Philippians 1: 28 – And in nothing terrified by your adversaries: which is to them an evident token of perdition [destruction], but to you of salvation [wholeness], and that of God.

Did you know that it is God’s Will for you to resort to self-defense if necessary? This seems to shock some wishy-washy so-called Christians. Self-defense does not necessarily have to mean violence by any means. For example, a neighbor of mine just came home early from work and I immediately closed all my curtains and my front door. This person is an alcoholic and has tried to cause me serious problems at one point. He was defeated and made a fool out of himself. His wife (girlfriend?) just left him, BUT HE STILL DRINKS – morning, afternoon, and night. He is a functioning alcoholic. This a very simple example of self-defense. Oh, that’s not ‘christian-like’. Then YOU feel sorry for the adversary and he will melt YOUR face. You need to protect yourself from the enemy. It is written in our site’s title page that we do not teach religion. [See The Spirit That Dwells In An Alcoholic].

The main point I want to emphasize here is to allow you the ability to properly discern the difference between self-defense and vengeance:

Vengeance is of the god of this world.

Self-defense is of the God and Father of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

Why am I teaching you about this subject?

III John 4 -- I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.

Let’s take look at what God’s Word says about the subject of vengeance.

Romans 12: 19 -- Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather  give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is  mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.

Before I teach you something extremely important about this verse, let me say this. There is a very fine line between vengeance and self-defense. God will have to teach you individually HOW TO DISCERN THE DIFFERENCE. Remember that with God all things are possible. I can only give you examples from my own spiritual walk which will help you to clarify this distinction.

Now let’s get back to Romans 12: 19. The key phrase containing a certain noun that you must understand is " but rather give place unto wrath". Let us dig deep under the surface of God’s Word where the priceless jewels are buried.

This phrase, for some reason, gave me no end of problems for many years. ‘Wrath’ as defined in the Concordance means: "temper of mind; anger together with desire for revenge". However, the way the verse is worded, the main question is WHOSE wrath is this referring to? For years I thought it was referring to a person’s wrath, BUT IT IS NOT!!! It is in reference to God’s wrath. This will make the verse clear to you. In essence, God is saying: "Get out of the way, son. Don’t interfere and give me room to work." A much better translation of this verse is given in the New English Bible (NEB).

NEB – Romans 12: 19 – My dear friends, do not seek revenge, but leave a place for divine retribution; for there is a text which reads, ‘Justice is mine, says the Lord, I will repay’.

God says He will repay. Do not argue with God.

God never wants us to get into this type of situation, but now we know what God wants us to do when we desire to seek revenge or vengeance upon others. This verse is part of our blueprint for living. God knows and you better accept the fact that YOU WILL NOT be able to live at peace with all men, even though God desires this and you should desire this also.

Romans 12: 18 – If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.

Sometimes it is not possible to get along with everyone. Darkness cannot stand light and those in whom darkness dwells will try and hinder you from walking by the revealed Word of God. Paul clearly states this in the following verse:

II Corinthians 12: 7 – And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.

What was Paul’s thorn in the flesh? PEOPLE. Remember that I taught you that the Word of God interprets itself in one of three ways: 1) right in the verse where it is written 2) in the context or 3) where it was used before. In this case, Paul’s thorn in the flesh is interpreted where it was used before  way back in the Book of Numbers.

Numbers 33: 55 – But if ye will not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you; then it shall come to pass, that those which ye let remain of them shall be  pricks in your eyes, and thorns in your sides, and shall vex you in the land wherein ye dwell.

Satan has four (4) fronts: 1) Yourself 2) Others 3) The Environment 4) Idols or Religion. We are focusing specifically here on number two (2) OTHER PEOPLE. How do you deal with them? When do you step aside and let God carry out Divine retribution and when do you stand up and defend yourself? Knowing how to be able to discern the difference is the crux of this teaching.

