Biblegateway Verse of the Day

Standing Firm (Updated Article)

By Benjamin H. Liles

          In the last article I said that the Christ-follower will do all to stand firm, awaiting the hope of the Lord and Savior bringing salvation. In this article I will outline how we do that, but to quickly go over it, we're told in Hebrews 9:28, "the Messiah...will appear a second bring salvation to those who are waiting for him." Within scripture, especially in the New Testament, we see a people the Lord has carved out who belong to Him who endure and can endure according to the strength of the Lord and not on their own merits.

          We see this in this text here: "Not only that, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out His love into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, whom He has given us" (Romans 5:3-5, Berean Study). What Paul is saying here is that suffering will produce in us determination, and determination will produce godly character, and with godly character, hope (you ought to get this line of thought).

          I love what James, the half-brother of Jesus, says, "Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love Him" (James 1:12).

          How can we stand this test of faith, and with what? Paul gives us this within the pages of the Book of Ephesians. He writes, "Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle with flesh and blood, but against principalities, and powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the day of evil, and having done all, to stand" (Ephesians 6:11-13, New King James).

          In other words, Paul is saying that the Christ-follower should and ought to stand firm against what an evil nation might advocate for (meaning if it deems life be cut off where life out to persist, stand against that; such as abortion, which God says to take life is murder), to stand against undue and even evil influence (such as that of Hollywood celebrities believing they are more in the right than actual people of Christ), against those in high position of authority both physical and spiritual (I will come back to this as well, actually). We are to especially stand against those who claim special divine knowledge when we know that God alone is true, that His Son Jesus Christ alone gives and brings us salvation.

          We can stand against those things with grace, truth and love, as much as Christ Himself did. For Christ did stand against those who were sinful and proud, rebuking Him as though they were His. He used the word of God to shame the wise, which only He can do. All we can do as His children in the faith is point to Him, declaring the same as I said in the last post: "to repent of sin, have faith in Jesus Christ, to be baptized, and to receive the Holy Spirit." There is no knowing and walking with Christ or even God without that at all. This is the how we are to stand and walk in faith, even if child-like.

          Paul gives us the following what from Ephesians 6:

1) Gird your waist with truth
2) Having put on the breastplate of righteousness
3) Placing sandals (shoes) on our feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace
4) Taking the shield of faith, which will quench the fiery darts of the wicked one
5) Taking the helmet of salvation
6) Placing the sword of the Spirit at our side, the word of God (Ephesians 6:14-17).

          Now that we have the what we are to have to stand against those who oppose all that is God and belongs to Him, we can stand firm in our fight of faith. However, we are not the aggressors, but ambassadors (see 2 Cor. 5:17-21; Rom. 8:14; Eph. 6:20; Prov. 13:17; 1 Cor. 11:1). We all know what ambassadors do on behalf of a nation: to seek peace, to establish justice, granting asylum to those in desperate need; extending shelter to those in need of a home.

          From the beginning in which I started this website/blog I have given my best and utmost to that which rightfully belongs to the Lord: proclaiming His lordship, His name, the fact He gives His mercy to whom He gives it to, and to be the kind of guy He can and will bless. And He has blessed me indeed. He gave me life when I didn't even deserve it, but owing me nothing brought me to Himself and declaring me righteous as His own Son is righteous. It is not something I say with pride but with a sense of gravity. It is done so that you, the reader can and may see God's glory reigning in and through to those who need Him active in their lives. I extend this message of hope, of salvation to you, in the name of Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior.

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