THE ULTIMATE SMACK-DOWN GRUDGE MATCH
I’ve only watched a handful of wrestling matches in my life. I know some people love them. My favorite was a live amateur event at a local community center, where you could clearly see that the punches being thrown were not connecting with the opponent’s face. I think they wore masks to hide the fact that they were laughing when they should have been looking tough.
Christians wrestle – with or without the tights and capes and masks of the WWE.
Ephesians 6:12 says: For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high [places].
One of our greatest wrestling matches and perhaps the bloodiest of all “smack downs” is the war between right and wrong, between good and evil, between what we know is right and what human nature leads us to do, going on inside us.
Let’s face it, God asks us to do some pretty tough stuff – well tough for our natural, human nature. Here is just one example: He tells us to love our enemies, to pray for those who despitefully use or persecute you. Mat 5:44 [KJV] 44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;
That seems like a lot to ask of our carnal nature – especially when Satan “tag teams” in with whispers of temptation.
In Romans 7:14-25, Paul openly admits that he struggled. So, at least I know that I’m in good company with this wrestling match. He even admits that he sometimes loses the match in verse 19, where he says: For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. Then he asks the question I often ask myself after a disappointing wrestling match: 24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? Fortunately, Paul also gives us the answer that through Jesus we are delivered. Jesus is my wrestling team – and yours too. He has already knocked out the opponent. Whether Satan is ready to “cry uncle” or not – he is a “goner.”
God knows that in the “Ultimate Smack-down” grudge match in going on in our hearts and minds. He understands that we need His help to even have the “want to” when it comes to doing His will versus our own. Philippians 2:13 [KJV] 13 For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of [his] good pleasure.
That is why He also gives the Holy Spirit – so we have some of His nature in us to be our “tag team” partner in our daily, internal wrestling matches.
In Acts 2, we get an outline of what happened on the day the Holy Spirit was given to the New Testament church. Act 2:1-3 [KJV] 1 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. 2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. 3 And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.
This is a day we all celebrate – and rightly so. I know I need all the help I can get in this wrestling match going on inside me and I am thankful for the Holy Spirit’s help and support in the battle.
Yes, one of our greatest wrestling matches is the war between right and wrong, good and evil, the Holy Spirit and human nature going on right inside each of us every day. But it is also there where we can have our greatest victories.
So never cry “uncle.” Just wrestle on, my sisters – each and every moment of every day -- no holds barred.
I’d love to hear your thoughts too. You can write me at Nancy@DynamicChristianMinistries.org
About this N.E.W. Church Lady – She is just an average middle aged woman who has been a believer and church attender all her life. She is married with three grown children. She lives in a small town and works in sales. Her hobbies are fitness, reading, cooking, writing and travel.