2 Corinthians 10:3-5 says, “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh (for the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds), casting down imaginations and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.”
God has given us many weapons with which to war against the enemy of our souls – the Word of God, the blood of Jesus, the name of Jesus, our faith, the word of our testimony, heavenly revelation, and worship, for starters. One of the most powerful weapons of our warfare is our prayer language.
For most of us, Ephesians 6:10-18 is a familiar passage about spiritual warfare. We have been taught consistently about six pieces of the armor – the helmet of salvation, the breastplate of righteousness, the belt of truth, the shoes of the preparation of the gospel of peace, the shield of faith, and the sword of the spirit. There are actually seven pieces to the armor, but the seventh is rarely mentioned. Take another look at verse 18: “praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit ….” I personally believe that this seventh piece of our armor, “praying in the Spirit,” refers to our prayer language.
Let’s examine how praying in tongues becomes a mighty weapon of our warfare:
We talked last time about how praying in tongues gets rid of our “stinking thinking.” As we pray in the Spirit, it helps to bring our thoughts into obedient lining up with how Christ would think, and it helps us to recognize imaginations of the mind that are not in keeping with His Word so that we refuse to indulge them (2 Corinthians 10:5). The mind is a huge battlefield – probably the devil’s favorite arena of combat. If he can get us messed up in our minds, he can render us ineffective in every area of our Christian lives. A mind paralyzed by fear, doubt, confusion, hatred, bitterness, unforgiveness, unbelief, etc. makes for a Christian who does nothing to advance God’s kingdom. The renewed mind, on the other hand, makes us strong for the battle, and as we discovered in Part 3, praying in tongues paves the way for that renewed mind.
Praying in tongues builds our faith. Jude 20 says, “…building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit.” This is referring to praying in tongues. Our faith is naturally built through communication with God, because He is a God of faith. Praying in tongues is an avenue we use to deeply interact with Him and thereby take on the faith of God.
Praying in tongues enables us to pray rightly, with pinpoint accuracy. Many situations that need to be bathed in prayer are complicated. We do not always have the necessary details at our disposal, or the wisdom to know what to do with those details if we did have them, but the Holy Spirit does. Romans 8:26, 27 tells us, “Likewise the Spirit also helps our weaknesses: for we don’t know what we should pray for as we ought to, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And He Who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.” As we use our prayer language, we are praying perfect spirit-to-Spirit prayers, not limited to the understanding of our natural minds. We are praying words given to us by the Holy Spirit, Who understands the ins and outs of every situation, and Who understands the will of Father God.
We will talk some more about the prayer language as a weapon of our warfare next time.