1 Peter 2:11-12 “Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul; Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation.”
War is never wanted or desired. When it comes, there are some givens.
With war, there will be a cause worth fighting. There will be those opposed to God’s cause and those willing to give their life for their cause. War will always have collateral damage involving those not wanting to fight.
With war, the lines are drawn, meaning you will be on one side or the other. Neutrality is often a difficult place to maintain. Allies and enemies are made during the war, and some are pressed into choosing sides.
But to know of an enemy that wars against our soul are a bit disconcerting. This war is at a very base level. It strikes at the heart of where we live. Our most basic desires for food, comfort, clothing, and shelter are promised by our Savior.
1 Timothy 6:7-8 “For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.”
Philippians 4:19 “But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”
To want more is to invite the ‘fleshly lusts’ of which Peter speaks.
Whether wanted or not, prepared or not, war has come to us and oppresses our soul because of who we are in Jesus Christ.
Ephesians speaks of the armor we are given to protect us. There are promises we can carry into this battle that will be most advantageous to remember.
Isaiah 54:17 “No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and their righteousness is of me, saith the LORD.”
We are already more than conquerors.
Romans 8:35-37 “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.”
We already have a victory promised in a fight guaranteed to come our way.
1 Corinthians 15:57-58 “But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.”
In this war against our lusts, we must beware of those things that will unknowingly draw us into that fight. We cannot be falsely confident in those things that might trip us up.
Often, we mistake our confidence for foolish pride when we should be trusting the Holy Spirit’s leadership and guidance. Taking heed to those things God tells us will go much farther in keeping us safe than relying our own wisdom and knowledge.
God has seen many of His children through this war safely and successfully throughout the ages. His plan and His provision work every time. Why would we forsake the time-tested promise of our Creator for what a feeble mortal can do?
Take God at His Word.
Fight the good fight of faith.
Lay hold on eternal life and live!