I Was Just Thinking About – THE NECESSARY STRUGGLE.
We have become so familiar with different passages of Scripture that we tend to either forget or ignore what it intends for the Biblical Christian. One passage that illustrates this for us is Ephesians 6:10-17 and the emphasis upon: “Put on the full armor of God, so that you can make your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this world’s darkness, and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Vs.11-12). Paul made a very clear emphasis with the words “our struggle” and the sense that it is never-ending.
In conjunction with a Sermon he was going to preach on I Corinthians 16:13, (“Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong.”), Isaac Watts (1724) wrote the following words that would later become part of the Hymn, Am I A Soldier of the Cross?
Must I be carried to the skies
On flowery beds of ease,
While others fought to win the prize,
And sailed through bloody seas?
Are there no foes for me to face?
Must I not stem the flood?
Is this vile world a friend to grace,
To help me on to God?
Along with this spiritual warfare is the disciplined pursuit of both peace and holiness. Hebrews 12:14 states: “Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy; without holiness, no one will see the Lord.”The NLT states: “Work at living in peace with everyone, and work at living a holy life, for those who are not holy will not see the Lord.” In his devotional on this verse, John Piper wrote in Desiring God: “There is a practical holiness without which we will not see the Lord. Many live as if this were not so. There are professing Christians who live such unholy lives that they will hear Jesus’s dreadful words, “I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness” (Matthew 7:23). Paul says to professing believers, “If you live according to the flesh you will die” (Romans 8:13). So, there is a holiness without which no one will see the Lord. And learning to fight for holiness by faith in future grace is supremely important.”
In these matters, are you taking a serious God seriously? If not, why not?
Prayerfully – consider these things with me.