Proverbs 20:18 Every purpose is established by counsel: and with good advice make war.
James 4:1 What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you? There truly is a war within our lives that can and will tear us apart if we let it. Road rage over the smallest infractions can escalate to a court date for vehicular manslaughter. Neighbours screaming and hitting with whatever is in reach of a clinched angry hand because someone cut across a lawn. A couple of old guys in a parking lot going fisticuffs over a parking spot. The reasons for the anger in the first place may be legitimate as we have all had to deal with things people do that we do not like. However, allowing our anger to overreact in war, is a breach in our soul that exposes the true condition of our hearts. Matt. 15:19 For from the heart come evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, sexual immoralities, thefts, false testimonies, slander.
The counterculture protest song War performed by Edwin Starr in the 1970s still carries the same question, and the answer remains the same today, as it did back then. “War, huh, yeah. What is it good for? Absolutely nothing, uhh!” War against each other is good for nothing, but the war against the common enemy of our soul should be our full-time dedication toward destroying the works of darkness. Prov. 20:18 Every purpose is established by counsel: and with good advice make war. Satan has declared war on the inhabitants of the earth and has stirred up the people to focus their anger and dissatisfaction with life by fighting each other over the smallest transgressions. It is the prince of darkness we should be fighting with the weapons God has given us. 2Cor. 10:4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.
The war raging within us is a result of sin that has marred our souls, causing separation from God the Father and one another. The anger and feelings of vulnerability are hyper-sensationalized by demonic powers who influence people’s minds and hearts. Eph 6:12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. It is as if we are fighting a war on two fronts, one within ourselves and one with the enemy of our soul. No wonder we feel the pressure to lash out toward someone or at something. History also shows us that fighting a war on two fronts rarely results in victory. Therefore, we need a saviour who has already defeated Satan, and we need to hand over to the Lord the reasons for the warfare in our lives so that we remain victorious in Christ.
If we remain hellbent on war against everyone and everything coming our way without the leading of the Holy Spirit, we will not see the strategies against us, and we will forsake a lot of God’s blessings that are available to us. We can end up turning our contrived war into an idol of personal martyrdom. Look at me, “I am the only one fighting for the church. I’m the only one God can count on,” and all that rhetoric that comes out of self-righteousness. Jonah 2:8 Those who regard and follow worthless idols turn away from their living source of mercy and lovingkindness.
First and foremost, we are children of peace. The war within us can be conquered with the peace of God that is available to us. Remember, Jesus, who lives within us, is the Prince of Peace. The key is to become disciplined in handing over to the Lord our choices concerning the things battling within our hearts. Yes, we are to fight by faith when God leads us into battle, however, God knows how to help us win His battles because the battle belongs to the Lord. We are not out there fighting alone. As David said to the Philistines, 1Sam. 17:47 All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the LORD saves; for the battle is the LORD’s, and he will give all of you into our hands. The ministry of peace is our calling, and our feet are covered in peace so that where we go, the Lord’s peace comes with us. Eph. 6:15 And with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.
Jesus has given us the way to fight the good fight of faith, and that is by allowing God’s word to direct our lives and hearts. It is by handing over the issues that tear us apart and bring division within the church and between friends and family. The Lord has already won the war that is boiling over within people’s hearts. We just have to declare a full surrender of our lives to our Saviour who loves us. Micah 4:3 Then He will judge between many peoples and arbitrate for strong nations far and wide. Then they will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will no longer take up the sword against nation, nor will they train anymore for war. Yes, Lord, let us walk in your peace. Amen.