Monday, 19 July 2021

Paradox of Battle and Rest

 Scripture:  Hebrews 4 v 9 - 11: "There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God. 

10  For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his.
11  Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief."

2 Timothy 2 v 3 - 4: "Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.
4  No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier."

The two desirable attributes of being a Christian are resting in Jesus and being on the battle front.  These two seem to be contrary to one another until we examine them more closely.

The words that stand out in the verses from Hebrews are 'ceased from his own works' which can be easily defined as 'under new management'.  We cannot serve two masters so our self promotion of what we think needs to be done is now defunct.  Obsolete.  Our Master is Jesus and if we are not obedient to the will of God, He will disown us when it matters most.

In Timothy no soldier entangled himself with the affairs of this world.  We know what the world is, the system controlled by Satan through demons and their human agents.  So we need to have a clear picture of what pertains to the Kingdom of God and fill our whole beings with it.  And, we need a clear picture of what the world consists of and distance ourselves from it.

Christians have to live in the world without being part of it.  The problem is that many churches have invited the world into the sanctuary and defiled it.  I saw a video by John Ramirez this weekend.  He is a former very high level Satanist who was miraculously saved by Jesus actually appearing before him, like Paul, with similar results.

He was preaching in a church in America and not mincing his words about the condition of the churches especially the New Age influence that has become a standard in many of them.  This is one small step from the One World Church which they will not be able to resist, said he.  The church is passive on this issue, resting on its traditional laurels, the wrong kind of rest.  The One World Church is rising for the end times when the Antichrist will have full control of it.

This is where the battle should be raging!  First, to make absolutely sure in every church that all the boxes are ticked to ensure their candlestick, if they even still have one, is in no danger of being removed by Jesus.  Everyone needs to know this and ensure they are in an acceptable to God church.  Mistakes cannot be rectified later.

I heard a few days ago after the Quotes on True Revival blog, that one denomination is praying very much for the Holy Spirit revival but only if it does not include the  His gifts!  How pathetic is that?  The true Church cannot operate without the gifts, all of them not just tongues and healing.  We need words of knowledge, words of wisdom, discerning of spirits, prophecy, the gift of faith, all the time.  

So we are resting from our own works so that we can do the works of Him who is our Lord and Master.  His works are for us to be soldiers fighting against the unseen enemies and pulling down demonic strongholds.  We need to be evangelizing and shepherding the lost and newly saved.  It's not just the Pastors job, or the Evangelists.  We can and should be doing this, praying with them, studying the Bible together, having Communion.

These things are not confined to the people with degrees in theology, they are for every anointed Christian.  If we have the Holy Spirit within us we are anointed.  If we are born again we have the Holy Spirit within us.  When we are baptized we lose our sinful nature, so those who say we must wait for our salvation to kick in before water baptism are wrong.

We need to lose that sinful nature and receive the righteous nature of Jesus on day one.  Through water baptism.  Then pray for the Holy Spirit baptism which turns us into new creatures in Christ.  Empowered to be witnesses for Him.  That's day one done and dusted.

Then we work out our salvation with fear and trembling.  These are the works of Jesus.  When two are three are gathered in His name He is in our midst.  Harmony, unity, prayer, conviction of sin, the power of the Blood.  If we all had this harmony and unity we would turn the world upside down for Jesus.  

Instead our battles are fleshly and carnal, arguing over things added or subtracted from God's Word.  The enemy enjoys these distractions and keeps them stirred up because nothing else gets done that endangers his plans for our destruction.  Are You hearing me today?

Do we want to enter Heaven with an empty basket that should be overflowing with fruit?  How will we be judged if we have done little or nothing to promote His Kingdom?  My brief from Jesus is to exhort His followers to greater effort to fill His Kingdom with souls saved from utter hopelessness.

A dear friend of mine lost her mother this weekend after her elderly mom was physically assaulted about a month ago, by a neighbour high on alcohol and drugs.  When asked if they wanted natural or unnatural causes on the death certificate, they chose to forgive the assailant and put natural causes.  This is a sacrifice worthy of Jesus and He will mete out His own justice as my friend rests in the blessing of obedience.

We do not battle against flesh and blood people but against spiritual wickedness in high places.  The powers of darkness that control the world.  The only way we can see these beings is when the gifts of the Holy Spirit are fully operating, and in these end times we need them more than ever.  

The world has laws and political correctness that we cannot control but neither can we yield to them.  We must obey the Word first and foremost which is a lamp to our feet to guide us safely through the minefield of the world.  So to solve the paradox of simultaneous rest and battle, stop what you are doing and get busy with what Jesus wants done.

Prayer:  Heavenly Father, not my will but Yours be done, in Heaven and on Earth, so that the greatest victory of the greatest battle will be won with trumpets blaring and the name of Jesus shouted from every rooftop.  We are the army of God marching through this land, booting our demonic enemies back to Hell.  Thank You for the privilege of being in the winning team.  In Jesus' name.  Amen.