Continue to Fight the Good Fight

Introduction

1Ti 6:12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.
1Ti 6:13 I give thee charge in the sight of God, who quickeneth all things, and before Christ Jesus, who before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession;
1Ti 6:14 That thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukeable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ:

There are many battles in “the good fight of faith”, but every battle is part of the same war that is being waged within our heavens.

Rev 12:7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,
Rev 12:8 And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven.
Rev 12:9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

The adversary has been granted two hundred thousand, thousand ways to deceive each of us. He does not rest until he has tried our faith, made us all to doubt that “God is love”, and has made us question whether the Bible is the Word of God and cause us to doubt our very conversion. That is why it is called “the good fight of faith”. That is also why, when asked what work was required of us to do what God wants us to do, Christ made this statement:

Joh 6:28 Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God?
Joh 6:29 Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.

What Christ is saying here in effect is simply “fight the good fight of faith”.

1Jn 5:4 For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.

No war has ever been won without first gathering intelligence concerning the adversary. God’s Word gives us all the strategies and devices of our adversary and of his ability to incite our flesh to do his will. Don’t let anyone tell you that your flesh is all you struggle against. Anyone who thinks and who teaches that heresy, far underestimates their opponent, and they have lost this great battle before it even begins. You and I really are the worst enemy we have in the flesh, but here is the Truth of God’s word concerning to whom these fleshly bodies are subject.

Eph 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. [ Greek – the heavens].
2Co 2:11 Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.

Are we ignorant of the devices of our adversary? At first we are all ignorant of his devices, and it is only through ‘falling seven times’ that we are granted the knowledge of his devices.

Pro 22:3 A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished.

This Truth is important enough to warrant being repeated in chapter 27.

Pro 27:12 A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself; but the simple pass on, and are punished.

We are all “in Adam” by birth. We are born neither “prudent” nor “a just man”. We are all first wicked, and we all first “fall into mischief”, and we all live out and “live by” these words.

Pro 24:16 For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief.

This war is within ‘the heavens’ and it is all for God’s purposes

Eph 6:12 For our fight is not against flesh and blood, but against authorities and powers, against the world- rulers of this dark night, against the spirits of evil in the heavens.

With this verse in mind, let’s read Rev 12 again.

Rev 12:7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,
Rev 12:8 And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven.
Rev 12:9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

We have demonstrated that ‘heaven’ is where God dwells within His people, and we will miss the mark if we are unaware of the fact that it is a predestined war, with a predestined adversary whose function is to try us and to prove us for our own good. We will become discouraged if we do not realize that it is God Himself who is the author of this great battle, and He is in control of every skirmish from beginning to end. Every day of our lives is in His book, written before we are born.

Psa 139:16 Thine eyes did see mine unformed substance; And in thy book they were all written, Even the days that were ordained for me, When as yet there was none of them.
Pro 16:4 The LORD hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil.

So even when we succumb to the temptations of the adversary, we are, in our own “day of evil”, coming to see the weakness of our flesh and the hopelessness of our situation in “the body of this death”, into which we have been placed by God Himself and delivered over to “the spirits of evil in the heavens”.

Isa 63:17 O LORD, why hast thou made us to err from thy ways, and hardened our heart from thy fear? Return for thy servants’ sake, the tribes of thine inheritance.

God will “return for His servants’ sake, the tribes of His inheritance”, but He will do so in His time and on His schedule.

Rom 9:15 For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.
Rom 9:16 So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.
Rom 9:17 For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth.
Rom 9:18 Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth.
Eph 1:11 In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will:

Here is the first skirmish fought in this great predestined battle. It physically happened, and it is written for our admonition (1Co 10:11).

Gen 2:16 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:
Gen 2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

Now here is verse 17 in the Concordant Literal Version.

Gen 2:17 Yet from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you are not to be eating from it, for in the day you eat from it, to die shall you be dying.

“To die shall you be dying” tells us that anything that comes “out of the ground” will die and is dying and will be given life only through that death. Christ Himself was no exception to that Truth. “To die you shall be dying” was why He came into this world.

