Spiritual Warfare + Ministry – Why are things so hard now?

Anyone who is doing ministry with a goal of bringing people “from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God” (Acts 26:18) is going to undergo spiritual attack. Intercessors (and many others) are involved in becoming part of the answer to the classic prayer, “Your kingdom come, your will be done.” As such, they are in direct opposition to the Enemy, who comes to frustrate the purposes of God, and to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10).

Jesus said in the world we will have trouble (John 16:33). Paul said we’d suffer affliction (1 Thess. 3:4) and that we enter the kingdom through much tribulation (Acts 14:22). He explains this battle more fully in Eph. 6:10-17.

Spiritual warfare, and the oppression that comes with it, is a reality of life, not a myth or a theoretical concept. In the words of Dr. Ed Murphy, in his Handbook for Spiritual Warfare, “…everything from Genesis 3 to Revelation 20 that has occurred, is occurring, and will yet occur, occurs in the context of warfare between the Kingdom of God and the kingdom of evil supernaturalism.”

Peter reminds us that we should not be surprised by spiritual or physical attack, as though it is a strange thing. (1 Peter 4:12-19) 1 Peter itself was written to a group of churches who were experiencing persecution. It would be good in these days of cultural and spiritual shifts to read 1 Peter as a whole, and be familiar with all of the persecutions noted in Acts.

The Bible clearly shows us that following the ways of the Lord, and especially doing ministry work, will result in trouble, whether we look at Moses, David, Jeremiah, John the Baptist, Christ, Peter, Paul or John.

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