Spiritual warfare

From Academic Kids

see also Spiritual Warfare (NES)

According to some Christian beliefs, spiritual warfare is the interaction of persons with the angelic and demonic realms in positive or negative ways (e.g. exorcism). Spiritual warfare is a prominent feature in some pentecostal and charismatic churches. Spiritual conflict (less than "war") exists thoughout Christianity (e.g. prayer).

The concept of spiritual warfare is based on the understanding that Satan and demons are real beings whose primary mission is to thwart God's purposes on earth, specifically to prevent non-believers from placing faith in Christ and to prevent Christians from being effective disciples of Jesus.

The Scriptural basis of spritual warfare is found in Christ's commissioning of the disciples to cast out demons in the gospels and the Apostle Paul's exhortation to don the armor of God in the Epistle to the Ephesians. St. Paul tells us there that our battle is not with flesh and blood, but with the principalities and powers (fallen angels).

A popular modern portrayal of spiritual warfare is Frank E. Peretti's book This Present Darkness.

Dr. Ed Murphy is the author of a modern 600 page tome on the subject from the point of view of deliverance ministry entitled The Handbook of Spiritual Warfare. From the Catholic perspective, Father Gabriele Amorth has written two instructive books on his personal experiences as an exorcist for the Vatican: An Exorcist Tells His Story, and An Exorcist: More Stories.

Interest in spiritual warfare increased markedly after the release of the film The Exorcist in 1973.

See also Territorial Spirit.

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