Welcome to Knowing Christ!

Welcome to Knowing Christ! My sincere prayer is that God will use what time you spend reading the words shared here to draw you closer to Himself, to speak to you through His word and to mold you and shape you more and more into the image of Christ Jesus by the power of the Holy Spirit. There is absolutely nothing special about me but I serve a loving and holy Master who can and will work through all who fully surrender their lives to His control. May you also testify with Paul and myself and countless others that everything else is garbage, filth, dung when compared to the infinite value of KNOWING CHRIST Jesus our Lord.

Your Brother in Christ,


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Saturday, June 2, 2018

The War of the Christian

For a large portion of my life I wanted to go into the military. It was a dream of mine that started when I was young and continued all the way through high school. I had plans to go into the special operations group of the USMC known as Marine Force Recon. I had trained for years getting both psychically and mentally prepared for this task. Throughout my high school career I would run, swim or workout 6 days a week. The desire to be a Special Operator was my all consuming passion. I had studied military leaders and tactics and even was a part of a USMC youth group similar to Jr. ROTC where I competed at a national level for physical fitness. For most of my teenage life there was a driving force within me to prove to those around me not only that I was tough but that I could push myself physically and mentally far beyond anything that other people were capable of doing. Although I was never eager about the thought of war my attitude was that if someone had to go, "here I am LORD, send me" (Isaiah 6:8).

 In my senior year God did something drastic to get my attention. Knowing that my pride had overtaken me and that I had drifted so far from God's plan for my life, a few weeks before I was supposed to take my final fitness test, God graciously ordained that I should have an asthma attack while running on my high school track. Long story short is that I had been diagnosed with asthma as a kid and thought I had outgrown it for the most part or at least gotten it to become manageable for me to move forward with MY dream. It was that moment that changed my life. I realized that God had other plans for my life and that it would not be for me to wage war as a soldier in our nation military. Nearly 14 years after that moment, in October of 2012, the Spirit of God did something else in my life where He came upon me (Acts 1:8, overtook me, attacked me) in a very powerful way. At that moment, the Holy Spirit simultaneously broke me and empowered me as I promised to serve Him wherever and however He chose. At the time I had no idea what that meant but I would find out soon enough. Looking back I can clearly see that God did not plan for me to be a soldier for our country...  but instead He planned to use me as a solider of Jesus Christ.

For the last two weeks, I've been reading through 2 Corinthians. This morning I share a passage of deep significance for all who profess to be followers of Jesus Christ.

"We are human but we don't wage war as humans do. We use God's mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments. We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from KNOWING God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ." 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 NLT

As Christians we are commanded to testify about our Lord Jesus Christ. We are called to be His witnesses, to be soldiers of Christ. Paul specifically says here that we don't "wage war" as humans do with weapons of this world but with weapons of God. Whether we like it or not, there is an unseen but very real war raging all around us. A war where satan and his demons fight for the souls of our friends, our neighbors, family and co-workers. So what are we to do? How are we to fight and with what weapons do we have in this war?  When Paul urged the Ephesians to put on the armor of God for this battle, what was the only offensive weapon mentioned? It was the word of God, the Bible, the Holy Scripture (Ephesians 6:17). Hebrews tells us that the word of God is sharper than any sword and that it is alive and active in our lives (Hebrews 4:12). When Paul left the Ephesian elders after serving with them and teaching them for 3 years he told them that he was entrusting them "to God and to the WORD of His grace" (Acts 20:32). In Jesus' last recorded prayer, Jesus asked that the Father would sanctify all believers that would ever live by the WORD of God (John 17:17). Scripture is one of our most important weapons but not our only weapon. Our other weapon is prayer. There are too many to quote but time and time again scripture makes great promises about prayer. (1 John 5:14-15, John 14:13, 15:7,16:23-24,Luke 11:9, etc) God will use and direct any true follower of Jesus Christ, that has been trained and equipped by the word of God (2 Timothy 3:17) to "wage war" on the kingdom of darkness. These followers are men and women who, armed with prayer and scripture, the Holy Spirit can use and direct as His personal special operators to wage war on the enemy of man's soul.

As I close our time together, I would simply ask you are you in this fight? Is God using you to wage war to fight for the souls of those around you? Are you a good solider of Jesus Christ like Paul commanded Timothy to be? If you are than I say amen! However, if you are not I would ask you to honestly examine yourself.  Are you training daily by spending time in the word of God and in prayer? If you are not in the fight, not waging war then you are still sitting on the sidelines and brother or sister we desperately need more soldiers in the war. If you are on the sidelines I would exhort you to ask God to change you from the inside out. Ask God to change your desires and your focus just as David did is Psalm 51 and as the Apostles did throughout the book of Acts. Becoming a soldier is not something you do for God, it's something God does for you and TO YOU. HE changes you, HE equips you, HE enables you and HE fills you with the power of the Holy Spirit. He does this THROUGH His word and through prayer and He certainly will change anyone that asks Him to do so (Luke 11:13). When you fully surrender yourself to God for Him to use you as He wishes… He will always equip you for His work. God does not call the equipped, He equips the called.  Like myself and countless others, I pray that you also will ask to be used as soldier of Jesus Christ to wage war on the enemy and join me is saying "here am I LORD, send me."

"Father, I ask that You use these words in the lives of all who read them. I ask this in the name of Jesus Christ my Lord and my God. Amen."