Summary: When a Christian says, "I do" to Jesus, they enlist themselves in the army of the Lord. You cannot be reconciled to God without being recruited for God. So what are the characteristics of a Christian who is a good soldier?
Becoming a Soldier for Jesus Christ
International Day 2009
• ILLUS: Years ago there was a man named Saddam Hussein who invaded the nation of Kuwait.
• With all of his military power, he descended on that nation and brought death, and disease, and destruction
• Saudi Arabia, recognizing that they would be next on his hit list, made a call to Washington D.C.
• The call went to President Bush calling for help.
• Regardless of your political persuasion, you would have to agree that on that day President H.W. Bush was at his best.
• He picked up his telephone and on that day he called England, and Canada, and Turkey, Italy, France, and many other nations of the world and said, “Let’s have a coalition…let’s all get together and draw a line in the sand…and serve notice on this madman that not only can he go no farther…he must give up territory that he has already conquered.”
• The next thing that Saddam Hussein knew was that 500,000 men and women in desert storm had come upon the beach to serve notice on him that he could no longer have the territory.
• There’s another madman on the loose—we call him the devil.
• And he has come onto territory in Miami that he did not create and does not own
• And he has brought with him death, and disease, and destruction
• He has sought to take away our families, take away our morality, he has sought to take away our future, and destroy our city
• But God has called together a Coalition known as Wayside – it’s made up of black men, and white men, and yellow men, and red men—to draw a spiritual line in the sand
• And to serve notice on this madman – that not only can he not take any more – he must now GIVE UP what he has already laid claim to.
• It is high time that the men and women who serve God under the umbrella of Wayside – serve notice on this man that the party is over.
• Jesus said that upon this rock I will build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
• We are in the business of amassing an army of Christian soldiers who are willing to count the cost and pay the price in following after Jesus Christ
• That was the idea that entered Paul's mind when, at the end of his own ministry, having been imprisoned by the emperor Nero, he wrote to encourage a young pastor named Timothy.
• Timothy was facing severe conflict in his ministry at Ephesus, and the relentless opposition from heretics, apostates, and persecutors was weakening him.
• And just like any Christian who experiences difficulty because of following Christ, he needed to be reminded again of his task--to suffer hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.
• READ 2 Timothy 2:1-4, “1You therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. 2The things which you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, entrust these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.
3Suffer hardship with me, as a good soldier of Christ Jesus.
4No soldier in active service entangles himself in the affairs of everyday life, so that he may please the one who enlisted him as a soldier.”
• When Paul wrote these words he was chained to a Roman soldier.
• He was in a Roman jail, in fact, everywhere he looked there were soldiers.
• And so Paul, in communicating to Timothy, makes a comparison of a Christian to that of being a good soldier.
• Now, you may not have realized it – but when you accepted Jesus Christ – when you said “I DO” to Jesus – you were saying, “I enlist in the army of the Lord.”
• He doesn’t force anybody to be a soldier – the army of the Lord is not a draft – he doesn’t force anybody to follow him, but once you do take up your cross, you cannot look back.
• Stuart Briscoe once said, “You cannot be reconciled TO God without being recruited FOR God.
• Paul’s words to Timothy are also our marching orders as a church – we are teaming together as an army striving to be good soldiers of Jesus Christ.
• LISTEN TO ME: If black homosexuals can join up with white homosexuals who join up with Hispanic homosexuals to take over our nation for immorality… SURELY black Christians and white Christians and Hispanic Christians can join together to get our culture back!
Let me show you 5 marks of a good soldier in Christ Jesus.
I. A GOOD SOLDIER IS WILLING SUFFER HARDSHIP