THE SWORD OF THE SPIRIT
Derek Prince

HIS GLORY REIGNS
B. Childress
Oct 24 2008 08:00AM


There is one thing that distinguishes the sword from the other five items that we have examined.  The sword is the first
item that is not purely defensive.  Without it, we have no way to drive off the Devil.  If we put on all the other items of
equipment, we may be able to prevent the Devil from actually wounding us, but we cannot drive him from our presence.  
The only thing in that list that can do that is the sword, which is called "
the word of God" (Ephesians 6:17).

The Bible compares God's Word to a sword because God's Word pierces and penetrates.  Hebrews 4:12 declares the
following:

    "For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to
    the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts
    and intents of the heart." God's Word penetrates to every area of human personality.  It penetrates to
    the marrow, the very innermost part of the physical being.  It also penetrates and divides between soul
    and spirit, the innermost area of human personality.  It is sharper than any double-edged sword.

In Revelation 1:16, where John had a vision of Jesus in His glory as the Lord of the church, one of the things that he
saw was a sword coming out of the mouth of Jesus.

    "And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword: and his
    countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength."

That sharp double-edged sword is the Word of God coming out of the mouth of Jesus.  Since it is indicated in Scripture
that Jesus Himself uses the sword of the Word of God, we would do well to study just how Jesus  used it in His earthly
life.  The clearest picture of this is found in Matthew 4:1-11, which describes the temptation of Jesus by Satan in the
wilderness.  Let me (Derek Prince) point out that every time Jesus encountered Satan personally, the only weapon He
used against him was the sword of the Spirit, or the Word of God.

    (1)  "Then was Jesus led up of the spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil."

    (2)  "And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred."

    (3)  "And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made
    bread."

    (4)  "But he answered and said, It is written, MAN SHALL NOT LIVE BY BREAD ALONE, BUT BY EVERY WORD
    THAT PROCEEDETH OUT OF THE MOUTH OF GOD."

    (5)  "Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple,"

    (6)  "And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, HE SHALL GIVE HIS
    ANGELS CHARGE CONCERNING THEE: and IN THEIR HANDS THEY SHALL BEAR THEE UP, LEST AT ANY
    TIME THOU DASH THY FOOT AGAINST A STONE."

    (7)  "Jesus said unto him, It is written again, THOU SHALT NOT TEMPT THE LORD THY GOD."

    (8)  "Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the
    world, and the glory of them; "

    (9)  "And saith unto him, all these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me."

    (10)  "Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan:  for it is written, THOU SHALT WORSHIP THE LORD
    THY GOD, AND HIM ONLY SHALT THOU SERVE."

    (11)  "Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him."       Matthew 4:1-11

I (Derek Prince) would like to point out some interesting things about that passage.  First, neither Jesus nor Satan even
questioned the authority of Scripture.  Isn't that remarkable?  In particular, Jesus quoted each time from the book of
Deuteronomy, the one book that has been singled out for attack by modern theologians and critics.  Personally, I
believe Jesus and Satan were wiser than the modern theologians.  They both knew the authority of those words.

Second, the basis of every temptation against Jesus was a temptation to doubt.  Every time Satan began with the word
"
if," he called something into doubt.

Third, as I have already indicated, Jesus did not vary His method of dealing with Satan, but always used the same
weapon of the Word of God against him.  "
It is written...It is written....It is also written."

It is significant that the Devil can quote Scripture, but he misapplies it.  He quoted from Psalm 91, but Jesus quoted
again from Deuteronomy.  The Devil tried to use Scripture against the Son of God.  If he did it against Jesus, he might
do it against you or me.  We must know Scripture thoroughly and we must know how to apply Scripture if we are going to
be able to handle the Devil.  We must be careful of people who misapply Scripture and try to tempt us to do the wrong
thing.

Jesus did not answer the Devil with theology or religious affiliation.  He did not tell which synagogue He attended or
which rabbi had taught Him.  He always went straight to the Scripture.  "
It is written...It is written....It is also written."  After
the third thrust of that sharp double-edged sword, Satan backed off; he had enough.  You and I are given the privilege
of using the same weapon.

In Ephesians 6:17, where Paul spoke about the sword of the Spirit, the Word of God, the Greek word he used for "word"
is rhema, which primarily means a spoken word.  It is significant that the sword of the Spirit is not the Bible on the
bookshelf or on the nightstand.  That does not scare the Devil.  But when you take the Scripture in your mouth and
quote it directly, then it becomes the sword of the Spirit.

Notice also the significance of the phrase, "
the sword of the Spirit" (Ephesians 6:17).  This indicates cooperation
between the believer and the Holy Spirit.  We must take the sword.  The Holy Spirit will not do that for us.  But when we  
take the sword in faith, then the Holy Spirit gives us the power and the wisdom to use it.



Source:

Spiritual Warfare, by Derek Prince, Copyright 1987, Whitaker House.
2010 - HIS GLORY REIGNS
LIFE IN JESUS-MINISTRIES