I am so thankful for the men and women who have fought for my freedom here in the U.S.. I met a man last night who is a former Marine… if there really is such a thing. I think that once you are a Marine, you’re always a Marine at heart.
We were talking about all the technological advances in our world and how they affect battle. But this man said that it doesn’t matter how much technology is used in battle, there will always be a need to have troops on the ground. I couldn’t help but think of the battle going on in God’s Kingdom that we participate in as Christians, and how this truth applies there as well.
Do you realize that you are a soldier with your feet on the ground in God‘s Kingdom? That God wants to use you to go out, to assess the situation, and to bring change and victory to the situation? Do you realize that He is prepared to back you up with the power of the Holy Spirit? (2 Corinthians 10:4 King James Version) For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds. The power of the Holy Spirit is available to all who believe; to every soldier in God’s army. If you have your feet planted on the ground and are running into battle…you better believe God is there to back you up! The soldier doesn’t fight by himself or fight for himself. He goes out at the command of his superior officer, fighting for his country. Likewise, we as Christians are called to go out at the command of God and fight for His Kingdom.
The soldier also does not fight for his own agenda. In a similar way, in God’s Kingdom, the strategy and battle plan is not ours to set – it has already been set. In our physical wars, the soldier does not determine when war is necessary, governments do. Likewise in the spiritual realm there are two unseen governments at work, God‘s kingdom and the dark principalities of Satan, that fight against each other also. The spiritual battles that we fight, at their root, are battles between those two kingdoms. We are called to be soldiers for the Kingdom that we fight for. What does that look like?
We are given our foot soldier gear in scripture (Ephesians 6:10-18). Our armor covers our head… chest… feet… it gives us a weapon to fight with… The only thing it doesn’t cover is our back. Why? For one thing, we are supposed to be forward marching and forward moving – proactively advancing on the enemy; not turning tail and running scared. And as we fight these battles, the Holy Spirit has our back. God has our back. God, through the power of the Spirit, is there to bring victory. (Deuteronomy 20:1-4 English Standard Version) “When you go out to war against your enemies, and see horses and chariots and an army larger than your own, you shall not be afraid of them, for the Lord your God is with you, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt. And when you draw near to the battle, the priest shall come forward and speak to the people and shall say to them, ‘Hear, O Israel, today you are drawing near for battle against your enemies: let not your heart faint. Do not fear or panic or be in dread of them, for the Lord your God is he who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies, to give you the victory.’
But we have a role to play also – we must step out in faith. Just as the Old Testament priests had to put their feet in the water at the edge of the Jordan before it receded for others to cross (Joshua 3:13)… some brave Christian soldier has to step out in faith and pray the way to victory for those who need to see victory and see God move in their life. We receive our ‘marching orders’ throughout Scripture: pray continually (1Thessalonians 5:17), give to those in need (Hebrews 13:16), admonish those who stray (Romans 15:14), discipline (Matthew 18), disciple (Matthew 28:19), bear others’ burdens (Galatians 6:2), and most importantly – love one another (John 13:34-35).
Are you willing to be a soldier in God’s army? Are you willing to move forward and battle on the behalf of others? Are you willing to trust that God has your back? Like my new Marine friend…are you a warrior at heart?
There is much at stake. This war isn’t visible to the human eye, but its real and the battle is for the human soul of your neighbor, brother, sister, friend. Will you fight in this unseen battle? Will you be a soldier in God‘s army? March on! There’s still room for a few good men (and women) in God’s army!
(1 Timothy 6:12 English Standard Version) Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.