Satan is no stranger to defeat. After an unsuccessful uprising, God cast the enemy from heaven (Revelation 12:7-12). The devil was defeated again when Jesus died on the cross (Colossians 1:12-13). Satan's third and final defeat will be when Jesus returns in Earth's final days. This time, Satan and death will be cast into the Lake of Fire (Revelation 20:14). That's it, the end.
Perhaps pride blinded Satan into believing he could dethrone God. In fact, I think Satan still believes that he can defeat the Creator of the Universe. Consequently, the devil continues to prowl around looking for someone to devour and destroy, which is why God calls His children to be sober and alert (1 Peter 5:8). The war is on.
As Christians, God calls us to fight back by bearing witness to the world and making disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:19), but Satan uses weapons such as fear, anxiety and other emotions to cripple our efforts. There is nothing Satan likes more than a passive Christian.
Consequently, God allows us to face trials and resistance to build character, the vital ingredient in overcoming the attacks of the enemy. Luckily, God has equipped us to deal with a war that He's already won. What we need is a soundtrack that says, "Satan, you're already defeated-- but here are a couple more shots for good measure." Songs that say, "Child, I am on your side-- despite Satan's cheap shots." And of course, songs (or as I call them, "warship anthems") that say, "Let's stand up and fight." I have counted down 10 anthems that fit the bill. Enjoy.
10. "Ceasefire" by for King & Country
Sometimes I just want to stand in rebellion to the world and say "you are not taking me alive." In "Ceasefire," a spiritual warfare anthem from the expanded edition of for KING & COUNTRY's 2014 album Run Wild. Live Free. Love Strong., Joel Smallbone sings that God uses love to win the war: "One by one, love is building an empire / One by one, reaching out to our enemies / One by one we will make it to the finish line." God reaches out to the lost in love, not antagonism. "One by one we will call for a ceasefire / One by one we will fight for a better end / One by one we could rewrite the headlines / Standing side by side."
9. "Move" by Audio Adrenaline
Earlier I said that Satan loves a passive Christian. Audio Adrenaline's "Move" is a fast-paced call to action for Christians having a hard time standing up for their faith. The song's lyrics inject even more energy into an already highly explosive song: "You got to move / If you're ready or not / Give it all that you got / Turn it up now / You got to move / It's your chance to fly / With your head held high / Right about now." "Move" is indeed "audio adrenaline" to fuel us in taking a stand against evil. In April 2015, the MLB Network selected "Move" (from the 2015 album Sound of the Saints) as the opening theme for "MLB Now."
8. "Praises and Arrows" by Trip Lee (featuring Deraj, Canon and Jeannie Ortega)
God protects us from the enemy's attacks. The Creator of the Universe calls us to wear the Armor of God (the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, the shield of faith, feet fitted with readiness, the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit) so that we can stand firm in our battle with the enemy and the evil rulers of this world (Ephesians 6:10-18). Trip Lee, Canon and Deraj, accompanied by the beautiful vocals of Jeannie Ortega, reinforce the message that God gives us what we need to extinguish the flaming arrows of the evil one in "Praise and Arrows," a warship anthem from Praises and Arrows (Songs Inspired by the "Lion of War" Book Series): "You give me a shield of salvation for this battle / You give me Your strength to call Your name in this battle."
7. "Stand Up" by Fireflight
God uses broken people. His son, Jesus Christ, was broken on the cross to give life to his children. Satan uses lies, deception and accusations to fuel shame, consequently paralyzing believers. In shame, people move into isolation where Satan can do even more damage. Fireflight's "Stand Up," from the band's 2008 album Unbreakable, is about people hiding in the dark, in isolation, imprisoned in the enemy's lies. However, lead vocalist Dawn Michele urges listeners to stand up and fight back: "Stand up / Stand up if you're broken / Stand up / Stand up if you feel ashamed / You are not alone when you hurt this way / Stand up! / Stand up if you need love / Stand up / This is not judgment day / You don't have to hide / There's no need to run / Everything will be okay."
6. "Never Back Down" by Nine Lashes
Fireflight urges the listener to stand up, and Nine Lashes takes this message one step further in their hit single "Never Back Down" from the 2014 album From Water to War. Lead vocalist Jeremy Dunn makes the precious declaration that "We'll never back down / We will not relent / Now or never, till the day that we dreamed of / I see it coming / As we press on / We will not relent / Now or never, till the day that we dreamed of / I see it coming to life." The song declares, "I would rather be dead, than tell a lie."
