“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.”
The book of Ephesians has a lengthy text in chapter six about spiritual warfare. But more importantly, the book of Ephesians is all about the kingdom of God.
Every kingdom has a king.
Every king has an army.
Every army has soldiers.
Every person who embraces Christ becomes a citizen in God’s kingdom.
Every citizen must serve in God’s army.
Therefore, you are a soldier in the kingdom engaged in spiritual warfare.
Rush Limbaugh used to say that the job of the military is to kill people and break things. But our warfare in the spiritual realm is to save people and build things, namely, building the kingdom of God.
Spiritual warfare is not about defending ourselves for our own benefit or protection. It’s not about “defeating” Satan. It’s not about us. It’s about rescuing others from damnation. It’s about building communities of faith in Christ as a witness to the larger community around it. Saving. Rescuing. Building. Organizing. Disciplining. That’s what spiritual warfare is all about.
“When it was evening, the disciples came to [Jesus] and said, ‘This is a desolate place, and the day is now over; send the crowds away to go into the villages and buy food for themselves.’ But Jesus said, ‘They need not go away; you give them something to eat’” (Matthew 14:15-16).
This is one of the greatest miracles of Jesus, and the only miracle that is found in all four Gospels. When the disciples were faced with so may hungry people who were following Jesus, Jesus said to his disciples, “You give them something to eat” (Matthew 14:16). The disciples were bewildered. Then Jesus prayed over the available food and more than 5,000 were fed, with Jesus’ disciples passing out the fish and loaves.
It was always Jesus’ intention to feed the crowd. He knew from the beginning what he was going to do. And it was his intention to use the disciples to feed them, as they served the crowd. Jesus blessed what they had and it was multiplied in the disciple’s hands to feed the crowd.
What is in your possession for God to bless and provide to those around you? Whatever your gifts, talents, possessions, money—no matter what little you have—God can use it in your hands to bring blessings to others. In fact, the miracle Jesus did was precipitated by a command. With just a few loaves and fish Jesus said, “Bring them here to me.”
Whatever it is that you have, you must first commit it into the hands of Jesus for God to use whatever resources and gifts he has given you. Then the Lord will multiply the gift he has given you for the outcome he intends.
Just as the disciples were surprised and overjoyed to see what Jesus was doing through them to feed everyone, so too, God wants to use you to bring great blessing into the lives of others. God does the miracle, but it is your hands that serve others what God multiplies in your life. The result for Jesus, the disciples, and the people was that, “They all ate and were satisfied” (Matthew 14:20). There was even some left over to bless others with later!
“Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established” (Proverbs 16:3).
Do you wonder what you can do for the kingdom of God? Do a personal inventory of your life. What are you good at? What talents or resources do you have? Whatever they are, you can use them in serving others, in helping others to know Jesus. Submit your time, talents, and treasure to Christ and ask him to multiply them in service to others.