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Thursday, May 19, 2016

This Means War: Part 1

The moment you open your eyes from your sleep, the war begins. Really, the war never ends. Spiritual warfare is a constant battle that rages on many fronts. Every believer is in the midst of this war at all times. Unfortunately, though, we often lose the battle. Yes, you are not perfect. Even though some people act as though they are, they aren't.

Today we embark on a several post series through Ephesians 6:10-20. This is the passage where Paul exhorts the believers in Ephesus to put on the whole armor of God to withstand the schemes of the devil. If we are going to win, then we must implement the strategy and structure that is given to us by the Lord. It is vital that you and I understand what we must do in order to win the war. If you and I will simply follow the action plan of the Lord, we will experience victory over the devil in our lives more often.

We begin today by looking at verse 10..
                 
                 "Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might."

Many times we glance over this verse. The truth, however, contained in this verse is paramount to you putting on the armor of God and standing against the devil. Note that we are to be strong in the Lord. That is to say to be courageous for the causes of the Lord. There must be in your mind and life a conscious decision in which you pledge total allegiance to the cause of Christ. If you go into the battle for the Lord with partial allegiance, then you are doomed to utter destruction. It is imperative that your devotion to the Lord and His causes supersede that of anything or anyone else. You will never fight for a cause you deem unworthy of your total allegiance. Spiritual warfare is not something you can go into haphazardly as though you don't really care about the outcome. No, spiritual warfare is a war in which you must be totally devoted to your commander & chief..the Lord.

Here is the kicker..
You and I don't possess the ability within ourselves to do that. WAIT?! WHAT?! Yes, you read that correctly. I know I just told you that we must have supreme allegiance to the Lord and His cause, and now, I am telling you that you can't do that in and of yourself. While some would think that is a bad thing, it is, in reality, a wonderful thing. It is wonderful because it is not left up to you to supply the power to fight. Paul ends the verse, "and in the strength of his might." We are to be utterly dependent on the power of the Lord. It is when we try to stand against the attacks of the devil on our own strength that we fall woefully short of the goal, but when we are dependent upon the Lord and His strength, we are able to stand, fight, & win. 

You are not in this war alone. Trust me, I know that sometimes it feels as though you are, but you're not. If you are totally devoted to the cause of the Lord, then you are also totally dependent upon His power to provide you with the strength to stand. By the way, the One who is supplying you with the strength, is also the One who has all-power. Take heart knowing the One that fights with and for you is also the One who is the sovereign creator of everything seen and unseen. He is the One who has the power to destroy this world with His words. I leave you with Jesus' words to His disciples when they were about to face the onslaught of the world. 

"I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world." -John 16:33

-JCH

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