Lucia's Blog: SOLDIERS OF CHRIST ARISE!
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Isaiah 55:8-9

Isaiah 55:8-9

Friday, August 21, 2015

SOLDIERS OF CHRIST ARISE!

"I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith; in the future there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing."  
II Timothy 4:7-8


On the battlefield of right and wrong, there is a "bloody" fight going on. Our very souls are at stake as well as the future of our families and churches. Think with me about the faith and promises that the Lord provides for us in this battle.

Our life in Christ is a constant BATTLE.  We war not against flesh and blood, but against the spiritual forces of wickedness in heavenly places.  Ephesians 6:10-12 tells us that we are at war and that we must constantly remind ourselves of such a war.

"Finally, be strong in the Lord, and in the strength of his might.    Put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.  For our wrestling is not against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers, against the world-rulers of this darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places."

We are here, in this our tabernacle, constantly fighting the good fight of faith.  Satan is the general of our enemy, trying at all cost to defeat us as well as the Lord's church.  Therefore, we must ARISE and go to battle, putting on the whole armor of God that we might be strong in the strength that God supplies through our Lord and Savior.

"Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm.  Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.  And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God."  Ephesians 6:13-18.

Unfortunately, this war has existed since the beginning of time and will continue until the Lord comes.  Often we find our FAITH being stretched to the limits.  It is then that we become weary on the battlefield.  We start longing for peace in our lives.  Our biggest desire is for everything to be perfect and peaceful.  However, we must embrace this battle, remaining steadfast in our faith and the Word of God as our main source of nourishment for our desperate souls.

"For this reason I too, having heard of the faith in the Lord Jesus which exists among you and your love for all the saints,  do not cease giving thanks for you, while making mention of you in my prayers;  that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him.  I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints,  and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might  which He brought about in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places."  Ephesians 1:15-20

Ephesians 1:15-20 describes for us the strength of God in our lives:

  • Through wisdom and knowledge. (v. 17)
  • Hope through Jesus.  (v. 18)
  • Through prayer,  Ephesians 3:14-19.   Paul’s desire, in his prayer, was that God might grant us, according to the riches of His glory, strength in the inner man,  (vs. 16).  So that,
  • Christ may dwell in our hearts by faith. (v. 17
  • And being rooted and grounded in love we might be able to comprehend His love in order to be filled with all His fullness. (v. 18)

Since our Lord gives us strength, we need to accept it.  We need to STAND FAST with it.  I Cor. 16:13 says,
"Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong."

The Bible is rich with stories of war and peace.  We can learn much from such stories.  The Psalms are also an especially rich source of help in times of DISTRESS.  Consider some Psalms that help us fight in the battlefield of our souls:  Psalm 37:39-40 55:16; 55:18; 55:22; 56:3-4; 56:8; 56:9; 56:11; 56:13; 57:1; 59:9;59:16-17, 61:2-3; 62:1-2; 62:5-8.

It is on the field of battle that we must diligently seek Him and His Word for strength and nourishment for our FAITH We must learn to love the Psalms.  They strengthen the prayers that we desperately need for the battlefield.  Prayers help us greatly in our spiritual war.  The Psalms strengthen us in our weaknesses and in the fears that freeze us sometimes.  The Psalms quiet our murmuring and complaining and build up our faith.  If we follow the examples of David on the battlefield of his desperate physical war when he wrote of his feelings and emotions in his poetry, we can easily apply this to our spiritual warfare.

Therefore,
  • We must follow this pattern of feeding our souls with the Word as well as praying that we might win the fight.  
  • We must be on the alert because our enemy, Satan, will attack us without mercy.  
  • We must be in the middle of this battlefield fighting with all of our strength and might.  
  • We must remember that we cannot win this battle alone.  We need our God to fight for us.  He is our HELPER, who will help us conquer the land and subdue the kingdom of darkness in a spiritual sense.  
  • We must arm ourselves with the weapons of war, fighting the enemy on the home front.  
  • Let us never forget that we are to be warriors ready to fight at all times: warriors who purpose in our hearts to have victory.  The Kingdom of heaven is for valiant warriors and not cowardly ones.

We see this picture portrayed in our Lord and Savior.  He was both the Lamb and the Lion.  As the Lamb, He surrendered Himself to the cruel cross carrying the penalty for our sins.  He was obedient as a sheep that yields to the shearer never opening his mouth in protest.  But He is also the Lion of the tribe of Judah.  The Lion to whom every knee shall bow bringing all of His enemies, kings and kingdoms into subjection to His Lordship and dominion.

We are children of the Almighty.  We are born of the Spirit to conquer!  We subdue, bring into subjection, conquer and keep our enemies under our feet.  How do we accomplish this? 

