A Family Guide to Spiritual Warfare

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The New Testament reveals that the warrior God of the Old Testament has called those who belong to Christ to stand beside Him in battle. The mighty sword of the Spirit is placed in the humble hands of the Christian (Eph. 6:17). But if the sword is purely spiritual, where is its power? “The weapons of truth, integrity, eagerness of the gospel, faith, salvation and the Word of God build a spiritual kingdom not an earthly one.” These spiritual truths become weapons for the Christian, who is baptized in Christ to build His heavenly kingdom and smite the head of the serpent.

Fr. Dennis McManus teaches, “If you are not a warrior, you’ll be a victim.” I used to resist the whole idea of a “warrior identity” until twenty-five years ago, when I saw how the evil spirits were attacking me and my family. I chose to wear God’s armor to defend myself, my marriage, and my children. During exorcisms, we see a fierce battle for a person’s immortal soul. My faith in the need to wear the full armor of God has greatly increased.

Describing the enemy we face in Christ’s name, Fr. Amorth said: “The original sins of the angels are the same as those who implicitly or explicitly adhere to Satanism. Angels and men who follow Satan base their existence on three principles and practical rules of life: you can do what you wish, that is, without subjugation to God’s laws; you obey no one; and you are the god of yourself.” He then added: “One day during an exorcism, Father Candido Amantini — a Passionist priest and my great teacher — asked a demon: ‘How many are you?’ The demon responded: ‘We are so many that if we were visible we would obscure the sun.’ The demon on that occasion gave information that we have no reason to disbelieve because it is confirmed in the Bible.” Consider that of all the angels, only one-third fell away; two-thirds are good angels who serve God according to the divine will. They would obscure two suns! We have double the spiritual power!

God’s provision for His soldiers includes the gift of spiritual garments. You must decide whether to accept Christ’s endowment. In exorcism cases, many people seeking liberation from evil spirits had long ago ceased to wear God’s armor. They had put on a different garment. Some clothed themselves, knowingly or not, in garments fashioned by the world, accommodating the flesh, or crafted by the devil. God’s armor is not “in fashion” today. But to the Catholic soldier, it is the most glorious garment of all. Its fabric is fashioned with the white threads of divine love interwoven with the crimson threads of the Blood of the Lamb. It’s a garment not of this world, and the soul who wears it confirms his call to be in the world, but not of the world (see John 17:16). The disciple dressed in the armor of God enjoys an esprit de corps with the Church Militant and the Church Triumphant.

The Old and New Testaments teach of the blessedness of God’s armor and our need for its protection. Let’s proudly wear the uniform that God offers our families.

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This article is adapted from a chapter in Family Guide to Spiritual Warfare by Kathleen Beckman which is available from Sophia Institute Press.

Art for this post on the Armor of God: Cover and featured image used with permission.

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