All Spiritual Warfare Involves Suffering
If you’ve read a few of my posts you know that I believe many people misunderstand spiritual warfare. Many would think the statement “all spiritual warfare involves suffering” refers to physical suffering. It doesn’t. The main reason people think spiritual warfare is about physical suffering is the story of Job. No one can deny that he suffered physically Job 2:7, 2:12, 7:5, 30:30. But that wasn’t the purpose of Satan’s attack. Satan attacked Job’s family, circumstances and health to get to his mind. Satan wanted him to curse God Job 1:11, 2:5.
One of the overlooked benefits of reading the book of Job is that it reveals the emotional elements of satanic attacks. Consider this.
- Before the attack Job was a godly righteous man Job 1:1, 8.
- After the attack he was godly and humble Job 42:1-6.
These are facts. Yet throughout the book Job alternates between trusting God and lashing out against God. This was because his mind was being attacked at the same time as his body. We can see Satan’s fingerprints all over Job’s words. They describe his emotional suffering.
Job’s Emotional Suffering Revealed
- He wished he had never been born Job 3:1-16.
- He was weary Job 3:17-19.
- He was miserable and bitter Job 3:20-22.
- He felt hidden from God Job 3:23-26.
- He was confused Job 7:20-21.
- He despaired of trusting in God Job 9:16-18.
Have you ever been overwhelmed with these emotions in the midst of a trial? If, like Job, there was no sin in your life, you may have been under a satanic attack.
It’s easy to understand Job’s emotional suffering. What we need to understand is that to some extent everyone suffers mentally when attacked by Satan. We know this because of 1 Peter 5:9. Peter tells us that when we resist a satanic attack we need to remember,
“the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world.”
He calls satanic attacks suffering! Not only that, after we resist and get to the other side of the attack,
“the God of all grace, Who has called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.” 1 Peter 5:10
It’s God’s will that we go through satanic attacks. That’s okay because God equips us to be able to resist them and be victorious. Even so they are mentally, emotionally and spiritually painful. After the attack our Father strengthens us!
There is an alternative to fearing or being upset about satanic attacks. Instead we would do well to respond like the apostles who were beaten by the religious officials who weeks before crucified Jesus.
“Then they left the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name” Acts 5:41.
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