Armor Before Peace
By Jim Huskins
“O God, the nations have come into your inheritance; they have defiled your holy temple; they have laid Jerusalem in ruins. They have given the bodies of your servants to the birds of the heavens for food, the flesh of your faithful to the beasts of the earth. They have poured out their blood like water all around Jerusalem, and there was no one to bury them. We have become a taunt to our neighbors, mocked and derided by those around us.”
The opening verses of Psalm 79 were penned 2600 years ago, but they articulate a modern horror. How did Hamas terrorists catch Israel napping? What caused the failure of a legendary intelligence and defense network?
To make matters worse, cities across the US and Europe are witnessing jubilant crowds praising the slaughter. Thousands of Australian citizens paraded around the Sydney Opera House shouting “gas the Jews.” Some Americans proclaim that black lives matter, but Jewish lives do not. Our so-called journalists blame Israel for every problem in the Middle East. The U.S. House of Representatives is tainted by this rot. How did we come to this?
The stifling atmosphere of world politics has become even more laced with threats and insults. Any voice of reason is obscured by the clatter of rattling sabers. Our president talks about “unwavering support for Israel,” but he is attempting to hand over one hundred million dollars to Hamas. Does he believe they will buy rice and beans? No force on earth can prevent the war that will eventually resolve this ancient enmity. The Bible tells us what will happen. The only unanswered question is when will the final battle begin.
This struggle began as sibling rivalry in the home of Abraham. Descendants of older brother, Ishmael, insist that their ancestor is the legitimate heir of the Abrahamic Covenant. Genesis 16:12 describes Ishmael, “He shall be a wild donkey of a man, his hand against everyone and everyone’s hand against him, and he shall dwell over against all his kinsmen.” Ishmael’s descendants are called Arabs. The founding of Islam was an Arabian attempt to lay claim to the Covenant. Muslims insist that they worship the God of Abraham. They do not. Allah is no different than baal, molech, or chemosh. The phrase “God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob” distinguishes the Creator of All from the host of pagan impostors.
Younger brother Isaac is the true heir. “I will establish my covenant with Isaac.” (Genesis 17:21) Isaac’s family is the nation of Israel. The heart of the “Middle East Conflict” is the fact that God chose for Himself a people. He separated Israel from everyone else for His purpose. In the final battle of this age, every nation on earth will join forces to attack Israel. They will lose.
Between now and Armageddon, the spiritual battle will rage. “Powers and principalities, and spiritual wickedness in high places” stand fanatically opposed to Messiah and His family. Matthew 24:21 says, “For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be.” During that tribulation, everyone’s allegiance will be discovered. Many Christians think they will be removed before the tribulation. When that does not happen, some will lose their faith. The only way to survive the horrors foretold by scripture is to trust Jesus and become intimate with His Word.
Never has it been more important for God’s people to prepare for battle. That preparation involves putting on His full armor. We must first gird up our loins with truth. God’s Word is truth. Read it! Start today. Read every word over the next twelve months. No excuses.
Put on the breastplate of righteousness. You may have been taught that Christ’s righteousness is miraculously applied to you and that your righteousness is like “filthy rags.” These are both lies. As you immerse yourself in the truth of Scripture, you will learn how to live righteously.
Shoe your feet with the Gospel of peace. One of satan’s favorite tricks is infecting us with worry. We cannot “stand firm” if we are terrified about what “might” happen. Knowing God’s truth and devoting ourselves to righteous living will help us stand securely on the peace of Christ.
Take up the shield of faith. When we are convinced that God will always keep His promises, our enemy has no chance of defeating us. If we choose to believe the popular lie that God reneged on His many promises to His people, Israel, then we are doomed. As you read the Bible, you will discover that He did no such thing.
Put on the helmet of salvation. When we turn to Jesus in faith, repentance, and baptism, we begin a process which must be worked out with “fear and trembling.” Salvation represented by a helmet is a powerful image. It is in our minds that temptations and distractions take root. Let us surround our minds with the assurance that those who endure to the end will live eternally in God’s presence.
The last item in our armor is “the sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God.” (Ephesians 6:17) Our preparation for Spiritual battle begins and ends with God’s Word. Not with a devotional book. Not with watching or listening to someone talk about the Word of God. All of us will be judged based on what we do in this life. The only way to discover how God wants us to live is to read His book.
I do not know if the current war is the beginning of end-time events, but I am certain that every person on earth has been given a wakeup call. Satan still holds incredible power over this world. Everyone will be forced to choose sides. Will you stand with the prince of darkness, or will you arm yourself and serve the King of Kings? No third option is available.
Jim & Beverly Huskins are members of Obedient Heart Fellowship in McDowell County. Beginning July 2, 2022 Obedient Heart Fellowship will meet at 10:00 Each Sabbath (Seventh Day) in space graciously shared by New Covenant Church in Christ. 2460 US 221 Business N. In Marion, NC. Call for info. 828-460-7913. You can read more good Christian news from Jim HERE.