What does it mean to stand firm against an unseen enemy? Who is my unseen enemy? Ephesians 6:10-13 states, “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore, take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.” You cannot withstand against evil spirits in your own strength. Many of the girls in my County Jail Bible study say they are determined not to return to drugs and alcohol. But sadly, those who did not commit their lives to God and rely on Him for strength return several months later. The devil is always seeking to tempt us to depend on ourselves or an idol instead of God.

How We Have Strength To Stand Firm

Memorize Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through him who strengthens me.” God strengthens those who abide in Him as a branch abides in the vine and receives strength from the vine. John 15:5 states, “I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.” We stay connected to the Spirit of God (the vine) through praying, praising, and pondering scripture. To abide means to stand fast, remain, dwell, or remain attached to something. Abiding with God includes memorizing Scripture passages, praying about everything with thanksgiving, and loving Him and others by serving them (Gal. 5:13-14 and Deut. 11:13).

It is worth repeating; the devil’s strategy is to separate you from God, who is your strength. The devil used this strategy when he tempted both Eve and Jesus, and he hasn’t changed. Eve did not take the tempting thought captive to disobey God, and humanity is still suffering the consequences. Jesus was victorious over the devil’s lies by taking the tempting thoughts captive and using Scripture to defeat the devil. Because Jesus defeated the devil and did not sin, now we can enjoy the benefit of life through righteousness in Jesus Christ (Rom. 8:11).

The more Biblical truth you know, the stronger spiritually you will be. For example, Satan puts a deceptive thought into your mind that you are weak, and God won’t help you. What do you do? You can believe the lie and live a defeated life. Or you can command the lie to be gone from your mind in Jesus’ name and speak the truth that you can do all things through Christ, who is your strength (Philippians 4:13). I can’t possibly list all the lies the devil will put into your mind. But if you memorize the truths in God’s Word, you will recognize the lies of the enemy.

Examples of God’s Power in The Old Testament

Exodus 14:13 states, “And Moses said to the people, Fear not, stand firm, and see the salvation of the LORD, which he will work for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall never see again.’” Fear causes you to run away to escape a threat. No matter what you are facing now or are going to face, God is bigger and can work a miracle in your life, but you must stand firm in His strength and on His truth.

Another great Old Testament example is the story of King Jehoshaphat, who was outnumbered by his enemy. He humbles himself before God and seeks His help. God tells Jehoshaphat in  2Choronicles 20:17, “You will not need to fight in this battle. Stand firm, hold your position, and see the salvation of the LORD on your behalf, O Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid and do not be dismayed. Tomorrow, go out against them, and the LORD will be with you.” I don’t know what battles you are facing or will face, but I know God is for you, not against you. I memorized Isaiah 41:10, which states, “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” I spoke this truth out when I was going through a tremendous battle at a previous job. Reminding myself of God’s truth helps me stand firm against the unseen attacks of the unseen enemy.

How to Stand Firm

1Corinthians 16:13 states, “Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong.”  1Corinthians 1:24b also tells us to stand firm in our faith. We grow stronger in our faith when we read God’s Word (Rom. 10:17). You can’t stand firm against the unseen battles of temptations and deceptions without the knowledge of the truth. The belt of truth and the rest of the armor of God help you stand firm in your faith. Ephesians 6:13 states, “Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.” But you have to put it on every day through prayer. See the post called PUTTING ON THE ARMOR OF GOD PRAYER MODEL.

Galatians 5:1 states, “For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.” The devil does not want us to be free from our passions, immoral and impure thoughts, greed, coveting, anger, etc. He wants to keep us in bondage to our sin, but we are to stand firm by submitting to God, not the devil’s temptations and lies. James 4:7 states, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” Read my post HOW TO DESTROY THE DEVIL’S WORK IN YOUR LIFE to know how to stand up to the devil and make him run.


This following Scripture passage clarifies what the devil does and what we need to do not to get devoured. 1Peter 5:8-9a states, “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith.” Many Christians do not resist and are defeated by the unseen enemy. If you are a victim of the devil and allowed him to put you in bondage again, Jesus wants to set you free again, look up and pray for His help and strength to get out of the pit. Psalm 40:2 states, “He drew me up from the pit of destruction, out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure.” Memorize all the Scripture verses in this post so you can remind yourself to be watchful and to resist the wrong thoughts the devil puts in your mind and stand firm in your faith.

All verses are from the English Standard Bible. If you find my posts and website helpful, please share the links with your friends and family, The information is copyright protected, and no part of the posts or my book may be reproduced without proper citation to Joyce Hanscom and this website. 

Contact me at, and ask for a PDF of Eight Prayers from the Bible. The prayers are for the Spirit of wisdom, renewal, spiritual strength, knowledge of His will, virtues of God, salvation for non-believers, 23rd Psalm, and victory. Please leave your name, so I know you are a real person making the request.

Image by Lorraine Cormier from Pixabay


Do you wish you knew more Bible verses by memory? Do you struggle with remembering Scripture verses? In this post, I will explain why you should memorize, how to memorize, and how to practice and recall what you have memorized.

Why should I memorize Scripture?

  • The armor of God is useless without having an arsenal of Bible verses memorized.
  • Jesus used Scripture to overcome the devil’s temptations in the wilderness (Matt. 4), and that is the only way we will overcome temptations too.
  • Never forget that we are always in a spiritual war, whether or not we know it.
  • Memorizing Scripture makes us stronger and encourages spiritual growth.
  • It allows you to have gospel truths ready at all times, whether your day brings you temptation, heartache, or a friend in need of encouragement.
  • You can experience God’s perfect peace by having His promises written on your heart and ready to claim.
  • Memorized Scripture helps you be victorious over sin and all the devil’s attacks. Psalm 119:11 states, “I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.”
  • Scripture memory will also help you gain confidence in witnessing.

Put off the “I Can’t Memorize” Myth

If you believe the lie that you can’t memorize or remember anything, take those wrong thoughts captive and put them out of your mind and heart in Jesus’ name. Our words have the power to create new thoughts and beliefs. Isaiah 42:9 states, “Behold, the former things have come to pass, and new things I now declare [speak]; before they spring forth [happen], I tell you of them.” Speak out loud and bind in the truth that you can do all things through Christ (Phil. 4:13) and that you have the mind of Christ (1Cor. 2:16b) and can memorize and remember scriptural truths.

Put Off the “I don’t have time” Myth

You may think that this is a lot of work, and you don’t have the time. Guess what? I bet you don’t have the time to exercise either. To stop making this myth a reality, loose from your mind the wrong thoughts that you do not have time to memorize or exercise. Next, bind into your mind the truth that memorizing scripture is essential for spiritual health and strength. Also, memorized Bible verses will help me win the unseen battles with the temptation and deceptive thoughts the demonic world entices me to believe. Bind in the truth that just as physical exercise is essential for a healthy, strong mind and body, so memorizing scripture makes you stronger spiritually. I combined memorizing and exercising because I am a kinesthetic learner. 1Timothy 4:7-8 (NIV) states, “Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives tales; rather train yourself to be godly. For physical training is of some value but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.”

You can walk 30-45 minutes each day and memorize scripture as you walk. If I don’t walk that day, then I made a reading stand out of cardboard for my elliptical machine to memorize scripture while I work out. I am confident that you can come up with many other combinations. You can also download the Bible to your MP3 player, iPod, or your cell phone and then listen to the scriptures. Hit pause to recite what you just heard, and rewind to hear the verse or verse chunk again until you can recite it perfectly (or near perfectly). You can listen to the scripture while driving, doing chores, or exercising.

