garden and meeting the living Christ who loves you and is your best friend. The girls were encouraged to develop their BFF relationship with Christ and immediately they all began recovery. His love heals! Praying for you all, -Rachel

    • Christine says:

      One of the bible study leaders at my church has struggled with an eating disorder and it is extremely serious and difficult to watch. My heart feels compassion for what you are going through, and I pray that we can surround you with a team of prayer warriors to intercede for your daughter. Do you have some helpful scripture verses to fight back? Start making a list of what you know is true…and carry it with you.

      Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Deut 11:17 NIV

  • Judee Baysinger says:

    False condemnation comes at all times. ” You are to fat”, ” No one loves you that’s why you are alone all the time”, You don’t need to get up and walk, you are just fine sitting here”, ” You don’t need to clean your house, no one comes to visit you anyway”. Just a few examples. Satan speaks to me quite loudly. God does too, I just don’t always listen to Him. Don’t let Satan deceive you and shout so loudly you can’t hear God. God IS in control. Just tell that old lier to shut up and leave you alone.

    • Christine says:

      Chip Ingram says the battle is between our ears. It’s in our mind.

      • Christine says:

        I really enjoyed the book “Who Switched Off My Brain” by Dr. Caroline Leaf. In it, she shows how the enemy can slowly invade our minds, and also teaches how we can stop these thoughts and reverse the process. When you first have the negative thought, tell your mind “this is a negative thought and I refuse to allow it to stay in my mind.” Do this consciously. Then replace the thought with scripture you have memorized. See my example below (the doctor in the book does a much better job of explaining it 🙂 )

        Thought: I am flat broke
        Counter: This is a negative thought and I refuse to allow it in my mind
        Truth in Scripture: The Lord is MY Shepherd, I shall not want (Psalm 23)

        Thought: I am overweight and lazy
        Counter: This is a negative thought and I refuse to allow it in my mind
        Truth in Scripture: I am fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139)

        Thought: I don’t have a seminary education to lead a bible study
        Counter: This is a negative thought and I refuse to allow it in my mind
        Truth in Scripture: When God calls me, He will equip me (Hebrews 13:20-21)

        You can change what you don’t like about yourself (conviction) and draw near to God, not pull away in shame (condemnation).

    • Rachel says:

      Judee,
      thank you for sharing. I think lots of us have had the same type of attacks! Think of them as principalities God is showing you to tear down!
      I love your name, Jude (the root word) can mean ‘praise, light”. It gives me the picture of you being the Lord’s praise singer to the gentiles! (water in the scriptures often represents the gentiles.)

  • Sue D. says:

    1.Is there any God-given spiritual territory you have already given up to the enemy? How can you take it back? I am still struggling with this and have been for a while. If feels like I’ve not had a hold on any of this territory. Its a mind bender to think that Christ had already given all this and from the very first day. It impresses upon me how I value God’s patience and the loveliness of His word. I need to claim His word.

    sue d.

    • Christine says:

      Use caution that the enemy does not bring you down with this, laying a heavy dose of guilt on you. Remember the rule we learned in our study so far: if it is spoken in love, the Holy Spirit is convicting you. If you feel further away from God because of this, Satan is tempting you.

  • Mindy says:

    1.On page 78, Ingram writes “we have His Spirit and His various gifts, we have been joined to the spiritual body of Christ, and we have been promised an inheritance that includes forgiveness, peace and spiritual fruit. All of this territory is accomplished by Jesus and given to us by grace. When we prayed to receive Christ in faith, we received all this as our possession.” Is there any God-given spiritual territory you have already given up to the enemy? How can you take it back? (page 79)

    I have given the enemy my peace, for a long time. I’ve lived much of my life and have made many of my decisions in fear. I’ve felt not good enough, or too fearful to try something or do something even though I really wanted to and knew God wanted me to. I think that first off just having the awareness of where the fear has come from is powerful, and that it’s the enemy’s lie and plan of attack to keep me from trusting and leaning into God. I can now appreciate my fear as a sign that I’m being targeted, and I’m able to turn to God for strength, courage and guidance.

