Wrestlers for Christ (continued)
The Call to Warfare
A few years ago in China I was asked to take a Bible class for young men in the professions. I never like to assume a task like that without entering into some new, deeper experience in my own life. I am afraid of giving to others from out of stale manna. I always want some fresh, new touch of God upon my own life. So, as I took this Epistle to the Ephesians for that Bible teaching, I asked the Lord to give some new message to me, to make some new demands upon my own life. When I came to verse 12, chapter 6 (Ephesians), the Lord gave it to me in that word "wrestle." "For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places." I said, Yes, that is a new call! I have been a witness; I have been a worker at home and in the mission field, but never before have I had a call made to me to be a spiritual wrestler. Friends, I did not know what it meant! I would have been a cowardly had I known all that it meant to make the promise to God that I would be a spiritual wrestler. But I did promise, and I asked Him if He could trust me, that He would put me out in the front line, in the firing line, in the thickest of the fight. In these last few years He has let me know a little of what it meas to be a spiritual wrestler in a real spiritual warfare.
This then is the message that He has given to me to bring to you today: simply to be His voice, making the last call to the people that you will not be satisfied with being merely a witness, with being even a worker, but that you will offer yourself to God to be a spiritual wrestler, a spiritual warrior, with all that may be involved in a real spiritual conflict, for the victory in your home, in your church, in your community, in your country, and in this world, in these last days before the Lord comes.
Let us turn, therefore, to chapter 6 and so learn about this spiritual warfare and all that it means from God's own Word. "Finally, my brethren." Paul does not say, "my fellow apostles," or "my fellow commanders." No, he says, "My brethren." Paul is saying there, "my fellow soldiers." No Christian is exempt from this warfare. God has no place for spiritual pacifists. He calls every saint to arms.
"For our wrestling is not against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers, against the world rulers of this darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places" (Ephesians 6:12).
(continued with # 23)