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The Offensive and Defensive Types of Warfare

Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States

By Bishop Youssef


In earthly wars between countries and kingdoms, there exist two types of warfare with their own individual strategies. These are offensive and defensive types of warfare. In the spiritual fight there are the same types of warfare and both require from us personal initiative and active participation. Since Satan does not take rest, we should be involved in both wars if we want to be true soldiers in the army of Jesus Christ.

The Defensive Warfare
It is a means of defending one’s territory, a forced battle launched in response to an attack from an opponent and a defensive decision made based on an offensive one. This type of warfare does not advance into the enemy’s territory. Such defensive type of warfare is necessary because Satan is constantly attacking believers and therefore we should be constantly alert to apply defensive strategies in order to defend our spiritual territories. This type of warfare is pretty much what most churches stop at, getting satisfied with protecting the believers who are already active in church with the aim of:

  1. protecting believers from going astray (prophylactic in nature).
  2. nurturing and nourishing them spiritually in order to grow into the likeness of Christ.


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