Archive for January 29th, 2015

Spiritual Battle

January 29, 2015

Once upon a time, I served our country in the Marine Corps.  When I made the decision to not reenlist and to return to Bible college instead,  I told people that I was transferring to the 1st civ div.  I was in the Lord’s service and was being transferred.  My time in the military had been TAD (temporary assigned duty) but that it was time to get back to the calling God had on my life.

Ephesians 6:10-20

 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; 18 praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints— 19 and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.

I.  Be Strong in the Lord

Physical strength was very helpful in the Marine Corps.  In serving God a different type of strength is needed.  Spiritual strength comes from spending time in the Word and time in prayer.  It comes from God.

We are involved in a conflict.  This conflict is not fought with guns, planes, and tanks.  This conflict is fought with faith, prayer and the Word of God.  The conflict is spiritual.  We are not fighting for a country, or oil, or even physical freedom or prosperity.  We are fighting for the eternal destiny of souls.  All people will one day stand before the Lord.  Those who have rejected the salvation offered in Jesus Christ will go to hell for all eternity.  Our goal in this conflict is to bring all that we can into the kingdom of God.

It is a war worth fighting.  It is worth the cost.

II.  The Armor of God

I have known many people who believe that this armor is spiritual.  They get up in the morning and say a prayer, spiritually putting on the armor of God.  I do not have any problem with this practice.  It reminds people of the spiritual nature of our warfare.  However, I also believe that it will do little good to say this prayer if you are not actually practicing the articles of faithful living.

We should be people who speak truth.  Our culture is filled with lies.  The “little white lie” is considered harmless, or even helpful. As Christians, we must resist this influence and speak the truth.

We should have a good knowledge of the gospel so that we may be able to share it with those who are searching for hope in a world that desperately needs a solid foundation.

We should live lives of righteousness.  We are called to be holy.  I understand that we will not obtain perfection, but that is not an excuse to remain in our sins.  We are to be growing in godliness.

Our faith in God extends beyond simple salvation.  We trust God to guide, provide and protect.  When things are bad we remember that “all things work together for good, for those who love God”.  (Romans 8:28)

Our salvation is rooted in our relationship with God through our faith in Jesus Christ.  We must keep God first in our lives.  Do not allow yourself to drift away from your first love.

Jesus himself rebuked the devil with the Word of God.  We should be people of the Word.  We should read it, study it, memorize it, meditate upon it and make it a central part of our lives.  “It is written …” is much better than “I think…” when dealing with spiritual matters.

III.  Prayer

I suspect that many people underestimate the power of prayer.  Prayer has an impact beyond what we see.  It can also be an effective evangelistic tool.  People often like to share about their problems.  We can offer to pray for their needs.  Even unbelievers will gratefully accept prayer when the need is great.  It can reach into their lives and touch their hearts helping to make them more receptive to the gospel.

It has been many years since I served in the Marine Corps, but I have been on the front lines of spiritual battle for decades.  I encourage you to join me in this spiritual battle.

Be strong in the Lord and the power of His might!

These are the sermon notes from 1/4/15.  Any advertisements that might appear are placed by WordPress.  I have no control over them, nor do I receive any money from them.