Practice the scriptural principles you have memorized

Practice doing and sharing what you memorized to reinforce long-term memory. The following scriptures instruct us to practice the Word of God. Meditate on each verse.

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; all those who practice it have a good understanding. His praise endures forever! –Psalms 111:10

Practice these things, immerse yourself in them so that all may see your progress. –1Timothy 4:15

But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil. –Hebrews 5:14

For if you practice these qualities [faith, moral excellence (virtue), knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness, and love] you will never fall [stumble].” –1Peter 1:10

If we say we have fellowship with Him [Jesus] while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. –1John 1:6

But whoever does what is true [practices the truth; or lives by the truth] comes to the Light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God. –John 3:21

The more you practice something, the better you become at it. For example, I had a problem of complaining, so I memorized Philippians 4:8 and 1Thessalonians 5:16-18. When I wanted to get upset and complain, I would recall and practice these principles to resist the temptation to be irritated and speak destructive words. But these verses are useless if I do not practice capturing my negative thoughts before they go into my heart and come out of my mouth. Memorizing scripture is not beneficial until you practice what you have internalized and transform wrong thoughts, attitudes, or behaviors. Ephesians 4:22-24 states, “To put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.” We also purify our souls when we obey and practice the truth as described in 1Peter 1:22a, which states, “Having purified your souls by your obedience to the truth.” Because 1Peter 2:11 states, “Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul.”

First, pray and ask God to help you hide His Word in your heart so you don’t forget it.

Repetition is the key to retaining the verse in long-term memory. Small steps of obedience can make a significant impact. Try the following to help you mentally internalize the Word of God.

  • Write the verse on a whiteboard or type it on the computer, then eliminate words until you can write, type, or recall it from memory five to ten times.
  • Carry your verse(s) with you. When you are waiting in line or at a red light, go over and recite your verse or verses.
  • Turn it into a song.
  • Turn it into a prayer.
  • Draw a picture or a series of images to represent the verse.

Psalm 91:9-12

  • Memorize in phrases and associate a picture that depicts the expression.
  • Write the verses on index cards and make each phrase a different color. Post these around your house in places you go most (your bed, above your light switch, your bathroom mirror, etc.)

How to Begin

I like to memorize a chapter at a time, and Psalm 91 was the first chapter I learned. I still remember it because I turned it into a prayer and made a picture board like the one above. I also recite it often. To create my memorization list, I first went to, selected the Bible version, and searched for the scripture I wanted to memorize. Next, I copied and pasted it into a “Word” document. I found it easier to break up the scripture in verse chunks, and then after each chunk, include some keywords from each verse that would trigger my memory. The following are two examples I use.

Christ Is Our Example—1 Peter 2

21 For you have been called for this purpose, since Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in His steps,

22 who committed no sin, nor was any deceit found in His mouth;

23 and while being reviled, He did not revile in return; while suffering, He uttered no threats, but kept entrusting Himself to Him who judges righteously;

24 and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds, you were healed.

25 For you were continually straying like sheep, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls.

24– bore-cross-die-live-healed

OR you can do the following, which also works well.

1 Peter 4:8-12

8 To sum up, all of you be harmonious, sympathetic, brotherly, kindhearted, and humble in spirit;

9 not returning evil for evil or insult for insult, but giving a blessing instead; for you were called for the very purpose that you might inherit a blessing.

10 For, “The one who desires life, to love and see good days, must keep his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking deceit.
11 “He must turn away from evil and do good; He must seek peace and pursue it.
12 “For the eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous, and His ears attend to their prayer, But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.”

8 To sum up, a o y b har, sym, bro, kin, a hu i sp;
not returning evil f ev o in f in, b gi a bl ins; f y we ca f t v pur th y mi in a bl.
10 For, “The one w de li t lo a s go da, mu ke h to fr ev a h li fr sp de.
11 He must turn aw fr ev a d go; H m se pe a pu i.
12 For the eyes o t L a to t ri, a H ea at t th pr, B t fa o t L i ag th w d ev.”

Repetition is the key to recall. I would repeat each section until I could recite the verses without looking at the aids. The next day I would again recite the same verses before memorizing the next set of verses. I also found it helpful to say the verses backward. It was also beneficial to review the Scripture memorized earlier that day before going to bed and then meditating on them until I went to sleep. In doing this, you are meditating on scripture day and night, just as King David recommends in Psalm 1:2-3 states, “But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers.”

What I Learned From Researching Other Memorizing Methods

From Not everyone memorizes things the same, but if you’re curious to know how I was able to memorize 500 verses a year, this is it:

  • Work on one verse at a time – not multiple verses.
  • Read the verse aloud 20 times – don’t rush through this part.
  • Read the verse aloud once, then speak the verse once from memory (10 times).
  • Quote the verse without mistakes 5 times in a row. Once you can do this, move to the next verse.
  • When you think you have it down, recite the verse(s) for your family and friends!

Sometimes going through the process would take 15 minutes per verse, other times it would be about 20 minutes per verse. It’s not about spending a certain number of minutes – it’s about repetition and using your eyes, ears, and voice to get each verse down.

From Many thousands of people have shared that this system was what finally worked for them after years of trying other approaches.

4 Steps to Memorizing More Scripture

Step 1: Pick an area of gospel truth you’re motivated to understand more deeply

It has been curated by The Navigators based on experience helping people of all ages grow in Christ since the 1930s.

Step 2: Dig into the context

  • Find the verse in your Bible and read the paragraph before and after it.
  • Use this context to gain a clear understanding of what the verse means. You may want to read the verse in other Bible translations or consult a commentary.
  • Read the verse through several times thoughtfully, aloud or in a whisper. This will help you grasp the verse as a whole. Each time you read it, say the topic, reference, verse, and then the reference again out loud.
  • Discuss the verse with God in prayer, and ask for His help memorizing Scripture.

Step 3: Memorize in bite-sized pieces

  • Memorize the topic and reference first.
  • Next, memorize only the first phrase of the verse. Once you can recite the topic, reference and first phrase from memory several times, continue to add each additional phrase, one by one.
  • Consider why each word was selected as you memorize it.
  • Think about ways the verse applies to you and your daily circumstances.
  • Writing the verse out can be helpful. This deepens its impression in your mind.

Step 4: Review with friends

  • Review the verse immediately after learning it, incorporate it into your prayers, and repeat it frequently over subsequent days to others. This step is crucial for fixing the verse firmly in your mind because we tend to forget things recently learned.
  • Invite a friend to memorize with you! Set a time each week to check in and review verses. In just ten minutes you can give each other enough accountability to grow by leaps and bounds in your love for God and knowledge of His Word.
  • Review! Review! Review! Repetition is the best way to engrave the verses on your memory.

All verses are from the English Standard Bible. If you find my posts and website helpful, please share the links with your friends and family, The information is copyright protected, and no part of the posts or my book may be reproduced without proper citation to Joyce Hanscom and this website.

Contact me at, and ask for a PDF for the Psalm 91 picture memorizing form. Please leave your name, so I know you are a real person making the request.


