Actions are a result of the attitude that is in a person’s mind. The attitude or “spirit” behind the action is what all must deal with directly... not the actual person. Ephesians 6:12 lets us know that the battle is not with the person you see, but the spirit of thinking behind the person’s action. You fight in that space. The devil wants you to attack the person you see so he provokes you through the person’s action that you see expecting you to punch back the way you were
punched. But 2 Corinthians 10:4-5 lets us know that “our weapons of warfare (fighting) are not carnal (we don’t fight back the way we were attacked), but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds.” The stronghold is on that person’s mind.
We attack the spirit behind the person you see by hitting it with the word of God which casts out anything not of Him as it exposes the truth (the spirit behind the action). Verse 5 says to “cast down every imagination (thought) that exalts itself against the knowledge (word/ wisdom) of God. We are to not let that thought become an action unto the obedience of Christ.” This takes self control which is a fruit of the spirit found in Galatian 5:22-26. You attack the spirit behind the person by exposing the spirit using the word to expose.
The intent of the exposing is for the person operating in the spirit (attitude/thinking) to be made aware without attacking the person directly. We attack the spirit with the hope of a person being brought to repentance while that spirit flees (this falls in line with the will of the Father found in 2 Peter 3:9). The word will bring about conviction to those who are teachable. But for anyone operating in pride... they won’t see it as conviction... they will be offended by the truth and flee with that spirit.
They are not teachable because they embrace the spirit they are operating in. They will run away from any one who sees the spirit and operates according to the word. They will attack the person but never use the word of God to point out anything. It will always be personal... not Biblical.
This is why it is written:
“Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage-with great patience and careful instruction. For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry.”
2 Timothy 4:2-5 NIV