Friday, December 26, 2014

SPIRITUAL WARFARE

Today’s Reading: Deuteronomy 19-20

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion on the right-hand side).

 

In the ancient city of Corinth, a stone platform was constructed to support the Bema Seat (judgment seat) of the local officials. The seat was used to give out awards to athletes for their competitive performances (usually a crown wreath of leaves), but also to address legal charges brought against individuals. The Apostle Paul was quite familiar with this seat. This is where he was brought before Gallio, who was the proconsul of Achaia at the Bema seat (Acts 18:12). This Bema Seat was also used by Paul as a symbol of the "Judgment seat of Christ" (2 Corinthians 5:9-11). In this context, Paul explains to us that this is where the Believer will receive an evaluation for works done in this life, whether good or bad.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Deuteronomy 20:3

And he shall say to them, “Hear, O Israel: Today you are on the verge of battle with your enemies. Do not let your heart faint, do not be afraid, and do not tremble or be terrified because of them…”

 

In today’s reading there are at least two points to make: (1) The rule of Law (illustrated by the above picture), and (2) God’s presence and protection. In our courts today, “manslaughter” is the charge that may be brought against someone who accidently kills another person. While we don’t have “cities of refuge” today, there is a strong tradition of taking refuge in a church building. In recent years there have been examples of this, particularly when immigration law requires a person to be deported back to their original country.

War is a sad commentary on the human condition. The most difficult moral decision is choosing the lesser of two evils. If we fail to choose the “lesser,” the “greater evil” will win. Had Israel not fought, the surrounding nations would have destroyed God’s people by attacking, killing all, or by converting them to false religion. In the context of our lives today, let us take heart from the promise found in our key verse. As followers of Jesus, our enemies, if they are people, are to be loved (read Matthew 5:38-48). Our most destructive enemy is sin. We are constantly in a state of war. Identify the enemy (read Galatians 5:16-21). Now, prepare for battle, equipped with the knowledge gained from our key verse, and we will win not only a battle but the war itself. Amen!!!

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord Jesus, You are God’s Word made flesh. You, as the Light of the world, illuminate truth to me. Please help me to always examine the written Word in the light of Your person and work. In Your brilliant light I see, I perceive, I understand, and I conquer evil in Your strong Name. Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

While a state may wage war (if I support a war, I must be convinced it is a just war. e.g. WW2 against Nazis who killed millions of Jewish people and many others), in my personal life I do not “fight…against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness” (Ephesians 6:12). I find that this fight can be downright scary. To counteract fear, I’ve just read Ephesians 6:10-18. I must learn this lesson over and over again. For emphasis I’ll type out Ephesians 6:18, the secret to winning the war: “Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints.” The dictionary definition of “supplication” is “humble prayer, entreaty or petition with pleading fervently.” Having done this, I will no longer fear, but I will truly be a brave heart in every circumstance of life. YES! SO BE IT!!!

Yours for winning each battle and eventually winning the war,

David

P.S. Here is an additional photo that Reynold took in the ancient ruins of Corinth. The feet of that great warrior, the Apostle Paul, may have walked this very street.

This is one of the main streets in ancient Corinth.

7 thoughts on “Friday, December 26, 2014

  1. Well, it’s “Boxing Day.” This is a great way to calmly start the day, reading scripture and David’s insight and commentary. I thought the point about choosing the least of the two evils regarding warfare for the Israelites, was very interesting. Although we are to love our enemies, we must be willing to stand strong against being attacked by such elements as the ISIS regimes. Peace will not be found by an absence of action or by simply standing our ground. I pray for our Armed Forces and their missions which are ultimately led by our Lord to protect our Christian values and society. Peace will ultimately reign in God’s timing. May His peace and strength guide our hearts and minds this day.

  2. Deuteronomy 19-20 is very fitting to study the day after we celebrate our Saviour’s
    birth. Love your Prayer for Today Rev. Thank you.
    Blessings on all fellow saints.

  3. Spiritual warfare; that is a good admonition for the New Year for a spiritual awakening and salvation for our families, friends and the world. Great poem yesterday Beverlee. Blessings everyone.

  4. Please know Rev Mainse how much I appreciate your daily blog with such insightful, godly truths you deliver to us thirsty souls day after day! Truly amazing and astounding is your persistence in delivering daily this fresh bread from heaven! I am forever grateful. It keeps me disciplined now too, I never miss a day and spend much time now searching the Scripture. The Lord is washing me through His Word and healing me. I am deeply grateful. Your joy, love, humility and spirit of grace is truly remarkable. Your whole family is truly remarkable. There is a deep rift in my family for which I’ve pled for more than. Twenty years. Thank you for praying about this for me and my husband at the Garden Tomb in Jerusalem in 2005 when we were so privileged and blessed to Be with you and Norma Jean on the Holy Land tour. You truly are a man after God’s heart and I am praying for you. The Lord took my dear husband at 76 years of age to himself almost three years ago. He was a godly man and such a wonderful life’s partner.
    God bless you mightily, along with your whole family, in this tremendous walk of faith. You are all a great inspiration and encouragement to me and to many, many others. Happy New Year to you and your family and to all the fellow Bible students following your daily blog. It is not in vain!

    • Sorry to hear about your husband passing and family rift, Alice. Be strengthened by our prayers for you and your family on the blog. We pray to You, our Heavenly Father, Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, and to the sanctity of the Holy Spirit for forgiveness, peace and love for Alice and her family. Amen!

  5. God bless you Alice! I need to be reminded of discipline, surrender; I wonder sometimes if I will ever get it. I sure did a dumb thing! I actually believed I would win on a ticket and I didn’t! I feel so stupid that I got caught up in the devil’s snare! When will I ever learn!!!!! I have confessed this to God, and I know He has forgiven me. In fact the time on my computer is 3:16??? God has known us before we were born…..He has planned a strategy for our lives! He has done things for us when we were yet in the womb that would help us in later years! On a daily basis we can be thankful for everything that God has done in our lives, EVERYTHING, each day is a new beginning! Let us read Ephesians 6:10-18 and in particular verse 18!

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