And Joshua went to him and said to him, “Are you for us, or for our adversaries?” And he said, “No; but I am the commander of the army of the LORD. Now I have come.” And Joshua fell on his face to the earth and worshiped...
- Joshua 5.13, 14
So here we must fight and struggle with our vices, that we may be crowned elsewhere. For this is a time of war; no one should expect rest in warfare, for the reason that in warfare none sleeps, and none joins his rank at rest.
- Columbanus, Sermon X, Irish, 7th century
In this life we are engaged in a great struggle, as Columbanus noted.
Well, we should be, at any rate.
I find that sometimes I don’t struggle against my vices as earnestly as I ought. It’s just so much easier to stay mad, or to indulge some spiteful thought, flop down and waste the Lord’s precious time, or just go around brooding and moping.
I need to remember – and some of you as well – that the Commander of the army of the LORD, Who has gone before us into glory, is unfolding His rule of righteousness, peace, and joy in my life only to the extent that I take up arms with Him against our common foe.
So we’re always in the thick of battle – against the world, the flesh, and the devil. We must be ever on our guard and always positioned before our King in an attitude of worship, receptive to His Word and eager to give Him thanks and praise.
How do we fight?
By equipping ourselves through the Word and prayer. By recognizing and resisting temptation. By laying aside the old person and being clothed with the righteousness of Jesus. By initiating conversation that edify or encourage, or that point someone to the saving love of the Lord. By daily confessing our sins, repenting, and being filled with the Spirit anew. And by nurturing that attitude toward God and our lives which Paul describes as prayer without ceasing.
The war goes on. The fight draws nigh.
Are we struggling on the side of our great Commander or are we simply laying down in the field and allowing the enemy to step over us and trample us under foot?
To arms, brethren – for righteousness’ sake, and for the glory of King Jesus!
Psalm 60.9, 10 (Ein Feste Berg: “A Mighty Fortress”)
Who now shall lead against our foes, when God has left us falt’ring?
Lord, You have left us to our woes, our foes o’er us exalting.
Grant strength to win the day! Lord, help us in the way!
The strength of man is vain he victory to gain;
Through Jesus we will triumph!
Help me in the battle today, O Lord; let me gain some ground in my sanctification.
In the Gates
Where does public policy get made, and what can you do to participate in making it?
Here's a great story from the early ministry of Brendan of Clonfert.
In the Bookstore
Order the book, A Mighty Fortress, and learn to sing Luther's hymn the way he meant it to be sung.
T. M. Moore, Principal