A Biblical Theology of Spiritual Warfare and Missions

In some missions contexts, the spiritual darkness is thick enough to feel. What does the Bible tell missionaries about these “principalities and powers”?

Among the practical topics on which missionaries receive hands-on training, spiritual warfare can sometimes fall by the wayside—but spiritual warfare is crucial for missionaries to grasp and engage effectively. How should we understand spiritual warfare in relation to pagan nations? Is exorcism normal and to be expected on the field? Do missionaries need to name territorial spirits by name and spiritually “map” their field? This week, Scott and Alex dive into these questions and build a brief biblical theology of spiritual warfare.

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Alex Kocman & Scott Dunford

Alex Kocman is the Director of Communications and Engagement for ABWE. He serves as general editor for Message Magazine and co-hosts The Missions Podcast. After earning his M.A. in Communication and B.S. in Biblical Studies, he served as an online apologetics instructor with Liberty University and a youth pastor in Pennsylvania, where he now resides with his wife and three children. Read his blog or follow him on X/Twitter.

Scott Dunford is the pastor of Western Hills Church in San Mateo, Calif. Previously, Scott served as Vice President of Mobilization and Communications for ABWE and as a missionary in East Asia. Scott graduated from Northland International University (B.A. in Pastoral Studies), earned his M.A. in biblical studies from Central Baptist Theological Seminary, his M.B.A. from Cornerstone University, and is currently enrolled in Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary’s D.Min. program with an emphasis on missions.