Before we begin with actual examples, I need to cover a subject quickly around which there is much controversy and no end of confusion. Why? Because the Word of God is not rightly divided. Why? Because it is not studied diligently and therefore people GUESS at what it means.

II Peter 1: 20 -- Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private [idios -- one's own] interpretation.

FIRST, you need to understand that there are seven (7) different TIME PERIODS or ADMINISTRATIONS in the Bible. A different set of rules and/or laws apply to and govern each different Administration. You should refer to and study the teaching The Seven Administrations before continuing. This teaching will clear up more confusion for you about the Bible from a chronological standpoint than any other teaching on the subject. It will help you to rightly divide and therefore understand God’s Word like never before.

II Timothy 2: 15 -- Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

John 8: 32 – And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

Now if you don’t understand the Seven Administrations, you won’t understand this example taken from the Old Testament.

Luke 6: 29a – And unto him that smiteth thee on the one  cheek offer also the other;

The New Testament began on the Day Of Pentecost which began the Grace Administration [5th Admin.] in which we now live. The gospels are part of the CHRIST ADMINISTRATION [4th Admin.]. This was when Jesus Christ was physically present upon the earth AND THIS IS STILL THE OLD TESTAMENT. A different set of rules and laws apply to the Christ Administration as compared to the Grace Administration. The greater part of the Bible is written FOR our learning while the seven (7) Church Epistles are written DIRECTLY TO US TODAY. The Old Testament is the Law and Jesus Christ came to fulfil the Law and to put an end to it.

Romans 10: 4 – For Christ is  the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.

The gospels were written BEFORE the Day of Pentecost and Pentecost began the New Testament. Therefore the Gospels are still the OLD TESTAMENT!  Is that so hard to understand?



Things equal to themselves are equal to each other.

Now the most important point:

If something written in the Old Testament IS NOT changed in the Seven Church Epistles which are written directly to us in this day and time, then that principle from the Old Testament STILL APPLIES TO US TODAY. An example of this is tithing.

Now, let’s get to some real life examples.

Remember the following Scripture? WATCH IT WORK.

Philippians 1: 28 – And in nothing terrified by your adversaries: which is to them an evident token of perdition [destruction], but to you of salvation [wholeness], and that of God.

When I first got in the Word of God in 1974, the adversary figured he would take a crack at me. I was hot for God and witnessed almost constantly with great success. Back then we were running 36 hour Bible classes on videotape. I was responsible for signing up about seven people for that class – glory to God, not to me. But before all of this even took place, I had simply gone to only one fellowship.

I had a beautiful car that I treasured. On a rainy night, I was out for ride. The car had new paint, a new exhaust system, and a new clutch. It was immaculate – a ’68 SS canary yellow – 4 speed Camaro.

As I made a right turn on a side road, I thought I was in some type of a daze. The car started to tip forward and of course, the back end went up in the air. I couldn’t believe what was happening. I heard a scraping noise and before I knew it, I was standing in a stream of low water. My hand was stiff. I had gone off a 25 foot construction ditch straight down with my car. The car was totaled. A policeman took me to a nearby hospital. I had to climb out of the ditch using a ladder and one hand. The neighbors had pushed the Road Closed signs aside to get to their homes. Nobody pushed them back.

Surgery was done on my hand for four hours. The Doctor, I admired. He said to me: "Ralph, I put the bones all back together as best as I could, but it’s not the same as God did it."

My third and fourth metacarpals do not extend completely – I lack about 25% extension. I was determined to destroy the works of the adversary from that day on and that was about 37 years ago. NOW COMES THE CASE IN POINT:

The greatest woman of God I ever met came to the hospital with the person who first witnessed to me. She was the leader of about 40 Christians who had come to my area for a year. SHE LOOKED AT ME AND SAID: "Ralph, you should get a lawyer and sue." You see, I was not liable in any way for what happened. What did I do? Turn the other cheek? I SUED AND I WON!!!


I John 4: 4 – Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.

