Summary: God is always the victor inn the battles of life.
The Battle Belongs To The Lord
We have some great lessons in this story that may be learned and applied to God's people today. If there has ever been a day when God's people are engaged in a deadly spiritual battle with the forces of darkness and the enemy of men's souls, today is that day. We do not guess what is the ultimate and primary objective of Satan in every age. Since the ultimate and primary objective of God is to spread the Good News of salvation to every creature, then it can be assumed that Satan's objec- tive is to defeat that plan. "But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them." (II Cor. 4:3-4)
Since His detailed plan for doing this is outlined in the Great Commission and He gave that Commission to His New Testament Churches in every age, we can assume Satan's grand strat- egy is to hinder and interfere with the only institution that has been commissioned to do this work of God on earth. It is clear that he has in the past, and continues to do so today, focused on hindering and destroying the ministry of any sound, solid, soul winning church. Just let a church begin to come alive spiritually and stand for the whole truth and then really get burdened for lost souls to the point they will go into the highways and byways with the soul saving gospel, and you can expect Satan to begin to cause trouble and disunity. Let them begin to take John 4:35, seriously, and you can be sure Satan will not sit idly by while the work of the gospel goes on. You can reasonably expect the battle to intensify. He has no reason to be concerned about the modernistic and apostate crowd. You can expect Satan will begin to infiltrate the people of God. He will find a way to stir up murmuring and whinging against those who are going out and out for the Lord.
It is all too often true that good and sincere people can be unwittingly enlisted into his cam- paign. I have heard of situations when those who had no interest or part in doing the hard yards in the building program, both physically and spiritually, being the first to jump on the band wagon when murmuring occurs. I think it is appropriate to state for the record that as someone who has spent thousands of hours in building here, both physically and spiritually, that I would fight to my last breath to protect the flock in this place. The investment of the lives and finances of hundreds of people are tied up in this light house of the gospel.
I can surely identify with Paul's emotional and heartfelt message to those pastors and the people involved in the churches at Ephesus when he said: "Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them." (Acts 20:28-30)
That Satan is alive and well on Planet Earth and is fully engaged in this warfare is evident for all to see. He is described as the adversary of the committed Christian. Peter warns that he goes about as an hungry old lion, crouching and hiding in ambush to pounce upon the unwary combat- ant. Paul speaks in clear and concise terms about the deadly nature of the combat involved. (Eph. 6:10-18)
There is a real concern about an obvious need for unity reflected in this story. When the people began to bad mouth the spiritual leader God has set over them, they were headed for trouble. God had a way of using those around them to sort them out. Even using ungodly nations and people to do so. This has always been the case and always will be the case. It remains a serious matter of concern today.
Just what is the unity Christ spoke of in John 17:17 and what is real Christian unity today?
To say the least, the unity to be sought today is based upon the whole truth and nothing but the truth. It is to be based upon all the faith as it was once delivered to the saints. It is to be based upon all parts of the Great Commission our Saviour gave as His marching orders to Scriptural New Testament Churches in every age.