Spiritual Warfare



By William Gurnall- (1617 – 1679)

“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood” Ephesians 6 vs 12

The Christian’s state in this life is set out by the word wrestling. The wrestling or conflicting state of a Christian in this life is rendered observable here by a threefold circumstance.

FIRST, The sharpness of the combat.

SECOND, The universality of the combat.

THIRD, The permanency of this combat.

FIRST. The sharpness of the combat. The kind of combat which the Christian’s state is here set out by, is the phrase translated ‘we wrestle’, which though it be used sometimes for a wrestling of sport and recreation, yet is used here to set out the sharpness of the Christian’s encounter.

SECOND. The universality of the combat. ‘We wrestle’ comprehends all. On purpose you may perceive the apostle changes the pronoun ye in the former verse, into we in this, that he may include himself as well as them; as if he had
said, The quarrel is with every saint. Satan neither fears to assault the minister, nor despises to wrestle with the lowliest saint in the congregation. Great and small, minister and people, all must wrestle; not one part of Christ’s army in the field, and the other at ease in their quarters, where no enemy comes. Here are enemies enough to engage all at once.

THIRD. The permanency or duration of this combat; and that lies in the tense we wrestle. Not, our wrestling was at first conversion, but now over, and we passed the pikes; not, we shall wrestle when sickness comes, and death comes; but our wrestling is; the enemy is ever in sight of us, yea, in fight with us. There is an evil of every day’s temptation, which, like Paul’s bonds, abides with us wherever we go.