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Ministry as Warfare

Ministry as Warfare

Ministry as Warfare

The Authority to Correct


Passage: 2 Corinthians 10 - 13

Preachers and teachers of the word of God should not diminish from correcting wrongs and errors, because this is a part of our successful warfare against the forces of evil. We have been authorized by God with divine weapons to demolish the works of darkness.

In this section of Second Corinthians, the Apostle Paul began to respond to a rebellious and antagonist group in the church. Apparently, there was a set at the Corinthian church who were accusing Paul of only being bold in his letters, but that he was not powerful in person. Essentially, they were assuming that Paul was just operating like any normal person, who may be fearful in live confrontation, but speaks big when far away. They were judging Paul based on worldly standards; they were looking at his physical presentation rather than the power of Christ in him. Paul sets the record straight that his authority was in Christ.

From this section of Second Corinthians, we will see how the minister must use the authority given to him in Christ to war against the works of the enemy. When I say minister, I mean any believer active in the ministry. But note that the authority to do certain things is based on the particular calling you have been given in ministry.

We have been authorized by God with divine weapons to demolish the works of darkness.

Ministry as War

Preaching and ministering is a part of spiritual warfare.

The Apostle Paul makes it clear that his conduct in the ministry was not based on human ability, but that he was conducting spiritual warfare with weapons that were divinely empowered. Thus, he was correcting with authority to rebuke the enemies of Christ.

    1. It is not based on Natural Tactics or Force. Not the strength of the person’s look, or the force of their voice.

    2. Believers in ministry may live in a physical body and world, but our war is spiritual, not physical. This world we live in is the battlefield. We fight, however, in the spiritual realm.

Ephesians 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

Enemies in Ministry

  1. Forces of satan - Ephesians 6:12

  2. Strongholds - Arguments,  Rebellious and Arrogant Opposition, False Doctrines (2 Corinthians 10:4-5)

  3. Opposers - False Teachers/Preachers/ Prophets

    1. Rebellious

    2. Accusers

2 Corinthians 11:13-15 For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. 14And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. 15Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.

Believers in ministry may live in a physical body and world, but our war is spiritual, not physical. This world we live in is the battlefield. We fight, however, in the spiritual realm.

Weapons are Mighty

Not Physical weapons

These are the weapons: Ephesians 6:14-17 Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; 15And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. 17And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:

The Apostle Paul tells us that our weapons are divinely endowed. They are mighty. In Ephesians 6, he tells us what these divine weapons are. The minister of the gospel wages war with truth; Jesus Christ and His gospel is the truth. The second weapon is righteousness; a right standing with God through Christ and living out that right standing in our daily practice. Readiness to preach the gospel; the minister must always be ready to preach and explain the gospel of Christ. Faith is trusting God, and remaining faithful despite the attacks the minister may face. The helmet of salvation is the hope of eternal life; this keeps us assured of our standing. Every minister needs the sword, the word of God to use in preaching, teaching, and ministering.

Powerful in God with Great Spiritual Force

These divine weapons - truth, righteousness, gospel readiness, faith, the hope of salvation, and the word of God - are mighty. They are powerful having great spiritual force to demolish the forces of satan.

Effects of the Weapon

2 Corinthians 10:4-5 For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) 5Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God

Pull Down Strongholds 

    1. Established Arguments and Reasonings

      1. Pulling down proud thoughts against God

While embracing the truth, walking in God’s righteousness, exercising faith, hoping for salvation, and being ready with the gospel, the minister can powerfully wield the word of God to pull down any argument, ideas, and human logic that seeks to set itself up against God and His will. It is not with the use of human logic and philosophical reasoning that we pull down worldly arguments, but it is through wielding the sword of the Spirit while fully covered in the whole armor of God. The simple, sincere teaching and preaching of the truth, along with clear corrections where necessary will defeat worldly arguments and demonic doctrines.

It is not with the use of human logic and philosophical reasoning that we pull down worldly arguments, but it is through wielding the sword of the Spirit while fully covered in the whole armor of God.