    2.Do you get defensive when God points out the truth? what does that indicate about your spiritual armor? (page 88)

    Not any more, but not too long ago I’d not only get defensive but also a bit rebellious. I’m so grateful now that I’m in such a different place. I ask for God to point out the truth, good or ‘constructive.’ This indicates I’m wearing my armor and every day it fits a bit better than the day before :o)

    3.How much of your faith depends on your feelings? When you notice your faith coming and going with your mood, what steps can you take to ground yourself more firmly in the gospel? (page 105)

    In the past several months God has been revealing a lot to me about “feelings.” I’ve let them play way too much importance in my life and my decisions, and have recently had some major lessons from Him on this subject. I’ve felt tossed like a leaf in the wind or a wave in the sea when I let my feelings take too much importance, and staying closely connected to God in prayer, reading, and community grounds me more firmly in the truth, which gives me peace and balance.

    4.Share an example of condemnation. When did you experience true conviction and when did you experience false condemnation?

    This weekend in church I felt thoughts of condemnation comparing myself to other Christians and thinking I’m not good enough, seasoned enough, make the right choices enough, etc. I realized that the enemy was playing in my mind. God’s conviction in my heart was to remind me that I don’t have to be, because it’s through HIS strength and forgiveness, and His Spirit IN me, that I am always all that He needs me to be… and it’s Him in others that strengthens them as well.

    • Christine says:

      I had a similar pattern of fear, I learned it in childhood and did everything I could to make sure I was not in danger. In my carefulness, I was not placing my trust in God and instead placing my trust in myself. For me it was a form of pride that I did not see until I started learning through bible study. I’m thankful that each day is an opportunity to learn and grow in faith and nearness to God.

  • Marietta says:

    1.On page 78, Ingram writes “we have His Spirit and His various gifts, we have been joined to the spiritual body of Christ, and we have been promised an inheritance that includes forgiveness, peace and spiritual fruit. All of this territory is accomplished by Jesus and given to us by grace. When we prayed to receive Christ in faith, we received all this as our possession.” Is there any God-given spiritual territory you have already given up to the enemy? How can you take it back? (page 79)

    I have been a Christian since I was 12. I am now 62. When I was in high school I was “accused” of being a goody-two shoes and that my “friends” didn’t like me because I made choices they thought were stupid. Somewhere back then I gave up righteousness and throughout my life I have mostly given it up. I now see that when I have given it up I have been lead down a wrong path by the enemy. I can take back my God-given righteousness by putting on the armor of God daily and living for Him daily and not anyone else’s approval.

    2.Do you get defensive when God points out the truth? what does that indicate about your spiritual armor? (page 88)

    I’m assuming God would be pointing out a conviction and I don’t get defensive, I feel deeply humbled, remorseful and grateful. Recently it happened when I got upset with a desk clerk and I felt she was not giving me proper service. I got upset with her and tried to tell her how to do her job. Then I realized that I had “lost my peace” and I had to get it back. I was humbled, remorseful and went back to her and apologized. Then felt God’s peace again. Gratitude!

    3.How much of your faith depends on your feelings? When you notice your faith coming and going with your mood, what steps can you take to ground yourself more firmly in the gospel? (page 105)

    More of my faith depends on my feelings than I would like. That’s one reason I’m studying the Bible daily and praying and now engaging in this Bible study. I believe God will help me as I turn to Him more and more.

    4.Share an example of condemnation. When did you experience true conviction and when did you experience false condemnation?

    In my story in #2 I felt conviction. False condemnation occured in the situation in #1 when I felt like I was not worthy to my friends.

    • Christine says:

      I love the story about the desk clerk. It’s a story of how our walk with God enriches the lives of others, if they are Christian or not. You humbled yourself to this woman and it will be imprinted in her mind. Great story!

  • Laurie says:

    1.On page 78, Ingram writes “we have His Spirit and His various gifts, we have been joined to the spiritual body of Christ, and we have been promised an inheritance that includes forgiveness, peace and spiritual fruit. All of this territory is accomplished by Jesus and given to us by grace. When we prayed to receive Christ in faith, we received all this as our possession.” Is there any God-given spiritual territory you have already given up to the enemy? How can you take it back? (page 79)

    I’m having trouble forgiving a family member. It’s hard to forgive when they keep doing things that hurt. I am trying to forgive, but it is so, so hard. This person has hurt me all of my life and the straw finally broke the camel’s back. It’s really hard to forgive.

    2.Do you get defensive when God points out the truth? what does that indicate about your spiritual armor? (page 88)

    No, I don’t get defensive because I know when He wants me to do something, He has good reason for it.

    3.How much of your faith depends on your feelings? When you notice your faith coming and going with your mood, what steps can you take to ground yourself more firmly in the gospel? (page 105)

    I have learned that we don’t go by our feelings. We go by what God says.

