by Mike Ratliff
12 Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted. 13 But evil men and impostors will proceed from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. 2 Timothy 3:12-13 (NASB)
The Christian has been called by God to serve the Lord Jesus as His bondservant or slave (δοῦλος). This role of bondservant also includes being His obedient disciple and valiant warrior. I grew up in an era in which there just was not much turmoil in the churches I was part of. The Pastor was considered the one who should take moral stands on issues and proclaim the truth to those in darkness, but the rest of the folks in the church did not consider themselves soldiers of Christ Jesus except when they sang songs such as Onward Christian Soldiers. However, times have changed. There are some preachers these days that deserve a proclamation of “woe” such as this one from the Prophet Isaiah.
20 Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil;
Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness;
Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! Isaiah 5:20 (NASB)
Yes, God has called some to be elders and pastors and deacons. However, all Christians should consider themselves soldiers for Christ on the front lines. I know that He has called some of us with the speaking and teaching gifts to fight it out with the enemy in specialized ways, but all genuine believers should enter into the battle with prayer and encouragement for those in the thickest part of the fight day in and day out. Continue reading