My Musings – Going to battle requires preparation. Being properly prepared involves at least three key elements: knowing your enemy, surveying the battlefield, and choosing your weapons.
Knowing Your Enemy – “So that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes” Ephesians 6:11, NIV 1984). In the movie “Patton,” on the eve of battle, actor George C. Scott who portrays General Patton is seen reading Field Marshal Rommel’s book “The Tank in Battle” (actually “Infantry Attacks”), a book on battle tactics. In a following scene, Patton has Rommel on the retreat and as he gleefully exclaims “Rommel…you magnificent %@$&*!, I read your book!” I don’t know how historically accurate this is, but it nicely illustrates how knowing your enemy can help you defeat him. This is especially important in Spiritual warfare “in order that Satan might not outwit us. For we are not unaware of his schemes” (2 Corinthians 2:11–12, NIV 1984).
Surveying The Battlefield – “So that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground” (Ephesians 6:13, NIV 1984). An army would not willingly go into battle without knowing a little about the “lay of the land.” Choosing the “high ground,” would provide a definite advantage. Avoiding positions that would make your army vulnerable, is another example. When Adam and Eve were tempted, they were in the worst position they could be in to avoid temptation. They were hanging around the forbidden tree. At the time of the year that kings go to war, David stayed behind. His first mistake. Then he “found” himself where he should not have been, watching Bathsheba bathe and inciting lust.
Choosing Your Weapons – “Therefore put on the full armor of God” (Ephesians 6:13, NIV 1984). Spiritual battles require Spiritual weapons. “For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds” (2 Corinthians 10:3–4, NIV 1984). In a classic fight scene in “Raiders of the Lost Ark,” Indiana Jones had just fought a fast-paced battle against a dozen attackers. Already weary, he is confronted by one final ninja-type adversary wielding a samurai sword. Somewhat nonchalantly, Jones draws his gun and shoots the warrior. Moral of the story: don’t bring a sword to a gunfight. Corollary: don’t bring worldly weapons to a Spiritual battle.
My Advice – Know your enemy, survey the battlefield and choose your weapons wisely. Lest you think these make you invincible, one final movie quip from Han Solo to Luke Skywalker in “Star Wars” – “Great, kid. Don’t get cocky” To avoid this “be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power” (Ephesians 6:10, NIV 1984).