Sunday, February 25th, 2018:  Spiritual Warfare and the New Testament Church” • Pastor David R. Stokes


Read: Ephesians 3:8-21


READ: Devotional


Some Christians see the local New Testament Church as something akin to a “cruise-ship.” Fun and games. Plenty of “activities.” In fact, they hire staff to coordinate all the “busyness” to keep everybody happy. This group is going here. That group is going there. Make sure the calendar is full. It’s all very social. “We’re building community,” is the mantra.

The problem is, it’s not all that’s spiritual—or even Biblical.

It’s not that “community” isn’t important. We are to make connections with other followers of Jesus. But we need to remember—the church is not a “cruise-ship,”—it’s a “BATTLESHIP.” The local church is, in fact, in troubled waters—a war zone. Satan has an agenda against the church. He wants to hurt it. He wants to haunt it. He wants to neutralize it.

“…lest Satan should take advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devices.”

II Corinthians 2:11 (NKJV)

Among the enemy’s most effective devices are attacks on our DOCTRINE, the fostering of DIVISION, a persistent attempt at DISTRACTION, and the sad pattern of DEFECTION. We need to be wise in the face of these. In fact, we need to be “sober” and “vigilant.” (See: I Peter 5:8-9)



  • Have I ever participated in something divisive in the church, not fully realizing how I was playing into the enemy’s hand
  • Why is doctrine important?
  • What is “the main thing,” and how to we keep it “the main thing”?






the church is not a “cruise-ship,”—it’s a “BATTLESHIP (5).png