Since evil spirits are invisible, wouldn’t it be great to have an invisible around-the-clock guard who can warn you of a spiritual attack and protect you? Prayer is a forgotten part of God’s armor, but it is essential for using the rest of the armor. When you pray, you become connected to the Spirit of God, called the Holy Spirit, who lives in your soul/heart. The Holy Spirit can see the evil spirits attack and warn you and then help you be victorious when you have the armor of God on. Prayer is how we draw strength from God and rely on Him to protect us. Praying is the key that “activates” the armor. When you don’t rely on God through prayer, you will lose every spiritual battle. I have written many posts on prayer, which you can find in Posts about Prayer.

Unanswered prayer is a spiritual battle we all face. Because evil spirits know that prayer is powerful and connects us to God’s power and the Holy Spirit’s guidance. Therefore, they will put doubts, distractions, and deceptions into your mind to keep you from praying. So, we need to be alert. 1Peter 5:8 states, “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” He mainly attacks our minds through deception and temptations, which I covered in the last nine spiritual warfare posts.

I. How do you pray constantly? 

Ephesians 6:18 states, “Praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication [requests] for all the saints.

I believe praying at all times means always being mindful to turn every thought into prayer. For example, if you see an ambulance, pray for the paramedics and the injured or sick in the ambulance. If someone cuts you off on the highway, pray a blessing of safe travel for them. As you look at the people you walk by, intercede for them. In 1 Thessalonians 5:17, the Apostle Paul encourages us to “pray without ceasing.” And Romans 12:12 states we are to “Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.  So if I think about someone, I will pray for them at that moment. I immediately turn my concerns over to God instead of thinking about them and being tempted to be anxious. When I am having trouble with something, I seek God for help and guidance. If I am tempted to be angry, I ask God to take the anger from my heart and give me peace. When I walk by my refrigerator and see the missionary pictures, I will pray for them as I go about my kitchen tasks. And so on.

II. What do you think it means to “pray at all times in the Spirit”? 

There are several ideas about what it means to pray in the Spirit. One scholar said, that “praying in the spirit means to be directed by the spirit to pray for certain things and for certain people.1” Albert Barnes said in his commentary that “praying in the Spirit is to pray with His aid.”  Romans 8:26 states, “Likewise, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.”

Those in the charismatic circle say praying in the spirit means we pray in “tongues” (a spiritual language). The book of Acts explains how people spoke in tongues, a few places are in Acts 2:4, 2:38, 19:6. 1Corinthians 14:1-2 states, “Pursue love, and earnestly desire the spiritual gifts, especially that you may prophesy. For one who speaks in a tongue speaks not to men but to God; for no one understands him, but he utters mysteries in the Spirit.”  1Corinthians 14:14 states, “For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays but my mind is unfruitful.”

We receive the Holy Spirit of God the moment we put our faith in Jesus to be our Lord and Savior. Some scholars say you can have another “baptism/filling of the Spirit” as a separate event given as a gift from God when we ask for it (Luke 11:13). Regardless of what terminology you use, there seem to be separate Holy Spirit infilling events, which causes controversies in some churches.

III. What does it mean to be alert in prayer?

We are to stay alert through prayer because prayer is our guard that protects our thinking. After all, that is where we fight the spiritual war (2Cor. 11:3). When we are not praying, our guard is down, and we become vulnerable to Satan’s unseen attacks. Even Jesus often went alone up into the hills or some other desolate place to pray (Luke 5:16). He knew He needed to commune with His Father.

We, too, need the help of God our Father in heaven to fight against Satan and all the demonic forces of darkness. 2Corinthians 10:4-5 states, “For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God and take every thought captive to obey Christ.” The weapons of our warfare are God’s armor and His power through the spoken word. My short book on this website explains how to use prayer to destroy wrong thinking, false beliefs, and strongholds. DISCOVER A NEW REALITY.

We can talk to God about anything; besides, He knows everything and is always with us (Ps. 94:11, 139:2-4). God wants us to make requests because He wants to answer our prayers. Isaiah 65:24 states, “Before they call I will answer; while they are yet speaking, I will hear.”

IV. What do you think it means to “keep alert with all perseverance, making supplications [requests] for all the saints?”

First, to “keep alert” means to watch for opportunities. Second, “with all perseverance” means never becoming discouraged or disheartened and not growing weary of making requests for others. Third, “saints” are those who are the children of God. The following Scriptures call believers in Jesus Christ saints: Ephesians 1:1; 1 Corinthians 1:2; Philippians 1:1; and Colossians 1:2. 

Prayer also involves worship and thankfulness for all God has blessed us with, or thankfulness for the various truths and promises found in the Bible. Praying at all times is easy when you abide in Jesus Christ (John 15) by letting your mind dwell on Him and not on things of the earth. Note, we do not have to be perfect for God to answer our prayers. We need to humble ourselves by abiding (remain in and dwell) through prayer in the heavenly place with Christ and in the Word of God.

2 Chronicles 7:14 states, “If My people who are called by My name humble themselves, and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”


Most people are told to set aside time for prayer every day, which is a good practice. Jesus took time for prayer. But praying all the time is a different discipline. Though both prayer methods require mental discipline. I can’t stress enough that through prayer, you stay connected to God, who is your refuge in times of trouble and will protect you from the evil one (2Thes. 3:3). Psalm 91:9-10 states, “Because you have made the LORD your dwelling place—the Most High, who is my refuge—no evil shall be allowed to befall you, no plague come near your tent [dwelling].” When you pray continually, you are dwelling with your Lord. 


  1. McDonald, William. (1995) Believers Bible Commentary



Psalm 91 Posts


Can You Be Too Heavenly Minded?

All verses are from the English Standard Bible. If you find my posts and website helpful, please share the links with your friends and family, The information is copyright protected, and no part of the posts or my book may be reproduced without proper citation to Joyce Hanscom and this website. 

Contact me at, and ask for a PDF of Eight Prayers from the Bible. The prayers are for the Spirit of wisdom, renewal, spiritual strength, knowledge of His will, virtues of God, salvation for non-believers, 23rd Psalm, and victory. Please leave your name, so I know you are a real person making the request.


Have you ever been in a snowball fight as a kid or threw little rocks and sticks at each other? It helped to have a trashcan lid to shield and deflect the snowballs or sticks. Maybe you looked for something to hide behind for some relief for a short while until someone found you. In this post you will learn why you need the shield of faith and when and how to use it.

The problem with spiritual warfare is that we don’t see what is coming in our direction or when it will come. It is safe to assume we will continually fight a spiritual war for our souls. Consequently, we need to stand firm in our faith. Without faith, we are vulnerable to every empty philosophy, temptation, and deception thrown at us. A warrior’s shield is the first layer of protection.

In my last post, I explained that we should expect spiritual war because “the whole world lies in the power of the evil one” (1John 5:19b). The Bible says we need the shield of faith to protect us from the fiery arrows the unseen enemy shoots at us. Ephesians 6:16 states, “In all circumstances, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one.” Because you can’t physically see the invisible flaming darts, you need to keep the shield of faith up. Faith protects you from the following:

  • darts of doubts designed to destroy your convictions and knowledge of the truth;
    • arrows of temptation designed to weaken your resolve to die to sin and to be holy as God is holy;
    • missiles of accusation designed to make you feel insecure, rejected, and worthless;
    • flaming arrows of condemnation for things you have done in the past that would keep you in bondage to shame and guilt. Guilt keeps you in despair and makes you ineffective; and
    • thoughts of failure and rejection.