You see, when the so-called Christian comes a knockin’ at your door, he’s dressed often in a suit and tries to act so religious. I got three of them in my home once because I finally had enough. I took out my Bible and disproved everything they were saying. The one leader of the group, a woman, was just staring at me. Well, let me say that if looks could kill, you might as well call Digger ‘O Dell. I started to convince one of her followers and lo and behold, they got up and left.


Did I sit there and say "Yes, brethren and sistern" and act all religious? I knew 50 times more of the rightly divided Word of God than those counterfeits and NO ONE cuts the Word of God to pieces in my presence. How did I fight back? THE VERY BEST WAY. The enemy can’t stand the light of the true Word of God. But you know, I never defended the Word. Truth needs no defense. I DEFENDED MYSELF from these persistent idiots coming from the god of this world. It is these people that turn more people away from turning to the Bible than almost anything else.



James 2: 19 – Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.

People, you have got to get tough with the enemy or he will run and control your life. Understand that I am trying to help you to understand God’s Word. This distinction between self-defense and vengeance is a very fine line.

This is the last example. Heed it well. It is extremely powerful and I apply it when I have to. Now the following is an example where you are using a principle from God’s Word directly as a means of self-defense. First, I am going to God’s Word:

Philippians 2: 10 – That at the name of Jesus [Christ] every knee should bow, of things  in heaven, and things  in earth, and things  under the earth;

For many years I wondered why I seemed to face so much tribulation from people – especially neighbors!  The enemy works through people who are closest to you – not only emotionally, but geographically. I may be on the enemy’s top ten list and that shows that I am damaging his reign with the truth of God’s Word. So what does he do? The only thing he can do.

John 10: 10 – The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I [Jesus Christ] am come that they might have life, and that they might have it  more abundantly.

The enemy’s ministry is only to steal, kill, and destroy. That’s it.

At one time a new couple moved in next door. I decided to speak to the man’s wife in her driveway and greet her to the neighborhood. This woman and I got along so well, it was phenomenal. I was so thrilled to finally have a neighbor with such a kind heart and cheerful attitude. HOWEVER, at one point in our short conversation, her husband emerged from the garage with a look of anguish on his face. He did everything in his power to disrupt the friendly conversation I was having with his wife. It was something, but I had seen this before. He was abnormally jealous and possessive of his wife. I felt bad for her and politely walked away. We never spoke LIKE THAT AGAIN!! I did nothing wrong, now watch what happened.

Proverbs 6: 34 – For jealousy is  the rage of a man: therefore he will not spare in the day of vengeance.

The husband started to avoid me and to make excessive noise as often as he could. By this, I MEAN NOISE. If it weren’t his prized John Deere riding mower, it was his mulching/bagging mower, OR it was his leaf blower, OR his weed trimmer. I could not help but notice that he was riding up and down on a thin section of grass near my family room windows excessively. One time I went out on my deck and I counted 17 trips past my windows where only about 4 or 5 were necessary.

I had a problem. Let me show you something in Proverbs about turning the other cheek. Christians don’t understand nor rightly divide a Scripture that says overcome evil with good. "Good" is doing what God commands. My neighbor was obviously doing something evil.

Proverbs 17: 13 – Whoso rewardeth evil for good, evil shall not depart from his house.

If I sat on my deck, I would play any music at low volume. NOT ANY MORE. I had to fight back so I played music to my liking. Very unusually, this person hated music. He never spoke to his wife outside and never left the property except in his cars and trucks. (His father owned a used car dealership.) He worked 2 jobs and never spent time with his family. I got to know my enemy well. He tried to intimidate me and take away my peace. BIG MISTAKE. Remember, I was an innocent person. Never cross a righteous Christian for no justifiable reason or you will live in hell.

