Urgent times call for urgent dedication. This is not a time for half-hearted so-so Christianity. ISIS is gaining territory by the day, and the few places where we have held back their advance are nothing compared to their stolen gains. And ISIS is not the only threat to Christianity and the peace and safety of the world, but it is one of the most formidable. An unbelievable 20,000 fighters recently joined their ranks. But what are they against, the Lord God Almighty? The battle is, in the last analysis, more of a spiritual battle than a physical one. As Christians, our armor is already provided. It is the spiritual armor of the helmet of salvation, meaning that God’s rescue of His people covers and protects our intellect, our thought processes. The breastplate is the purity of our emotions centered, not on our enemy, but on Jesus. If we center on the enemy, our thoughts bring the emotion of anxiety instead of peace. The belt of truth buckled around our waist is strengthened by our meditating on, and studying, God’s word. It is also the area of reproduction, which happens easily and spontaneously as we pray and witness faithfully. Our feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel is our ability to not be thrown down by the attacks of the enemy, and our willingness to go to our neighbor with the Good News. Hold the shield of faith before you, trust in God’s promises, and the flaming arrows of Satan’s accusations will fall short of you. And use the mighty sword of the Holy Spirit, God’s word, to pierce the consciences of the hardest hearts and bring them in love to Jesus.
Rev. Dr. Richard L. Shaw, Pastor