What is faith?

When I think about faith, I think of a warm, secure, peaceful place for my mind to dwell. In that safe place, I have no worries, fears, anger, and so on. I have peace when I trust God has a purpose and is in control. I trust that He will work everything out for my good because I love Him (Romans 8:28). The Bible says in Hebrews 11:1, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” I could not see how God would work out all the problems I was facing when I became a single mother. But I decided to put my hope in Him and stay tight with Him through prayer and praise. The other choice was to become depressed and angry about how unfair life was. When I put my trust in God and claimed His promises during my divorce, I saw God do many miracles, which strengthened my faith. You can read my story WHAT IS INNER LIFE TRANSFORMATION? My Story.

Hebrews 11:6 explains, “And without faith it is impossible to please him [God], for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.” Though you do not physically see spirits, you can observe the evidence. For example, you can see the destructive force of evil in a person’s life who has yielded to the influence of evil spirits. Peace and life are evidence that a person has yielded their mind and heart to God (Rom. 8:6).

Faith became a shield for me as long as my mind was on the things above where my savior, Jesus Christ, is. Colossians 3:1-2 states, “If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.” When I think about the things on the earth, I become anxious, especially when I watched the news. I feel peaceful and secure when I turn my thoughts toward God and recount His goodness and sovereignty over the affairs of our country and my life.

When I am anxious, I often will recite Psalm 91, then I immediately relax and feel peace, especially at night when my mind can’t stop thinking about life’s worries. You can read the series of posts I wrote on Psalm 91 in Psalm 91 Posts. 2Samuel 22:31, Psalms 18:30, and Proverbs  30:5 states, “This God—his way is perfect; the word of the LORD proves true; he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.” We take refuge in God through praying, praising, and pondering scripture.

Faith believes that God will do what He promised He to do. Luke 1:37 states, “For nothing will be impossible with God.” Faith is the childlike trust that what God has promised, He will do. You put your spiritual shield of faith into action by claiming God’s faithfulness to keep His promises. See my post about the 15 promises we can trust God to keep. However, the shield of faith is useless if you do not meditate on or memorize God’s Word. As you memorize Scripture and claim God’s promises, you are strengthening your shield of faith so the fiery arrows from the devil cannot penetrate your mind.

Why do we need the shield of faith?

Too often, people unwittingly put their faith in lies from the devil, such as, “I will never succeed” or “I am not worthy to be loved,” which produces sorrow and many times destructive thoughts. Your faith in Jesus and applying the living water of truth extinguishes the devil’s darts of lies and accusations. The allegations and enticements seem so real that most people believe them and try to build their lives upon them. Satan’s lies are empty and destructive.

People grieving a loss are the most susceptible to spiritual attack? It could be a loss of health, a job, a loved one, and so on. When we are in a community of believers, they can cover you with their shield of faith through prayer and encourage you to keep your hope in God’s promises. Also, Hebrews 10:24-25 states, “And let us watch out for one another to provoke love and good works, not neglecting to gather together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging each other, and all the more as you see the day approaching.” The faith of other believers encourages our faith when we are in a battle because their faith helps us stand firm in our faith. For example, when soldiers stand close together and lock their shields together, it forms a barrier against an attack. Do not forsake going to church. Satan will throw all kinds of offenses at you so you quit going to church, which will weaken your faith to fight the spiritual battle he wages to take your soul.

In Luke 22:31-32, Jesus says, “Simon, Simon, behold, Satan demanded to have you, that he might sift you like wheat, but I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned again, strengthen your brothers.” Peter denied knowing Jesus three times because he was alone and his faith was weak. God’s Word says that Satan comes before God to accuse us. Read Job 1:6-12 to learn how Satan asked permission to test Job’s resolve to fear God and not sin. We will learn more about the power of prayer in the next post.

Trials and temptations will cause you to either have faith in God or doubt His promises and mentally dwell in the pit of despair. When trials test our faith, and we resist the temptation to worry or despair, we will become stronger. James 1:2–4 states, “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials [temptations] of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness[endurance, patience]. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.” Three different words describe what testing of our faith produces: steadfastness, endurance, and patience. All are necessary to be victorious in the unseen spiritual battles. For an example read about Paul’s thorn in the flesh in 2Corinthians 12.

  • Steadfastness means firm, fixed, settled, or established, or constant and not changing.
  • Endurance is the ability to last, continue, or remain, or the ability to stand pain, distress, fatigue, etc.
  • Patience is to bear or endure provocation, annoyance, misfortune, or pain, without complaint, loss of temper, irritation, or the like.

Where do we get faith?

First, you need to get the shield of faith from Jesus. Hebrews 12:2 states, “Looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” And we get faith from reading the Bible. Romans 10:17 states, “So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the Word of Christ.” So, when you study God’s Word and pray daily, your shield of faith is up, and the devil’s arrows bounce off. But when you miss time reading God’s Word and praying, your protection is down, making you vulnerable to Satan’s temptations and lies. You will lose spiritual strength and health when you don’t read your Bible and pray daily.


Daily pray: I take up my shield of faith to block the fiery arrows of condemnation, accusation, temptations, doubts, and flattery of the enemy. I believe that God loves me, cares about me, and is the shield that protects me from evil. I will strengthen my faith by meditating on Scripture day and night. (Eph. 6:16; Rev. 12:9; 1John 3:1; 1Peter 5:7; 2Thes. 3:3; Rom. 10:17)


The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil” (1John 3:8b). What are the works or schemes of the devil?

  • Deception, so we remain self-focused and unforgiving (John 8:44 and 2Cor. 2:10-11).
  • Temptation, so we sin and stay under God’s wrath (Col. 3:5-9).
  • He inflicts us with illness (Acts 19:12 ).
  • Entrapment to do his will and not God’s will (2Timothy 2:26).
  • Oppression (Matthew 8:16).

To not get caught in the devils schemes, Ephesians 6:11-12 states, “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” What does a warrior do? A warrior trains and is prepared to fight.

I have been doing a series on the armor of God, but this is Easter weekend, and I want to remind you that Jesus has destroyed the works of the devil in your life. I like the following passage because it reminds me how to be victorious. Hebrews 12:1-2 states, “Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.”

Jesus Christ is alive and is seated at the right hand of God. He gives us the spiritual authority to fight against the demonic spirit world and their work of deception and temptations. The following are four truths explaining why we have dominion over demons through Jesus Christ:

1.  Jesus has dominion over the demonic realm. This truth is found in Matthew 28:18, “And Jesus came and said to them, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.’” Every spiritual entity yields to Jesus. And 1Peter 3:22 states, “Who [Jesus] has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers having been subjected [submitted] to him.”1 Because Jesus triumphed over the demonic ranks, so can we. Colossians 2:15 states, “He [God] disarmed the rulers and authorities [the demon ranks] and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in him [Jesus].”Therefore, Romans 8:37b, “We are more than conquerors through him who loved us.”

2.  We have the same authority as Jesus when we daily submit to His leadership: This truth is found in Colossians 2:9–10, “For in him [Jesus] the whole fullness of deity dwells in bodily form, and you have been filled in him, who is the head of all rule and authority.” Because Jesus lives in our hearts, we are “filled in Him”, and we have His deity and authority because He becomes our life as explained in Colossians 3:4a, When Christ who is my life appears.” And Galatians 2:20 states, “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God.” And 1Corinthians 2:16b states, “We have the mind of Christ.” If Jesus Christ has all authority, and He is our life, and we are one spirit with Him, then we too have His spiritual authority. The Bible says we have power over demons and evil spirits.2 Still, we do not have control over another person’s will to choose. This truth transformed my unhealthy belief and the resulting offenses I held against God for unanswered prayer. I prayed for people who were making wrong choices, and my prayers went unanswered because they have a free will.

