Summary: To be a winner you must win these three battles.

“Three Battles You Have to Win to Be a Winner”

February 18, 2007

When I was a young man, every night you turned the TV on it was filled with the Viet Nam War. Wounded and bloody solders hobbled across the screen. Napalm tore a fiery trail over the green jungle. Sometimes you could hear the actual fighting and men yelling and screaming. My older brother joined the Navy and went to Viet Nam. I joined the army and went to Korea. We were born into a family of soldiers. Since the war fought for independence from England, to the civil war, to Viet Nam of my day, and my son’s day, with battles around the world, someone in my family has fought in the U.S. Army. Some have been marines and sailors, but mostly we were soldiers. My little cousin, that I lived with for part of a year, grew up to be the world’s foremost expert on killing and human aggression. Check out Lt. Col. Dave Grossman’s Web site: You’ll find it interesting.

Today the TV takes your generation to the streets of Baghdad and involves you in the fighting, too. The President talks of sending more troops to win the war. Some politicians talk of pulling out and deserting the fight. It’s hard to know who’s right and who’s wrong. Some of you may soon be in uniform. And the Bible prophecy has come true that there will be “wars and rumors of war”. We live with it.

In Korea, for the first time in our history, we left without clearly winning. In Viet Nam we left clearly defeated. In Mogadishu Clinton’s politicians let some of our elite troops be killed when a Black Hawk went down. A lot of people are used to defeat and it doesn’t bother them too much. And I suppose there are some battles you should walk away from. There are some battles if you lose - it won’t matter much. But this morning I want to talk about three battles you have to win – if you want to be a winner. I’m talking about the battle for control of body, mind and spirit.

Some of you may be shocked that I am talking like you are a soldier. You may consider yourself the farthest thing from a soldier. But the fact of the matter is that you are in a war – a war for your very life; a war for your destiny; a war for your soul. And you shouldn’t be too surprised. God’s people have always been warriors. God’s people have always come under attack. And some have been the most unlikely – like King David. He was a great warrior king – but he didn’t look anything like King Saul, the one he replaced. The Bible says,

“...Saul was the most handsome man in Israel. And he was head and shoulders taller than anyone else in the land!” 1 Sam 9:2 (Living)

I imagine Saul looked the part. Tall, handsome, a born leader. David was a little different.

“He was a fine looking boy, ruddy-faced, and with pleasant eyes...” 1 Sam 16:12 (Living)

“... was not only a talented harp player, but was handsome, brave, and strong, and had good, solid judgment. "What’s more," he added, "the Lord is with him." 1 Sam 16:18 (Living)

David seemed a gentle spirit. He was a musician. He was good looking. He was smaller than his brothers. But he had the difference maker. The Lord was with Him. And the people made this song up about Saul and David.

" Saul has slain his thousands, and David his tens of thousands!" (1 Sam. 21:11)

David reminds me of Audie Murphy. He was short, good looking, and you wouldn’t think he would be much of a soldier. But Audie Murphy was the most decorated soldier of WWII. He was fearless in battle.

The point is that looks don’t really matter. Sex doesn’t matter. The Bible mentions some fantastic female warriors. Physical size doesn’t matter – unless you count the size of the heart. Someone said, “It isn’t the size of the dog in the fight that matters – it’s the size of the fight in the dog.” That’s true of people, too. How much heart do you have? How much fight is in you? Paul said:

“Now, Timothy, my son, here is my command to you: Fight well in the Lord’s battles, just as the Lord told us through his prophets that you would.” 1 Tim 1:18 (Living)

Whether you like it or not – you are in a war. Whether you like it or not – you are a warrior. Whether you like it or not – you are under attack.

The Bible says,

“For we are not fighting against people made of flesh and blood, but against persons without bodies--the evil rulers of the unseen world, those mighty satanic beings and great evil princes of darkness who rule this world; and against huge numbers of wicked spirits in the spirit world.”

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