February 26. 2020

While all the people were listening, Jesus said to his disciples, “Beware of the teachers of the law. They like to walk around in flowing robes and love to be greeted in the marketplaces and have the most important seats in the synagogues and the places of honor at banquets. They devour widows’ houses and for a show make lengthy prayers. Such men will be punished most severely.” – Luke 20:45-47 NIV

Warrior;
This is why I address you as WARRIOR! We are to fight the good fight! In 2 Timothy 4:7, Paul says, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” This well-known and oft-quoted passage is quite significant in that this epistle was Paul’s last before his martyrdom in A.D. 67. Paul uses many battle analogies, including in Ephesians 6:11, “Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil.” We must be REMEMBER that the Christian life is a struggle against evil—within ourselves and in the world (John 15:9; Romans 8:7; James 4:4). Pauls parting words to his Spiritual son Timothy was to “endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ” (2 Timothy 2:3). Our battle is not with flesh and blood “but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 6:12)

Leader, in 2 Timothy 4:7, the Greek word agonizomai, translated “fought,” means literally “to engage in conflict.” The word was used in the context of competing in athletic games or engaging in military conflict. The Christian life is a fight, a never-ending struggle against evil—not an earthly military campaign, but a spiritual battle against the trinity of evil: Satan, our flesh and the WORLD SYSTEM. In Ephesians 2:1-2, we are told that Satan is the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience. We are called to have discernment; to make sure we are listening to Commander Jesus and not the trinity of evil. When Jesus walked this planet his main ire was directed at the RELIGIOUS LEADERS, not people like you and me, who struggle to BE IN THIS WORLD, but NOT OF THIS WORLD. Ever since Jesus has approached Jerusalem, Luke’s Gospel records one confrontation after another: The Pharisees criticize Jesus’ disciples for their praise at the Triumphal entry. (19:39) Jesus drives out the sellers from the Temple. (19:45-46) The chief priests, the teachers of the law (scribes), and leaders constantly plot to kill him. (19:47-48) People challenge his authority to teach. (20:1-8) People challenge him about paying taxes to Caesar. (20:20-26) Sadducees challenge him about the resurrection and marriage. (20:27-40)

Conduit, in the 12th Chapter of Luke Jesus makes a startling statement; I have come to ignite a fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! But I have a baptism to undergo, and how distressed I am until it is accomplished! Do you think that I have come to bring peace to the earth? No, I tell you, but division. From now on, five in one household will be divided, three against two and two against three. They will be divided, father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.” (Luke 12: 49-53. Also see Micah 7:1-6; Matthew 10:34-39) In Acts 10:34-35 we see that GOD IS NOT A RESPECTER of PERSONS! Then Peter began to speak: “I now truly understand that God does not show favoritism, but welcomes those from every nation who fear Him and do what is right. You and I have direct access to GOD, when the temple was torn upon Jesus last breath on the cross, the barrier between man and God was removed. The ground at the foot of the cross is level, we all have the same standing before God! We are sinners in need of a savior! All men fall short of the glory of God, ALL MEN\WOMEN need the blood of JESUS to have a RIGHT STANDING before God- it is called RIGHTEOUSNESS. Our works are filthy rags to God, NO ONE IS GOOD- NO NOT ONE! It is only through our personal acceptance of the PAID PRICE OF THE CROSS, and our PERSONAL RELATIONSHIP with JESUS, the Christ- that we enter the KINGDOM OF GOD! You don’t need a priest, you don’t need a pastor and you don’t need to do good works- you need to FIGHT THE GOOD FIGHT OF FAITH and BELIEVE on Jesus! Because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. (Romans 10:9)

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