Christian Living

Spiritual Life

Victory Through Vigilance

Homeland Security Director Tom Ridge recently asked Americans to be continually watchful for signs of terrorism, saying: "Now is not the time to back off. Obviously, the further we're removed from September 11, the natural tendency is to let down our guard. We cannot do that. We are a nation at war."

Spiritually, this is true, too. We must pray as if our lives depends on it -- because they may! We cannot let up when there's a military success or the headlines seem to be more encouraging.

For years, Islamic extremists have been preaching a message of hatred, glorifying suicide bombers, and training young children to fight a "Jihad" against Jews and Christians. As a result, innocent people are suffering in many nations of the world -- including Israel, Sudan, Indonesia, the Philippines, and now America.

The Bible says, "Don't be surprised at the fiery trials you are going through" (1 Peter 4:12a). When the light of the Gospel goes forth, the prince of darkness is outraged.

Paul -- first a persecutor and then himself persecuted -- encouraged believers to look beyond the physical realm to the real root of opposition: "For we are not fighting against people made of flesh and blood, but against the evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world" (Eph. 6:12a).

And the only way to conduct that battle is on our knees! That's why Paul concluded, "Pray at all times and on every occasion in the power of the Holy Spirit. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all Christians everywhere" (Eph. 6:18).

Jesus also urged His disciples to be vigilant, warning them not to be distracted by "the cares of this life, the lure of wealth and the desire for nice things" (Mark 4:19b). He wants us to be perpetually ready for His return, like the five wise virgins who had their lamps filled and their wicks trimmed (Matt. 25:1-13). That's why it's so important to get right with God and walk with His Holy Spirit moment by moment.

The affairs of the world are unfolding at an accelerated pace, and millions of people desperately need to know that Jesus Christ holds the key to hope, salvation and eternal life. Together, let us redouble our prayers as CBN reaches out to the nations with the Gospel at this critical time in history!

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