One of my favorite books on spiritual warfare is The Christian in Complete Armour, a 17th-century work by William Gurnall.[i] You can find this book in abridged form built around daily devotional readings. The writing is old but still quite relevant, as I trust these quotes from each month will show:
- JANUARY: “Nothing torments the devil more than to see his old companions neglect their former sinful pleasures and spend time studying the Scriptures instead.” (Kindle location 511)
- FEBRUARY: “The devil is at church as often as you are.” (Kindle location 954)
- MARCH: “You belong to one camp, and only to one. Christ will allow no equal, and neither will Satan; therefore, you cannot side with both. The test of your allegiance is really quite simple. You are the subject of the one you crown in your heart—not the one you flatter with your tongue.” (Kindle location 1602)
- APRIL: “When you cause anyone to sin, you take the devil’s office out of his hands. Let him do it himself if he can, but never allow him to use you as his hireling. Tempting someone else to sin is worse than sinning yourself.” (Kindle location 2263)
- MAY: “This war is a spiritual holocaust. Either you destroy the power of Satan in your life by putting on the whole armor of God and keeping it on, or Satan will destroy you.” (Kindle location 2897)
- JUNE: “Truly the hypocrite does more damage when he is discovered than when he seemed to be alive in his profession of faith. The hypocrite then puts a big stick into the hands of the wicked who have been looking for a way to bruise the saints. How fast they can then cause division and smear the face of all believers with the grime they see upon one hypocrite’s sleeve!” (Kindle location 3755).
- JULY: “The devil would rather see Christians defiled with sin and unrighteousness than defiled in blood and pain, for he has learned that persecution only trims the church, which soon comes back up all the thicker; it is unrighteousness which ruins it.” (Kindle location 4389)
- AUGUST: “The world thinks the Christian life is depressing anyway, a dry meal where very little wine of joy is tasted. Why will you confirm their deception, Christian? . . . When unbelievers see Christians sad as they hold the cup of salvation in their hands, they suspect the wine is not so good as preachers say it is.” (Kindle location 5091-97)
- SEPTEMBER: “It is impossible for the Christian who is careless in his walk, infrequent or negligent in his communion with God, to enjoy true peace and comfort very long. . . . You can murder your own peace by starving it as well as by stabbing it.” (Kindle location 6093)
- OCTOBER: “Satan is so afraid of losing his throne inside you that he tries to smother your conscience with carnal lukewarmness and extinguish the Holy Spirit’s convicting work.” (Kindle location 6469)
- NOVEMBER: “Although Christ was able to baffle the devil by reason, He chose to overthrow him in the way that we ourselves must use in skirmishes with Satan. He repelled him simply by lifting up the shield of the Word: “It is written,” said Christ (Matt 4:4, 7, 10). (Kindle location 6869)
- DECEMBER: “Spiritual warfare against lust is enlistment for a lifetime career.” (Kindle location 8010).
[i] William Gurnall, The Christian in Complete Armour: Daily Readings in Spiritual Warfare, ed. James Bell (Chicago: Moody Publishers), Kindle edition.