“The Lord will march out like a champion, like a warrior He will stir up His zeal; with a shout He will raise the battle cry and will triumph over His enemies." (Isaiah 42:13) Are you hearing the battle cry? We are here to be part of God's army. We must fight for the souls of our families, our friends, and our nation. The kingdom of darkness is attempting to take over. If we do not take a stand, who will? While we stand, we should be encouraged by remembering that there are no victories without battles. Let's look at what the Bible has to say about battles and victories.
God trains us for battle: Judges 3:1-3 explains that God left some of Israel's enemies in the promised land so that the next generation could learn how to fight. "He did this to teach warfare to the descendants of the Israelites who had not had previous battle experience." King David wrote about this in 2 Samuel 22:35 and Psalm 18:34. "He trains my hands for battle; my arms can bend a bow of bronze."
Prepare for the battle: When the Lord was ready to give Israel victory over the Babylonians, He spoke through Jeremiah: "Before your eyes I will repay Babylon...for all the wrong they have done in Zion...Lift up a banner in the land! Blow the trumpet among the nations! Prepare the nations for battle against her..." (Jeremiah 51:26-27) The Lord helped in the battle preparation. Here is how it is explained in Isaiah 42:13. "He will march out like a champion, like a warrior He will stir up His zeal; with a shout He will raise the battle cry and will triumph over His enemies."
Show up for the battle: Imagine being ready for the battle but refusing to participate! "The men of Ephraim, though armed with bows, turned back on the day of battle; they did not keep God's covenant and refused to live by His law. They forgot what He had done, the wonders He had shown them." (Psalm 78:9-11) King David made the biggest mistake of his life one spring when he did not go to war in the time when all kings were expected to do so. 2 Samuel 11 tells the story of David's lust for another man's wife that led to adultery and the murder of her husband because he did not show up for the spring battle.
Recognize and use the weapons we have for battle: The Lord has already placed within us the weapons we need to win our battles. They are simple yet powerful! Look at 1 Chronicles 5:20. "They were helped in fighting them, and God delivered the Hagrites and all their allies into their hands because they cried out to Him during the battle. He answered their prayers because they trusted in Him." The tribes that fought with David were known for their contributions. "From Zebulon, experienced soldiers prepared for battle with every type of weapon to help David with undivided loyalty." (1 Chronicles 12:33) Zechariah 10:4 teaches that Judah or Praise will win the battle: "From Judah will come the cornerstone, from Him the tent peg, from Him the battle bow, from Him every ruler, together they will be like warriors in battle."
Remember the reason for the battle: Three verses in 2 Samuel 23:11-12 demonstrate how one courageous man stood his ground for Israel and the generation to come. "Next in rank was Shammah ...One time the Philistines gathered at Lehi and attacked the Israelites in a field of lentils. The Israelite army fled but Shammah held his ground (stood) in the middle of the field and beat back the Philistines. So, the Lord brought about a great victory." (NLT) Prophetic contributor to the Elijah List, Joe Joe Dawson, wrote that Shammah saw more than a field of lentils; he saw a harvest for future generations. Amen! Ephesians 6:13 admonishes, "Put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand." Plunder is ours as we win our battles. The children of Israel dedicated some of their plunder for the repair of the temple. (1 Chronicles 26:27) How thrilling it is to give the spoils of victory to the Lord!
Remember that the victory belongs to the Lord: We should be encouraged by this truth. "Hear, Israel: Today you are going into battle against your enemies. Do not be fainthearted or afraid; do not panic or be terrified by them. For the Lord your God is the one who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies to give you victory." (Deuteronomy 20:2-4) In Psalm 6:11-12 David cried out to the Lord: "Give us aid against our enemies for human help is worthless. With God we will gain the victory, and He will trample down our enemies." The challenge is before us. In Isaiah 59:15-16 God reveals His disappointment that no one would intervene for Israel: "...The Lord saw it, and it displeased Him that there was no justice. He saw that there was no man and wondered that there was no intercessor. Therefore, His own arm brought salvation for Him; and His own righteousness, it sustained Him." The battle plan to win the war for the souls of our families, friends, and nation, and to beat back the darkness, is before us. It is time for us to take a stand. I ask again: If we do not do it, who will?
Joan E. Mathias