“A (1,000) thousand shall fall at [Y]our side, and (10, 000) ten thousand at [Y]our right [H]and; but the [arrow or pestilance] shall not come near [Y]ou. (Psalm 91:7)
“O death where your sting? O grave where is your victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which gives us victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as you know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.” (1 Corinthians 15:55-58)
The quoted passages above fit the definition of rousing. Paul’s rousing and evoking words are second to no other. Paul’s words above, from 1 Corinthians 15, is the Christ-ian’s hope and battle cry. The Psalm from above also provokes hope and passion in the believer or it should.
Often times when my children and their friends leave our home I charge them with Paul’s words of steadfastness, unmovability and perpetual abounding.
One of the titles given to this article is, “The Aweful Promise of God.” When most hear the word aweful they think bad or terrible or even horrible, however the Scriptures mean it as being filled with awe or amazement. In the Psalms we are encouraged to be in awe of our God….”Stand in awe of your God and sin not.” Those who know God’s greatness and big-ness know that “God is so big; so strong and so mighty; [and] there’s nothing [their] God cannot do.” Those who know God’s goodness and power know that He is “the God of the impossible.”
Those who are blest and allowed to know God intimately walk by faith and not by sight; they trust in the Arm of God and His Right Hand and do not trust the arm(s) of flesh. We that “know God or rather are known of God” look to Him and the promises made by Him in His Word. This writer has found, in all cases, God and His promises are to be trusted fully and without doubt, “As your faith is, so be it unto you,” said God’s Right Hand, “Your faith has delivered thee,” He says elsewhere, and He also said, “only believe.” John the beloved teaches us that, “[our] faith is [our] victory.”
One of His promises is quotes above and is (1) one of out titles. Psalm 91:7 promised many shall fall at our side but we will remain and we will stand. This is an aweful promise. To be true to Scripture we must point out that Psalm 91 is a promise to Christ and refers to His resurrection and final, complete and utter victory over sin and death. But beloved, a promise made to Christ, our Head, is a promise made to us, His Body.
In (1st) First Corinthians 12, Paul teaches that the church and it’s many members are the many members of Christ’s Body. The inference taken from that is our earthen, and kingdom promoting activities and ministries are instructions delivered to us from our Head. We receive these instructions through the Nerve Center that is The Holy Ghost and God’s Word.
Christ said to us that “The gates of hell shall not prevail” against the Church, Christ’s Mystical Body. However, we see many ministries closing it’s doors in this “world that lies in [perpetual] wickedness.” Does this then contradict the Words spoken by Christ and the promises made by God? The Body of Christ experiences the loss of beloved members all the time. Christ-ians, our siblings, are being persecuted and killed in this “present evil world” everyday. It would appear that the church is being massacred before our very eyes!!!
“Only with your eyes shall you behold and see the reward of the wicked” (Psalm 91:8). Though we are seeing the Christ-ian church massacred in our very sight we must remember that we walk by faith and not by sight. Though we see the wicked gaining ground the promise of God still stands…we shall see the reward of the wicked. I for one believe Him and not what I am seeing and hearing.
How does one explain then the seemingly apparent assault and destruction of the church, whether by persecution or by atrophy? The local church, the buildings, the human bodies, the outward works are all viewable by sight as is the persecution and the atrophy thereof. But beloved forget not, we walk by faith, we walk in the Spirit, we live in the Spirit, we are led of the Spirit. We are taught from inspired Scripture that that which is “seen is temporal and that which is not seen is eternal” When we see the church being persecuted or seemingly vanishing away let us remember the Cross….The disciple saw their Friend, their Brother, their Master, their Savoiur die.
But behold, beloved, the disciples also saw Him raised from the dead as He declared victory over the grave and over sin. The Church…the mystical, invisible, eternal, Body of Christ will rise, will be raised…and will live in eternal victoy and the eternal one-ness between Christ and His Body of many members shall be made sight!!!
The abiding and divinely maintained hope that breathes within each member of Christ’s Holy Body is their salvation and is the foundation or their “greater works!!!” This abiding and driving hope is the grown up and matured faith of the believing member. This hope has been rewarded by it’s Giver and Maintaining many many times. We have many examples in Scripture. Moses and the Body of Israelites saved at the edge of the Red sea; Elisha delivered from a king’s wrath by the host of Heaven; Hezekiah and his kingdom protected by an Angel of God Who killed an entire army in one night; Peter and Paul, both, miraculously and divinely released from prisons; and Paul raptured to safety by Roman soldiers as a crowd of Jews sought to kill him.
We see from the above paragraph that God will use supernatural methods to aid His servants and He will use natural means to deliver His servants…both are of God and both are an answer to one’s God honouring hope.
Another method or means of safety that is used by God, is indeed and in fact, death. In Scripture death is known as the sting or result or reward of sin. However, death, like so many others means is (2) two edged. Sin entered our world and became intrinsic to all humans through the deception of (s)atan and the fall of Adam. ” For by one man” sin and death entered our world and reigned over all men. In the present sin continues to reign over man but not over all men. We know that sin and death yet reigns over many, as a Sovereign, because sin and it’s reward remains as part of the human condition or the old creation still in Adam.
“But God commended His love toward us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died [and rose again] for us” (Romans 5:8) …us being those that have, do and will believe. Also, God was not willing that any [of us] should perish, but that all of [us] should [must- Acts 4:12] come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9). God uses the double edge of death to save, deliver, and bring His servants Home. God saves, delivers, and brings His servants home once they have, “finished [their] course” and after they have “fought a good fight”…the “good fight of faith[fulness].”
It is because of Christ Jesus the Lord of the Living and the dead that death has it’s (2) two edges, “O death, where is your sting? O grave, where is your victory,?” mocks Christ our Victor. Death is a dragon that Christ has broken and tamed. Death now serves Him and His body of many members. The world that walks by sight and stumbles due to it’s spiritual blindness sees the Body of Christ in the throws of defeat. The believers, the many members under Christ’s Headship, walk by faith and are seeing the salvation and deliverance of God….We see the aweful promises of God being kept and our hope being honoured, for God honours them that honour Him.
Therefore, Beloved, In light of this truth and our abiding hope; “be ye steadfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord [The Work He has, by His Spirit, delegated specifically and especially to you], forasmuch as you know [Faith believes; Hope knows] that your labour is not in vain [that is wrought for and] in the Lord.”
Onward Christ-ian Soldier,….Onward and Upward to Victory and to Christ, Victory’s Champion and God’s King Eternal!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!