Fighting With Spiritual Weapons

Fighting With Spiritual Weapons

Psalm 20:8
„Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.”

This psalm is clearly about some people trusting in themselves, while others trust in God. There have been many wars in Israel's history, many of which were won, even though the chances were quite hopeless. The victory was given to them by God because God fought for His people. But what message does this have for us today?

Daily message. Because our days are filled with spiritual fighting. However, only those who desire to live their lives according to God's will face this struggle. Such people will always have spiritual fight, since we are still in this world, and the rules of the world mostly go against God's rules.

If we only look at visible things, we can easily give up the battle, but God's love teaches us not to look at visible things.

2Corinthians 4:17-18
„For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.”

God has shown Israel many times that the odds do not matter. If they live according to God's will, then God will save them from their enemies. Israel's strength was not in the size of the army, but in God. God also taught them this when he commanded the following:

Deuteronomy 17:16
„Only he must not acquire many horses for himself or cause the people to return to Egypt in order to acquire many horses, since the LORD has said to you, 'You shall never return that way again.'”

Let's not just think of Egypt geographically here. We read that:

„You shall never return that way again.”

Which way? Could they have returned by another way? We know very well that after the people of Israel came out of Egypt, they wished to return many times. They saw the conditions in Egypt as better than what they had just experienced in the desert. Although God was with them in the wilderness, they would have rather chosen a better life without God in Egypt (which was not a very good life anyway). Their wandering in the desert was difficult for the people of Israel because it was uncertain. They didn't have a good life in Egypt, but they knew what to expect the next day. This was not the case during the wanderings in the wilderness. Sometimes they didn't have water, they wandered a lot and fought, but God allowed all of this because He wanted to teach Israel to trust Him. But they didn't trust, that's why everything was so uncertain for them. In fact, not returning that way to Egypt means not abandoning their trust (faith) in God for what is seen (Egypt).

Let's read the verse again so that we can also understand the topic of horses:

Deuteronomy 17:16
„Only he must not acquire many horses for himself or cause the people to return to Egypt in order to acquire many horses, since the LORD has said to you, 'You shall never return that way again.'”

So by keeping so many horses, they would be trusting in their strength, not in God. That is why Joshua did the following:

Joshua 11:7-9
„So Joshua and all his warriors came suddenly against them by the waters of Merom and fell upon them. And the LORD gave them into the hand of Israel, who struck them and chased them as far as Great Sidon and Misrephoth-maim, and eastward as far as the Valley of Mizpeh. And they struck them until he left none remaining. And Joshua did to them just as the LORD said to him: he hamstrung their horses and burned their chariots with fire.”

Joshua did all this because he trusted God's leadership and strength, not horses and chariots. David did the same:

1Chronicles 18:3-4
„David also defeated Hadadezer king of Zobah-Hamath, as he went to set up his monument at the river Euphrates. And David took from him 1,000 chariots, 7,000 horsemen, and 20,000 foot soldiers. And David hamstrung all the chariot horses, but left enough for 100 chariots.”

We know about David that he always trusted God, which is why he went into a seemingly hopeless fight with Goliath. In those days, people won wars with chariots and horses, but God did not teach Israel that way. The prophetic word, which is God's speech, is more powerful than any number of chariots and horses. That is why we read the following about Elijah:

2Kings 2:11-12
„And as they still went on and talked, behold, chariots of fire and horses of fire separated the two of them. And Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven. And Elisha saw it and he cried, "My father, my father! The chariots of Israel and its horsemen!" And he saw him no more. Then he took hold of his own clothes and tore them in two pieces.”

I used to think that Elisha's cry describes the things that happened at that time, since Elijah was separated from him by a chariot and horses. But in fact Elisha said all these things to Elijah. Because Elijah was God's prophet, he spoke the word of God, which meant Israel's real strength (spiritual chariots and horses). Let’s read about Elisha:

2Kings 13:14
„Now when Elisha had fallen sick with the illness of which he was to die, Joash king of Israel went down to him and wept before him, crying, "My father, my father! The chariots of Israel and its horsemen!"”

In what or in whom do we trust? In God's guidance or do we want to go back to Egypt?

Antal Farkas
(March 11, 2023)

Tagged: spiritual weapons, decision, fight, trust, wilderness, Elijah, Elisha

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