My Sure Defense

Thursday, October 7, 2004

"The Lord shall judge the people: judge me, O Lord, according to my righteousness, and according to my integrity within me. Oh, let the wickedness of the wicked come to an end, but establish the just; for the righteous God tests the hearts and minds. My defense is of God, who saves the upright in heart."
~Psalm 7:8-10

"Show me a sign for good, that those who hate me may see it and be ashamed, because You, Lord, have helped me and comforted me."
~Psalm 86:11

I fell asleep last night crying out to my Savior. Jesus. How precious His name is to my heart, and it grows more so each day that I wait on God. He is my reality. He is my identity. In the first passage above, the psalmist is crying out for salvation on the basis of his righteousness. For me, the cry is the same, but my Righteousness (as was his by faith) is Jesus.

This morning, I prayed for a girl who has been involved with witchcraft. I knew in volunteering to pray for her that I would open myself for more attack, as with the email I sent to K earlier this week, as with stepping out and beginning Free Indeed, as with seeking reconciliation with those who are bitter against me.

Right now, I feel so unequipped to fight this battle. I have no defense of my own against the accusations that are being leveled at me, against the innumerable darts that Satan is aiming at me to cement bitterness into my own life. I have a vision of what ought to be. I see the darkness that is. I am overwhelmed.

Except for Jesus. In Him was light, and in Him was no darkness at all. When I am looking at Jesus Christ, I see a man of sorrows, acquainted with grief. But I do not see darkness until I see Him bearing mine upon the Cross.

But He is not dead any longer. The darkness of our death could not hold Him. Jesus Christ is alive, and interceding for us at the right hand of the throne of God. How much more then shall we live through His life?!

I have never felt the intensity that I feel right now regarding the spiritual realm all around me. There is a reality to it that goes beyond emotion, beyond standards, beyond comprehension. How can I fight this? The evil allowed by God and empowered by Satan is so much stronger than I.

"Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the Devil, and he will flee from you."

There is a deep humility in the perspective of submission. Submission directly produces meekness, which, a friend shared with me recently, can be pictured as a powerful warhorse, trained and held back by a strong hand until he should be released to run to the battle.

Jesus Christ is meek. "Learn of Me," He said to those who are weary and heavy laden. In His meekness, Jesus gave us an example of waiting on God, turning the other cheek, obeying and carrying our cross. Not exactly the victorious picture of God's warfare.

Paul explains how we are to fight as we follow Christ: "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 pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled." (2 Cor. 10:3-6)

Christ's love constrains us to live not for ourselves but for Him who died for us, to be ambassadors of God so that the world may know Him, as Christ prayed in John 17. If our weapons are not mighty and based in God, we cannot hope to pull down the strongholds that set themselves against knowing Him.

Someday, we will stand and watch amazed as His power is released and He charges into battle for all that is holy and good and God's. One day, we will watch Him lead His armies to war not only on our behalf, but for His Father, God, who cannot look upon sin, whose promised vengeance will be wreaked upon His enemies once and for all. Jesus, the Son of Man, will ride victorious who once was dead at Satan's hand.

But for today, we are to "do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly" with our God. I think that as we do that, we will come to know that He truly is our sure defense. He goes before us. The war is already won. I want to let God fight the battles, cause He knows His warfare best.


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