Monday, August 28, 2017

WEAPONS


Hey Partners & Friends

If I ask you to think about the need for weapons, what would come to mind? Guns, knives, bombs, grenades, any number of things that can be used to empower to defend to fight or even to wage war. A weapon increases the strength and power of the one who possesses it if they know how to use it effectively. Some weapons are extremely powerful, devastating, able to demolish or destroy anything in its path. The atomic bomb for example caused destruction like no other weapon ever used by mankind. The end result of its use however, was that it brought about the end of the war, and ultimately it brought peace.                                                         

Sometimes in life people use weapons to defend or protect themselves, to defeat an enemy and end the conflict.

What kind of weapons come to mind when considering the Kingdom of God? Of course we think of the familiar passage in the Bible that talks about the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, feet shod with the gospel of peace, the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit.  Along with these there is another weapon that can bring an end to the wars that rage in our hearts and minds.

“For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does.  The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.  We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” 2Cor 10:3-5 NIV

I want to suggest that forgiveness is one of the most aggressive, devastatingly powerful weapons you have in your arsenal. It empowers you to overcome evil. We don’t usually think of forgiveness in terms of a weapon of our warfare. But it can destroy strongholds in our life, like resentment, anger, rage, jealousy, envy, strife, and bring peace.  Eph. 4:31-32 says, “Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.  Be kind and compassionate to one another (and how do we do that?) forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. The weapon of forgiveness changed the world when Christ cried out from the cross, “Father forgive them for they know not what they do.”

CR Principle # 6. “Evaluate all my relationships. Offer forgiveness to those who have hurt me and make amends for the harm I’ve done to others, except when to do so would harm them or others.”

“Happy are the merciful.” Mt.5:7 “Happy are the peacemakers.” Mt 5:9

At Celebrate Recovery we are learning how to use this formidable weapon of forgiveness in a way that brings the peace that passes understanding and freedom beyond measure. It’s a mighty weapon for pulling down strongholds. God has forgiven us, we must forgive others.

Peace,

Jim & Pam