The Never-Ending War, Part 1 (Revive the Family, Revive the Church, Awaken the Nation, O Lord #53)

spiritual-warfare

A series of homilies on Ephesians 5 & 6

A homily is “a short talk on a religious or moral topic; a usually short sermon; a lecture or discourse on or of a biblical theme.”


I am sharing a verse-by-verse series of short messages on Ephesians 5 & 6 (as well as other passages of Scripture) specifically targeted at reviving families and encouraging and exhorting husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, and children to do what God has commanded them to do, for if the church is to be revived and the country is to be awakened, the family must be revived first.

Ephesians 6:10: “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.”

—–

Amy Carmichael said, “Don’t be surprised if there is an attack on your work, on you who are called to do it, or on your innermost nature — the hidden person of the heart. It must be so. The great thing is not to be surprised, nor to count it strange — for that plays into the hand of the enemy. Is it possible that anyone should set himself to exalt our beloved Lord and not instantly become a target for many arrows?”

Leonard Ravenhill said, “Many pastors criticize me for taking the Gospel so seriously. But do they really think that on Judgment Day, Christ will chastise me, saying, ‘Leonard, you took Me too seriously’?”

—-

For the Christian, the idea that life is war is more than true. While we may want to rest easy as Christians, we must come to realize that our life is a daily spiritual battle — a war that will not end till the day we die. The moment we decided to believe in Jesus and follow Him, we took sides in this war. We cast ourselves against the forces of darkness whether we believe it or not, whether we want to or not. How do we win this war? How do we succeed against our powerful enemy, Satan, who prowls about like a roaring lion seeking to devour us?

The Bible tells us how. “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.”

Notice the address to “brethren.” This is the church as a whole — not just men or women, not just young or old, not just pastors or leaders — all brethren. No one who names the name of Christ is immune from the battle.

We all are told to “be strong in the Lord.” This term means to be enabled or to be strengthened to engage in spiritual warfare. We do not gain strength on our own. It does not come through spiritual self-help books, attending seminars, or psyching ourselves up for combat. We gain the strength to fight spiritually only by being “in the Lord.”

Being “in the Lord” requires a sensitivity to His spirit. A person who has sin in his life is going to be weakened spiritually, and will leave an opening for the devil to wreak havoc because he is not “in the Lord.” He may be saved, but he is not currently walking in the path God has set before him. In order to be “in the Lord” and to benefit from His strength, we must get rid of the sin in our lives and walk in the power of God’s Holy Spirit. There is no other way to win the spiritual battles that we face.

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