Joh 12:25 He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal.
Joh 12:26 If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour.
Joh 12:27 Now is my soul troubled; and what shall I say? Father, save me from this hour: but for this cause came I unto this hour.

That one commandment not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil was the law God gave to Adam and Eve. Like the later law of Moses, if it were broken, the result was merciless death. Of course, with the aid of the serpent it was soon broken, and the penalty, already in effect, produced the result that all dying bodies produce. Here is the state of all flesh without Christ.

Mat 8:22 But Jesus said unto him, Follow me; and let the dead bury their dead.
Rom 7:24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?

So Adam and Eve were in “the body of this death” which caused them to make natural decisions instead of spiritual decisions. This story is all presented here in Genesis two as if Adam and Eve could have chosen not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, and if they had made that decision, then they could have lived forever in bodies of perfected sinless flesh. But we have demonstrated that the fact of “the sum of God’s Word” is simply:

Jer 18:4 And the vessel that he made of clay [ Adam] was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it.

It was not marred because of it willed itself to be “marred”. It was not marred outside of the hand of the Potter. It was, by the Potter’s design, a ‘clay vessel’, and as such, by virtue of its very composition, it was “ made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of Him who subjected the same in hope”.

Rom 8:20 For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope,

It was made by the Creator Potter, a body of flesh, and this is the Biblical Truth concerning all flesh:

1Co 15:50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.

So Adam’s will was not even a factor. The author of Adam’s book, according to Psa 139:16, had already written in that book before Adam and Eve were ever created that they would disobey the command that they were not to partake of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. The fruit of that tree is death, and once again, this is the simple truth concerning this battle in which we all find ourselves.

Rom 8:20 For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope,

So let’s be perfectly clear, this battle in the heavens of our hearts and minds is, from beginning to end, the work of our Lord. He has by His design, given us a body of sinful flesh, and has empowered a serpent to dine on the dust of that marred clay vessel, and tells us clearly concerning that old serpent, “Dust shalt thou eat…”

Here is the plan as it was originally revealed

Gen 3:14 And the LORD God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life:
Gen 3:15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.
Pro 16:4 The LORD hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil.
Isa 63:17 O LORD, why hast thou made us to err from thy ways, and hardened our heart from thy fear? Return for thy servants’ sake, the tribes of thine inheritance.

No serpent on earth has a diet of literal dust. This “dust” granted to the serpent for his nourishment is our fleshly minds. It is argued by those who are not granted to accept the fact that it is the Lord who “makes us to err from His ways and hardens our hearts from His fear” that this entire scenario renders us all as mere robots. But a robot is far too developed to make the point God wants us to understand. He wants us to see ourselves, and this entire battle in which we are engaged, as mere clay in the Potter’s hand. He wants us to know that this great battle has a predestined outcome which we cannot lose, and which will prepare us to be the overcomers who will rule this world and will judge the angels.

1Co 6:2 Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters?
1Co 6:3 Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life?

The later more mature version of this same battle

Rev 9:15 And the four angels were loosed, which were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year, for to slay the third part of men.
Rev 9:16 And the number of the army of the horse men were two hundred thousand thousand: and I heard the number of them.
Rev 9:17 And thus I saw the horses in the vision, and them that sat on them, having breastplates of fire, and of jacinth, and brimstone: and the heads of the horses were as the heads of lions; and out of their mouths issued fire and smoke and brimstone.
Rev 9:18 By these three was the third part of men killed, by the fire, and by the smoke, and by the brimstone, which issued out of their mouths.
Rev 9:19 For their power is in their mouth, and in their tails: for their tails were like unto serpents, and had heads, and with them they do hurt.
Rev 9:20 And the rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues yet repented not of the works of their hands, that they should not worship devils, and idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and stone, and of wood: which neither can see, nor hear, nor walk:
Rev 9:21 Neither repented they of their murders, nor of their sorceries, nor of their fornication, nor of their thefts.

