- A Good Soldier is to be Single-Minded – In Luke 3:14: “And the soldiers likewise demanded of him, saying, And what shall we do?”, John the Baptist’s response (under divine inspiration) to their question: “And he said unto them, Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages”, is enlightening, and reveals certain traits that soldiers could very easily succumb to: (1) Don’t intimidate or frighten others; (2) Don’t lie about others; and (3) Be content with your wages. In 1 Tim 1:18 Paul tells Timothy, “This charge I commit unto thee, son Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before on thee, that thou by them mightest war a good warfare;”. The warfare that the Bible is focused upon is spiritual in nature. In Eph 6:12, we read “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood…”, that there is an unseen spiritual battle that is being waged at all times. Our spiritual warfare is not “after the flesh” but “with our own flesh”: “From whence come wars and fightings among you? come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members?” (Jam 4:1). The factor that affects all of us who have been redeemed is the body of flesh that we inhabit, and that has not yet become saved. 1 Pet 2:11 admonishes “Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul;”
Eph 6:10–13 “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.”
2 Cor 10:3–6 “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.”
Col 3:1–5 “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory. Mortify [that is, put to death] therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry:”
- A Good Soldier do not Entangle Himself with the Affairs of this Life – 2 Tim 2:3–4 states “Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier”. What are the “affairs” of this life? Luke 12 admonishes believers not to seek “what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink” but rather seek “the kingdom of God” because “where your treasure is, there will your heart be also”. A believer’s “world” should be focused on advancing the Kingdom of God, and not become “captivated” by “… the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life…”. In Luke 19:31, “And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come”, spiritually speaking, underscores the duty of all believers to sacrificially publish the Gospel as widely as possible until the Lord returns.
2 Pet 2:20 “For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning.”
Luke 12:29–34 “And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind. 30For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things. 31But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you. 32Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. 33Sell that ye have, and give alms; provide yourselves bags which wax not old, a treasure in the heavens that faileth not, where no thief approacheth, neither moth corrupteth. 34For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.”
- A Good Soldier Fights Sources of Entanglements with Perseverance – Paul in 2 Tim 4:10 states: “For Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world, and is departed unto Thessalonica…”. A very real and insidious problem of life on this sin-cursed earth is that we can become captivated by “… all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever”, according to 1 John 2:16–17. Luke 17:26–33 is a fitting commentary of our day, as we are in the period known as “Great Tribulation”. Jesus pointed out in Luke 16:13, “No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon”. A true Christian denies himself, takes up his cross daily and perseveres to the end by God’s grace: “And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me” (Luke 9:23). Could it be that God might so work in each of us that we might affirm along with the Apostle Paul the words of 2 Tim 4:7, “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:”
Luke 17:26–33 “And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man. They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all. Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all. Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed. In that day, he which shall be upon the housetop [proclaiming Gospel], and his stuff in the house, let him not come down to take it away: and he that is in the field [proclaiming the Gospel to the World], let him likewise not return back [stay focused and not look back]. Remember Lot’s wife. Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it.”
Luke 9:62 “And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.