3.  We have authority in Jesus’ name. This truth is found in John 14:14, “If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it.” Also, Psalm 124:8 says, “Our help is in the name of the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.” God will answer our prayers when we follow the parameters found in John 15:7–16; 1John 3:21–24; and 1John 5:14–15, summarized below:

  • We must abide in Jesus and live through Him, and His Word abides in us (John 15: 7)
  • We bear fruit (John 15:16)
  • Our heart does not condemn us because we please Him and love others (1John 3:21-24)
  • Our requests are submitted to His will (1John 5:14)

God’s sovereignty is difficult to understand because the thoughts and ways of God are above our understanding.3 Also, doubt and habitual sin block our prayers, so God may not respond to your prayer requests.4

4. We have the keys to the kingdom. Matthew 16:19 states, “I [Jesus] will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” (Also see Matthew 18:18.) When you have keys, you have the authority to lock or unlock your house or wherever the key fits. In the spirit realm, the kingdom’s keys allow you to bind (lock) or loose (unlock). The Greek meaning for “bind” is to tie or knit, and “loose” means undo or release. Jesus does not give specific examples. The Bible also uses the terms put on, which can be interchanged with “bind,” and put off for “loose.” Ephesians 4:22-24 states, “To put off [loose] your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on [bind] the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.” In prayer, you must first loose or put off your old self consisting of wrong thoughts and false beliefs so you can bind or put on your new self that conforms to the truth of God and be holy.

ONLY as we submit to the Lordship of Christ Jesus do we have dominion over the demonic world. James 4:7 states, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” For example, as long as I worried about something, I was controlled and consumed by it. Satan was able to control my mind through that worry and keep me self-focused and in despair. He tempts me to imagine all the terrible things that will never happen, so I become angry. I let Satan steal my joy and peace. As soon as I submitted my concerns to God and put them in my “God Cares” box, then I could keep my mind on the things of God, and Satan could not torment me again. Satan cannot read your mind, but he does hear what you say. So RESOLVE to do what HEBREWS 13:15 says, “Through him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge his name.” Modern King James says, “Confessing His name.” King James says, “Giving thanks to His name.


Because you have the life of Christ in you through the Holy Spirit, you have His divine power and authority. So, when you keep your mind on Christ through continual prayer and praise and by faith apply His truth, you will remain in victory over every scheme of the devil. You will suffer defeat when you let your mind dwell on the troubles and allurements of the world. So, daily submit your mind to God’s control and abide with Him through prayer and praise. Be watchful for pride because it blocks Christ’s power in your life for victory over demonic activity.

Reflections and Applications:

Why do you think submission to God’s authority is the key to keeping our victory?

Why do we need to keep our minds on heavenly things and not earthly things?

Section Footnotes:

1.  Demons in subjection to Jesus: Heb. 2:7–8.
2.  Authority over demons or evil spirits: Mat. 10:8; Mk. 6:7,13, 16:17; Lk. 9:1–2.
3. God’s thoughts are greater than ours: Is. 55:8–9.
4.  Doubt and sin block prayers: Ps. 66:18; Is. 59:1–2; Jm. 1:6–7.




Spiritual Warfare 1: HOW TO DISCERN THE TRUTH


All verses are from the English Standard Bible. If you find my posts and website helpful, please share the links with your friends and family, The information is copyright protected, and no part of the posts or my book may be reproduced without proper citation to Joyce Hanscom. 

Contact me at, and ask for a PDF of Eight Prayers from the Bible. The prayers are for the Spirit of wisdom, renewal, spiritual strength, knowledge of His will, virtues of God, salvation for non-believers, 23rd Psalm, and victory. Please leave your name, so I know you are a real person making the request.

P.S.: Experiencing a lasting change in your life depends on having a right relationship with God the Father through believing in His Son Jesus Christ and obeying His command to love (1 John 3).


Whether you know it or not, you’re an Atheists or a Christian, everyone is in a spiritual war with the devil and demons who are intent on destroying humanity (Revelations 12:9 and John 10:10). We are spirit beings in a physical body, living in a spiritual world within God’s physical creation (Colossians 1:15-16). 1Corinthians 2:11 states, “For who knows a person’s thoughts except for the spirit of that person, which is in him? So also no one comprehends the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God.” You receive the Holy Spirit of God the moment you believe with your heart that Jesus is the Lord and the Son of God and confess He has risen from the dead (Rom. 10:8-10), then you become one spirit with God (1Cor. 6:17). Then the Holy Spirit helps you comprehend the thoughts of God and helps you fight the unseen spiritual battles and live a victorious life.

Every day we need to prepare for a spiritual war with the evil spirits that attack our mind and body. Ephesians 6:12 states, “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” The demons (evil spirits) want to deceive us and tempt us to sin so that we remain under the wrath of God (Eph. 2:1-3). We prepare everyday by:

  • praying and praising (Phil. 4:4-7 and Heb. 13:15)
  • pondering Scriptural truths (Ps. 119:15 and 48)
  • putting on the armor of God every day to stand firm against the schemes of the devil
  • being alert and standing firm in your faith as you rely on God’s strength (Eph. 6:10-18).

In the previous posts:

  1. You discover the source of truth and how to discern the truth by putting on the belt of truth. And why it keeps you spiritually stable and not double-minded.
  2. Then you learn why the breastplate of righteousness protects your spiritual life and how a reverent fear of God will keep you safe.
  3. Next, you learn how to live in peace with God and humanity by strapping on the gospel of peace to your feet, so where ever you go, you do not slip and fall when offended.
  4. And you discover why the helmet of salvation protects your mind and how to take every deceiving and tempting thought captive.

In this post, you will learn about the sword of the Spirit and how, why, and when you use it. Learning to use the sword of the Spirit in spiritual warfare is essential if you want to be victorious over the unseen spiritual battles. The objective of demonic forces is to keep you doubting and insecure in your relationship with God.

What is the sword of the Spirit?

In the spiritual realm, the “sword of the Spirit” is Scriptural truth. You can also see it as the Holy Spirit’s sword. Only the Holy Spirit sees how the unseen evil spirits are attacking. Jesus said in John 14:26, “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.” The Holy Spirit will bring to your mind the scriptural truths you memorized and stored in your belt of truth. 2Timothy 3:16 tells us that God breathed out all Scripture, so God’s Word is powerful when we speak it out against temptations and deceptions of the enemy.

Why do I need the sword of the Spirit?

We daily face temptations to worry, be frustrated, be impatient, judge others, doubt, be depressed, be fearful, and so on. The sword is both a defensive and offensive weapon in the list of God’s spiritual armor. All other pieces of armor are protective. We are told in Hebrews 4:12, “For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” Where do your thoughts and intentions come from, God’s truth or the devil’s deceptions? God’s Word is powerful through the Holy Spirit to discern and annihilate every attack of the enemy on your mind and heart.

