2 Corinthians 10 … Consider His Weapons for Our Warfare

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, (10:3).

It’s war out there. And it has been since the dawn of creation, all the way back to the garden. There is not a narrative in the Bible that does not allude to this reality: the enemy is relentless in his rebellion against God and in his attacks against God’s people.

And we can be sure of this, wherever God is at work, so is the enemy. I heard it said once, “If you don’t ever run into the enemy, then you might both be going in the same direction.” Paul was definitely running into opposition at every turn, all the time.

And here, Paul directly confronts the assaults being hurled by God’s enemies, who have called Paul’s authority into question; an attack not so much on the character of Paul, but on the truth of the gospel that he was sent to proclaim. For if the enemy can get the Corinthians to doubt the messenger, they are more likely to fall prey to the adversary’s ultimate scheme: doubt the message.

Paul begins his defense in asking the Corinthians to consider two things about their risen Savior, “Now I, Paul, myself urge you by the meekness and gentleness of Christ—”  (10:1).

And in those paradoxical descriptors of the Lord of Hosts, meek and gentle, we see a glimpse into His Weapons of Warfare.

His munitions are not in strong-arming, in brute force or in outnumbering the opponent, rather His artillery is furnished with Weapons that have nothing whatsoever to do with the strength of the flesh. His Weapons for Our Warfare have everything to do with the knowledge of His Truth.

Consider His Weapons for Our Warfare

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ, and we are ready to punish all disobedience, whenever your obedience is complete, (10:3-6).

  • His Weapons for Our Warfare are not of the flesh.
    • for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh
      • It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life, (John 6:63).
  • His Weapons for Our Warfare are divinely powerful
    • but divinely powerful
      • For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart, (Hebrews 4:12 NKJV).
  • His Weapons for Our Warfare destroy fortresses.
    • for the destruction of fortresses
      • So Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, “If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free,” (John 8:31-32).
  • His Weapons for Our Warfare destroy speculations.
    • are destroying speculations
      • …so that you may instruct certain men not to teach strange doctrines, nor to pay attention to myths and endless genealogies, which give rise to mere speculation rather than furthering the administration of God which is by faith, (1 Timothy 1:3-4).
  • His Weapons for Our Warfare destroy every lofty thing (opinions) against the knowledge of God.
    • are destroying… every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God
      • And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect, (Romans 12:2).
  • His Weapons for Our Warfare take every thought captive.
    • are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ
      • See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ, (Colossians 2:8).
  • His Weapons for Our Warfare are ready to punish disobedience (defend the truth).
    • are ready to punish all disobedience
      • holding fast the faithful word which is in accordance with the teaching, so that he will be able both to exhort in sound doctrine and to refute those who contradict, (Titus 1:9).

How do we respond to His Weapons for Our Warfare?

I used to envision war against the enemy like hand-to-hand combat; little ole me facing off against some giant fire-breathing dragon. But notice the focus of His Weapons for Our Warfare. All of His Weapons for Our Warfare are to be utilized by our minds, which then manifest in our attitudes and our actions.

The war is not hand-to-hand; it is head-to-head. And if the enemy can just get us to doubt… since the beginning that has been his scheme which launches every attack against God’s people.

Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Indeed, has God said…” (Genesis 3:1).

And that is why doubt is so despicably dangerous; doubt diminishes faith until we are debilitated by our disbelief. That is why we are all so desperate for His Truth. The enemy does not stop! So we can’t either.

We must recognize the enemy’s scheme in twisting and misinterpreting the Word of God. You’ve probably heard this analogy; in their responsibility to safeguard our currency and in order to detect the counterfeit, the Secret Service does not spend their time studying counterfeit bills. They invest time in examining and getting to know the real deal so they will easily detect that which is false. We must do the same. So when the enemy comes, with his accusations against the knowledge of God, “Indeed, has God said?,” we will be able to stand strong.

Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. 14 Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth, (Ephesians 6:13-14).

The first piece of the armor of God is Truth. We must remember His divinely powerful, primary Weapon for Our Warfare is knowledge of His Truth.

“My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.
Because you have rejected knowledge…
” (Hosea 4:6).

Let us not take this for granted; we have His divine power readily available in His Weapons for Our Warfare: His Truth, believed and accepted by faith. And we will not only survive the War by His Weapons; we will thrive as we guard our hearts (minds) with His Truth.

Watch over your heart with all diligence,
For from it flow the springs of life
, (Proverbs 4:23).

  • Because as we grow in His Truth, we will be set free to become all He has created us to be.
    • “and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free,” (John 8:32).
  • For as we grow in His Truth, we will begin to think rightly about ourselves.
    • For as he thinks within himself, so he is, (Proverbs 23:7).
  • And as we grow in His Truth, we will be enabled to think rightly about others.
    • You are looking at things as they are outwardly. If anyone is confident in himself that he is Christ’s, let him consider this again within himself, that just as he is Christ’s, so also are we, (10:7).
  • And most importantly, as we grow in His Truth we will think rightly about God.
    • You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world, (1 John 4:4).
      • “What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us.” The Knowledge of the Holy by A.W. Tozer

But growing in His Truth does not happen by osmosis. I dare say it doesn’t happen from sitting under gifted preachers or teachers. It won’t happen from reading someone’s blog or listening to podcasts. It happens when we intentionally spend time with Him and seek Him in His Word. Again, please allow me to quote my favorite pastor (my husband), “I am convinced there are only two ways in which God grows and equips us; the Word of God by the Spirit of God.”

Listening to, or reading what others glean from His Word may be helpful, but God desires to minister personally and intimately to each one of His children. How can we not desire that?

As we spend time with Him, we can ask Him to give us understanding about the battles we face. The battles are not of the flesh. While we may be offended or hurt by people, there are much greater forces involved.

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places, (Ephesians 6:10-12).

And it is only by the greatest force that we will defeat the forces of the enemy. His Weapons for Our Warfare are all about His Truth; therefore, we must set our hearts to know and study His Truth amply provided in His inspired Word.

All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; (2 Timothy 3:16).

And we must commit to think on, dwell on and occupy our thought life with His Truth.

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things. The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you,  (Philippians 4:8-9).

His Weapons for Our Warfare are founded in our knowing, studying, believing and applying Truth.

Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth. (2 Timothy 2:15).

As we wage war with His Weapons for Our Warfare, our faith will be strengthened to rest in His Truth. And by faith we can be assured; we will stand unashamed before every enemy as His victorious conquerors in Christ.

For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith, (1 John 5:4).

Let’s Grow Together!

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