Taking Thoughts Captive

2 Corinthians 10:5 and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

      1. Through the Word Arrest Every Disobedient Thought

      2. Teach, Preach, Compel Obedience

As we preach and teach we are arresting disobedient thoughts as we compel others to obey Christ. Through the teaching and proclamation of God’s word, we pierce into the thoughts of men, binding those thoughts that oppose Christ, and compelling the mind to obey Him.

Disciplining the Rebellious

2 Corinthians 10:6 And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.

      1. Rebuke

      2. Disfellowship

The church as a body under the pastoral and or presbyterial leadership has the divine authority to discipline those that are rebellious.

Matthew 18:17-18 And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican. verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

The simple, sincere teaching and preaching of the truth, along with clear corrections where necessary will defeat worldly arguments and demonic doctrines.

Authority for Edification

2 Corinthians 10:8 For though I should boast somewhat more of our authority, which the Lord hath given us for edification, and not for your destruction, I should not be ashamed.

The authority to preach the truth and correct errors are for the building up of God’s people, not their destruction. The minister’s goal is not to be harsh and uncaring, but to speak the truth in love for the development of God’s people.

Authority from God’s Commendation

Authority to correct and do ministry only comes through divine endowment. This cannot be faked, nor humanly conjured.

    1. Mistakes of Ministry 

There are erroneous attitudes and conduct that strips a person from the authority to minister. These attitudes are mostly held by those who are rebellious. All in the work of the ministry should examine our own attitudes to ensure that we are maintaining a ministry mindset that aligns invites divine authority. Some of the mistakes are given below.

2 Corinthians 10:12-13 For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise. 13But we will not boast of things without our measure, but according to the measure of the rule which God hath distributed to us, a measure to reach even unto you.

      1. Taking Credit for another man’s work

      2. Comparing Yourself to Other Men’s Self-Centered Claims

      3. Disregarding the Authority God has Given

2 Corinthians 10:11 Let such an one think this, that, such as we are in word by letters when we are absent, such will we be also in deed when we are present.

    1. Commendation is from the Lord

2 Corinthians 10:14-18 For we stretch not ourselves beyond our measure, as though we reached not unto you: for we are come as far as to you also in preaching the gospel of Christ: 15Not boasting of things without our measure, that is, of other men's labours; but having hope, when your faith is increased, that we shall be enlarged by you according to our rule abundantly, 16To preach the gospel in the regions beyond you, and not to boast in another man's line of things made ready to our hand. 17But he that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord. 18For not he that commendeth himself is approved, but whom the Lord commendeth.

      1. God gives us the Measure (Domain) of Our Authority in the Ministry.

      2. Go Where God Sends You. Don’t Seek to Glory in Another Man’s Work

Maximize the Power

  1. Glorify God for your Infirmities

2 Corinthians 12:9-10 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.

As you do the work of ministry, you will come under attack by the forces of satan with persecutions, hardships, difficulties and troubles. But when you face these, do not back down from the call of God on your life. Believers do not run away from ministry because of hardships and offenses. Rather, glorify God during those weak situation. You maximize the power of God in you to do ministry when you praise him during your rough times.

    1. Seek to Edify not Destroy

2 Corinthians 12:19 Again, think ye that we excuse ourselves unto you? we speak before God in Christ: but we do all things, dearly beloved, for your edifying.

When you use the power of God to build up others, then you glorify God because you are bearing fruit. Due to this, God’s power will operate even greater through you as you build up others with the word of truth.

You maximize the power of God in you to do ministry when you praise him during your rough times.

Use the Power

  1. Do not Spare

2 Corinthians 13:2-3 and to all other, that, if I come again, I will not spare: 3Since ye seek a proof of Christ speaking in me, which to you-ward is not weak, but is mighty in you. 

  1. Build Up as Necessary

2 Corinthians 13:10 Therefore I write these things being absent, lest being present I should use sharpness, according to the power which the Lord hath given me to edification, and not to destruction.


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