Winning the War
Tags: Church Growth, Church Growth Movement, Church growth consultants, worship leader, conservative, liberal, Conservative Christian, Conservative Christian theology, Evangelical, evangelism, post modern church, modernism, praise and worship, hymns, hymn singing, Jericho, Joshua, Moabites, Ammonites and Menuites, Jehoshaphat, Satan, spiritual warfare, Jordan River, Red Sea
When Gods people have learned to
daily praise God for who He is and what He does with thankfulness, magnificent things
result. Consider the instructions that the Lord gave Joshua and the Hebrews as they
prepared to storm the walls of
Pastor, when you look at your city today do you sense there is a wall between your church and the surrounding community that is impeding the work of the ministry? Then let God do the work as you praise Him continually. Praise is not about a dominion-oriented singing exercise designed to drum up God in order to subdue the world, but a life filled with an attitude of gratitude. So in your life, remain faithful to his commands and do as He has instructed you in His Word. Praise Him continually with a heart of thanksgiving. And teach your congregation to do the same to praise him in the sanctuary, at work or in school, in their communities and in their homes.
The heart of an ungrateful person spews out anger and pessimism and nobody responds well to that. But praise brings the truth of God along with optimism, peace and encouragement to a lonely and distressed world. So praise the Lord unceasingly to see the people around you recognize the greatness of God and thus give their lives to him. This is evangelism at its best.
Praise not only stands out as our
offensive weapon but our defensive covering as well. When
Now to those on the outside, sending
praise singers out in front of the army might seem a bit wacky. But this is not so for the
people of God. Indeed, the ways of the world are not suitable for those who love God and
worship Him. They fight their battles by other means than human might. As they began
to sing and praise, the Lord set ambushes against the men of Ammon and
Like the enemies of
The important thing to understand is that we are not involved in a physical battle but a spiritual one. (Eph 6:12) Thankfully for Jerusalem Jehoshaphat realized this and sought his victory through prayer, worship and praise. This same victory is available to all who will do the same.
Daily each of us is caught in the middle of a spiritual war. Who is against you today as a result of your faith? Are you feeling persecution at work because of your Christian beliefs? Do people look down on you or are you held back as a result of your testimony? Has a sociology or philosophy professor in college given you a lower grade because you defended the faith in your term paper? Has your teacher instructed you not to pray, not to carry a Bible or not to wear a T-shirt that mentions the Christian faith? Does the community that you work in scorn you because of your adamant stand for Christ? Do you sense the disdain of others because you fail to give into the crowd who is bent on liberalizing doctrine or bringing the ways of the world into the fold? Are people lying about you or misrepresenting your intentions? When you speak out the truth do your critics attempt to make it a personality issue at your demise? Do you always find yourself at the bottom of the political fray? Do you feel that you are standing alone at times?
The one who praises the Lord with an attitude of gratitude never stands alone. He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress; my God, in Him I will trust. . . For He shall give His angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways. In their hands they shall bear you up, lest you dash your foot against a stone. (Psalms 91: 1-2, 11-12 MKJV)
Through the years I have faced many obstacles. Again and again I have lived under the attack and felt the hatred of those who became angered at me because of the testimony of Christ. Without exception, regardless of the adversity that I have faced, I have seen the Lords hand in it. Every time God has provided for me and rescued me from the enemys clutches even as He has dealt in an appropriate fashion with those who have sought my ruin. In all of this I have learned to praise the Lord, not for my circumstance but in my circumstance. As the psalmist wrote even before he saw Gods victory fulfilled, But I have trusted in Your mercy; my heart shall rejoice in Your salvation. I will sing to the Lord, because He has dealt bountifully with me. (Ps 13:5-6 MKJV)
Notice the wording here. The psalmist
recognizes clearly that the salvation of the Lord lies in the future. God has not
accomplished His saving work in the situation yet. But God will save us and we can depend
upon this fact not only because of His Word but also because of how he has been good to us
in the past. When you are faced with the awesome task of crossing the River Jordan, never
forget about the
Praise Him while remembering And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. (Rom MKJV) Pastor, do you want to see God do something noteworthy in your church? Then it is time to stop coveting the church that you dont have and begin praising God for who He is and what He has done.
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