Genesis 1:3, 6, 9, 11, 14, 20, 21, 24, 26, & 28 – And God said . . .
Again today we step into “the gates of hell” that Jesus declared would NOT prevail against His Church. I know I have written some strong words in recent days, but nothing has changed. I’m still writing of the words of Jesus that painted us a picture of His expectations for His Church. I’m still convinced that much of today’s Church, if it saw this clear imagery of which I write would find itself slammed into a “You talking to me?” moment. Let’s consider “the gates of hell” yet more.
In traveling to Israel in 2020, and while walking through some of the archaeological digs of some ancient cities of Israel, I gained a much deeper understanding of the imagery Jesus was using in Matthew 16. It was not coincidental that Jesus chose Caesarea Philippi as His point for making His open declaration of war for His Church. In cities of those days, when one entered into the city gates, he did not go directly up into the city. A defended city would have walls all about the city. But at the gates, that which would usually be one of the weaker points of entry, the defenses were made especially strong. The defensive wall of the city would continue into the city on the right side of the gate as you entered. Then very quickly, there would be a left turn, then a right turn, followed by another right turn, and finally a left turn into the city proper. On both sides of all these turns, defensive walls loomed above those entering. If you were an attacking force, you would have not room to mount a defense, you front, flanks, and back would be totally exposed to arrows, lances, and hurled stones from the defensive walls. In effect, an attacking force would find itself in a shooting gallery in which they were the targets, like sitting ducks, or as one old adage says, “fish in a barrel.”
This is where the “You talking to me?” moment is found. Can you see the place into which the Lord expects His Church to charge in our spiritual warfare? Why, we’re talking about suicide! “You talking to me?” Indeed, I am, and so was Jesus. He has already declared that hell’s gates would NOT prevail against you. He has clothed you in His armor, armed you with His weaponry and shield, and assigned Holy Ghost as your “rereward,” or “rear guard.” No weapon formed against you shall prosper. You are more than a conqueror; you are an overcomer. Your enemy comes before you to be smitten before you face. He comes one way and flees seven ways. What have you to fear? You overcome the enemy by the blood of the Lamb and the Word of your testimony. I only have one more word for your today. ATTACK!
Manna for Today – Genesis 1; Psalm 119:89; Proverbs 4:20-23; Mark 11:22-26; Romans 3:4