5. "Our Time is Now" by Colton Dixon Colton Dixon's smash hit "More of You" from the album Anchor echoed the message in Matthew 16:26: "What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul?" World conformity comes at a costly price-- but so does following Christ. We are called to drop selfishness, material objects and anything else that gets in the way of serving God. Some of us have a hard time giving up worldly wealth. It takes courage to do so, but dropping material wealth gives Satan less ammo to attack with. In the song "Our Time is Now," which is also found on Anchor, Dixon rallies the listener to stand up: "raise a fist high / This is the first night of beginning of forever / Now let the old die / 'Cause there is new life / Forever starts tonight / Our time is now." Convincingly, Dixon sings our time to drop the baggage at the cross is now.
4. "Dear X, You Don't Own Me" by Disciple
Satan does not want God's children to be glorious, strong and beautiful, living lovingly and bold for God's kingdom. Satan uses weapons such as pain, shame, hate and anger to paralyze us and to diminish our credibility. How can we be God's representative if all the world sees is our hate and anger? Furthermore, how can we step out boldly to glorify God when we're paralyzed by fear and shame? Disciple acknowledges Satan's weapons in "Dear X, You Don't Own Me," the lead single from the 2010 album Horseshoes & Handgrenades. In defiance, Disciple's lead singer Kevin Young rebukes these weapons and proclaims that we were are purchased by the blood of Christ: "Go ahead, put a target on my forehead / You can fire, but you've got no bullet / I was yours, I'm not yours anymore / You don't own me."
3. "Rise" by Skillet
Bottom line: we live in a fallen world. Skillet vividly illustrates this fact in "Rise," a hit single from their 2013 album by the same name. The song closes with some haunting audio snippets of a 9-1-1 call, a reporter sharing depressing news about the economy falling apart, and a parent abusing their child. These all-too-familiar scenes are solid examples of the world's suffering. How can we as Christians stand up with so much hatred in the world? How can we as Christians fight for the world when we ourselves are having our rights taken away? In response, Skillet urges us to "Rise in revolution / It's our time to change it all / Rise in revolution / Unite and fight, to make a better life / Everybody one for all / Sound off, this is the call, tonight we rise."
2. "Christ is Risen" by Matt Maher
Despite what we see in the world, we must not forget that God's already won the war. Christ rising on the third day was Satan's second-- and ultimate-- defeat. Matt Maher's "Christ Is Risen," from the 2009 album Alive Again, declares that "Christ is risen from the dead / Trampling over death by death." The warship anthem not only speaks the truth that the world desperately needs to hear, but gives reassurance to God's soldiers who are weary from the fight. In victory, Maher sings: "Oh death! Where is your sting? / Oh hell! Where is your victory? / Oh, Church! Come stand in the light / Our God is not dead, He's alive / He's alive." I don't know about you, but when I hear this song I am ready to look up to the heavens and ask God for more strength to win souls for Christ.
1. "God's Not Dead" and "He Reigns" by Newsboys
In a world that tries to convince others that God is dead, activists Newsboys will proclaim His name despite any resistance. The group has brought the spiritual warfare movement to a new level since the release of their famous anthem "God's Not Dead." The song spawned two movies of the same name. Speaking of the God's Not Dead sequel, the Newsboys recently released the smash hit "Guilty," which fits into the spiritual warfare anthem category as well.
A worthy mention goes out to "He Reigns," a Newsboys song that pre-dates the Michael Tait era. I don't consider this song a warship anthem per se; however, the song's strong message declares that God reigns over the kingdom of darkness: "And all the powers of darkness / Tremble at what they've just heard / Cause all the powers of darkness / Can't drown out a single word."
What are your favorite spiritual warfare fight songs?
Phill Feltham is a Canadian journalist with over eight years of experience writing and editing content for print and digital media. He specializes in health, fitness, nutrition, travel, and the power grid. He loves music, movies, and, of course, living for Jesus. Highlights of Phill's work can be found on his portfolio site PhillFeltham.com and his official blog, The theweeklywanderer.com. Phill lives out his faith with his wife, Jodi, in the Greater Toronto Area.
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