Wednesday, September 26, 2012

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Back when my sons were young, they were watching Saturday morning television. One morning I walked by the living room and they were watching Superman. I'll tell you, I got hooked! It brought back memories.

Superman was originally on in the mid '50s, and Fred Flintstone was there in school with me at that time. You might remember that. Television was a brand new thing! We had this little seven-inch screen in our home. I could barely put words together, but I used to watch Superman. Oh, I never missed those 30 minutes. It was always amusing to watch the crooks try to stop Superman. Did you ever see that? They'd be firing this gun as many times as they could find bullets for it, and every bullet would bounce off Superman, and they'd kind of look at their gun quizzically, and he stands there like he's not even aware of the bullets were mosquitoes bouncing off of him.

Or they would come up and stab him with a knife and the knife bent and it hits them. Or they try to break a pipe over his head, and of course the pipe breaks and nothing happens to him. They sure did waste a lot of ammunition on Superman. But once in a while a clever criminal would discover Superman's one weakness. Kryptonite! That's right; that ore from his original planet. And if you could use a little of that ore on Superman, he would fall to his knees, powerless, and he was beatable.

I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Wasted Bullets."

Well, Ephesians 6 is where we find our word for today from the Word of God. It's a very revealing chapter. It reveals the real battle that we're fighting; the spiritual warfare that you and I are involved in. And it gives to us a description of the armor that you can put on to protect your heart and your mind from what is called the Devil's flaming arrows. Then it goes on to reveal to us the only weapon he fears.

I'm reading from Ephesians 6:18. After you've got all the armor on, "...pray in the Spirit on all occasions, with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints." Now, the comparison between Satan and Superman is pretty inadequate. Satan is no hero. He is the Prince of Death. Superman was fiction; Satan is very real, very active around us. But there is a parallel when it comes to wasted bullets and spiritual kryptonite.

Prayer in Jesus' name renders Satan powerless. But unfortunately we usually fight our battles with wimpier weapons. We try to do God's work on the strength of good management, our great plans, our cleverness, more committee meetings, human charisma. We try to get God's work done with abundant programs, new buildings and persuasion. And the Devil laughs. Those bullets bounce right off of him.

How much time and money do we throw away on wasted bullets? We're trying to win a personal battle with schemes, and endless discussions, and phone calls, and emails, and back room politics, and personal determination. Those bullets are bouncing right off our enemy.

Our last resort, usually, is prevailing prayer. The kind when we get on our knees, we confess our total bankruptcy in the situation, we surrender all our schemes, we allow a total Holy Spirit takeover, we invoke the cross and the blood of Christ against our enemy. When you do that, Satan crumbles to his knees. He's rendered powerless by the spiritual kryptonite of fervent prayer.

Hey, for once, put all the other meetings on the back burner. You need a prayer meeting. You may need many prayer meetings. Without that, all our other weapons? They're wasted bullets.