For instance, Jesus knew the Scriptures and rebuked Satan’s temptations immediately (Matthew 4:1-10). Therefore, you must read your Bible daily and memorize the truths to be victorious over the many unseen battles. Just as Jesus’s spoken word had power over the devil, so our words have power when we speak His Word to defeat the unseen demonic attacks the Holy Spirit exposes. But, if you don’t know the truth, you will suffer many oppressive blows from the unseen enemy, and he will spiritually and emotionally cripple you. Have doubt and discouragement ever crippled you? It has crippled me. What are some unseen battles you face or have seen other people face? We need to know the truths of the Bible not only for ourselves but to encourage others when they are facing unseen battles.

Four ways to use the “sword of the Spirit” to defeat the enemy?

If you ever watched a show about Gladiators, which I had to because of my two sons, the sword was secured by the Gladiator’s belt and was always by their side. They even slept with their swords. The sword is for close contact fighting, which means you are fighting for your life. To be good at using your spiritual sword, do the following four actions.

1. Read the Word of God to expose the unseen battle with lies and temptations.

The Holy Spirit uses Scriptural truths to reveal the lies and temptations the devil puts into your mind that cause strife and confusion. For example, when I read Romans 12:10 to, “Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor.” The New International Version says, “Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.” The Holy Spirit exposed the unseen battle of sin in my heart to dishonor my husband by speaking disrespectfully and not valuing him above myself. So, I confessed my sin to God and my husband, then ask each to forgive me (1John 1:9 and James 5:16). Then I prayed and put off the dishonoring spirit that gained access to my heart and put on the truth that I am to be honoring and loving in what I say and do. I used the sword of the Spirit to defeat the unseen spirit that gained access to an unsubmitted area of my mind.

Joshua was a great fighter in the Old Testament. He said in Joshua 1:8, “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.” So why should you meditate on God’s instructions and promises? How often must you meditate on God’s Word? You can increase your knowledge of truth by listening to the Bible on your cell phone, CD player, iPod, or MP3 player while you do things, like clean house, do the dishes, drive, mow the grass, sleep, and so on.

Just like the Gladiators had their swords by their sides day and night, so we need to keep the Word of God on our minds day and night to be ready for unseen ambushes. The sword is useless if you don’t have it with you or know how to use it.

2. Use the sword of the Spirit to eradicate your fleshly, sinful desires.

James 1:21 states, “Therefore put away [loose, untie] all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness [humility] the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.” Filthiness is indecent, immoral corruption, or obscenity. Something rampant is spreading unchecked, such as widespread wickedness. Wickedness is having an evil, depraved moral character. To put wickedness away from you, you must also put off the spirit of pride because pride keeps you from acknowledging your sin and repenting. Repentance is to put your sinful longings away and train yourself to be godly and do what is right (1Tim.4:7-8 and Col. 3:5-10). Then you can receive the “implanted word” of life and truth, the Holy Spirit of Jesus, into your heart, which will save you.

Each time you read the Bible, ask God to expose known and unknown sins controlling your thoughts. The Holy Spirit uses Scripture (the sword) to correct the wrong thinking from lies the devil has used to cause you to act in unloving ways. Then keep your mind on the things of the Spirit so you can put to death the sinful deeds of the body, which begin as a wrong thought (Romans 8:13). To learn more, read my post called “Are you in control of your life?” and “Three Steps to Renew Your Mind (Part Two).”

3. Memorize Scripture to increase the size of your sword.

Do you want to fight an enemy with a pocket knife, a skinning knife, a dagger, or a big sword? The more you memorizing Scripture, the bigger and sharper your weapon will be. Practicing using the truth is essential to be ready for any spiritual attack. A dull sword is ineffective. So constant Scripture memorization is a discipline that should be a daily habit if we are to keep our sword sharp. You can write a Scripture verse or verses on a 3×5 card that you put in your pocket or purse. Pull out the 3×5 card while waiting for the light to change, walking somewhere, waiting in line, doing the dishes, folding laundry, exercising, etc. I copy and paste Scripture passages from and attach the verses to cardboard and put it on my elliptical to memorize Scripture passages as I work out. When I walk for exercise, I memorize Scripture. I pray the scripture using my Scripture prayer book. Who God is — Daily A-C-T-S Prayers.

4. To be good at using your sword, practice with it.

Just like practicing a sport or art makes you proficient, practicing God’s commands (instructions) makes you skilled in using the truth of His Word. The more biblical truth you know, the more effective you are at using the sword of the Spirit to defeat the enemy with the help of the Holy Spirit. James 1:22-25 explains, “But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing.” Be honest, how many times do you read the Bible, then later can’t remember what you read? But do you remember the Scripture verses you used to apply to your life and used to transform your thinking? My husband journals Scripture passages, and he says that has helped him store the truth in his heart.

How to use God’s Word to slay the lies and temptations of the enemy.

When you have the truth of God’s Word stashed in your “belt of truth,” you can pull it out whenever you are in close combat with the enemy. For example, you need healing, but the devil tells you that God doesn’t heal or won’t answer your prayers. Quick, use your sword of the Spirit to slay doubts. Remind the enemy of your soul of the truth and recount all the times Jesus healed and answered prayers. The demons may come at you with an accusation like you don’t have enough faith. Slay that accusation and speak the truth that you only need faith as small as a mustard seed to move mountains. The demons may come back again with condemnation and accuse you of sin, and God won’t hear your prayers. Slay the curse and remind the devil that you are forgiven, and God does not hold your sin against you. He comes back and tempts you to be depressed, worried, or discouraged. You get the truth out and strike your enemy with the truth that God is faithful, and I can hope in Him. He is going to use my suffering for good because I love Him.

Can you see the spiritual battles that can be waged in your mind? This scenario plays out millions of times and in thousands of ways. The only way to be victorious is to put on God’s armor, stand firm in the strength of the Lord, and fight the unseen battles.


Daily pray: I take up the sword of the Spirit (Scriptural truths), and rely on the Holy Spirit to strike down every temptation to yield to my pride and deceitful, sinful desires. I will discipline my mind to memorize Bible verses and practice them. Through prayer, I surrender to the Holy Spirit’s control and guidance over my thoughts. (Heb. 4:12; Rom. 8:5-8; Mat. 4:1-10; John 16:13-14.)



The Core Negative Heart Issue

Mission Statement for my life and how I will accomplish it.

What is Wrong with Fairness?

All verses are from the English Standard Bible. If you find my posts and website helpful, please share the links with your friends and family, The information is copyright protected, and no part of the posts or my book may be reproduced without proper citation to Joyce Hanscom. 

Contact me at, and ask for a PDF of Eight Prayers from the Bible. The prayers are for the Spirit of wisdom, renewal, spiritual strength, knowledge of His will, virtues of God, salvation for non-believers, 23rd Psalm, and victory. Please leave your name, so I know you are a real person making the request.

Spiritual Warfare 4: How to Protect Your Mind

Who or what is directing your thoughts? How do you make decisions? Spiritual warfare is fighting the unseen battles that only the Holy Spirit can see. The Holy Spirit is the helmet of salvation that protects our minds. Suppose we don’t take the helmet of salvation and put it on. In that case, we will be susceptible to every deception and temptation designed to destroy us. Temptations are made to look good but are deceitful. We fight spiritual wars through prayer.

