My new Bible-based preaching series, The Invisible War, takes us into the murky and evil realm of Satan’s rebel kingdom. Over the years of pastoring five churches and traveling to various mission fields, I have encountered many battles in this spiritual war first hand. Within my first year as a youth pastor in Denver, Colorado I uncovered a sex ring that almost got me killed. It involved underage teenage girls on heroin and visiting airline pilots who were imprisoning these women. I was almost knifed to death on a dark downtown porch by a heroin addict while ministering compassion to teens in an attempt to get them out of the sex ring. Drugs and perverted sex are two of Satan’s ploys to trap, imprison and destroy broken people. I learned that Satan’s spiritual tactics are dark and dirty.

 

Within that same year the biggest cocaine dealer at the local high school was brought to me by a friend. Drew, the coke dealer, was an addict himself when he came into my “fancy” office which was a converted janitor’s closet and began a conversation. He was fearful that the police were closing in on his distribution operation and he felt helpless and addicted. When I turned the conversation to Jesus and His power to save, Drew, went into an unconscious state and slipped off the chair and on to my office floor. I was a graduate of a nationally recognized Christian university but no one had ever prepared me for the spiritual war that was now in my face. I ran down the hall to find the lead pastor of the church hoping that he would know what to do, but he was not there. As I ran back to my office I breathed this prayer, “Lord, help me, lead me and protect me.” When I arrived back to my office, Drew was still on the floor and unconscious but breathing. Then suddenly the Holy Spirit reminded me of this verse of Scripture. “Whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” (Joel 2:32) I quoted this verse over Drew and then I asked him to call out the name of Jesus. No response. I prayed again and then in a louder voice I said, “Drew, Jesus will deliver you but you must call out to Him. Just say the name, Jesus.” He stirred then opened his eyes and then with a loud shout he yelled, “Jesus!” Instantly his body regained strength and consciousness and he stood to his feet like a man who had just been awakened from a long dark nightmare. Then Drew said, “I am free! I am finally free!” At that he ran out of my office into the empty church parking lot and began to leap and jump and praise God! On that day Drew was delivered from Satan’s grasp and placed into the family of God. In my first year as a pastor I learned that the spiritual war was all around me, proving the apostle Paul’s inspired statement “we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” (Ephesians 6:12)

 

It is safe to say that I was not battle ready for my first encounter with the invisible war but God gave me victory because the Holy Spirit reminded me of a verse of Scripture that had the power to loose a captive and set him free. How? By calling on the name of Jesus. The name of Jesus is the “name above every other name” so every believer who desires to see victory must invoke the name of Jesus out loud to take authority over Satan. When the seventy two returned from preaching the gospel of the kingdom they said, “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in your name!” (Luke 10:17) Here is what we must understand to be battle ready: Jesus has delegated His authority to His followers who use His name. Christian, you do not have the power to face Satan and his demonic forces on your own. But you’ve been given power over the enemy by standing in faith invoking the name of Jesus. Why is the name of Jesus so powerful? Why do demons tremble at that name? Because they know that Jesus is God the Son and they know that He defeated them at the cross. 1 John 3:8 says, “The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil.”

 

After preaching the first message in this series, many people came to me and asked if I would publish the four lies that Satan used to deceive and tempt Eve and Adam. Along with the four lies I gave some examples of where these same lies are active today. So here is a chart that exposes Satan’s original lies.

 

 

Over the next weeks make it your goal to become a battle-ready believer. In this sermon series, The Invisible War, you will be equipped to identify Satan’s ploys and strategies, you will come to understand how your mind is a battlefield, you will learn what the armor of God is and how you can stand firm with our armor in place, you will learn how to break free of any of Satan’s entanglements so that you can enjoy the freedom that Christ has given to all who believe in Him.

 

"Over the years of pastoring five churches and traveling to various mission fields, I have encountered many battles in this spiritual war first hand. Within my first year as a youth pastor in Denver, Colorado I uncovered a sex ring that almost got me killed."

"He stirred then opened his eyes and then with a loud shout he yelled, “Jesus!” Instantly his body regained strength and consciousness and he stood to his feet like a man who had just been awakened from a long dark nightmare. Then Drew said, “I am free! I am finally free!"

"It is safe to say that I was not battle ready for my first encounter with the invisible war but God gave me victory because the Holy Spirit reminded me of a verse of Scripture that had the power to loose a captive and set him free."

"Over the next weeks make it your goal to become a battle-ready believer."

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