Summary: From various Bible characters we can see that today as then there are many voices bidding for our love and affection. The most important thing is to keep the Lord first in our lives.
Intro: The passage we read in Deut. 20 is often referred to as the laws concerning warfare.
There’s no denying that the church is in a war today. It’s an ever-increasing war against the enemy of our souls.
Notice – When the officers stepped up they were about to go into battle. The word of the Lord was with them saying:
- When you see the enemies horses and chariots &
- When you see a people that is more than you.
He said – Be not afraid of them – fear not – for the Lord will go with you and He’ll fight for you.
He said they may be more in number, but the Lord will be there and you’ll be victorious.
Then He went on to say to the young men there:
1.If you’ve built a new house and haven’t lived in it – go home.
2.If you’ve planted a vineyard and haven’t eaten of its fruit – go home.
3.If your engaged to a young lady and you haven’t married her – go home.
4.If you are fearful & fainthearted – you go home too:
He said if you find yourself in one of these positions – you go home – your disqualified – you are exempt from the battle.
This seemed hard to understand. No doubt there were strong young men there who were well able to take the war effort on. Yet he is sending them home. WHY?
The captain knew in the heat of the battle if there was any second love lingering in the back of their minds – or any second loves hidden in their hearts, that may be able to speak to them on the battle field – THERE WOULD BE DIVIDED AFFECTION!
That second love would be on their minds:
1.You’ve built a house and now someone else is going to live in it.
2.You’ve planted a vineyard & now before you’ve eaten of its fruit – you’re out here on this battle field – while someone else is enjoying the fruits of your labor.
3.Think of that beautiful young lady you’re engaged to. It would come to their minds that while they were on the battlefield risking their lives, someone else would be enjoying her love.
Those second loves would have your attention. They would have their allegiance and they would have been destroyed on the battlefield – in the army of Almighty God.
BEWARE OF THE SECOND LOVE – We need total dedication today in Gods army like we never have before.
- We must be totally committed to the things of God!
- We must put our whole heart into serving the Lord!
- We need to resolve every issue that would rise up against us in our service for the Lord.
Our only love should be to please the Lord Jesus & hear Him say, “Well done thou good and faithful servant you’ve been faithful over few things – now I’ll make you ruler over many things.”
If there’s a 2nd love in our hearts & lives it could disqualify us from being in the army of the Lord.
- God demands a disciplined army. A people who’ll put him first.
We’re not our own – we’ve been bought with a price.
The thing that keeps us from doing the will of the Lord is not trying to find out His will, but it’s that second love.
We know that this is the day of compromise and divided allegiance.
- It’s a day of trying to make a piece with the enemies of the Lord.
We must love the Lord God with all our soul, and all our heart, and mind, and with all our strength!