You may be able to Stand (2 of 3)
Ephesians 6:11 (NKJV)
“Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil”
Previously, we looked at one of David’s mighty men, Shammah, who was a great example of a person who knows to stand and not back down against enemies that come to steal, kill, and destroy. Shammah defended a plot of land full of lentils. Perhaps it was part of his inheritance? Perhaps not. What he did might seem insignificant, but his stand was what turned the tide.
The Lord wants Christians to hold their ground. He is looking for men and women who will take a stand and not back down.
David's mighty men represent the kind of Christian God is looking for to enter the battle and hold the high ground! God is seeking Christians who will be brave and courageous! In II Samuel 23:8, it speaks of Adino the Eznite, who armed with a spear, stood alone against 800 men and slew everyone of them. So many times, we think of courage as a quality reserved for soldiers, police and firefighters. In our day to day existence, security is emphasized over courage. We are taught to play it safe. Because of this, we let fear rule our lives. Fear of failure. Fear of rejection. Fear of going broke. Fear of being alone. Fear of humiliation. Fear of public speaking. Fear of being ostracized by family and friends. Fear of physical discomfort. Fear of regret. Fear of success. Ambrose Redmoon said, "Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear." Courageous people are still afraid, but they don't let the fear paralyze them. The Lord told Joshua in Joshua 1:9, "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest."
Is fear and a lack of courage keeping you from witnessing? What about some commitment to a particular ministry? It requires courage to speak up and stand up for truth today! Ask God for the courage and boldness to do His will in your life!
God is seeking Christians who will fight beyond weariness.
In II Samuel 23:9, it speaks of Eleazar the son of Dodo the Ahohite who fought so long and hard against the Philistines, that his hand went into a spasm, and wouldn't release his sword! God uses people who are willing to go the extra mile, who will work extra hours, who will not let weariness become an excuse to give in or give up!
In II Corinthians 11, the apostle Paul lists the things he suffered as the "minister" or servant of Jesus Christ. He says in verse 11, "In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness."
In Ephesians 6, The Apostle Paul outlines the different pieces of the spiritual armor and exhorts the believer to take responsibility and put on the armor. The Armor enables us to Stand.
How, then, will we stand? We will stand in covenant. We will stand in perseverance; we will stand because we are more than conquerors. We are going to stand no matter what happens to us—whether we get put into prison or one someone attacks us, whether we lose our jobs or everything seems to go wrong. Nothing can cause us to back up, back out, retreat, run away, or fall down because we have geared ourselves up to stand. That’s what Paul’s admonition here is all about.
When you have made the decision to stand, remember God will not forsake you or allow you to lose strength (Hebrews 13:15). Also, remember Satan cannot pluck a believer out of God’s hand (John 10:28). When you have made a decision to stand, God will wrap His grace around you and make sure you are able to do just that.
God is seeking Christians who will stand when others flee. God is seeking Christians who are willing to risk their lives to serve Him. In II Samuel 23:15-16 it speaks of three of David's mighty men who risked their lives to fulfill his desire for a drink of water from a particular well that was in enemy territory. The Bible is full of the names and testimonies of men and women who took great risks for God, people like Abraham and Sarah; Nehemiah and Esther. At the end of his letter to the church at Rome, Paul sends a note of appreciation to various individuals and couples who contributed to his ministry. Notice his words in Romans 16:3-4. "Greet Priscilla and Aquila my helpers in Christ Jesus: 4 Who have for my life laid down their own necks: unto whom not only I give thanks, but also all the churches of the Gentiles."
Are you holding your ground? Are you setting yourself apart from the world of nominal, lukewarm Christians?
As I close, I’m reminded of Winston Churchill, who spoke these burning words in the face of the worst darkness Britain had ever faced. “I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears, and sweat.” He determined to stir the discouraged and beaten Britain to a new attitude of victory. After hearing his speech with these 11 words, the British force rallied and resisted Hitler’s advancing troops. As a result, Churchill’s speech was dubbed “11 burning words that changed a nation from that time forward.”
I want to give you twelve burning words: Hold your ground at all costs, against all odds, at all times.
Stand in covenant with God.
Stand for your salvation.
Stand for Jesus in an evil world.
Stand for your marriage.
Stand for your faith.
Stand for your ministry given by Jesus
Stand for the promises made by Jesus to you.
Stand for your house.