Soldiers for Christ
Today's passage is from Paul's letter to Timothy. The apostle encourages the young man—and, by extension, every believer—to face difficulty as a good soldier. The military term "soldier" implies that we are in a battle. And in fact, the combat started before Adam and Eve's lifetime.
We see the first evidence when almighty God, who had created all the celestial beings, nevertheless allowed Satan and other angels (thereafter known as "demons") to rebel against Him. They established their own kingdom and waged war with the Lord.
Later we see this strife extend to all humankind. In the Garden of Eden, Satan tempted Eve to violate God's command by eating forbidden fruit. Her disobedience corrupted mankind's innocence, and ever since, all human beings have been born with a nature bent away from the Lord—and with a profound need for a Savior.
Tempted by Satan in the wilderness, Jesus modeled how to be victorious in spiritual conflict: by means of Scripture. God's Word gives us everything we need to win—from offensive and defensive weapons (Eph. 6:10-17) to the proper perspective on our adversaries' real identity: "Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the . . . spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places" (v. 12).
When we see ungodliness in our society, the Enemy may at times seem to be winning. Yet we who are saved have assurance that we belong to Him who is greater—and who will have the final victory (1 John 4:4; John 16:33). View daily battles biblically and look to God, who is mightier than all evil.
For more biblical teaching and resources from Dr. Charles Stanley, please visit www.intouch.org.