  • Through our prayers.
  • Through our KNOWLEDGE of the WORD of God.  
  • This KNOWLEDGE of God's Word along with our PRAYERS are great weapons to conquer and subdue all the powers of darkness that subtly creep into every aspect of our lives as Christians.  
  • The enemy creeps into our marriages, and into our homes, our churches, our nation, and our children. 
  • We must fight for them!  
  • Our prayer must not be just a one-time prayer, and that is it!  It must be a constant and fervent prayer.  
  • Our THIRST and HUNGER for the WORD of  God is not just a one-time thing, and that is it!  
  • It must be a constant thirst and hunger.  
  • It is the only WAY to fight and take dominion or control of our souls.

Let us be encouraged by Nehemiah's exhortation: 
" When I saw their fear, I rose and spoke to the nobles, the officials and the rest of the people: “Do not be afraid of them; remember the Lord who is great and awesome, and fight for your brothers, your sons, your daughters, your wives and your houses.”  Nehemiah 4:14.

Our lives as Christians are a battlefield of the heart, soul, and mind in which we must fight so that we may live in victory and finally receive our CROWN.  2 Corinthians 10:3-6 describes this spiritual battle.

"For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, 4 for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ, and we are ready to punish all disobedience, whenever your obedience is complete."

The Word of God continually speaks of the battle and our fight for the right cause.  It is indeed an ugly war!
  • Let us not lose heart!  
  • Let us not give into the desires of our flesh.  
  • Let us crucify SELF.  
  • We are children of the ALMIGHTY GOD who have been born of the Spirit through our Lord and Savior, Jesus.    
  • Let us not forget that our Father in heaven dwells in us and is totally opposed to lawlessness and the desires of the flesh.  They repel each other.  

So my question is, to whom are we going to yield?  Let us consider Galatians 5:16-17 
"But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.  For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please." 

Is it not wonderful that we have the GRACE of God!

  • This GRACE is teaching and aiding us in combating and denying all ungodliness and worldly desires in order that we may live righteously and godly and use sound judgment.  
  • This GRACE helps us bear good fruit and be zealous in our daily walk with Him.  
  • We could never do it on our own!  
  • Thanks be to God for His indescribable Grace!  
  • We have no excuse since we have all we need in order to be equipped to fight on the battlefield of our souls.

The only way we are going to resist Satan is by overcoming our weaknesses.  Romans 12:21 says to not be overcome by evil, but to overcome evil with good.  I John 2:13-14 speaks of those who have overcome the wicked one.
“For whatever is born of God overcomes the world.  And this is the victory that has overcome the world – our faith. Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?”  I John 5:4-5 
"Fight the good fight of faith; take hold of the eternal life to which you were called, and you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses."  I Timothy 6:12
Although we as Christians face all sorts of conflicts, trials, sufferings and sorrows in our lives, we have hope.   Paul reminds us of this in 2 Timothy 4:7,
"I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith."  
We should be looking toward a time when we will no longer have to fight this war.  A time of eternal peace.   

Christ is our ultimate source of victory.  He will be with us through this life, and He will be with us as we leave to stand before the Supreme Judge of all if we have been faithful.  Paul, as he wrote of our spiritual battle always looked toward that victory.  

"But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ."  I Corinthians 15:57
"And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death."  Revelation 12:11

With the burden of this BATTLE on our shoulders, let us purpose in our heart, soul and mind to FIGHT on the battlefield against the flesh and all forms of evil.  What a day that will be, when we can finally stand before God (in judgment) having done all the will of God, passing the test for eternity.
"... that ye may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God."  Colossians 4:12

May the Lord help us to fight the good fight of faith and never give up, even until our last breath, that we may receive the CROWN of life.

"Finally there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.”  2 Timothy 4:8.
"No soldier in active service entangles himself in the affairs of everyday life, so that he may please the one who enlisted him as a soldier.  Also if anyone competes as an athlete, he does not win the prize unless he competes according to the rules."   2 Timothy 2:4-5.

Are you pleasing our Lord in this battle?


Luci

P.S.  The following song is a call to battle.  It reminds us of our war against Satan.  Let us consider this song that we may be more motivated and devoted in serving in His army, seeking always to please Him first.



Soldiers of Christ, Arise

Soldiers of Christ, arise, and put your armor on,
Strong in the strength which God supplies through His beloved Son.

Strong in the Lord of hosts, and in His mighty power,
Who in the strength of Jesus trusts is more than conqueror.

Stand then in His great might, with all His strength endued,
But take, to arm you for the fight, the panoply of God;

Leave no unguarded place, no weakness of the soul,
Take every virtue, every grace, and fortify the whole;

That, having all things done, and all your conflicts passed,
You may o’ercome through Christ alone and stand entire at last.