A Good Soldier of Jesus Christ
Do Christians ever think of themselves as being soldiers in God’s army? Probably not anymore than the Israelite’s did when God brought them out of Egypt. Like the Israelite’s of that time, Christians are just happy to be free of their harsh taskmasters, but God brought the Israelite’s out of Egypt for a reason. He didn’t deliver them from the Egyptians just to let them perish in the wilderness. God has a plan for the lives of His people and it does not include staying in Egypt expanding the fortunes of our taskmasters. Do you hear me? He brought the Israelite’s out of Egypt to bring them into their Promise Land. But before they inherited their promise land they struggled with their new found freedom because they did not understand the reason why God delivered them from the Egyptians. God does not deliver us from something unless He has plans to take us somewhere that is better than where we were. For the Israelite’s Canaan was their Promise Land where He would be their God and they would never want for anything. For the church our promise land is heaven where we will be the Bride of Christ who will rule and reign with Him forever. Do you understand?
God took those former slaves and made them into an army to fight His battles. And that is exactly what He does for us today. We were all slaves of Satan before we were born again, but when God delivered us from the power of Satan; He did so because He has a plan for our life. He did not deliver us from Satan just so we could wonder around in the desert of life until we perish like that first generation of free Israelite’s did. However, before He can fulfill His plan in our life, we have to be taught who we are and for what purpose we were saved. Christians are the only army God has on this earth to fight His battles. God strengthens us for the battles ahead just like Satan empowers his followers to fight his battle. Folks, we are in a war between God and the devil for the souls of lost men, lost men, lost men. Do I need to repeat it? We are in a war for the souls of lost men, and for no other reason. Because we are locked into this war, there will never be peace between God and the devil as long as lost men live on this sin tainted earth.
Whether the Christian understands God’s plan for them or not; the Christian is a member of God’s military force and He fully expects us to become disciplined, strong and courageous, ready to put the enemy to flight whenever and wherever we find him. Jesus released Satan’s prisoners from their bonds of sickness, demon possession, and death wherever He encountered them. The first church like Jesus Christ fought valiantly and turned the world upside down for Christ, and now it is our time to take the fight to Satan and spread the gospel of Jesus Christ far and wide. If the army of God doesn’t fulfill its purpose on earth; the job we have been called to do won’t get done and the church will have failed our generation.
The Apostle Paul wrote to a young pastor named Timothy in 2 Timothy 2:3, “You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ… No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier. A Christian cannot be fully committed to the Lord and be fully involved in the world and the affairs of this life at the same time. In other words, the mission of God’s army is to battle Satan for the souls of men and deliver them from their bonds. We cannot do this if we are more concerned about the affairs of this life than we are about God’s business. Our job as the army of God is to bring those new converts into God’s kingdom where we can protect them and keep them free from their former taskmasters until they are trained and ready for battle. Do not think if we do not have a job our family will go without. That is not true. In the book of Exodus God formed a working relationship with Moses and instructed him to deliver the Israelite’s from Egypt and lead them to the Promise Land and God would supply all of His people’s needs for that journey according to His riches in glory. This was God’s plan then and it hasn’t changed.
The first century church leaders clearly understood God’s plan of action. They had families and owned businesses just like we do, but they knew something we apparently don’t. They knew God would take care of them and supply all of their needs if they worked with Him to set the captives of Satan free. They understood if God parted the Red Sea for the Israelite’s to escape Pharaoh and the shed blood of Jesus Christ opens the way for us to escape the hold of Satan; they had nothing to worry about. God would meet all their needs just as He had for Jesus when He was on the earth. And what God did for that first century church… He will do for us today. “I am the Lord, I do not change.” Malachi 3:6 DThrash