“We are not ignorant of his devices… their power is in their mouth and in their tails, for their tails were like serpents, and had heads, and with them they do hurt”. It is clear that this battle is being fought while we are still in Babylon, still under the influence of these mouths and tails known as false prophets speaking false doctrines.

Isa 9:13 For the people turneth not unto him that smiteth them, neither do they seek the LORD of hosts.
Isa 9:14 Therefore the LORD will cut off from Israel head and tail, branch and rush, in one day.
Isa 9:15 The ancient and honourable, he is the head; and the prophet that teacheth lies, he is the tail.

This fire, smoke and brimstone is coming out of our own mouths and is condemning us just as the scribes and Pharisees were condemned by their own mouths. It is while we were still sinners, still in Babylon, that we are speaking the words of God, beyond our own understanding, and speaking the very words which hurt us and condemn us, and words by which we will and are being judged. Let’s read of this paradox.

Luk 19:22 And he saith unto him, Out of thine own mouth will I judge thee, thou wicked servant. Thou knewest that I was an austere man, taking up that I laid not down, and reaping that I did not sow:

It is out of our own mouths that we both accuse and bless God. Yet we do not and we cannot follow our own advice.

Jas 3:6 And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell.
Jas 3:7 For every kind of beasts, and of birds, and of serpents, and of things in the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed of mankind:
Jas 3:8 But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.
Jas 3:9 Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God.
Jas 3:10 Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be.

So our own mouth, speaks the truth of God’s Word. Even while we are yet in Babylon, still in sin, our own mouth curses our old man and blesses God. In doing so, we will be judged out of our own mouths. These are “horsemen” straight out of the bottomless pit, and yet they are doing what God has predestined them to accomplish. By these a third of our old man with all of his armies is destroyed.

Rev 9:18 By these three was the third part of men killed, by the fire, and by the smoke, and by the brimstone, which issued out of their mouths.

So Christ’s words concerning our old man in Babylon is true to this day:

Mat 23:1 Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples,
Mat 23:2 Saying, The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat:
Mat 23:3 All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not.

Christ is addressing these words to the very multitude which would murder Him, and he is addressing His disciples also, because He knew that His disciples are all first men in Adamic flesh, and as such are as guilty of His blood as the rest of the world. That is why He insisted that they all drink of His blood.

Mat 26:20 Now when the even was come, he sat down with the twelve.
Mat 26:21 And as they did eat, he said, Verily I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me.
Mat 26:22 And they were exceeding sorrowful, and began every one of them to say unto him, Lord, is it I?
Mat 26:23 And he answered and said, He that dippeth his hand with me in the dish, the same shall betray me.
Mat 26:24 The Son of man goeth as it is written of him: but woe unto that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! it had been good for that man if he had not been born.
Mat 26:25 Then Judas, which betrayed him, answered and said, Master, is it I? He said unto him, Thou hast said.
Mat 26:26 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body.
Mat 26:27 And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it;
Mat 26:28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.

Judas drank of that cup along with the other eleven apostles. He betrayed Christ, and then they all forsook Him and left Him to die on the cross. They could not die with Him then, even though they and all of us, may be willing to die for Him. Christ has absolutely no use for what we can do for Him. Job did many things for God (Job 29), which proves that our good works, when seen as being of ourselves, are our worst enemy. We must come to know that the only sacrifice God will receive is the one in which we acknowledge that it is Christ in us who does the works, just as Christ acknowledged that His strength to go to the cross for us was, in fact, His Father’s strength.

Joh 14:10 Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works.

Christ revealed to us that He could do nothing in His own flesh. He did all that He did through the strength of His Father being in Him. Did anyone believe those words? Only a very few believed them. And when Christ did reveal who He was, he was hated for it. So it is to this day. When we finally do humble ourselves to acknowledge that we can do nothing of ourselves, and yet we acknowledge that we are Christ’s Christ, and we can do all things through Christ, at that very point we will begin to be accused of thinking we know all Truth, and that we, of ourselves, have the Truth and we alone,, of ourselves, think that we know God.
Here is what Christ tells us of those who are His true and faithful disciples.

