Tag Archive | authority

So You Want To Be A Warrior?

Warriors 7

Today, most armed services have a 6 to 13 week period of what they term basic training. During that time, they have a leader called a drill instructor. After this basic training, the young soldier or sailor begins to look and act differently.

As you journey deeper in your walk with Christ, I pray that you will get in shape for more intense spiritual warfare. A timid, untrained army is no match for Hell’s terrorists! No, we must get into spiritual shape, pick up our armor and go to the battlefront. The destiny of humanity hangs in the balance.

David trained his 400 soldiers with the truth we find in Psalm 18, which contains six basic charges every warrior needs to hear.

“Get Under Authority” – Submission

“For You will save the humble people,
but will bring down haughty looks.” (Psalm 18:27 NKJV).

        The soldier must begin a day knowing how to obey orders. From the moment of arrival in boot camp, nothing belongs to the recruit anymore. Their hair is cut, their clothing is selected for them, and their schedule is determined by their leaders. For a season, freedom is lost and submission is taught.

It is essential to understand that putting the devil to flight requires submission to God. James 4:7 tells us…

“Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.” (NKJV)

One of my high school buddies was always a rebel at heart. His dress was unconventional, as well as his attitude. Finally, he quit school to live free. His choice? He joined the Marines. I laughed when I saw him after boot camp! His long hair was now a crew cut and he wore a crisp Marine uniform instead of jeans. He had learned to live under orders. Hebrews 12:1-2 gives the Christian his or her marching orders:

Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (NKJV)

 “Get on Fire for the Cause”—Passion

“For You will light my lamp” (Psalm 18:28a NKJV).

        The second goal of boot camp is to inspire the recruit to have a passion for the cause of the nation. All things being equal, the one with the most passion for the fight will win. In our struggle against the Enemy, we must be on fire to win the souls of men for God’s kingdom.

One admirable thing about Islamic fundamentalists is their unbridled passion for their cause. They are willing to die in order to further their purposes. While their teaching is in error and their methods are horrific, they are on fire for what they believe. All the weapons of a militia cannot stop such passion; it must be met by Christians who have a passion for Jesus Christ.

“Be Prepared for Warfare”—Discipline

“The Lord my God will enlighten my darkness” (Psalm 18:28b NKJV).

        God will “enlighten” His soldiers. We have been given the right armor and the right instruction. Every church must become a spiritual armory, preparing its people for the struggle against the darkness.

“Believe You Can Win”–Vision

“For by You I can run against a troop,
by my God I can leap over a wall” (Psalm 18:29, NKJV)

        Here the recruit confesses his faith. By the power of God, he can overcome a troop. With the strength of God, he can leap over a wall. The Enemy’s army and obstacles fall before the spiritual soldier who has faith.

“Know Your Weapons”—Power

Warrior 2“As for God, His way is perfect; the word of the Lord is proven; He is a shield to all who trust in Him. For who is God, except the Lord? And who is a rock, except our God? It is God who arms me with strength, and makes my way perfect…. He teaches my hands to make war, so that my arms can bend a bow of bronze.” (Psalm 18:30-32, 34, NKJV)

Notice first that God has a perfect battle plan. The word perfect means “absolutely complete.” We must fight according to His plan.

Second, Yahweh has given us a sharp, two-edged sword—His Word. We must wield this sword effectively if we are to live the victor’s life.

Furthermore, God grants us a shield of protection: Faith.

Also, Yahweh exercises our gifts so our hands will be strengthened to make war. We can use our “bronze bow” to judge the Enemy. Spiritual archers can shoot down the principalities in the heavens.

“Go to the Next Level”—Excellence

“He makes my feet like the feet of deer,
and sets me on my high places” (Psalm 18:33 NKJV).

Boot camp moves us to the next level of battle. We can conquer the mountains before us. Our feet must be strong, so we can walk with a sure foot. The feet of deer “track,” which means the rear foot will always land where the front foot leaves. Our God allows us to walk in His footsteps, tracking hard after Him.