I said in the post called “What Happens If You Don’t Put On The Whole Armor?” that I thought Ravi Zacharias and other Christian leaders fell into sin because they did not have on the “breastplate of righteousness.” After developing today’s post, I also believe they failed to put on their helmet of salvation. Not only did they not fear God and turn from evil, but they also did not rely on the Holy Spirit to discipline their minds. Putting on all the spiritual armor of God has to be done every day because the unseen demonic world works 24/7 to devastate your relationship with God and each other. We need the Holy Spirit to protect our minds from temptations and deceptions. He also convicts us of sin, so we repent and get right with God and each other again. Ponder the following Scriptures:

If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you. – Romans 8:11

For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. – Romans 8:5

But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. – Galatians 5:16

How do you know you have on the helmet of salvation?

Suppose you believe the truth and rely on Jesus to be righteous, but you don’t renew your mind and instead continue to live a worldly life. In that case, evil spirits will maintain control of your mind and tempt you to doubt your salvation. Worldly living keeps you from bearing the fruit of the Spirit because you are not abiding in the words and life of Jesus Christ (John 15:1-8). In his book The Weapons of Your Warfare, Larry Lea suggested you may not have salvation if you are not excited about it.1 Read over the following facts, and if they don’t make you happy and grateful, you need to evaluate if you have believed from your heart and have the Holy Spirit as your helmet. So are you:

  • Thankful that the blood of Jesus has redeemed you from destruction and the power of Satan.
  • Excited that Jesus, the perfect sacrificial lamb, rescued you from the wrath of God and forgave your sins.
  • Joyful that Jesus freed you from sin’s control that leads to death, and now you experience peace and abundant life.
  • Grateful that Jesus is preparing a place for you in Heaven so you can spend eternity with Him.
  • Thrilled that Jesus rose from the dead and sits next to God the Father interceding for you.
  • And so on.

When we receive forgiveness and redemption through Christ Jesus, the helmet of salvation helps us work out our salvation by daily renewing our minds with truth from God’s Word (Philippians 2:12, Ephesians 4:23, and Romans 12:2). 2Corinthians 4:16 states, “So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.” You renew your mind by putting off resentments, false beliefs, and sinful desires, then putting on the truth and your new self (Ephesians 4:24 and Colossians 3:10). In his book Dressed to Kill, Rick Renner said, “The devil’s entrance into the life of a believer is allowed primarily through that believer’s negligence. He slips in through an uncommitted, unrenewed area of the mind.2” When you renew your mind with truth from God’s Word, Satan can no longer influence your mind in that area.

Without the “helmet of salvation,” you cannot do the following:

You will not have peace and life or bear the fruit of the Spirit. With the helmet of salvation on, the Holy Spirit can guide your thoughts that support spiritual life and peace. Romans 8:6 states, “For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.” When we walk by the Spirit, we will display the fruit of the Spirit of love, joy, peace, kindness, patience, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23).

You cannot grow in your knowledge of God. Proverbs 2:5 says we find the knowledge of God when we fear Him. You reverently fear Him, and want to please Him. So you abide in His Word and practice your faith by keeping His commandments and doing good to others. Hosea 6:6 states, “For I [God] desire steadfast love and not sacrifice, the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings.” And 1Corinthians 15:34 (KJV) states, “Awake to righteousness, and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak this to your shame.” We must take every thought captive that goes against the knowledge of God. 2Corinthians 10:5 states, “We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ.” Having on the helmet of salvation helps you capture arguments and lofty opinions the devil plants in your mind.

You won’t submit to God and resist the devil and be godly. Romans 8:7 states, “For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot.” With the helmet of salvation, you have the Holy Spirit’s divine power to take ungodly thoughts captive and submit your mind to God and be godly as you think His thoughts. See James 4:7-8. 1Timothy 4:7-9 states, “Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths [lies]. Rather train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.”

Put on your helmet of salvation to not sin.

You have authority through Jesus Christ over ungodly thoughts. You have divine power through the Holy Spirit to not give in to sinful-fleshly desires but to live by the Spirit. Romans 8:13–14 states, “For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons [and daughters] of God.” As a believer, you are a child of God, and you have the mind of Christ (1Corinthians 2:16b). So, because you have the mind of Christ, you can submit to the Holy Spirit and allow the fruit of the Spirit to control your life (Galatians 5:22-25). If you don’t submit to God and take ungodly thoughts captive, they will lure you into sin.

When I submit my concerns and conflicts to God, I can take offending thoughts captive, forgive, and not let the offense produce the fleshly desire to be angry and unkind. When I yield to the Spirit’s control and forgive offenses, I can be humble and patient. For example, someone was throwing trash in my yard when they drove past. Not just a little garbage, a lot. I suspected who it was through the process of elimination. I became offended, and I wanted to get them in trouble. Wait a minute, capture wrong thoughts. In prayer, I took my upsetting thoughts captive and put them off, and then I gave my frustration to God. The day I submitted my frustration to the Lord about the trash, someone had cleaned up the garbage in my yard when I was at work, and no one threw trash in my yard after that.


Daily pray: I put on the helmet of salvation and take every ungodly thought, offense, and unholy desire captive and make it submit to the Lordship of Christ Jesus. I have the mind of Christ and His authority to overcome every obstacle to my faith in Jesus, my Savior. I will forgive offenses quickly so the devil doesn’t get a foothold in my mind to produce the fleshly desire to be angry, impatient, and unkind. I will renew my mind with the truth in God’s Word daily. (2Cor. 10:3-5; 1Cor. 2:16b; Col. 2:9-10; Matt. 6:14-15; Eph. 4:26-27; Jam. 1:14-15.)

1. Lea, Larry. 1989. The Weapons of Your Warfare. Lake Mary, FL. Creation House.

2. Renner, Rick. 2007. Dressed to Kill. Tulsa: Teach the Nations.


Spiritual Warfare 1: HOW TO DISCERN THE TRUTH


Spiritual Warfare 3: HOW TO BATTLE FOR PEACE

How The Spirit Gives Life.

Are you in control of your life?

Part 2: How to Overcome Evil with Good.

Four Realities of the Spirit World

POSTS on Thoughts

All verses are from the English Standard Bible. If you find my posts and website helpful, please share the links with your friends and family, The information is copyright protected, and no part of the posts or my book may be reproduced without proper citation to Joyce Hanscom. 

Contact me at, and ask for a PDF of Eight Prayers from the Bible. The prayers are for the Spirit of wisdom, renewal, spiritual strength, knowledge of His will, virtues of God, salvation for non-believers, 23rd Psalm, and victory. Please leave your name, so I know you are a real person making the request.

Spiritual Warfare 3: HOW TO BATTLE FOR PEACE

How do you achieve peace with God and peace with those who are nasty individuals? How can you live in harmony with people who irritate you, offend you, or are rude to you? The answer is to own the gospel (good news) of Jesus and what He did on the cross for everyone, not just know it or believe it, but personalize it and tell it to others. Owning something means you can claim it as your own, and you have the authority and power to live in it and share it. But you will have to do spiritual warfare to keep the peace.

The good news is redemption through forgiveness of sins and the victory Jesus Christ bought for everyone by defeating our common enemy, the devil. 1John 3:8b states, “The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil.” The devil is called the thief, and he came to steal and kill and destroy (John 10:10a). He especially came to steal peace and all the characteristics of the fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23). Look at the evidence around you and in the news. Because Jesus forgave our sins, we can forgive other people for their sins and stay in peace.

