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Thursday, January 24, 2008

DAILY ENCOURAGEMENT – THURSDAY THOUGHTS #41…Christlikeness - A Defence System Of A Nation.

Christlikeness is a tremendous factor in the life of the Lord’s people. Christlikeness, which is both spirituality and faith, is a tremendously important factor for both the Church as a whole and we as individuals to aspire to. Christlikeness lifts us above the affairs and concerns of this world. Oh, that the Church had maintained that position all the way through! What terrible tragedies have resulted from the Church allowing itself to become entangled in the ways of the world.

I will give an illustration of the tragedy that can befall the Church when it becomes entangled with the spirit of the world. I found this written by Sir George Adam Smith, speaking of the Moslem invasion of Syria, he writes:"Christianity in Syria fell before Islam because it was corrupt, and it deserved to fall. In an attempt by purely human means to regain her birthplace, the Church was beaten back by Islam because she was selfish and worldly.

It was not a true Christianity that was overthrown, though the true Church bears to this day the reproach, and the burden of the results.

The irony of this situation was that it was on the very land where Jesus once walked that the Church was punished for idolatry and materialism. It was in sight of the scenes where He taught and healed, and went about doing good with his band of pure devoted disciples, that the envious, treacherous, truculent hosts of the Cross were put to sword and fire.

They who in His name sought a kingdom of this world by worldly means could not hope to succeed on the very fields where Jesus himself had trod. The victory of Islam over Christendom then was no more a problem to God than the victory of Babylon over Israel.”

That is a tremendous statement. What history there is in a statement like that! Perhaps the greatest problem facing Christianity today, is Islam. I do not think the Church has any greater challenge today than the advance of Islam. Why? Well, Sir George Adam Smith puts his finger right on the cause when he said the power of Islam is commensurate to the corruption of the Church at any given point in history; divided, selfish and worldly. Islam has gained mastery whenever the Church has been in that state.

How, then, can Islam be held in check? How can its advance be reversed? Surely by a Christlike Church, which has been wholly separated from this world in all means and methods, and united in one spirit as a great spiritual force, under the government of the Holy Spirit. That, and that alone, will overthrow the forces which have gained their position by reason of the lack of spirituality, and the ungodliness in the Church.

If the principle applies to the Church as a whole, it must also apply to us individually. Victory over the enemy on any grounds demands spiritual detachment from the things of this world, a close walk with God, and a heavenly life, a life committed to Christ and aligned to His character. May the Lord lay upon our hearts the tremendous importance of this heavenly fellowship with Him each and every day, for the sake of the spiritual power that it generates to allow us to survive in this hostile world. - By T Austin-Sparks.

Loving Heavenly Father, I thank you for my life in Jesus Christ; Help me by the power of the Holy Spirit, to demonstrate His in my every day life. For your glory Lord, and for the extension of your Kingdom, in Jesus wonderful and mighty name I pray, amen!

Be encouraged!

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