Battle Ready

We sang this hymn in church a few weeks ago. As we sang this hymn this verse came to mind, "For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for the pulling down of strongholds." 2 Corinthians 10:3,4

Then I thought of, "For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places." Ephesians 6:12

What exactly do the weapons that Christians wield look like? What does a Christian who is battle ready look like? And what does a Christian engaged in a battle against things that are not flesh and blood look like? Is this what the church in America is doing today? Some how I think we have strayed a bit off of the path of battle readiness with fights over which political party to support and which candidate to vote for. And which pet issue to lobby the government over. And which pet sin to always be raging against. Some how I think a battle ready church and battle ready Christians would perhaps look a little bit different from what we see everyday.

Soldiers of Christ, arise!

Soldiers of Christ, arise, and put your armor on,
Strong in the strength which God supplies through His eternal Son
Strong in the Lord of hosts, and in His mighty power,
Who in the strength of Jesus trusts is more than conqueror.

Stand then in His great might, with all His strength endued,

But take to arm you for the fight the panoply of God;
That having all things done, and all your conflicts passed,
Ye may o'ercome through Christ alone and stand entire at last.

Stand then against your foes, in close and firm array;

Legions of wily fiends oppose throughout the evil day;
But meet the sons of night, and mock their vain design,
Armed in the arms of heavenly light, of righteousness divine.

Leave no unguarded place, no weakness of the soul,

Take every virtue, every grace, and fortify the whole;
Inseparably joined, to battle all proceed;
But arm yourselves with all the mind that was in Christ, your Head.

Pray without ceasing, pray, (your Captain gives the word)

His summons cheerfully obey and call upon the Lord;
To God your every want in instant prayer display,
Pray always, pray and never faint, pray, without ceasing, pray.

From strength to strength go on, wrestle and fight and pray,

Tread all the powers of darkness down and win the well fought day.
Still let the Spirit cry in all His soldiers, "Come!"
Till Christ the Lord descends from high and takes the conquerors home.

Words: Charles Wesley, in Character of a Methodist, by John Wesley, circa 1741.
Music: "Diademata," George J. Elvey, 1868


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