I once saw an old Tarzan movie in which the famed ape man was peering at a droplet of water through a microscope. The instrument had been brought to Africa by Jane’s father, Professor Porter. Tarzan was quite shaken to see that the water he drank daily was teeming with all kinds of organisms, invisible to the naked eye.
Similarly, the Bible reveals that our spiritual atmosphere is filled with unseen enemies—the real source of our spiritual battles. “For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 6:12 NLT).
I wonder how we’d react if we could catch a glimpse into the invisible heavenly places. Like Tarzan, I imagine we’d be shocked by the creatures we saw. The Bible doesn’t spend a lot of time describing this spiritual realm. It does, however, give us instructions on how to do battle. We’re given a detailed list of spiritual armor in Ephesians 6:10-20. James 4:2 encourages us to “submit to God, resist the devil and he will flee.”
But one of the most powerful weapons against the powers of darkness is the weapon of praise. Giving thanks helps us fight our spiritual foes—something worth emphasizing again as we bring our 30 Days of Thankful to a close.
The New Testament is filled with examples of the power of thanksgiving. We see Paul and Silas singing and praising God in a Philippian jail—their chains fell off, the jailer accepted Jesus, and his whole family became believers.
The Old Testament, too, tells stories of the power of praise: “After consulting the people, the king appointed singers to walk ahead of the army, singing to the Lord and praising him for his holy splendor. This is what they sang: ‘Give thanks to the Lord; his faithful love endures forever!’ At the very moment they began to sing and give praise, the Lord caused the armies of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir to start fighting among themselves” (2 Chronicles 20:21-22).
Perhaps you’re facing a spiritual battle today. You’ve resisted, and prayed, and fought the good fight. But you’re weary. This may be your strategic moment to simply thank God and praise Him for His goodness. Let Him fight this battle for you. Rest in His power—even if you don’t fully understand how He works. Just remember: the devil and his minions hate praise. So if you can stand firm and continue to thank God, I believe you will notice that the devil flees. After all, he is allergic to praise.