Wednesday, December 26, 2012

SPIRITUAL WARFARE

Suggested Reading: Deuteronomy 19-20

(click scripture link to read online)

 

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 Cor 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 of 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 Matt. 5:38-48). Our most destructive enemy is sin. We are constantly in a state of war. Identify the enemy (read Gal. 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” (Eph. 6:12). I find that this fight can be downright scary. To counteract fear, I’ve just read Eph 6:10-18. I must learn this lesson over and over again. For emphasis I’ll type out Eph 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.

5 thoughts on “Wednesday, December 26, 2012

  1. If we fail to put on the full armour of God, it is as though we leave our mind and spirit as vulnerable as an empty field. I see the rational of choosing the lesser evil to diminish greater evil, but am encouraged by Jesus emploring us in the manner, “you have heard it said, BUT I say…”.

    I was mesmerized by Reynold’s photo of the road in Corinth. To imagine how many have journeyed! And, who? Thanks again!

    • I too was fascinated with the photo of the road to Corinth. Looking at these pictures of ruins reminds me that life was not easy in those days

  2. When we know that God is in control of events in our life, we need not spend time worrying. Our Lord goes before us in all matters and affairs, turn worry into faith and you will be solidly fortified through God’s grace.

  3. A favorite Christmas card for this season is inscribed with- :The wonder of Christmas is that the God who dwelt among us, now can dwell within us -Roy Lessin. “The word was made flesh and dwelt among us.” John l:14. and 1 John 4:17, 18 “because as he is, so are we in this world.” There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. His faithful Love abides forever.

  4. Just love receiving the blogs every day, though just catching up today.

    Thanks be unto God for his wonderful gift:
    Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God
    is the object of our faith;
    the only faith that saves is faith in Him.

    Nancy Webb-Waisberg, Edmonton, Alberta

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