RSS

Tag Archives: watch

You’re in the Battle Zone – Stay Alert

mhXQFuIWhether you know it or not, the world is a spiritual battle zone right now. Unless you have the right mentality, you could become a casualty of this war. That’s why it’s so important to know how the Bible says for us to live.

Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.
Ephesians 6:17-18

As I’ve posted in the past, this verse is talking about the authority and power of God. The Lord wants to work this through us. To read the series where I talked about this – click here.

In this new series of posts my question is; if we know we’re in the battle zone, then how should we live? The last sentence of this passage literally reads attend to this with all persistency and petition. The fact of the matter is that there’s a battle zone mentality.

The first thing we’re told is that it requires us to be alert. The Greek word there means to be sleepless. We must be awake and alert in the battle zone.

We’re told in this same chapter of Ephesians that our enemy isn’t flesh and blood. They don’t take a day off. Does that mean we don’t need rest or take a vacation? No, but we have to stay spiritually vigilant no matter what’s happening in our lives.

“There’s not much going on in my life right now. I don’t need to pray today.”

That kind of thinking can destroy you in this battle. Look at how Jesus put it to His disciples.

“Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak.”
Matthew 26:41

Watching – staying spiritually alert – and prayer go together. According to Jesus, it’s so that you will not enter into a test, a proving.

In the battle zone there are traps and ambushes. You must be alert. Like someone who’s walking in the middle of minefield. At that point you’re in the test.

Did you know that many of the tests and temptations of life can be avoided? I wonder sometimes how many of these battles are of our own making. Or maybe we’ve just walked blindly into them.

Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
1 Peter 5:8

This is how the enemy works. In the natural, it’s the oldest, weakest lion that does the roaring. The strong, young lions wait on the other side of the prey. When the prey hears the roar and runs away from it, they run right to the lions waiting for their dinner to arrive.

It’s the same with our spiritual enemy. He’s trying to get you to head into a trap. We have to keep spiritually alert at all times. That only happens as we watch and pray. It will help us to avoid many of the problems that are before us.

Stay alert!

Question: Can you think of a time that you were tested or tempted because you weren’t spiritually alert?

© Nick Zaccardi 2015

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 27, 2015 in Power of God, Prayer, Spiritual Warfare

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Last Days – Finishing Strong

JogToday’s post will conclude my series about last-days attitudes. I’ve talked about the things that cause the world to worry and fret about the future. God’s people are not to act like this.

The promises of God don’t go null and void simply because we’re living near the end of the age. We’re still under our covenant with Christ – a better covenant. That’s why we can look to what’s ahead with hope and anticipation.

He told them this parable: “Look at the fig tree and all the trees. When they sprout leaves, you can see for yourselves and know that summer is near. Even so, when you see these things happening, you know that the kingdom of God is near.”
Luke 21:29-31

This should be an exciting time for the Church of Jesus Christ. The Kingdom is near! That thought should push us forward to greater effectiveness in the Kingdom.

Jesus does give us a warning, however. That’s the key reason for this series. I think that we’ve somehow lost sight of His Word to us.

“Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you unexpectedly like a trap. For it will come upon all those who live on the face of the whole earth.”
Luke 21:34-35

The Lord tells us that there are three things that we should be especially careful about in the last-days. The first of these is dissipation. Think about something like fog, when it dissipates. It seems to vanish right before our eyes.

That’s the distractions of the world. They dissipate your time, money, and strength. Then you find that you have nothing left to put into the Lord’s work.

Then there’s drunkenness. I don’t believe that Jesus is only talking about alcohol here. It could be anything that intoxicates God’s people. We end up chasing things when we should be pursuing the Lord.

The third is the anxieties of life. This is when you’re worried about things you can’t control. Put them in God’s hands. If you trust the Lord and follow His plan for your life, then the rest will fall into place.

Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.”
Luke 21:36

This is the bottom line of how to live in the last days. We must be a people who watch and pray. We must spend quality time in the presence of the Lord. This includes praying in the Spirit and listening to hear God’s voice.

In this way, the Holy Spirit will give you insight on how to live. We’re told that living like this will allow us to escape. Escape what? The anguish, perplexity, fainting from terror, and the apprehension that’s coming upon the world.

Isn’t that our ultimate goal; to stand boldly before the Son of Man at His return? If we heed His exhortation to us, then we’ll be unashamed by our life on earth. I’ll know that I lived by His power operating in me.

