There is a psychological concept related to fight or flight, which describes an innate instinct within animals and humans, when faced with a perceived threat. Built within each of us, is a natural desire to fight to protect ourselves, or to run from a perceived threat. One of my favourite characters in the bible is David. As we follow his journey, we see how God first taught David how to kill a bear and lion which came to threaten his sheep. These challenges were used to prepare David for confronting, challenging and taking down Goliath who threatened the people of God (1 Samuel 17).
There were other seasons in the bible, where David spent running from Saul, who wanted to take his life. David’s conviction was, “Touch not my anointed ones, do my prophets no harm” (Psalms 105:15). This was because David knew that Saul was anointed of God. Saul eventually came to his own demise, when he fell on his sword during his battle with the Philistines (1 Samuel 31:4). Saul was so consumed by his pursuit of David, that he missed the fact that the Philistines were planning their attack against him. Except for Saul who was anointed and whom David needed to leave to God to avenge, David did not run away from many battles. He stood and fought once he had consulted God and was convinced that God was with him in battle. David said in Psalms, “He trains my hands for war, so that my arms can bend a bow of bronze” (Psalms 18:34).
There are seasons when God will tell us to walk away and other times, when He wants us to take a stand of authority and declare victory over our circumstances. Our weapons are not physical and we do not fight in our own strength. Our weapons are strategic prayers and worship. When God commands us to fight, we have to remember that there is nothing for us to fear, but we have to be strong and courageous because God is with us in the battle (Joshua 1:9).
God will teach us the strategies of war and train us in warfare against the enemy. We have to do battle against principalities and powers, against the rulers of darkness of this present world (Ephesians 6:12). We need insight and wisdom for the battle and understanding as the Holy Spirit guides and teaches us in warfare. “For by you I can run against a troop, and by my God I can leap over a wall” (Psalm 18:29).