Monday, May 20, 2013

I Am A Soldier in the Army of the LORD

Allied soldiers storming the beach at Normandy on D-Day, WWII
I am a SOLDIER in the ARMY of the LORD.

Jesus said, "Go your ways: behold, I send you forth as lambs among wolves," Luke 10:3. Lambs among wolves? That speaks of the most hostile environment - an environment of blood-thirsty enemies.

"He that heareth you heareth me; and he that despiseth you despiseth me; and he that despiseth me despiseth him that sent me," Luke 10:16. DESPISED. He warned us that we would face those who would despise us, and reminded us that the REASON they will despise US, is that they despise GOD! God's enemies will become our enemies.

Make no mistake about it. This is war. This is Heaven against Hell. This is all that is GOOD against all that is EVIL. This is no game, no party, no recreation room. This is war.

Herod tried to destroy Jesus Christ as soon as He was born (Matthew 2:13). He killed an entire town-full of innocent babies. That is how diabolical and heartless this war is. DON'T THINK that Satan is LESS diabolical or heartless today. He is not.

In the days of His ministry on earth, Jesus repeatedly faced attempts to destroy Him.

"The Pharisees went fort, and straightway took counsel with the Herodians against him, how they might DESTROY him," Mark 3:6.

 "The Pharisees went out, and held a council against him, how they might DESTROY him," Matthew 12:14.

"He taught daily in the temple. But the chief priests and the scribes and the chief of the people sought to DESTROY him," Luke 19:47.

"The chief priests and elders persuaded the multitude that they should ask Barabbas, and DESTROY Jesus," Matthew 27:20.

Jesus knew what He was up against. He said, "The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to DESTROY: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly," John 10:10.

He forewarned us, "Ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved," Matthew 10:22.

"Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake," Matthew 24:9.

"If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you," John 15:18-19.

John knew why Jesus came to earth in the first place, "For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might DESTROY THE WORKS OF THE DEVIL," 1 John 3:8.

Jesus came to seek and save those who were lost, but He also came to destroy the works of the devil.

Jesus came to destroy the works of the Destroyer
His Soldiers are SENT to destroy the works of the Destroyer

"Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you," Luke 10:19

"These signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they CAST OUT DEVILS; they shall speak with new tongues," Mark 16:17.

If you are a true Christian, you WILL face adversaries. Hell has a target on you. You will be attacked. When you took God's side, you inherited all His enemies. But that's all right, because it is the nature of the Spirit-led life. This IS spiritual warfare. Don't ever forget it.

Winston Churchill once said, "You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life."

Every saint of God who ever lived has faced great tribulation in his day. Expect it. Deal with it.

Hell sets traps for God's people. If you live long enough, you will be caught in one. But God delivers His people, even from the jaws of death. Remember Calvary.

"If it be of God, ye cannot overthrow it; lest haply ye be found even to fight against God," Acts 5:39.

"And what shall I more say? for the time would fail me to tell of Gedeon, and of Barak, and of Samson, and of Jephthae; of David also, and Samuel, and of the prophets:

Who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, Quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, waxed valiant in fight, turned to flight the armies of the aliens.

Women received their dead raised to life again: and others were tortured, not accepting deliverance; that they might obtain a better resurrection: And others had trial of cruel mockings and scourgings, yea, moreover of bonds and imprisonment:

They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented; (Of whom the world was not worthy:) they wandered in deserts, and in mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.

And these all, having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise: God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect," Hebrews 11:32-40.

Here is the end of the matter: Jesus is coming. He will both destroy all His adversaries in that day, AND reward all those who have fought in His Army.

"And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth," Revelation 11:18.

THEREFORE, Saint of God...

"Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses," 1 Timothy 6:12.

"Endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier," 2 Timothy 2:3-4.

I'm a soldier in the Army,
And I'm marching, claiming victory.
I will not give up. I will not turn around.
I'm a soldier, marching Heaven bound.

Go. Fight. Win. In Jesus' name.

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Thursday, May 9, 2013

God's War Is Infinitely More Exhilarating Than Sports

The saint of God's exhilaration while engaging the forces of Hell in spiritual warfare, standing relentlessly for Truth in the face of Hell's most vociferous, pernicious lies, and taking hard blows from Truth's most malicious enemies, is an exhilaration that infinitely exceeds the rush of a football team against a receiver, the scramble of a basketball team for a goal, or the passing of a baseball over a fence.

The Early Church cast out devils, raised the dead, rebuked sicknesses and diseases, and preached amidst a great froth of controversy while being opposed and threatened from every direction. Yet they rejoiced to suffer for the cause of Christ, and defied every attempt to silence them in their crusade for Truth, righteousness and holiness.

Any man or woman who is fanatical about flesh-and-blood sports, while disinterested in great Biblical, doctrinal and spiritual controversies has been blinded and anesthetized by carnality, and does not realize that Satan has effectively derailed them from their divine purpose.

Jesus came to seek and save them who are lost, and destroy the works of the devil. The Church must take up His Sword, the Word of God, and engage His adversaries in His name. We are called to be soldiers in the army of the Lord. It should be our great joy to fight His battles. Little David took great delight in taking down Goliath, "the uncircumcised Philistine" who was the iconic adversary of God's people. There are plenty of giants now standing in the battlefield railing against God and His people. "Is there not a cause?" Go. Fight. Win. In Jesus' name.

"Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier," 2 Timothy 2:3-4.

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