When we give our life to Christ, we are not just accepting his offer of salvation, we are offering ourselves and our lives to him, in service of the Cross.
In other words, we’re enlisting our services to the God of angel armies, to fight for the salvation of all who are willing put their faith in Christ, just as we have done. Unfortunately there are legions of passive believers who willingly embrace Christ’s offer of comfort, blessings and love, but make no effort to demonstrate Christ’s power over sin in their lives, or the lives of others. For some it seems that even talking about sin is a sin.
“11 But as for you, O man of God, flee these things. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. 12 Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.” (1 Timothy 6:11,12)
We really are at war. The enemies of God are consuming almost all areas of the human experience, and as time passes, the Bible says that it’s only going to get worse. However, this is not an excuse to throw up our hands. On the contrary, this is the reason that it is so important to continue fighting the good fight until the end. It is not simply that we are commanded to in Scripture, but if we have any appreciation for what Christ has done for us, we should be falling over ourselves to continue to spread the message of the Gospel, and to ferociously resist the inexorable decline of Christianity in our world. It is as important now as it has ever been to put on the full armour of God and choose your battlefield…
Battlefields for the Christian warrior
Consider the greatest commandment of all:
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’31 The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’” (Mark 12:30-31)(See also: Matthew 22:37, Luke 10:27, Deuteronomy 6:5)
Love the Lord your God with all your mind, heart, soul and strength. Basically everything that makes you, you. And in basically every way that we are told to love God and our neighbour, Christians are being attacked by the enemies of God. Therefore I think it fitting to summarise the battlefields of the modern Christian Crusader into these four main categories.
The objective truth of Christianity has been under attack since Christianity has existed (even the Pharisee’s and Roman’s fought to suppress and manipulate the evidence for Christ’s resurrection). But today especially, in the West we live in a time of unprecedented intellectual warfare against the Bible and Christ’s divinity. Some of the most insidious objections to the faith include (but are by no means limited to):
- Attacks on the historicity of Christ’s resurrection and the Gospel accounts (even his very existence!)
- Attacks on the validity of the Bible as God’s Word
- Philosophical attacks on the existence of God
- The vast undercurrent of secular humanist philosophy that dominates modern academia
- The continual watering down of the Gospel and compromise on the inerrancy of Scripture by cowardly and ignorant Christian leaders and thinkers
The list goes on.
This is the battlefield I personally am most intimate with. This is the realm of apologetics (a reasoned defense). We are explicitly directed in Scripture to always be ready to give a reason for the hope that we have, and to destroy arguments against the knowledge of God.
The next one is one that no single western Christian (with internet access) should be unfamiliar with, for it is affecting our very ability to live an honest Christian life.
I imagine there is no single cause for the rapid and massively aggressive rise of postmodernism and all things associated with it. Yet, there’s no denying that it’s here, and isn’t going anywhere, anytime soon. At the heart of Christianity is the command by Christ to spread the Gospel to all nations. More than this however, is that essentially the entirety of the civilised West was founded on Christian values and principles, whether implicitly or explicitly (it was explicitly) (Koukl, 2009). Not only are both of these fundamental truths under ever increasing attacks, but those attacks are culminating in a cultural secular revolution of unashamed anti-Christian bigotry. Christianity is under horrendous pressure in all most all area’s of social and political life to conform to modern maxims of ‘tolerance’ and ‘silence’. Christian beliefs are literally being criminalized and Christians are being punished for simply accepting and honouring the Word of God. Christianity is at war with postmodernism.
That satan is the father of lies, and the ultimate enemy of God and his beloved should be no surprise. Almost since the beginning of creation the Prince of lies has been at war with God, and the soul of man is his primary target. There is no end to the deception that has been wrought by the ultimate enemy of the faith.
Satan is the source of evil and sin, which was brought into the world through an act of man, directly as a result of his deception. Ever since, and until Christ returns, we are at war not just with the literal forces of darkness, but with our own sin nature.
Having said that, literal evil spirits are not the biggest problem Christians face (despite what some may think), but it the more subtle, more insidious work of the deceiver in the world that Christians are in the most danger of. Besides all of the previous components of the war against Christianity mentioned already, we are engaged in a Spiritual warfare, one of deception. Heresies against the Christian Gospel abound, some more subtle than others. Countless individuals throughout history who have claimed to have had a miraculous experience with God have led millions away from the true Gospel, some with devastating consequences. Without going into too much detail here, I will simply offer this one warning:
Be extremely careful, anytime anyone ever claims to have received a direct revelation from God himself. Test all things (no matter how good they sound) against Scripture as the final authority.
Make no mistake, the human heart is so fragile, and the enemy’s deception knows no limits. He will stop at nothing. You don’t have to drink the koolaid to be deceived into an unsaving heresy.
Despite all this keep one last thing in mind; if you are a child of God, Satan literally has no power over you. The blood of Jesus Christ makes you Holy, and as such you are indwelt by the Holy Spirit from the moment of salvation and it is impossible for darkness to dwell in the light.
The last battlefield, and the most literal one of all is the literal war against Christianity around the world. Christians are being physically persecuted all around the world in some of the most hostile, anti-Christian environments on earth. You may not have even realised, but (apart from obvious Islamic terrorist attacks) it is even happening on Western soil, not just by ‘extremist’ groups, but apparently by everyday run of the mill civilized westerners. Ben Shapiro was recently threatened with physical violence on national television (yeah I get it he’s Jewish. But still)!! (maybe even more shocking and despicable is the reaction of the other panelists)
Finally, if this wasn’t enough, there’s at least one more physical threat that cannot be ignored. For it is this one where Christians more than any other, must stand in defense of those who cannot defend themselves.
Abortion is murder. That’s about all I really care to say about that. The Bible explicitly and in no uncertain terms acknowledges the unborn child as a blessed creation, fully human, soul and all.
“Your eyes saw my unformed substance;
in your book were written, every one of them,
the days that were formed for me,
when as yet there was none of them.” (Psalm 139:16)
Not to mention the general life affirming theme of the entire Bible.
If you are a Christian, you are against abortion, by definition.
I feel I have a responsibility to be extremely clear about my view here. Except in perhaps some of the rarest and most extreme cases where some medical complications threaten the life of both mother and child, if you are not completely against abortion then you are living in sin and are not a Christian.
Make no mistake, the literal, physical war against Christianity is real men, and it’s on your doorstep. Jihad, Communism, talk show panels (apparently), Church burnings, abortion and more.
You don’t have to become a literal physical soldier to battle this persecution either.
Joining the frontlines
If you are going to stand in defense of Christianity, you need to know what you are defending against. More than anything, we stand in defense of the Gospel and the truth of Christianity. We stand firm on the Word of God and commit our lives to following in Christ’s teachings and example. We seek perfection (however unattainable it may be). The corollary of this is that we are not just obliged to affirm the Gospel, but to fight for the faith, on all fronts, whether they are physical, spiritual, intellectual, or er… heart-ual… eh, you get the idea.
It’s so in your face it’s incredible. Biblical, evangelical Christianity is at war.
Men, stop thinking about what Christianity has to offer you, and start thinking about what Christianity has to offer the world through you.
When you gave your life to Christ, and promised to take up your Cross daily, you became a soldier of Christ, a Christian warrior.
It’s time you start acting like it. It’s time to wake up. It’s time to start fighting back.
We are Christians, we are warriors.
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Koukl, G. 2009. Tactics. Zondervan publishers. pp 178-9.