We’ll finish the race strong, knowing there’s a reward waiting for us. Not in fear, but the faith that Christ is with us.

Question: What do find most exciting about living in the last-days?

© Nick Zaccardi 2015

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 23, 2015 in Faith, Prayer, Return of Christ, Revival

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Watching for the Return of Christ

telescopeI’ve been posting about the return of Christ as He taught it to His disciples. I believe that there will be a “weeding process” that takes place as we get closer to His return.

God will use His angels to make a visible distinction between His Church and the kingdom of darkness. Both the world and the church will have come to full fruition.

But before we finish this series of posts, I want us to take a look at the account given by Luke. He recorded some more detail about what Christ said on this occasion.

“There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars. On the earth, nations will be in anguish and perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea. Men will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world, for the heavenly bodies will be shaken. At that time they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”
Luke 21:25-28

Jesus explains here that the nations are in perplexity because of all the events that can be seen taking place on the earth. Because of the weeding process just before the end, the entire world will know that something important is about to happen.

As believers, we’ll be prepared for the return of Christ. The unbelievers, however, will be apprehensive about what is ready to take place.

I believe that as we get closer to the end, it will become more and more obvious that the Lord’s coming is near. Then one day we’ll see the sign we’ve been waiting for.

If it’s daytime where we live, then we’ll see the sun going dark for no reason. If it’s night, then the moon will darken and the stars will look like they’re all falling from the sky.

Jesus prepares us with exactly what to do when we see the sign of Christ in the sky. Stand up and lift up your head because your redemption is here!

He’s obviously talking to the church in this section. It’s not some remnant of leftovers who “missed the rapture” seven years before. This is the sign for the body of Christ to recognize the Day of the Lord – the Resurrection Day.

“Now learn this lesson from the fig tree: As soon as its twigs get tender and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near. Even so, when you see all these things, you know that it is near, right at the door. I tell you the truth, this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.”
Matthew 24:32-35

Before He finishes this section of His teaching, Jesus emphasizes the certainty of His words. It will take place just as He said. We’ll see it approaching just as we see the changes of the seasons. If we are believers who are prepared to meet Christ, then this day will not take us unawares.

There’s no reason for fear or anxiety over what we see taking place on the earth. There should only be the excitement of anticipation over the return of our King.

Question: How do you prepare yourself for the events of the Last Days?

© Nick Zaccardi 2014

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on September 1, 2014 in Return of Christ, The Church

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

How to Live in Dangerous Times

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERAIn my last post I said that we are in spiritually dangerous times. How do we live in light of this? Christ gave an important exhortation. In talking about the last days, Jesus said…

“Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you unexpectedly like a trap. For it will come upon all those who live on the face of the whole earth.”
Luke 21:34-35

His first words are, “Be careful.”

“Pay close attention to what you are doing.”

That sounds like good advice to a rock climber. The words that Jesus used literally mean hangovers, intoxication, and distractions of this life.

So many believers are caught up in what the world have going on. Others are distracted watching what the world is doing. These things can knock you out of the race, in spiritually dangerous times.

You would never think of climbing in this condition. Yet, right now, there are believers on the edge, not prepared for the dangers of this age.

What are we to do if we want to avoid disaster? Christ gives the answer.

“Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.”
Luke 21:36

“Watch and pray in all times”.

God has certain times appointed for certain things. But now is always the time to pray. It doesn’t matter what else is going on – now is the right time.

We must keep watch – pay attention and pray. That’s the foundation for everything else. We must do this so that we can prevail against, flee away from, and stand. Because of a rich prayer life we can prevail against demonic forces. We can flee away from temptation. And we can stand in the face of severe pressure.

We especially need this in our generation. Paul explains it.

And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.
Ephesians 6:18

This is almost the exact same line that Christ used. We are to pray in the Spirit in all times. We have a more powerful prayer weapon than they had under the Old Covenant.

By praying in the spirit we can build up our faith. It opens our heart to hear from God, laying the groundwork for the supernatural. By it we gain wisdom for discerning the times that we live in.

Prayer in the spirit is our greatest advantage in overcoming the dangerous times we live in. Don’t let this great gift go unused in your relationship with Christ.

Question: How has prayer in the spirit strengthened your walk with God?

© Nick Zaccardi 2014

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on June 9, 2014 in Prayer, Prayer in the Spirit, Revival

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,