Joh 12:26 If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour.

‘Following Christ’ and being ‘where He is’ means that we live the life He lived, and the life He lived was a life of sacrificing the things of this world to win the approval of His Father. He made it clear that it was His Father in Him who empowered Him to sacrifice the approval of this world.

Joh 12:25 He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal.

Because we do begin to do the things Christ did, and we begin to follow in His footsteps and come out of Babylon, what is the instant result?

2Ti 3:12 Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.

Christ is very up front in dealing with those He will use to rule this world and judge angels. It takes a very unusual person to seek to be in “the armies in heaven” and to do battle and to “fight the good fight of faith”. Here are our inducements to join this great force:

Mat 10:22 And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.
Mat 24:9 Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake.
Mat 24:10 And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.
Mat 24:11 And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.
Mat 24:12 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.

Ours is not a call to anything that appeals to the natural man. Here is the Biblical contrast between our calling to be afflicted, to be killed and to be hated of all men for Christ’s name’s sake, and our first calling into Babylon and all of the deceptions which are therein.
This is the calling which first appeals to us all:

Gen 3:6 And when the woman [ us as Babylon the Great] saw that the tree was good for food [“the lust of the flesh”], and that it was pleasant to the eyes [“the lust of the eyes”], and a tree to be desired to make one wise [“the pride of life”], she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.

We all, without exception, are called to appreciate the things of this world, before we are given to accept a calling which promises us “You shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake”. We are just naturally born with the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, and in these three sins, all other sins of mankind in this world are encompassed.

1Jn 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

These three sins encompass all the sins that are in this world. And what is the solution for “the lust of the flesh”?

Gal 5:16 This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.

Before we can “walk in the spirit” we need to know what the spirit is in which we are to walk, and the scriptures do not leave us to guess:

Joh 6:63 It is the spirit which gives Life. The flesh confers no benefit whatever. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and are Life. (WNT)

The devices of the overcomers

So the only way to win the “war in the heavens” is to “walk in the spirit”, meaning to live by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.

Mat 4:4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by [ Greek – epi, upon] bread alone, but by [ Greek – epi] every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.
Luk 4:4 And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by [ Greek – epi, upon] bread alone, but by [ epi, upon] every word of God.

Here we are twice informed that we are to fight this great battle ‘upon’ “every word of God”. When we ignore any part of those words, or if we add anything to those words, then we will fall victim to the devices of the adversary.

Rev 22:18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:
Rev 22:19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

What is most commonly added to these words?

Jer 23:18 For who hath stood in the counsel of the LORD, and hath perceived and heard his word? who hath marked his word, and heard it?
Jer 23:19 Behold, a whirlwind of the LORD is gone forth in fury, even a grievous whirlwind: it shall fall grievously upon the head of the wicked.
Jer 23:20 The anger of the LORD shall not return, until he have executed, and till he have performed the thoughts of his heart: in the latter days ye shall consider it perfectly.
Jer 23:21 I have not sent these prophets, yet they ran: I have not spoken to them, yet they prophesied.

God’s true prophets do not spend endless hours reasoning around His plain commandments. His true prophets “mark His word and hear it”. God’s true prophets do not ask, what is permissible? What is the least I can get by with, so as not to upset this world? Rather God’s true prophets ask, “What is commendable according to the Word of the Lord?” Then they “mark His Word” and simply do what he says, follow Him where He goes, and let the chips fall where they may. God’s true prophets are not dictated to by the dictates of, or “the tradition of men”.

Eze 13:6 They have seen vanity and lying divination, saying, The LORD saith: and the LORD hath not sent them: and they have made others to hope that they would confirm the word.
Eze 13:7 Have ye not seen a vain vision, and have ye not spoken a lying divination, whereas ye say, The LORD saith it; albeit I have not spoken?
Eze 13:8 Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Because ye have spoken vanity, and seen lies, therefore, behold, I am against you, saith the Lord GOD.
Eze 13:9 And mine hand shall be upon the prophets that see vanity, and that divine lies: they shall not be in the assembly of my people, neither shall they be written in the writing of the house of Israel, neither shall they enter into the land of Israel; and ye shall know that I am the Lord GOD.

