There are many warriors mentioned in both the New Testament and Old Testament of the Bible. Some of these individuals were young men who took up weapons and fought in battles, some endured spiritual conflicts, and others were prayer warriors who petitioned the throne of grace.
Who are the warriors in the Bible?
David, Gideon, Naaman, and Samson are just a few of the warriors named in the Bible. They understood what it meant to fight for a cause while being brave and disciplined.
One of the servants answered, “I have seen a son of Jesse of Bethlehem who knows how to play the lyre. He is a brave man and a warrior. He speaks well and is a fine-looking man. And the Lord is with him.” 1 Samuel 16:18 NIV
But God said to me, ‘You are not to build a house for my Name, because you are a warrior and have shed blood.’ 1 Chronicles 28:3 NIV
Undoubtedly, David was a man of war and 1 Chronicles 28:3 alludes to this fact. He was a mighty warrior but there is more to his story.
Even before his first battle, David knew what it meant to stand his ground and defend his territory. As a shepherd it was his duty to protect his flock from other animals who preyed on them.
When it came time for him to face Goliath the giant, he was a fearless young man because he knew the God who was with him as he slayed the lion and bear.
God is always with us. When we serve in solitude and when we face our giants, we know He’ll be our shield and defense. With Him we can claim victory over all the battles we experience in daily life.
When the angel of the Lord appeared to Gideon, he said, “The Lord is with you, mighty warrior.” Judges 6:12
Gideon tested God and proved Him over and over. His experience with the fleece and his victory with a very small army are powerful lessons that God is able to accomplish great things with very little.
It was not the size of the army that Gideon commanded that led to victory. Rather it was the size and power of God.
When we allow God to lead us, He will confuse our enemies, scatter them in fear, and help us to overcome even when the odds are stacked against us.
Now Naaman was commander of the army of the king of Aram. He was a great man in the sight of his master and highly regarded, because through him the Lord had given victory to Aram. He was a valiant soldier, but he had leprosy. 2 Kings 5:1
Naaman knew what it meant to give a command and had it followed. As a military leader, discipline was very important. When he was commanded to go and wash in the Jordan River, he was at first skeptical.
However, he later obeyed the prophet’s command, He went, dipped seven times, and then experienced the healing power of God.
We are all soldiers in Christ’s army. That means we have to obey His commands even when we are not comfortable doing what He wants us to do.
If we remain loyal and faithful, He will reward us. We will live in the earth made new where there will be no more sickness or death. (Revelation 21:4)
You will become pregnant and have a son whose head is never to be touched by a razor because the boy is to be a Nazirite, dedicated to God from the womb. He will take the lead in delivering Israel from the hands of the Philistines. Judges 13:5 NIV
Samson was a strong and fearless warrior. He was an excellent display of the power and might of God. His story reminds us that not all alliances are sanctioned by God.
His alliance with Delilah shows how the enemy will use those close and dear to us to lead to our demise.
Lucifer is cunning and will use various tactics to betray us. That is why 2 Timothy 3 warns about terrible times in the last days when people will be lovers of themselves instead of lovers of God.
Mistrust and betrayal can lead us down the wrong road but we should never forget who we are and we should not lose hope in God.
In the end God restored Samson’s strength and his enemies suffered dearly. Even when we can’t see what lies ahead of us, we should remain hopeful as we trust that God will always help us to be victorious.
What is a warrior according to the Bible?
A warrior must always be equipped to face battles. Being ready requires physical, mental, and spiritual preparation.
A warrior is equipped with a sword
For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Hebrews 4:12 NIV
This Bible verse speaks about an important piece of artillery that each soldier needs to have. We will not make it without the word of God because it is our sword.
A warrior is disciplined
Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. 1 Corinthians 9:26 NIV
In this text Paul speaks about the importance of self-discipline. Our Christian experience is a warfare that requires us to show restraint while being mindful of what is at stake.
We all strive to receive a crown of righteousness and it is going to require focus and discipline.
Boxers train long and hard before they step into the ring to face an opponent. We have to prepare our minds and souls in order to face the wiles of the devil and win the fight of faith.
