Tuesday, April 08, 2008


“FIGHT THE GOOD fight of faith lay hold on eternal life.”—1 Timothy 6:12.


Bobby Welch and the story of "we were soldiers."

AT THE CALL OF presidents and premiers, men hasten to recruiting stations--careers forgotten, professions left, comforts forsaken, and homes deserted. As peril from the approaching enemy intensifies, weeping wives and sobbing sweethearts are tearfully left. Yet no one calls this folly. To shrink from this is cowardice; to rebel against the order smells of treachery. No mother warns her son of the stupidity of breaking off his university studies, even though he may return as a lifetime casualty--lamed, blinded, permanently crippled, or mentally unstable from enemy brainwashing. In the fight for freedom, this is all calculated and, to some degree, expected in the name of patriotism.

But there are great similarities in the picture of the soldier and the picture of the Christian.

You Are Called To Be A Soldier

“FIGHT THE GOOD fight of faith lay hold on eternal life.”—1 Timothy 6:12.

The true Christian is called to be a soldier, and must behave as such from the day of his conversion to the day of his death, he is not meant to live a life of religious ease, indolence, and security, He must never imagine for a moment that he can sleep and dose along the way to heaven, like one travelling in an easy carriage. If he takes his standard of Christianity from the children of this world he may be content with such notions, but he will find no countenance for them in the Word of God. If the Bible is the rule of his faith and practice, he will find his lines laid down very plainly in this matter. He must “fight.”

It is a curious fact that there is no subject about which most people feel such deep interest as “fighting.” Young men and maidens, old men and little children, high and low, rich and poor, learned and unlearned, all feel a deep interest in wars, battles, and fighting.

There is a warfare which concerns not two or three nations only, but every Christian man and woman born into the world. The warfare I speak of is the spiritual warfare. It is the fight which every one who would be saved must fight about his soul.

No, indeed! The principal fight of the Christian is with the world, the flesh, and the devil. These are his never-dying foes. These are the three chief enemies against whom he must wage war. Unless he gets the victory over these three, all other victories are useless and vain. If he had a nature like an angel, and was not a fallen creature, the warfare would not be so essential. But with a corrupt heart, a busy devil, and an ensnaring world, he must either “fight” or be lost.

You Are To be Enlisted.

“FIGHT THE GOOD fight of faith lay hold on eternal life.”—1 Timothy 6:12.

He must fight the flesh. Even after conversion he carries within him a nature prone to evil, and a heart weak and unstable as water. To keep that heart from going astray, there is need of a daily struggle and a daily wrestling in prayer. “I keep under my body,” cries St. Paul, “and bring it into subjection.” “I see a law in my members warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity.” “O wretched man that I am, who shall deliver me from the body of this death? They that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.” “Mortify your members which are upon the earth” (1 Cor. ix. 27; Rom. vii. 23, 24; Gal. v. 24; Col 3:5).

The Great Wall of China, only artefact visible from the moon, was breached three times in 1st hundred years after it was built. By someone bribing the guards.

He Must Fight The World The subtle influence of that mighty enemy must be daily resisted, and without a daily battle can never be overcome. The love of the world’s good things, the fear of the world’s laughter or blame, the secret desire to keep in with the world, the secret wish to do as others in the world do, and not to run into extremes—all these are spiritual foes which beset the Christian continually on his way to heaven, and must be conquered. “The friendship of the world is enmity with God: whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world, is the enemy of God.” “If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.” “The world is crucified unto Me, and I unto the world.” “Whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world.” “Be not conformed to this world” (James iv. 4; 1 John ii. 15; Gal. vi. 4; 1 John v. 4; Rom. xii. 2). Pig iron Bob Menzies and receiving back the scrap metal we had sold to Japan in the form of bombs and bullets.

He must fight the devil. That old enemy of mankind is not dead. Ever since the fall of Adam and Eve he has been going to and fro in the earth, and walking up and down in it, and striving to compass one great end—the ruin of man’s soul. Never slumbering and never sleeping, he is always going about as a lion seeking whom he may devour.

“Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life. .… Endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.” “Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.” “Strive to enter in at the strait gate.” “Labour for the meat that endureth unto everlasting life.” “Think not that I am come to send peace on the earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.” “Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong.” “War a good warfare; holding faith, and a good conscience” (1 Tim. vi. 12; 2 Tim. ii. 8; Ephes. vi. 11-13; Luke xiii. 24; John vi. 27; Matt. x. 84; 1 Cor. xvi. 18; 1 Tim. i. 18, 19). Words such as these appear to me clear, plain and unmistakable.

2 tim 2:4 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.

You Are To be Engaged

“FIGHT THE GOOD fight of faith lay hold on eternal life.”—1 Timothy 6:12.

No soldier gets entangled in civilian pursuits, since his aim is to please the one who enlisted him.

In Acts 8, we read about how Philip led an Ethiopian eunuch to the Lord. There are three commitments reflected in Philip's life that I want to challenge you to make this week.

Write them down and say, "By the grace of God, I am going to do these three things this week." Then, I would like for you to write and tell me what God has done through you.

If you make this commitment anew every morning, God is going to dramatically change your life.

Be Inclined To The Call Of The Spirit

Philip had ears to hear the word of the Lord. Acts 8:26 says, "And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert." Acts 8:29 says, "Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot."

Philip was in the middle of a revival in Samaria and God called him because his heart was tender enough to hear God. Now, Philip didn't know anything about God's plan, because God's ways are often unknown. God just said, "Arise and go." And Philip got up and went. Would you do that? Christians do not need an explanation from God when He calls. Instead, we need to say, "God, I'll do it. Wherever You want me to go. Whatever You want me to do. If You explain it, fine. If you don't, that's fine, too. But God I'm going to do it." Now, I want to caution you about this call. You need to make sure what you hear isn't an idea you have hatched. It is just as bad to run ahead of God as it is to run behind God. But when you are close enough to God to hear Him speak, you need to obey.

Be Insistent For The Cause Of The Spirit

Acts 8:35 says, "Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus."

Did you know that the Holy Spirit is very single-minded? He has but one cause. John 15:26 tells us what that is. Jesus said, "But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, He shall testify of Me: And ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with Me from the beginning". Second Chronicles 16:9 says, "For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward Him." The Holy Spirit is preparing somebody in your office, your school, your neighborhood, or your family. Will you be sensitive to His cause to witness when He calls?

It is time we got excited about what excites God and that is bringing people to Jesus Christ. We need to be inclined to the call of the Spirit and insistent for the cause of the Spirit.

Be Instant To The Commands Of The Spirit

Acts 8:29 says, "Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot." And what happens next? "And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest?" (Acts 8:30,) Philip did not take a leisurely stroll. He ran. Why? Because that chariot was moving on. There was a split second and God wanted instant obedience. When the spirit said go, he went.

I have a feeling that had Philip been the kind of Christian that some are, he may have said, "I can't go. He is a rich man. I am a poor preacher man. He is in a gold chariot. I can't go up there." But riches didn't keep Philip from going.

Or he might have said, "He's a different race than I am. And I don't feel comfortable talking to someone of a different race." But race didn't keep him from going. Or he might have said, "I don't want to disturb him. He is reading and he looks so busy."

Are You Enlisted?

Are You Engaged?

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