Temple Baptist Church - 5-24-2009
A. In Sunday School a few weeks ago, while teaching on the meaning of the Peace Offering in Leviticus 3, I made this observation: It has been estimated that in the last 5,600 years there have been 14,531 wars and only 292 years of world peace. The hearts of people worldwide long for peace! People have talked a lot about peace over the centuries, but they have experienced precious little of it.
B. This Memorial Day, our nation will once again honor our war dead with the placement of flowers at the Monument of the Unknown Soldier. What a tremendous price has been paid for the freedoms that we enjoy today! I made these statements last year but they need to be repeated this year:
1. In all of the American wars, either by our country or within our country, over 45,000,00 men and women have served in wartime with app. 1,175,000 war dead and app. 1,500,000 wounded in action. That is a tremendous number of young lives that have been given and forever changed while affording us the freedom that we now enjoy.
2. Freedom in a privilege, not a right! There are many in this country who enjoy the freedoms while misusing them. We do not have the freedom to do wrong in this land. We do not have the freedom to live here and defame this land. America has had some sordidness in its history and still is not a perfect land, but it is my country and I say, “Love it or leave it.”
C. Ecclesiastes 3 says:
Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: 2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; 3 A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; 4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; 5 A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; 6 A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; 7 A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; 8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.
1. There are times when it is Kill or be Killed
2. There are times when it is War or Slavery
D. War and Peace are two sides to a revolving door with neither side being open permanently. War is necessary! War is a way of life! The first mention of war is in Genesis 14:2 and the last in Revelation 19:19.
1. God taught David to War - Psalms 144:1 Blessed be the LORD my strength, which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight:
2. God taught Israel to War - Judges 3:1-2 Now these are the nations which the LORD left, to prove Israel by them, even as many of Israel as had not known all the wars of Canaan; 16217 Only that the generations of the children of Israel might know, to teach them war, at the least such as before knew nothing thereof;
3. We must teach our children to war! Judges 3:1-2 Now these are the nations which the LORD left, to prove Israel by them, even as many of Israel as had not known all the wars of Canaan; 2 Only that the generations of the children of Israel might know, to teach them war, at the least such as before knew nothing thereof;
E. One day all wars will end. Isaiah 2:4 And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.
F. But, until then, war has been, is, and will be a way of life.
1. Until Then We Will Have To Fight Our National Enemies - Ecclesiastes 3:8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace. (The enemies of peace understand only one thing: strength! You cannot negotiate peace from a position of weakness! As long as sinful man is in control, wars will be fought. Just before the Rapture, there are wars and rumours of wars… For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.)
Exodus 15:3 The LORD is a man of war: the LORD is his name.
Psalms 24:8 Who is this King of glory? The LORD strong and mighty, the LORD mighty in battle.
Psalms 45:3 Gird thy sword upon thy thigh, O most mighty, with thy glory and thy majesty.
Revelation 19:11-15 And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. 12 His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself. 13 And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God. 14 And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. 15 And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.
2. Until Then We Will Have To Fight Our Flesh - Romans 7:23-25 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. 24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? 25 I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin. (Until we get a new body at the coming of the Lord, our old nature will not be eradicated! Our Lord Jesus Christ will deliver us from the body of this death.)
Galatians 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
Luke 9:23 And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.
3. Until Then We Will Have To Fight Satanic Foes - Ephesians 6:12-13 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. 13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. (We live in perilous times with our enemy active while the church is asleep! He devours us while we devour each other. “Withstand” means to take a punch. Do not think that Satan is either retreating or giving up. One day, he will be put in the bottomless pit. One day, he will be cast into the lake of fire but—until then—we are in a battle for our very lives.)
1 Peter 5:8-9 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: 9 Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.
4. Until Then We Will Have To Fight The Good Fight Of Faith - 1 Corinthians 16:13 Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong.
Ezekiel 22:25 There is a conspiracy of her prophets in the midst thereof, like a roaring lion ravening the prey; they have devoured souls; they have taken the treasure and precious things; they have made her many widows in the midst thereof.
Jeremiah 5:30-31 A wonderful and horrible thing is committed in the land; 31 The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means; and my people love to have it so: and what will ye do in the end thereof? (God’s men have always been fighters! God’s people have always had to fight! Until He comes, we are commanded to “fight the good fight of faith.”)
1 Timothy 6:12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.
Conclusion: One day, praise the Lord, all fighting will be over. I long for that day when we meet Christ in the air and peace will eternally reign for the child of God.