WorshipDavid’s manual (Psalm 18) molded the 400 outcasts into a military machine that would take the kingdom. We, too, can go to the next level if we become informed and disciplined. It’s time to recognize your enemy, understand the battle, equip yourself for the fight, and walk in victory.

Adapted from my book
Everyone’s Guide to Demons & Spiritual Warfare
©2010 Ron Phillips
Published by Charisma House

The Consequences of a Random Act

Looking Glass

A friend of mine recently told me this story…

I was sitting in a restaurant when I noticed a couple of police officers enter. It was lunch time and, obviously taking a break, they were promptly seated across the busy room. I didn’t think much more about it, and went back to my meal and conversation. After a while, the officers finished eating and rose to leave. They passed by my table, but stopped before they reached the door to talk to the manager. I noticed the manager point back toward my table, at which point the two officers began walking back in my direction. Just before reaching me, they stopped at the table right next to mine. There was a family — dad, mom, and a couple of kids — sitting enjoying their meal, when I overheard one of the officers speak to the dad.

“Excuse me… I feel like maybe we weren’t supposed to know, but somehow that got lost in the translation,” the officer said to the father.

The father smiled knowingly and shook his head. “You weren’t.”

“Well, that was very kind, and we just wanted to come back and say thank you,” the officer replied.

“Yes… Thank you, sir. That was a very nice thing to do. We really appreciate it,” the other officer said.

“Well, I just wanted to say thanks to you guys for your service and for all you do,” the man said.

“Wow! If I’d have know you were buying, I would have gotten desert,” the first officer joked.

They all laughed, shook hands, the two officers exited, and the family went back to their meal. Several minutes later, I rose to leave and happened to find myself standing next to the man at the doorway.

“Excuse me for asking, but I overheard what you said back there to those officers. Do you know those guys?”

The man smiled at me and said, “Nope. Never met them before.”

“If you don’t mind me asking, why did you do that?” I asked.

“Those guys get a lot of bad press for doing a very, very difficult job,” he said. “I’ve had several friends who were policemen, and I have a great deal of respect for the job they do. I just figured buying their lunch was the least I could do to say ‘thank you for keeping us safe’. I wanted them to know that they are appreciated.”

He went on to tell me that, when he paid the manager, he told him he wanted it to be anonymous. However, it was a Asian restaurant, and the manager’s English was not very good, so his anonymity got “lost in translation” (as the officer said).

We hear a lot in the news about the negative stereotypes of “bad cops”. However, the overwhelming truth is that police officers are good men and women who have to carry out a tough job. In today’s media, deference is too often given to the perpetrator, and good officers are guilty until proven innocent — before facts are established, and before the truth can be ascertained.

In Romans 13, Paul writes…

For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same. For he is God’s minister to you for good. But if you do evil, be afraid; for he does not bear the sword in vain; for he is God’s minister, an avenger to execute wrath on him who practices evil. Therefore you must be subject, not only because of wrath but also for conscience’ sake. For because of this you also pay taxes, for they are God’s ministers attending continually to this very thing. Render therefore to all their due: taxes to whom taxes are due, customs to whom customs, fear to whom fear, honor to whom honor.

When we show respect and honor to those in authority, we have no reason to fear. Godly authority is there for our protection, in order for us to be allowed to live our lives in relative peace and safety. In the vast majority of stories I hear about violence involving police officers, those two things are always missing — respect and honor. Does that justify unwarranted “excessive force”? Not at all. But sadly, in the age of hostile news media, unfiltered social media, and “instant everything”, images mocking violence against police are posted online at lightning speeds, and only exacerbates how police feel they are being unjustly perceived, and magnifies a culture that has lost its moral compass, respect for authority, and reverence for God.

With all of the negative things we hear about police these days, and the repercussions that officers are experiencing with recent random attacks and killings, I wanted to share this positive story of good will. Actions have consequences, and all too often, we hear about the consequences of a random act of violence, or of a sequence of events that ends tragically…

It could be that the consequences of this random act of kindness are that a couple of officers spent the rest of the day feeling appreciated, and a father set a good example for his children.

It could also be that this story inspires someone reading it to go out and commit a random act of kindness today.