Maybe you can identify with this. At 3:30 PM on a Saturday afternoon, right when the Penn State kickoff took place, my neighbor would start up his leaf blower!! He would blow the smallest particles off his driveway and this was BEFORE he would cut his grass!!!!!!!!! He would take out the leaf blower again AFTER HE FINISHED CUTTING THE GRASS. I knew he had a number of devil spirits, but more importantly, he had to go. I pleaded with God to tell me what to do. It was already written what to do in God’s Word, but the time was not yet. He proceeded to come over the property line and put chemicals in my woods. I put up red 2x4’s all along the property line. That stopped him.    SELF-DEFENSE

Oh, how sweet it is! I happen to have a Rock-ola jukebox in my family room. I never played it excessively loud. But now, when he started his devil spirit activities, I CRANKED IT and God forgive me, but I did open the windows at times – I wanted fresh air, is that ok? It’s my house. I can’t open my windows?! He started to realize that he wasn’t going to win. This may all sound childish, but it happens and you know it. The devil himself did everything he could to stop me from doing what I’m doing right now – TEACHING GOD’S WORD. He failed.

Remember, God must be first and foremost and I needed my peace to continue teaching, SO HE HAD TO GO and there was nothing in this world that was going to stop me from accomplishing this task. Fortunately my computer is on the opposite side of his house.

I should mention to you that this person was emotionally disturbed and I eventually reported his erratic behavior to a Crisis Intervention Mental Health Center. [SELF-DEFENSE] I have experience working in a state hospital. He really went nuts after that. You’ve got to break the adversary or he will break you.

I’m going to make a very long story short. One day I was down far in my back yard which I prefer to leave natural – all woods. I saw that there was a pile of leaves thrown on my property – done by my neighbor from his leaf sucking machine. The tension and emotion I felt was overwhelming. My anger and believing was at one of the highest points in my life. As I walked back up through my path, I felt the greatest inspired utterance I had ever felt in my life and I looked up into the heavens and I screamed at the top of my lungs with all the strength I had:


It was an exhilarating feeling afterwards. I felt different. I felt a sense of relief like something was accomplished. You would have to experience it to know what I mean. I pondered it for quite some time.

Anyone that goes up against a Son of God walking by the rightly divided revealed Word and Will of God fights against God Himself. Was it my neighbor? No, it was a devil spirit that my neighbor allowed to work in him by his free will. I focused on the spirit, not the person. God told me what spirits they were.

This was a difficult one. After I applied:

Philippians 2: 10 – That at the name of Jesus [Christ] every knee should bow, of things  in heaven, and things  in earth, and things  under the earth;

The realtor came, and well, you know the rest.

You’re going to go up against situations like this if you’re going to stand strong for the true God. If you don’t defend yourself at times, the adversary will take you out.

Let me conclude this teaching with a similar situation in the Book of Acts concerning the Apostle Paul. Before I conclude, remember I love you and I have taught you this distinction between vengeance and self-defense to the best of my ability.

Acts 16: 16, 17 – And it came to pass, as we went to prayer, a certain damsel possessed with a spirit of divination met us, which brought her masters much gain by soothsaying: The same followed Paul and us, and cried, saying, These men are the servants of the most high God, which shew unto us the way of salvation.

I need to stop here. What this woman and her followers were doing was MOCKING Paul. What they were saying was in a mocking and sarcastic tone of voice. They were following Paul everywhere and mocking him and the Word he was teaching. Not a good idea. Now to verse 18:

Acts 16: 18 – And this did she many days. But Paul, being grieved, turned and said to the spirit, I command thee in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And he [it] came out the same hour [immediately]. – Emphasis added

God has a perfect exact time when He wants something done. You may wonder why Paul waited as long as he did. He was waiting for God to give him the green light by revelation and when he got it, the woman with the spirit of divination was history.

Romans 16: 19 – For your obedience is come abroad unto all  men.  I am glad therefore on your behalf: but yet I would have you wise unto that which is good, and simple concerning evil.

Romans 16: 20 – And the God of peace shall bruise [crush] Satan under your feet shortly [immediately]. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be  with you.  Amen.