    • Christine says:

      I struggled with forgiveness for a long time. I started to break free from it when I completed the Breaking Free study with Beth Moore. In her Living Beyond Yourself study, Beth discusses this again. She said to imagine the person you do not forgive. Imagine he or she is strapped to your back and you have to carry his weight. Now add more people you do not forgive. Is the load too big for you to carry? Does it slow you down and limit your walk with God? Not forgiving adds to your burden. Forgiving frees you from the bondage of it. Use the image of this person strapped to your back and see if you can free yourself from the weight. Throwing many {{{HUGS}}} your way and praying too!

      • Nickie says:

        that is a great way to look at unforgivness… I will have to remember that. it is more that just words, it is and action that we have to do… now I dont mean run and hug that person but we dont have to avoid them either, which I am good at… thank for that picture Chrisine

        • Christine says:

          I had a good discussion about this with Peggy this week (via email). She clarified that UNFORGIVENESS leads to ANGER leads to BITTERNESS leads to REVENGE. It is a cycle of revenge that can pass from generation to generation. Unforgiveness can cause us to sin through revenge. It is subtle and we often miss this. No wonder Jesus was so often demonstrating forgiveness to us. Sometimes revenge is more dangerous than the unforgiveness!Guard your hearts, mind and soul from the enemy.

    • Rachel says:

      My Mom had a 30+ years unable to forgive an in- law. And she was justifiably angry, no one could argue the facts. But God -she finally realized that she & her family were effected by her bitterness not the other party at all. She prayed that Lord Christ would do the forgiving & move on her to release the unforgiveness. It was transforming.
      Forgiving doesn’t mean you spend any time with the other party. It releases you both from captivity, spiritual bondage so the HS can work to greater degrees. – Rachel

  • Renee says:

    I’m not sure about #1. #2 – no I don’t get defensive.
    #3 I listened to a sermon recently about Christians who base their faith on answered prayers according to their desires. Then their mood and faith hit lows when things weren’t going according to their plan. I don’t think I do this … Much. … Any more. There was a time about a year ago when I was competing and asked God to “show me favor”. I came in last in every class. I was pretty upset about it and asked God why he hadn’t helped me out. It was then I was “told” that there was a bigger picture and he was teaching me many things!! When he showed me what he was teaching and ways he HAD shown me favor I was so pleased. God wants us to be happy but (for example) whether we win the football game or not is not important. It’s what we learn about him in the process. Its also what we show other people, especially when people know you are a Christian and they don’t practice faith.
    #4 I get false condemnation from Satan all of the time.

  • Sue Alice says:

    Sorry guys, I am going to only answer one question this time. The moving is coming along, but my temper is still there. Maybe I can leave it at the old house? Also Satan is playing games with my p.c., and making me snezze my head off. LOL.

    3. How much of your faith depends on your feelings? A bunch, I would say. When you notice your faith coming and going with your mood, what steps can you take to ground yourself more frimly in the gospel? By remembering to try and not get angry at the things I have no control over, and have more patiences with people…..Pray before I blow up and let go…hold my tongue….remember it is not the persons, things, dogs, and whatevers fault. Just let God handle it and help me deal with it. (have trouble doing that.) Blessings to all.

  • Angie says:

    What an awesome week. I am so thankful to God for leading me to this study.

    4. I may or may not have been dancing around the room praising God after reading the first five paragraphs of chapter eight. I could relate so closely to Mr. Ingram’s story in these paragraphs that my heart was beating fast and I was so excited I could hardly stand it.

    I was saved in October 1990 at a revival and baptized a few weeks later. I began attending the church where I was saved and baptized and tried like crazy to live a Christian life. I saw things with fresh eyes and knew I was a new person but was very confused as to why I continued to act like I did before I was saved. I think I thought my life would be magically changed immediately. About a year and a half later I experienced a traumatic event and was devastated. I could not understand why this happened and, unlike Mr. Ingram, I did walk away from the Christian life. I completely walked away, gave up, and went back to living as if I were not saved.

    Fast forward to October 2008. I woke up one Sunday morning and on the television was a very famous preacher and I was transfixed. For several Sunday’s following I got up and listened to this preacher on TV. I went out and bought a bible and began reading it. I could not get enough but I sensed that I was still missing something. Then it seemed that everything I heard or read said that I needed to go to church. I am a loner by nature and really, really did not want to try this again – wasn’t reading the bible and watching a sermon on TV every week good enough? After a few weeks it was so obvious that God was calling me back to Him and to the church that I could no longer ignore it. I renewed my relationship with God, joined a church and do my very best to walk with Him day by day. This was my experience of true conviction.

