And make no mistake about it. The Christian life is a struggle, a battle, a war.
Paul made clear to the church of Ephesus that we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places (Eph. 6:12).
In light of this perpetual warfare Paul exhorted Timothy, Fight the good fight of faith (1 Tim. 6:12) and Share in suffering as a good soldier of Christ Jesus (2 Tim. 2:3).
As I prepared to start another work week with our early morning prayer time as a staff, I read a word of encouragement from J. C. Ryle’s Holiness that gave my prone-to-be-weary soul a burst of strength for the fight. In stressing that the Christian’s fight must be one of faith, Ryle urges special faith in our Lord Jesus Christ’s person, work, and office as the life, heart, and mainspring of the Christian soldiers character. He writes:
He sees by faith an unseen Savior, who loved him, gave Himself for him, paid his debts for him, bore his sins, carried his transgressions, rose again for him, and appears in heaven for him as his Advocate at the right hand of God. He sees Jesus and clings to Him. Seeing this Savior and trusting in Him, he feels peace and hope and willingly does battle against the foes of his soul.
He sees his own many sins, his weak heart, a tempting world, a busy devil; and if he looked only at them, he might well despair. But he sees also a mighty Savior, an interceding Savior, a sympathizing Savior—His blood, His righteousness, His everlasting priesthood—and he believes that all this is his own. He sees Jesus and casts his whole weight on Him. Seeing Him, he cheerfully fights on, with a full confidence that he will prove “more than conqueror through Him that loved him” (Rom. 8:37).
So if you are weary this Monday morning as you reengage the battle fronts before you, I remind you with Ryle’s help to do so by faith in your unseen Savior casting your whole weight on Him.