Answered by: BibleAsk Team


What are the spiritual strongholds?


About the spiritual strongholds, the apostle Paul in his second epistle to the Corinthian Church wrote, “or though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds” (2 Corinthians 10:3-4). The word “strongholds” means “castles,” or “fortresses.” In this passage, Paul resembled the kingdom of Satan as being protected by many fortifications. And he stressed that it is the duty of the believer and the body of Christ to lay siege to the enemy, destroy his fortification, and chase him out.

Spiritual fortresses

Paul was without a doubt speaking of the spiritual strongholds of men’s minds, the wicked fortifications of their minds, and the established habits of sin. The war is of truth against falsehood, the knowledge of God against the foolishness of sin, true worship against all idolatry, and godliness against evil. Paul contrasted human theories with God’s truth.

Pride – the great obstacle

The apostle resembled the proud thinking of men as fortress on high hills. Rebellion to the God of heaven has ever been the sign the devil (Isaiah 14:13–15; Daniel 7:25; 8:11; 11:36; 2 Thessalonians 2:4; Revelation 13:5–8). People erect their own special stronghold to resist God. The strongest fortress for evil is revealed in the way of life that, while professedly Christian, actually opposes Christian principles. The exaltation of human wisdom rejects superior, spiritual knowledge of the Lord (John 17:8; Acts 17:23; 1 Corinthians 1:24; 2:10; Colossians 1:9). There is nothing more self-deceptive than the speculative reasoning of blind individuals who have great confidence in their own wisdom and distrust God’s Word.

Obedience the acid test

Without obedience motivated by love there can be no such thing as genuine Christian experience (Matthew 7:21–27). Christ explained the nature of true humble obedience (John 14:15, 21, 23, 24; 15:10; 17:6, 17). All true Christians will happily yield their will to God in loving surrender. The main reason why the truth has not made more progress in the world and in the lives of people is unwillingness to make Christ truly Lord of the life and to accept the authority of His Word.

The armor of God

Christians should use the spiritual weapons God provides. Paul wrote, “Our weapons are those of the “full armor of God” and consist of “the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Ephesians 6:14-17). The truth of God’s Word is more than personal honesty; it is the truth of God accepted in the heart and acted upon.

Paul added, “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5). These “arguments” are the philosophies, reasonings, and plans of the world.

Christ overcame the strongholds of Satan

Christ’s triumph over sin is the main theme of Christianity. Christ defeated death and Satan (Acts 2:24), and His followers can do the same by faith (John 3:16; Romans 6:23). Symbolically, Satan holds the “gates of hell,” but Christ, by His death, entered Satan’s spiritual stronghold and triumphed over him (Matthew 12:29). “The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death” (1 Corinthians 15:26). And death and the grave will ultimately be “cast into the lake of fire” (Revelation 20:14).

In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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