Resurgence roundup, 5/24/13
Fri May 24, 2013
The places grace empowers us
Thu May 23, 2013
by Justin Holcomb
‘Each next risk is the biggest one’: James MacDonald talks with Mark Driscoll
Wed May 22, 2013
by Mark Driscoll
Tue May 21, 2013
by Amanda Edmondson
From prison to ReTrain: Russell’s story
Mon May 20, 2013
Communicating in Enemy Territory
The Apostle Paul says that "we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places."
The Bible has many names for Satan and demons in the Bible: accuser, destroyer, Father of Lies, deceiver, adversary, and enemy. Peter gives a picture of what that enemy looks like; "a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour".
I recently asked a friend of mine who serves in the military about their communications. His response was as exact and direct as the distinction it made.
In friendly territory or enemy territory?
As a Christian, small group leader, friend, pastor, or even blogger, think for a minute about your communication. Do you communicate as though you're behind enemy lines?
Maybe it would be helpful to look at an example of what I'm talking about.
The urgency of their situation requires communication to be short, to the point, imperative-laden, and focused on the well-being of others. Of course I'm not saying that there is never room for introspective, creative, articulate, or even humorous communication; but in a Christian culture drowning in the inconsequential and trivial, I'd suggest we've lost the urgency that comes with remembering that we are in a war. Sarcasm and satire come easily; they're a luxury. Speculation and opinion-casting are luxuries. Heart-wrenching concern for our brothers' safety and well-being are none of those.
What keeps us from recognizing that we're in a war and keeps our communication, for lack of a better word, civilian?
- Love of self, money, success, and esteem (2 Timothy 3:1-4)
- Quarrels about minor points of theology (Titus 3:9)
- Foolish, ignorant controversies (2 Timothy 2:23)
- Coveting what someone else has (James 4:2)
- Conceited arguments over words (1 Timothy 6:4)
- The cares, riches, and pleasure of life (Luke 8:14)
- Fear (Matthew 10:26-33)
Imagine how silly any of those would look or sound in the situation above. Imagine the casualties and outcome.
Instead, don't get entangled in civilian pursuits and make it your aim to please the one who enlisted you (2 Timothy 2:4) by preaching the word - being ready in season and out of season - and reproving, rebuking, and exhorting with complete patience and teaching (2 Timothy 4:2).
Those are strong words born out of genuine love and concern for not only Timothy but the Ephesians in an attempt to correct their error and avoid its eternal consequences.