A warrior is mentally ready
Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. Romans 12:2 NIV
We have to train our minds to focus on the things of God instead of on the things of this world. Bible study, meditation, prayer, and a relationship rooted and grounded in the Lord are some of the things that will help us to renew our minds daily as we resist worldly temptations.
Who was the first warrior in the Bible?
There are two ways to look at this question. We could look at the first conflict or we could follow genealogy.
Following genealogy Nimrod’s name may come up in the post flood narrative. Or if we start at the beginning, we may look at how Lucifer rebelled against God and was cast out of heaven as a consequence of his actions.
Cush was the father of Nimrod, who became a mighty warrior on earth. 1 Chronicles 1:10
Genesis 10:8–12 is the first mention of a warrior in the Bible. The second text naming a person as a mighty warrior is Judges 6:12 which spoke about Gideon.
Nimrod is the son of Cush. Cush was the son of Ham. Ham was one of Noah’s sons who were with him on the ark.
How you have fallen from heaven, morning star, son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations! Isaiah 14:12 NIV
The King James Version clears up who this text is speaking about. “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!” (Isaiah 14:12 KJV)
Lucifer, the son of the morning, was cast out of heaven for waging war against God. Revelation 14 also spoke of this conflict between cosmic powers. Where Michael and his angels fought against Satan.
“Then war broke out in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. ⁸But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven. ⁹The great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him.” (Revelation 14:7-9)
What is God’s warrior name?
There are many places in the Bible where God is referred to as a warrior. King David, Moses and Miriam, Zephaniah, and John the revelator all knew that God is a mighty warrior and great conqueror.
Yahweh or Jehovah
The Lord is a warrior; the Lord is his name. Exodus 15:3 NIV
After crossing the Red Sea, the children of Israel gave thanks to God through festive singing. They acknowledged God as a mighty warrior and stated that the Lord is His name.
Some versions of the Bible like the NLT and Darby translations use the words Yahweh and Jehovah.
The LORD is a warrior; Yahweh is his name! (NLT) Jehovah is a man of war; Jehovah, his name. (Darby)
King of glory
Who is this King of glory? The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle. ¹⁰Who is he, this King of glory? The Lord Almighty he is the King of glory. Psalm 24:8,10 NIV
In Psalm chapter 24 God is referred to as the King of glory because He is strong and mighty in battle.
The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.” Zephaniah 3:17 NIV
In this text we see God as a mighty warrior who saves and protects His people. Even though Israel turned away from Him, He wanted nothing more than to restore them to Himself.
He wants the same thing for us today and He will continue to protect us from our physical and spiritual enemies.
King of kings and Lord of lords
I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and wages war. ¹⁶On his robe and on his thigh he has this name written: king of kings and lord of lords. Revelation 19:11,16 NIV
There is an ongoing cosmic conflict and we are all a part of it. We may choose to follow Satan and his angels and become castaways. Or we may remain faithful and true and follow God-the King of kings and Lord of lords.
Only those on God’s side will come out victorious at the end of the conflict.
Characteristics of a Warrior in the Bible
There are two sets of warriors in the Bible. One set fought against the Lord and one group represented God as they went up against evil forces and others that threatened His people.
Some identifying characteristics of Godly warriors include: following the Lord, putting on the whole armor of God, choosing God, and Proving Him.
Follow the Lord
So Hebron has belonged to Caleb son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite ever since, because he followed the Lord, the God of Israel, wholeheartedly Joshua 14:14 NIV
Caleb followed God and he reaped the rewards. Caleb and Joshua were the only two adults of the first generation from Egypt who entered the promised land.
As a spy, he wholeheartedly believed in God and he fought as a mighty man of valor for many years.
Put on the full armor of God
Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, ¹⁵and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. ¹⁶In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. ¹⁷Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Ephesians 6:14-17 NIV
Truth, righteousness, the gospel of peace, faith, salvation, and the word of God are the components that make up the armor of Christian soldiers.
In essence the armor of a Christian soldier is a reflection of the character traits needed to resist the wiles of the devil.