“They have made others hope that they would confirm the Word”, instead they have reasoned their way around God’s Word, rather than endure the persecution that obedience will bring to all who live Godly in Christ, Jesus.

2Ti 3:12 Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.

Those who lead God’s people “to hope that they wouldconfirm the Word” always end up doing the very thing of which they accuse those who are faithful to the word. It is they who add to the Word and speak above what is written, and it is all done to avoid the persecution that shall come upon all who will live godly in Christ Jesus.

What is most often taken away from God’s Word?

The phrase ‘Love your neighbor’ is indeed in God’s Word, but the definition of that phrase is very seldom rehearsed by those who take away from the Word of God. Nevertheless, this is the definition of ‘Love thy neighbor’.

1Jn 5:2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.
1Jn 5:3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.

So our love of our brothers hinges upon our obedience to Christ, and we are promised that if we do obey God we will suffer persecution and that we will be hated of all men.

Why would that be so except that God’s ways are not our ways, nor His thoughts our thoughts.

Isa 55:8 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.
Isa 55:9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.

The natural man hates the ways of God. They seem heartless, unloving and aloof to the natural man. We all naturally want to comfort the flesh, maintain the peace, bring everyone together and avoid divisions at all costs while Christ plainly tells us that His coming will always produce the very opposite.

Mat 10:34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.
Mat 10:35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.
Mat 10:36 And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household.
Mat 10:37 He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.
Mat 10:38 And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.
Mat 10:39 He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it.
Mat 10:32 Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven.
Mat 10:33 But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.

“Confessing Christ” has very little to do with verbiage and much more to do with ‘doing the things Christ says to do’.

Mat 7:21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
Mat 7:22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
Mat 7:23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
Mat 7:24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
Luk 6:46 And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?

Human reasoning will never replace the Words of Christ. This is what Christ wants us to do to fight the good fight of faith.

Joh 10:27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:
Joh 12:25 He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal.
Joh 12:26 If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour.

Where is Christ on any issue? “Walk in the spirit”, read His Word, and we will know where He is, and that is where we will be if He is in us. Overcomers never ask ‘What is permissible’. An overcomer would rather die than bring reproach upon the name of Christ. So we are told:

1Th 5:22 Abstain from all appearance of evil.

That is sound Biblical advice for anyone seeking to fight the good fight of faith. That is vigilance in practice.

1Pe 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:
1Pe 5:9 Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.

“Seeking whom he MAY devour…” These words bring us to our…

… Conclusion

2Co 3:2 Ye are our epistle written in our hearts, known and read of all men:
2Co 3:3 Forasmuch as ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart.
2Co 3:4 And such trust have we through Christ to God- ward:
2Co 3:5 Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God;
2Co 3:6 Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.

Does Paul sound like he fears for his standing with God? Absolutely not. Paul is convinced and fully persuaded that he is an “able minister of the New Testament”. Now let’s skip down to the end of this chapter.

2Co 3:12 Seeing then that we have such hope, we use great plainness of speech:
2Co 3:13 And not as Moses, which put a vail over his face, that the children of Israel could not stedfastly look to the end of that which is abolished:
2Co 3:14 But their minds were blinded: for until this day remaineth the same vail untaken away in the reading of the old testament; which vail is done away in Christ.
2Co 3:15 But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the vail is upon their heart.
2Co 3:16 Nevertheless when it shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away.
2Co 3:17 Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.
2Co 3:18 But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.

To speak with “great plainness of speech”, we must acknowledge that physical Israel here is the Biblical type and shadow of Christianity today. As such it is not, at this time, given to the masses of Christianity to see the outcome, the product or “the end of that which is abolished”. “That which is abolished” is “the law”, and Paul tells us that the law of the Gentiles who make up the masses of Christianity today is the same spirit as the law of Moses.