Understand that our struggle is not with sinful, self-centered people but with the unseen demonic forces (Ephesians 6:12). Ephesians 6:14-15 explains how to do spiritual battle, “Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace.” The gospel of peace is always being ready and prepared to share the good news about how to be at peace with God and with each other.

I explained how to use the belt of truth in Spiritual Warfare 1: HOW TO DISCERN THE TRUTH? and use the breastplate of righteousness in Spiritual Warfare 2: HOW TO NOT FALL AWAY. In this post, I will show how to put on the shoes of the gospel of peace and be ready for battle against the unseen demonic world who wants to steal your peace. Proper shoes are a vital part of a warrior’s attire because sturdy shoes help them walk securely and not slip. The spiritual shoes of the gospel of peace is the sure foundation that keeps you from falling into temptation and acting out your sinful nature and pride when you feel insulted. Have you noticed that prideful people do not live in peace, but humble people do? Why do you think that is?

Ready Your Mind to Be at Peace with People

When I humbly live my life through Jesus Christ’s divine life in me (Gal. 2:20 and 2Peter 1:4), I can give grace and forgiveness to the challenging people around me. Ephesians 2:1-2 states, “And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience.” The challenging people in your life may be those who are disobedient to God’s command to love and strive for peace. Do you keep God’s instructions in the Bible? When the gospel of Jesus Christ controls our thoughts, we can stand firm and live in peace with each other.

Every day, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil (Ephesians 6:10-11). The spiritual forces of darkness want to steal your peace and cause you to be offended or tempt you to sin so you don’t live in peace with God or those around you.

The Bible says in Romans 12:17-21,Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, ‘Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.’ To the contrary, ‘if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.’ Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” Our sinful, human nature wants to return evil for evil. When we feel insulted, we think: How dare they say what they said or do what they did, who do they think they are? When you return an insult for insult, what does that say about you? It reveals pride. How does Romans 12:17-21 say we should live in peace with someone who is insulting us? When Jesus was mistreated, how did He react (see 1Peter 2:21-24)?

First, living in peace with other people involves being at peace with yourself and letting God take care of the rest. My short-book on my website will help you find the painful memories that cause you to lose your peace 1–Healing Begins by Transforming Painful Memories. People can’t steal your peace unless you let them.

Second, strive to live in peace and choose to be holy and not act on your sinful nature to be unloving. Hebrews 12:14 (NIV) states, “Make every effort to live in peace with all men [people] and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord.” Holiness is to be without sin. That does not mean we never sin, but we repent and seek God’s forgiveness and cleansing (1John 1:9). This verse says we won’t see the Lord if we are not holy. So strive to live in peace with everyone as far as it depends on you (Romans 12:18). Living in peace is difficult without the help of Christ Jesus’ divine power in us. Jesus said in Matthew 5:9,  “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.”

How are we to be holy in a sinful world? 2Corinthians 7:1b explains, “Let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and spirit, bringing holiness to completion in the fear of God.” We become holy when we daily die to our sinful desires and cleanse ourselves by confessing our sins and asking God for forgiveness. Then we will have peace in our hearts. Fearing God is choosing to revere and obey Him by doing the things that please Him. We please Him by having faith, doing good, and putting off our sinful nature, as explained in the following Scripture passages:

And to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4:24).

For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live” (Romans 8:13).

For God has not called us for impurity, but in holiness” (1Thessalonians 4:7).

As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, ‘You shall be holy, for I am holy’” (1Peter 1:14-16).

Let him turn away from evil and do good; let him seek peace and pursue it” (1Peter 3:11).

And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace” (James 3:18).

Do you have holy conduct with those who are offensive? If not, seek to own the gospel of Jesus’ redemption until you can mindfully live above your natural sinful reactions and love everyone as Christ loves them. 2Corinthians 5:14-15 states, “For the love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all, therefore all have died; and he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised.” Satan does not want you to live in peace with anyone, let alone be controlled by Christ’s love for them, so he tempts you to be self-centered and prideful. The Gospel of redemption helps you stand firm against this scheme of the devil. When Christ controls us, we can pray for those who hate us or persecute us and not return evil for evil. You may not be persecuted, but you might be frustrated or annoyed with someone irritating you or upset about everything.

How does the gospel of Jesus Christ control your thoughts, so you can stand firm and not sin?

How to be ready to share the gospel message of of peace with God

Always be ready and prepared to share your gospel testimony of God’s power and hope in your life. Where ever you go, be prepared to share how God’s power transformed you and given you hope and peace. 1Peter 3:15 states, “But in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect.”

You can testify that He has redeemed your life from the pit of destruction. Psalm 40:2, “He drew me up from the pit of destruction, out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure.”

Testify how Jesus reconciled you to a holy God through the forgiveness of your sins so you can be at peace with God. 2Corinthians 5:18-19 states, “All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation.” Reconciliation means to make right or harmonious again. Before Christ, we are all dead in our sins (Ephesians 2:1) and destined for God’s wrath. After we received Christ into our hearts through faith (Ephesians 3:17), we were saved and reconciled to God. We also have peace with God by trusting Him to justify us (remove our sin) when we believe. Romans 5:1 tells us, “Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Explain how you were transferred from darkness to the light when you believed in your heart and confessed Jesus Christ as the Lord of your life. John 8:12 states, “Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.’” And John 12:46 Jesus states, “I have come into the world as light, so that whoever believes in me may not remain in darkness.

We have the same calling as the Apostle Paul in Acts 26:18, where Jesus tells Paul that He is sending him, “To open their eyes, so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.” Only God can open their eyes, so we must pray and ask God to remove the blinders from those you share your testimony with. 2Corinthians 4:4 states, “In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.”

The gospel of peace also gives them peace of eternal life when they believe. Romans 1:16 also states, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.” If you are ashamed to share the gospel message, then Jesus will be ashamed of you. Mark 8:38 states, “For whoever is ashamed of me [Jesus] and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him will the Son of Man also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.” I don’t know about you, but I do not want my Savior to be ashamed of me.

You can testify that salvation gives peace, and you do not fear the wrath of God because your sins are forgiven, and you are justified (Rom.5:1). So, you can testify that Jesus has saved you and will save them if they believe in their heart. 1Theselonians 5:9, “For God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.” And Romans 10:9-10 states,  “Because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.”


Each morning pray: I put on the shoes of the gospel of peace and prepare to sow peace with everyone and in every situation, even when people do not meet my expectations. Through prayer, I put off the spirit of pride and walk as God walks in humility, love, compassion, and respect for others. I will share my testimony of hope and encourage everyone I can to love and trust in Jesus Christ. (Jam. 3:18; Rom. 12:16-18; Col. 3:12-14; 1John2:16; Prov. 16:18; 1Peter 3:8,15.)

Email me at to get instructions on how to create a three-minute testimony you can share easily and readily anywhere. Revelation 12:11 states, “And they have conquered him [Satan] by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death.


Thoughts That Create Peace Within and Without

Four Realities of the Spirit World


All verses are from the English Standard Bible. If you find my posts and website helpful, please share the links with your friends and family, The information is copyright protected, and no part of the posts or my book may be reproduced without proper citation to Joyce Hanscom. 

Contact me at, and ask for a PDF of Eight Prayers from the Bible. The prayers are for the Spirit of wisdom, renewal, spiritual strength, knowledge of His will, virtues of God, salvation for non-believers, 23rd Psalm, and victory. Please leave your name, so I know you are a real person making the request.