June/Training for Mission
8 June 2010
Frail men would be stupefied with fear at the horror of their faces and the sound of their flight, not being able with bodily vision to behold those things which are now tied in bundles in the knotted bonds of dungeons.
- Columcille, Altus Prosator (Irish, 6th century)
For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to chains of gloomy darkness to be kept until the judgment...
- 1 Peter 2.4
Columcille is referring to the binding of Satan and his angels, the restraint imposed on them by the Lord Jesus Christ through the Word of God. He continues to set the stage properly for the call to mission. The prospect of being sent out into pagan lands must have been somewhat intimidating, but Columcille wanted them to be sure they knew that nothing could stand in their way when they went in the Name of Jesus.
Jesus bound the devil at the temptation in the wilderness, and reflected on this event in his answer to the religious leaders of the day in Matthew 12.22-29. With Satan bound, his holdings - the souls and cultures of men - were wide open to be plundered by the servants of the Lord. Columcille could send his disciples out in the confidence that, while the devil had not been rendered entirely harmless (1 Pet. 5.8), those who go in the faith of Jesus and trusting in His Word have nothing to fear.
And what about us? Does the prospect of talking with others about our Lord Jesus Christ fill us with excitement or dread? Do we fear men and shy away from bringing the Gospel up for their consideration? If so, the devil has already accomplished all he could ever hope to achieve with us.
The devil is bound and bundled. Why should we allow ourselves to be? Why should we be restrained in our speech, our witness, and challenge to others to consider the claims of Jesus Christ? We are free in the Lord and His Spirit, imbued with power from on high to be witnesses for Jesus Christ. Let's not get our roles confused: the devil is bound and bundled; we are free and filled with power to make the Name of Jesus known and to proclaim the glory of His Kingdom!
Today in ReVision: On Schedule - The economic recovery is proceeding apace, or so the President would have us believe.
This Week's Download: Faithfulness in Ministry - Download it for free and evaluate your ministry at present.
In the book store you'll find a growing raft of resources to help you know the fullness of your liberty in Christ.