But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.” Joshua 24:15 NIV
Joshua intentionally chose God and this made him stand out. When the group of men were sent to spy out the land and return with a report only Joshua and Caleb had the required faith. The other spies chose fear and doubted that they would be successful.
In the text above Joshua gathered the people and reminded them of how God fought for and delivered them from their enemies. He also asked them to choose which god they will serve.
Joshua chose the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and vowed to follow Him. In the verse that followed the people also chose to serve and obey God.
Gideon said to God, “If you will save Israel by my hand as you have promised— ³⁷look, I will place a wool fleece on the threshing floor. If there is dew only on the fleece and all the ground is dry, then I will know that you will save Israel by my hand, as you said.” Judges 6:36,37 NIV
We are warned that there will be false prophets who will try to deceive the very elect. That is why it’s very important to prove God for ourselves. Doubt will arise and sometimes we need to experience the power and might of God personally.
Gideon was called at a critical point in time to fight for God and His people. He wanted to make sure that it was really God who called him and after the experiment with the fleece Gideon proved the Lord for Himself.
This is why when he was told that he needed a small nimble team of soldiers he did not doubt God because he had already gotten rid of all his doubt.
What is a spiritual warrior in the Bible?
A spiritual warrior is someone who embraces the fight of faith and wrestles against spiritual wickedness.
Fight against dark forces
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Ephesians 6:12 NIV
A spiritual soldier will have to contend with evil forces and dark powers. This is not simply dealing with individuals or organizations that are direct opponents but includes sickness, death, possession by evil spirits and other tactics of the Devil.
Fight the good fight of faith
Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses. 1 Timothy 6:12 NIV
A spiritual warrior will need to defend what he or she believes in. This means sticking to your faith: when others don’t support you or if it’s the unpopular choice.
Paul faced a lot of persecution but in the end, he was able to say, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” (2 Timothy 4:7) NIV
Woman warrior Bible Verses
Deborah and Jael in Judges 4:4-6 and 17-22 may be two women who come to mind when you think about female warriors in the Bible.
However, there are a number of women who were not involved in actual battles but showed great strength when it came to exercising their faith, praying, and overcoming spiritual warfare.
The woman with the issue of blood, Hannah, Naaman’s servant, and Ruth are some females in scripture with extraordinary faith and warrior spirits.
Be strong and courageous
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9 NIV
It took great courage for the woman with the issue of blood to risk being in a crowd. She knew Jesus could heal her and she acted in faith.
The lesson for us to learn from this story is that sometimes we need to take risks, reach out to others, and get the help we need.
You will not fail
God is within her, she will not fall; God will help her at break of day. Psalm 46:5 NIV
Ruth and Naomi had lost everything. They believed in God and they had great determination. Be bold like Ruth as you follow God. You will not fail because God will never leave or forsake you.
God is your shield
Praise be to the Lord my Rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle. ²He is my loving God and my fortress, my stronghold and my deliverer, my shield, in whom I take refuge, who subdues peoples under me. Psalm 144:1,2 NIV
This Psalm is a great text to repeat for affirmation while thanking God for being our shield, deliverer, refuge, and protector.
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. Ephesians 6:18 NIV
The story of Hannah is maybe the greatest example of a prayer warrior. She knew what she wanted and she knew only God was able to help her have a child.
She emptied herself in the temple as she made her request known to her heavenly Father. Like Hannah, we too are able to prove that the prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Ephesians 6:10 NIV
This text gives the assurance that we can always draw strength from the God we serve. He is mighty and omnipotent
The Lord is with you
But the Lord is with me like a mighty warrior; so my persecutors will stumble and not prevail. They will fail and be thoroughly disgraced; their dishonor will never be forgotten. Jeremiah 20:11 NIV
Naaman’s servant didn’t forget she was a child of God because she was in captivity. She was moved by the Holy Spirit to introduce her master to the God she served.
No matter where we find ourselves, we should always remember that God is with us and that He is mighty and ready to save.
There are many important lessons that we may draw from warriors in the Bible. As you do so I pray you will put on the whole armor of God as you fight the good fight of faith.