Darkness & Light
In the third message of our "Winning Where it Matters" series, Pastor Eli Nelson focused on the cosmic battle going in our world, not a fight of flesh and blood, but one against the spiritual forces of evil.
"Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms." Ephesians 6:10-12 (NIV)
Where does this battle originate?
There is an atmosphere that surrounds the earth, just as there is an atmosphere that rules over the land. We cannot be ignorant to this battle between darkness and light. God had given authority over land to heavenly beings, but some of these heavenly beings (aka "sons of God" or angels of the heavenly hosts) rebelled against God, so now they are ruling unrighteously over certain parts of the land. Because of this, God scattered the people through language and distance (The Tower of Babel story: Genesis 11).
To dig deeper in this question, here are bible verses to reference: Ephesians 2:1-2, Deuteronomy 32:8-9, and Psalm 82:1-8
Jesus stepped into the middle of darkness.
"In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it." John 1:4-5 (NIV)
Light always overcomes darkness. We are called to be the light of the world like Jesus. We are to become image bearers of Christ. Jesus dying on the cross was God's redemptive plan to bring us back to Him and for Jesus to take His rightful place as ruler over this land.
To dig deeper on this topic, here are bible verses to reference: Matthew 4:16, Isaiah 42:16, Isaiah 60:1, Colossians 2:15, 1 Corinthians 2:8, and Acts 26:18
What part do we have to play in this battle?
"His intent was that now, through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms, 11 according to his eternal purpose that he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord." Ephesians 3:10-11 (NIV)
As Christians, we need to wake up, mark territory over our families and homes, and put on an armor of light as we enter the battle against the principalities and powers of darkness that exist in the imperfect world we live in. Through the church, Jesus is going to take back what is rightfully His. We are weapons in this fight! We are called to spread the Word of God to show the spiritual realm there's a new King on the throne: JESUS!
To dig deeper in this question, here are bible verses to reference: Ephesians 1:20-23, Ephesians 5:8-9 and Romans 13:11-12
We are the place where God dwells.
"Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in your midst?" 1 Corinthians 3:16 (NIV)
God's spirit rests because we are here, and we carry His spirit within us. Our bodies are like tents - they are temporary. One day we will have a pure and whole heavenly body. We are like the tent of the tabernacle. We house the presence of God within us. It's holy ground. God's territory. Every step you take you take ground in the heavenly realm. You are an ambassador for Christ. Everywhere you go you are sent to take back the land the devil has used and make it God's territory again.
To dig deeper on this topic, here are bible verses to reference: 1 Corinthians 6:19, Ephesians 2:19-22, and 2 Corinthians 5:1-2
You have to choose a side.
"for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light 9 (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true)," Ephesians 5:8-9 (ESV)
To dig deeper on this topic, here are bible verses to reference: Colossians 1:12-14, 1 Thessalonians 5:4-5, and Psalm 107:2, 10, 14-15
"You have a light inside of you. And that light makes a bigger difference than you know." - Pastor Eli Nelson
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