Topic: Time to Fight I [Tuesday 16, February 2016]
Memorise: To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: – Ecclesiastes 3:1
Read: I Timothy 4:1-6 (KJV)
1 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
3 Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.
4 For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving:
5 For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.
6 If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctrine, whereunto thou hast attained.
Bible in One Year: Luke 4:16-6:16; Job 22:12-30
Fighting means to engage in a struggle against a perceived enemy or enemies either defensively or offensively. Most human beings, irrespective of who they are, what they know, where they have been, and their level of spiritual maturity, have something they would fight for. We fight for our fundamental human rights, we fight for possessions, we fight for our family, we fight for our job. We are sensitive to criticism and insults, and sometimes we even fight for things we don't really own. The question is, should a true Christian fight for anything? And if you were to write a list of things worth fighting for, what would that list include? In this respect,Ecclesiastes 3:1&8 says:
"1 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: 8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace."
Conflicts come in different categories. Though we have the right to self defence, Christian are not called to take up arms against their offensive or aggressive neighbours because our weapon is not physical. However, God is under attack in today's world because His creative order, His principles and commandments are being maliciously attacked by heretics. Surprisingly, some of these enemies of the gospel of Jesus Christ have managed to rise to enviable positions of authority both in church and civil government. This has emboldened them and their supporters to intensify their evil attacks on the hristian faith. Do we fight for our Lord? Do we stand aloof or fight whenever these Attucks occur around us? 1 Timothy 6:12 says:
"Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses."
Christians do not have any choice in this matter; we do not have the luxury of a personal decision on this one. In reality, the battle of the heretics and false prophets is raging right now and our Commander in Chief, the Lord of hosts, has commanded us to fight, and we must fight. The above passage started out by qualifying the kind of fight that Christians could engage in as the good fight of faith. It is a good fight because it prevents the rapid spread of heretic teachings, and delivers people from ignorance and false doctrine. It is good because we are on the winning side, we can never lose because we are more than conquerors. It is good because we will be handsomely rewarded for our efforts here on earth and when we get to heaven. It is a good fight because we are well fitted with the most potent weapon in the universe- the Word of God. Above all, though we are saved by grace, our performance in this battle will ultimately determine our rank among the host of heaven and the manner of our reward. Apostle Paul seems to have discovered this truth as reflected in his final declaration in 2 Timothy 4:7:
“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: “
Only a general in the army of God who had fought valiantly for the truth could say this:
Prayer Point: Father, please let me finish well and able to say that I have fought a good fight.
Open Heavens Daily Devotional guide was written by Pastor E.A. Adeboye, the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God.