Be Strong and Courageous!

I just read the story of Joshua killing five kings. These kings hid inside a cave. Once retrieved, Joshua had his leaders step on the necks of these kings saying, “Do not be afraid or dismayed; be strong and courageous. For thus the Lord will do to all your enemies against whom you fight.” (Josh. 10:25)

My study bible makes an interesting connection with this story. “…we hear the echoes of the promised Messiah who will crush the serpent’s head (Gen. 3:15), and of Christ’s disciples who return breathless with the news that they trample serpents (i.e. subdue the demons) in his name (Luke 10:17-19).” (Gospel Transformation Study Bible, Crossway)

Victory Over Sin

Indeed, Christ has “disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, but triumphing over them in him.” (Col. 2:15). This is wonderful news for believers in our struggle with sin. Paul puts it plainly. “For sin will have no dominion over you.” (Rom. 6:14)

Still, sin still is a problem for believers, me included. But these words of the bible are plain to read. We CAN have victory over sin this side of heaven. Through Jesus. By Jesus. In Jesus. He renews our minds. He provides the way of escape during temptation. But did Jesus give me authority to tread on serpents and cast out demons like he gave to his disciples?

I would say no. Personally, I don’t want to confront Satan. No thanks. I’ll let Jesus handle that. I’m not match. However, I will put on God’s armor. And, do what? Stand firm. His armor is for us so “that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil.” (Eph. 6:11)

Do I need to stand on anyone’s neck? No. That’s Jesus’ job. Besides, man isn’t my enemy. “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” (Eph. 6:12)

Be Strong and Courageous in Prayer

What’s Jesus’ command to me? Put on my armor and stand firm. Oh, one more thing: pray at all times in the Spirit. Does that mean to pray in tongues? I don’t think so. The Sword of the Spirit is the word of God (Eph. 6:17). That means we are to pick up our bibles and see what it says about all these things.

Just like I did today.

Father, I thank you that your word encourages me. Yes, I am to battle the sin in my flesh, but you are the one who has won that battle. My strength is in you. I put on your armor, stand firm, and pray. Victory is in Jesus. The Holy Spirit is in me. He transforms my mind. My trust is in Jesus. I will not be afraid or dismayed. I will be strong and courageous. For thus will the Lord will do to all my enemies against whom I fight. Amen!

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