    Up until I read chapter eight though, I experienced false condemnation regularly. I had thoughts from the enemy saying “Sure you’re saved, you walked away remember? What makes you think He’s taken you back?” “You had you’re chance and blew it, you might as well give it up.” etc. etc. etc.

    However, I am so different today that sometimes I don’t even recognize myself! I have a long way to go but God is molding me daily into the image of His Son and I am forever grateful.

    Sometimes my heart aches to the point of tears for the years I lost and can never get back. But when that happens I remember that God works ALL things for the good of those who love Him. And I love Him. I trust that He means it and can’t wait to see how He works it all out.

    I apologize for this being so long and thank you for allowing me to share.

    • Marla Saunders says:

      That particular lie — you walked away and now God probably doesn’t want you back anyway, after all you have done — is one of Satan’s best inventions to keep us locked in bondage, isn’t it? I see so many people who totally believe that. If you can keep someone believing it’s too late, well then someday it will be.

      • Angie says:

        “If you can keep someone believing it’s too late, well then someday it will be.”

        Oh my gosh I had never thought of it like that, what a scary thought. Thank you for sharing that perspective. I will keep that in mind and share it with others.

  • Dedie Pope says:

    How much of your faith depends on your feelings? When you notice your faith coming and going with your mood, what steps can you take to ground yourself more firmly in the gospel? (page 105)

    There was a time when my faith fluctuated with my emotions. If everything was going well my faith was strong and when it wasn’t going well I would question God, as to why I deserved what I was going through. I did not recognize the potential to learn and grow from adverse situations. Instead of allowing the situations to increase my faith I allowed it to diminish my faith.

    To ground myself more firmly in the gospel and the promises of God I took a class on Christian basic essentials by Greg Laurie. I am not to proud to admit that, even though, I have walked with the Lord for a while I still need to get back to the basics. I have partaken in various studies and immersed myself in His word and knowing Him. I now know the truth, Satan attacks us when we are vulnerable and in my case this occurs normally during times of distress combined with fatigue. I have found prayer, reading, and a nap are my best defense against this type of attack.

  • Christine says:

    1. Is there any God-given spiritual territory you have already given up to the enemy? How can you take it back? Yes. When I was a little girl I had the spiritual gift of dreams. It frightened me so much I asked God to make it stop. I dreamed about a plane crash and hundreds of people died. At that age, I just assumed it was my fault and wanted the dreams to stop. Satan added lots of guilt to my shoulders and I was too young to understand. I am taking back my gift by journaling dreams, sharing them when appropriate and following God’s lead.

    2. Do you get defensive when God points out the truth? what does that indicate about your spiritual armor? Not anymore. Initially I would hide in fear, now I sit and listen knowing He speaks in love and truth. I confess, He forgives.

    3. How much of your faith depends on your feelings? When you notice your faith coming and going with your mood, what steps can you take to ground yourself more firmly in the gospel? None. I am careful about filtering my dreams to see if they are based on feelings or fact. Ironically, when I say “that was just an ordinary dream, no need to write it down” and I resist the temptation to ignore it, the dream usually has spiritual value.

    4. Share an example of condemnation. When did you experience true conviction and when did you experience false condemnation? I’m still processing this. I remember the false condemnation and living in shame. I am listening for true conviction now.

    • Miki LeValle says:

      I commented last week and it didn’t show up. I thought I was registered, but I’m uncertain to do at this point. I have been reading along and thoroughly feel informed and alerted to the truth!!! My favorite chapters thus far are Chapter 6 & 7!!!

      • Christine says:

        You don’t need to register to post a comment. I’m not sure why your comment did not show up, I’ll check the deleted messages from my Outlook account and see if I can find it in there. Thank you for letting me know. We approve all comments, none are deleted here.

        • Christine says:

          Thankful you have a unique spelling for your name, it was easy to locate your comment in my emails 🙂 This is what I found for Spiritual Warfare 101:

          4. I think the most that I take from this study is the level of alertness we should have throughout the day. I used to try to remember to put on the armor once a day, like when you put on clothes, but now…the consciousness of identify truth and being ever more prayerful has truly been made applicable in my own life.

          And its here in the blog comments:
          https://www.womensbiblecafe.com/2010/11/spiritual-warfare-101/#comment-5583

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