Rom 2:14 For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves:
Rom 2:15 Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;)

… which is “The end of that which is abolished” is Christ in us.

Rom 10:4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.
Rom 10:5 For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law, That the man which doeth those things shall live by them.
Rom 10:6 But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:)
Rom 10:7 Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.)
Rom 10:8 But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;

The masses and billions of Christianity are not granted, at this time, to see that God is bringing light out of darkness and good out of evil. Nevertheless, the Word of God is good news for all of mankind. Every word is directing us toward that which is “better for us” (Heb 11:40), but it comes only through the losing of this life; meaning giving up that which is temporary for that which is eternal.
What I want to impart to you is that God’s pleasure is what is being done in your life, and that the outcome of this battle in your life was written in His book before you were born. There are no loose cannons anywhere in the universe. Even every evil spirit is being directed by God Himself:

1Sa 16:14 But the Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the LORD troubled him.

Job’s story is our story, and it is there that we discover that Satan does exactly what his Master instructs him to do.

Job 1:6 Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them.
Job 1:7 And the LORD said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.
Job 1:8 And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?
Job 1:9 Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, Doth Job fear God for nought?
Job 1:10 Hast not thou made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land.
Job 1:11 But put forth thine hand now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse thee to thy face.
Job 1:12 And the LORD said unto Satan, Behold, all that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand. So Satan went forth from the presence of the LORD.

Satan says “Put forth your hand now, and touch all he has…” and God says to Satan “All he has is in your power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand”. God is clearly in charge of this whole scenario. He does not deny that it is His own hand which is to be upon Job’s possessions. It is He who grants Satan that power, then He speaks of His own instructions to Satan as “in thy power”, while He makes it clear that “thy power” is granted by and limited by God Himself. Later God grants Satan the power to touch Job’s body with boils from his head to his feet, but He again limits that power with these words:

Job 2:6 And the LORD said unto Satan, Behold, he is in thine hand; but save his life.
Job 2:7 So went Satan forth from the presence of the LORD, and smote Job with sore boils from the sole of his foot unto his crown.

What does this all reveal about “the good fight of faith”? What it reveals is that God intends to save our lives, too. What this demonstrates is that every day of our lives truly is “written in God’s book… before there were any of them”, and that we have every reason to trust in the love of our heavenly Father to save our lives, just as He spared Job through all of Job’s trials.

Psa 139:16 Thine eyes did see mine unformed substance; And in thy book they were all written, Even the days that were ordained for me, When as yet there was none of them. (ASV)

What this tells us is that we cannot lose, and we have every reason to rest in our Father’s love, and in his assurance of our salvation. Here are His own words to us concerning the battle we all face in this world:

Exo 14:13 And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD, which he will shew to you to day: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen to day, ye shall see them again no more for ever.
2Ch 20:17 Ye shall not need to fight in this battle: set yourselves, stand ye still, and see the salvation of the LORD with you, O Judah and Jerusalem: fear not, nor be dismayed; to morrow go out against them: for the LORD will be with you
Isa 52:10 The LORD hath made bare his holy arm in the eyes of all the nations; and all the ends of t he earth shall see the salvation of our God.
Isa 52:11 Depart ye, depart ye, go ye out from thence, touch no unclean thing; go ye out of the midst of her; be ye clean, that bear the vessels of the LORD.

Knowing that our works are really Him working in us, does not reduce the pain of our struggle, but knowing that the end of it all is Christ in us, does give us the hope that saves us from the despair of those who have no hope.
So what do we do to fight the good fight of faith? We go back to the same verses with which we began this study.

Joh 6:28 Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God?
Joh 6:29 Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.

When we believe on Him who God has sent, we are doing the work God wants us to do to fight the good fight of faith. We can now “stand still and see the salvation of the Lord”. While it is all worked within us the good battle of faith is not ours but the Lords, and the outcome is predestined.
Our salvation is by God’s chastening grace through the faith of Christ within us. Again, it is all His work in us.

Eph 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Eph 2:9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
Eph 2:10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.
1Jn 5:4 For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.
Joh 14:10 Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works.

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