As we continue to talk about anxiety, keep in mind that worry, fear, and anxiety don’t come from heaven but from the forces of darkness. This is a battle in the spirit realm.

How do we live a spirit-filled life on earth? We must put our faith in Jesus Christ and pay attention to the Word of God because it gives us keys to living victoriously on this side of heaven.

Understand that the battleground is in our mind. Amazon recently cited that Philippians 4:6-7 is the most highlighted scripture in the Bible. (“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”) Because people are looking for peace and relief from anxiety, it’s not surprising that this scripture is so popular today.

Worry and anxiety are rooted in fear. In Matthew 6:34, Jesus commands us, “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” Worry is soul-suicide; it damages our soul and overwhelms us so that we cannot see God’s goodness.

Corrie ten Boom said “Worrying carries tomorrow’s load with today’s strength, carrying two days at once. It is moving into tomorrow ahead of time.” We miss out on the blessings of today when we worry about our future.

Remember that worry is attached to fear, and fear is designed to bring death and rob us of life and joy. Fear only tears us down and breeds anxiety inside us. Whether you’re studying for an exam or getting ready to have a medical test done, fear can affect us because we’re nervous about the outcome. But worrying doesn’t accomplish anything; worrying doesn’t affect the outcome. Instead of worrying, we need to pray and trust God – this isn’t always easy – but with God’s strength we can resist worrying.

1 John 4:18 tells us that fear involves torment. In other words, the purpose of fear and anxiety is to torment us so that we cannot enjoy the life that God has for us. Fear is a tool in the hand of the enemy to torture us. Many times we fear things that are unrealistic or unlikely to happen; this is a direct attack on our soul by the spiritual forces of darkness to put us in bondage and paralyze us.

Hebrews 2:15 explains that Jesus came to “… release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.” The enemy loves to use the fear of death to put people in bondage and to keep them from enjoying their lives in God.

But because of Jesus’s death on the cross and His resurrection, we don’t need to fear death or hell. If we call on Jesus and trust Him for forgiveness of our sins, and daily live for Him, we are assured a place in heaven when we die.

1 Corinthians 15:55 says, “O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?” Because Jesus overcame death and the grave, death has no hold on us! Death is not our final destination – eternity with Jesus is our final destination, so we don’t need to fear death. The enemy has no foothold anymore because of Jesus’s victory.

So instead of dwelling on negativity and things we cannot control, the Bible tells us what we should think about in Philippians 4:8: “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.”

When we turn our worries into prayers, God’s peace overtakes us. When we think about the goodness of God and things that are true, right, and just, we can enjoy a worry-free life. But we have a part to play in our victory over anxiety and worry: we must choose to think about the right things and say the right things.

Remember — the words we speak have power. Worry produces death, and our words produce death or life. Proverbs 18:21 says that “death and life are in the power of the tongue.” If we speak words of worry and fear, our spirits and souls die. But when we speak words of faith and life, when we speak the Word of God, life and joy are produced, and anxiety cannot fill our minds and torture our souls.

Practice right thinking and right speaking this week and watch anxiety and worry diminish in your life!

← Session 2: Spiritual Warfare Session 4: Spiritual Forces