Believers are peaceful, honest and loving people who do not return evil for evil but usually return good for evil (Romans 12:19, 1 Thessalonians 5:15). Part of living peacefully with all, is being able to return good for evil. God said: “Vengeance is mine” (Romans 12:19). Repaying evil with good is the way to heap burning coals of conviction and regret upon the conscience of those who mistreat us. Certainly the potential of overcoming evil with good is tremendous.
The above picture is however different when it comes to matters concerning our precious faith in Christ. A Christian may allow his flesh, finance, integrity and all other personal belongings to be tempered with or ravaged but when it comes to issue of his faith in Christ which is embedded in his choice of God and Heaven, he or she must resist, contend and fight back. No true believer would want to be divorced from his or her loving Saviour – Jesus Christ. The Bible enjoins us to fight back when it comes to issues relating to the fundamentals of Christian faith and our personal stand or trust in Christ Jesus. Here there is no room for compromise at all. The fight is however not carnal, not in flesh but with weapons rooted in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 6:12).
“Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints” (Jude 3). To “earnestly contend for the faith” is rendered in the living Bible as “to stoutly defend the truth which God gave…” It means to fight for the truth relating to your faith in Christ, with all spiritual weapons at your disposal.
Jude emphasizes the important relationship between correct doctrine and true faith. The truth of the Bible must not be compromised because it gives us the real fact about Jesus and salvation.
All scripture is inspired by God and should never be twisted or changed; when it is, we become confused over what is right and wrong and lose sight of the only path leads to eternal life. Before writing about salvation, Jude felt he had to set his readers back to the right track, calling them back to the basics of their faith. This is to make the way to salvation clearer. However, the way to salvation within the Body of Christ is gradually becoming obscure today because the basics of the Christian faith are being compromised for the worship of money, man, material things and occultism.
Paul in a very strong term declared that no matter who is involved, the fundamentals of Christian belief must not be compromised. He rained curses on anyone who will dare to do so or lure other believers to compromise. Not even Judaism which was the acceptable religion of the Jews before Christianity is spared.
“But though we, or any angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed” (Galatians 1:8).
What these Judaizers were doing was so bad that Paul used strong words to denounce their actions. The Judaizers were extremist Jewish faction within the Church who taught that Gentile Christians had to submit to Jewish laws and traditions in addition to believing in Christ which is wrong. Hence Paul said that if any Angel from Heaven comes preaching another message, let that Angel be cursed forever.
If an Angel came preaching another message, he would not be from Heaven, no matter how he looked. In 2Corinthians 11:14-15, Paul warns that Satan and his agents can turn themselves into Angels of light. Here he invokes a curse on an Angel who spreads a false Gospel-a fitting response to an emissary of Hell. He extended that curse to himself. God’s message must never change, for the truth of the Gospel never changes. Paul uses strong language because he is dealing with a life-and-death issue. No sane medical doctor experiment with human life. In the same vein, Paul would not want the lives of God’s children to be spiritually toyed with.
The issue of our faith in Christ Jesus is that of life-and-death. As such, it must be taken or treated with levity. It can neither be bargained nor compromised. Any attempt to undermine it should be sternly resisted. All our spiritual military artilleries should be pulled together to contend and protect our faith in Christ. It does not matter who or what the Devil is using to lure us to compromise. Be it the captivating things of this world, fleshly desire and lust, our relations – father, mother, brother, sister or friends, they should be given a second place in our lives and must not be allowed to undermine our blessed faith in Christ or what God is out to do in our lives as Christians.
The call for the battle for truth as a good soldier of our Captain, Jesus Christ, is a much nobler calling than warring against flesh and blood or our fellowmen. This battle is not a fight which results in the horrors of bloodshed, destruction and death. Instead, it is a spiritual fight of faith (1Timothy 6:12) against principalities, powers of this world, and spiritual wickedness in high places. (Ephesians 6:11-12). Therefore, to withstand the pressure of our foe, we must have some equipment. Unlike carnal man’s defence equipment of bombs, bullets, guns and gasses, “the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds” (2Corinthians 10:4). Praise God we have a complete set of armour! It consists of truth, righteousness, peace, faith, salvation and the Word of God (Ephesians 6:14-17).
Friends of God, there are times God expects believers to strike back when stepped upon. There is a time we must defend ourselves and fight back desperately like a wounded Lion. And such a time is when our faith or the fundamental doctrine of God’s Word is distorted. God always supports us in this battle even when or where it costs us our lives (Revelation 12:11). This battle is carried out and won on our knees. It is not carnal. There are many Archbishops, Bishops, Pastors, Teachers and Professors of the Christian faith all over the world and particularly in Nigeria today. But the question is how many have been able to keep their garments spotless? How many have been able to stand without bowing to the negative influence of money, fame, fleshly lust, materialism, government intimidation or manipulation? How many believers who are today holding key government positions still tenaciously hold unto their faith without allowing themselves to be used as crusaders of evil deeds and programmes?
God is still in the business of raising up uncompromising believers who will declare his glorious gospel of salvation uncompromisingly. He wants us to call what is sin, sin. And that which is ungodly, ungodly. He doesn’t want us to water down his word by calling sin oversight, human weakness or mistake. God will never compromise with sin or Satan. No! not even when his only begotten son, Jesus Christ bore the sin of the whole world on the cross of Calvary, did he do so (Matthew 27:46). God will not look away from sin. The Church all over the world is in a very bad state at the present time because of this terrible sin of compromise among many others. What is alarming about it is that she is satisfied with it. I find very few people who are truly disturbed today.
Culled from Uncompromising Christians in a Compromising World