Could it be that most Christians in today’s world are fighting the wrong fight, or fighting the wrong battle? I am afraid if they don’t get this right soon, then it will be too late. So, let’s examine the real battle that needs to be waged in the hearts and minds of God’s beloved children. Before we do, however, let’s take a moment and review the battles that many are wrongfully engaged in, producing meager results at best. There is the humanistic battle that has captured many in our day leaving them stressed, empty, and discouraged. They struggle almost daily to walk in the path of righteousness by following the many commands in Scripture and the rules and regulations of their church and society. They relentlessly struggle against the old sin nature rebuking this sin and the next. They yell at the devil and have learned how to rebuke curses to no avail. Clearly, they are engaged in the wrong battle by trusting in the works of their own hands. They are not fighting the good fight of faith.
Next, there is, what I refer to as the social/political battle that’s being ruthlessly waged in our day, capturing many. These are those who struggle daily to improve the social and political structures in our world. They enthusiastically work long hours for just the right candidate to arise and overcome the many sins in our evil world, to turn back the tide of lawlessness, and win a glorious battle against the heathen. They have openly and unreservedly embraced the world’s methods in overcoming all the emotional and psychological problems invading the fallen world. No longer trusting God to solve their many problems they are now in league with the fallen world bringing their teachings and counseling techniques into the lukewarm church in an attempt to help God’s wayward children. However, with all this hard work, the world is not getting any better. People are not delivered from their many emotional and psychological problems but have sunken even deeper into a regimen of endless counseling and the addiction to psychiatric drugs. Clearly, they are engaged in the wrong battle by trusting in the works of their own hands. They are not fighting the good fight of faith.
Next, there is what I refer to as, the doctrinal battle, on what we say we believe. Let me say right up front, that this can be a good fight, if we apply our doctrine, or what we say we believe, to our lives. Yet, most vigorously fight others with heated rhetoric to hold onto a belief that they have never truly applied to their lives. This battle has raged since the first century ruthlessly fighting others over doctrine to the point of rendering horrific persecution to those who refuse to recant. Clearly, to fight over a baseless doctrine that has not changed your life, or the life of others is not only senseless but spurns the Holy Name of God and His many glorious promises designed to bring forth life to those who are dead. They too are engaged in the wrong battle by trusting in the works of their own hands to bring forth life by only believing the right doctrine. The Bible says, “Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble” (James 2:19). So, it must be more than just believing in the right doctrine, if we want to fight the good fight of faith, we must apply our doctrine to our lives.
So, how do we fight this good fight of faith? The key to fighting the good fight of faith is trusting in all the beautiful promises of God, proclaimed by His Son, and by the anointed writers of the Bible. The world that’s run by the powers of darkness does not want you to believe that the promises are real, and they don’t want you to trust in Christ to fulfill His promises through the indwelling Spirit. The greatest wile of the devil in our age, the last days, is to hide these promises from God’s children and to convince them that they need the world’s help. Like the days of old, your children have forgotten the promises and have sought reliance upon human aid, which is totally inconsistent with trusting in you to fulfill your beautiful promises (See Isaiah 30:1-18). To fight the good fight of faith, we must start by remembering your many wonderful promises, to put them deep within our hearts, and then walking in such a manner that proves that we are trusting in your promises to be fulfilled in our lives.
So, how do we apply these promises to our lives? This is an important question that has been ignored in our day. Yes, we must believe the promises, but that is only the first step. Most try to take this first step and only pay lip service to the promise, but that’s as far as they go. We must go a lot further. Whatever we say we believe; we must put it into our life. For example, if we say that we believe that God has given us everything we need for life and godliness (See II Peter 2:1-2), then we must search the Scriptures to find what we need to answer life’s problems. The moment we turn to the world then we have nullified our faith, we have lost the battle, we are no longer fighting the good fight of faith. Another example is if we say that God has made us into a new creation and that old things have passed away (See II Corinthians 5:17) then we must believe that truth, but we can’t stop there, we must proceed. If we truly believe that old things have passed away, then we will not keep looking back. We will no longer believe the world, that says, “we are just made that way and are unable to change who we are.” When we reject their lies and believe that God will fulfill His promises in our lives, then we will be fighting the good fight of faith.
If we don’t follow these simple steps, then we will be numbered among those who have no faith when Christ returns in glory (See Luke 18:8). Believe me when you start trusting in Jesus Christ to fulfill His promises in your life then you will be confronted head-on by Satan and the powers of darkness. They will attack you at every turn. We will be called radicals for our interpretation of Scripture. We will feel the brunt of their hostility, and their malicious anger. When we stand toe to toe with the world claiming the promises of truth and our unwillingness to participate in their lies that’s leading God’s children astray by trusting in their counselors, then we will know that we have entered the good fight of faith. When we proclaim to them God’s promise to make us into a new creation where old things have passed away, then we will know that we have finally engaged the enemy. When we tell the world that we don’t need anything from them because God has given us everything we need for life and godliness, then we will know that we are fighting the good fight of faith.
Suffice it to say that we cannot bring about the promises in our own power. Every true believer in Christ learns all too well that we can’t but He can. It is only Christ through the indwelling Spirit that can fulfill His promises in our lives. As we step out in faith ready and willing to join the good fight, then we have His grace and the power of heaven at our disposal through prayer. As Christ prayed in the garden, He was about to embark on the greatest promise ever made to humanity, the promise of salvation through faith alone. God the Father gave His son the grace to see the mission through to the end, and He will do the same for us. When we run into difficulty, we must not turn to the world for help, but we turn to God for whom our help comes from (See Psalms 121:1-2). It is He that will fulfill all of His promises in our life. So, let us also recognize the power of prayer as we step out in faith asking God to fulfill His promises in us. Dear Children, fight the good fight of faith. Amen
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