Spiritual Warfare

A Pure Heart + A Good Conscience + A Sincere Faith = Christlike Love Start your time today in prayer and thoughtfully meditating on 1 Timothy 1:5 “The aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.” (ESV) David was said to be “A man after God’s own heart” What a way to be remembered in the Bible and in history. The life of David was certainly commendable, from the time he was a young boy he worship God, praised Him, wrote songs to him. The Psalms are full of his praises and prayers to God. Who could have questioned if he had “pure heart.” In a quote from his book Wild at Heart, John Eldridge said, “A man has to know where he comes from, and what he’s made of.” And he goes on to say... “Those are two of the deepest questions of the masculine soul – even if we may not always be aware of them – and they are linked. What a man thinks he’s made of is so often shaped by what he thinks his father is made of. As the old age saying goes, “The fruit doesn’t fall far from the tree.” Yet we are something more than our father’s son...we bear the image of God.” I am absolutely sure David understood this. I believe David had a pure heart. I believe David had a good conscience. I believe David had sincere faith. So did almost all the people who knew him, and God blessed him. He became King of Israel. Until one day...when he should have been on the battlefield, instead, he was at home in his palace and looking from his rooftop, he sees a beautiful woman bathing and gives into his lust of the flesh. What David didn’t realize was that he was actually walking into a battle, but on a different battlefield, a Spiritual Battlefield. He was so overcome by the desires of the eyes, his lust of the flesh, that he misused his authority as the King of Israel. He had inquired as to who she was and told she was, Bathsheba, the wife of Uriah the Hittite, a noble warrior under David’s command and yet demanded that she be brought to him. Not only did he yield to his lust, he was pulled right into the hands of satan’s plan, consumed by sexual sin and he was soon caught in the dangers of lust... first by lying, then manipulating, and finally David ordered the murder of Uriah to cover up the guilt of his actions. “But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.” (James 1:14-15, ESV) I encourage you to read the full story in 2 Samuel 11:1-27. Sounds like a Hollywood movie, doesn’t it? But it happens. You may personally know of someone or even have seen it on the news. Maybe for you some parts of this story even have a familiar ring to it? Lust! You sometimes don’t even see it coming. First just a glance, then again, a second look; again, a stare, and then the lustful desire has taken root. “Can a man carry fire next to his chest and his clothes not be burned? Or can one walk on hot coals and his feet not be scorched? So is he who goes in to his neighbor’s wife; none who touches her will go unpunished.” (Proverbs 6:27-29, ESV) Jesus knew how serious this type of Spiritual Warfare can be. And because it goes undetected or doesn’t even appear to be on our radar is why Jesus said, “You have heard it said to those of

old ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that whosoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” (Matthew 5:27-28, NKJV). This is where we must hold the line. it’s the first warning. The shot fired over the bow. The “Guardrail” Pastor Andy Stanley is talking about that should wake us up. “Danger! Danger!” You will get seriously hurt on the other side...Don’t cross that line. Don’t become distracted like David. Knowing now that satan comes “to rob, steal, and destroy” we must be ever watchful. When we enter into the ring to fight, we must never drop our guard. Instead, we must prepare for battle, “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.” (Ephesians 6:11, NKJV) Prepare for the fight! Prepare for battle! This what King David should have been doing. Since every sin can be traced back to that one deceptive thought. Since what you think ultimately becomes what you do, it’s so important to pray. To pray regularly for the power of the Holy Spirit to renew your mind, helping you to think only praiseworthy thoughts that are positive, and productive. When you pray, pray in Jesus’ name, calling upon His strength. Pray with a sincere faith, with a pure heart, for a good conscience, out of humility, and God will bless you with protection, and provision through His power. Remember, “A man has to know where he comes from, and what he’s made of.” Because, when we put on the whole armor of God...we bear the image of God.” A Pure Heart + A Good Conscience + A Sincere Faith = Christlike Love Put on your armor! Pastor Don

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