"Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong." (1 Cor. 16:13)
On this date in 1944, during the Ardennes Offensive, the German Army was still wreaking havoc in the American lines. Some, in the face of overwhelming odds and firepower, stood their ground. Some survived. Many died in the process. Thousands, however, fled in shear panic. I have never condemned the latter. If I would have been in that hellish position, I cannot really be sure what I would have done. "Stand fast" means to hold your ground, be unmovable, unshakeable. The NASB translates, "be brave," as, "act like men." Variations on this were heard all over the battlefield in those horrendous days.
And so, in the desperate war of life, the God-Breathing Word says the same to us. The Holy Spirit would not have urged Paul to write our text if Believers did not need this kind of exhortation and encouragement. We all know people who exude the air of perfect spirituality, never show signs of weakness, never fearful, always seemingly on top of things. I write not for them. I write for those who find days or moments in the days when we need to hear, "watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong." There are seasons in this pilgrimage when the enemy throws overwhelming forces at us, and we face the temptation to turn and attempt to outrun the onslaught. Our text commands us what to do.
Someone once said that when the Lord says, "Fear not," He has a reason. Something is facing you which will cause fear. But to those who are utterly dependent in Jesus Christ, the, "Fear not," command rules. Mark this--- There are no impossible commands in the Bible. If some seem as such, it is only because we try to walk in them apart from total dependency on the Living, Indwelling Christ. "Watch" in Jesus. "Stand fast in the faith" in Jesus. "Be brave" in Jesus. "Be strong" in Jesus Christ. And as He says, "Do this and you will live"--------------------------------- and not run.
Father, in Jesus' Name, thank You that You are the power of the command. Amen.
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