1. Last Wednesday was the 75th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. 2. It was touching to see several of the survivors taking part in the observance. 3. Perhaps this is a good time for us to study a number of Scriptures that relate to Christians being soldiers in God's army, the church. 4. We first need to point out . . .
I. HOW A PERSON BECOMES A SOLDIER IN GOD'S ARMY
A. To become a soldier in God's army, we must come to the Father through Christ (John 14:6). B. To learn what is involved in coming to the Father through Christ, let us examine Acts 2:36-41, 47b. 1. Vs.41 is a key verse -- in coming to God through Christ we must "gladly receive" the Lord's word. 2. This word teaches us: a. something important about Jesus (vs.36 -- He is both Lord and Christ) b. something important about salvation (vs.38 -- we must repent and be baptized in the Lord's name for the remission of sins) c. that the Lord adds those who are saved to His church, His army (vs.47b). C. These passages teach us how to become soldiers in God's army, but there are some additional matters that we need to consider.
II. SOLDIERS IN GOD'S ARMY HAVE SOME WEIGHTY RESPONSIBILITIES
A. A soldier's main responsibility is to fight, and this is true of Christian soldiers. 1. We are not involved in physical warfare because the Lord's kingdom is not of this world (John 18:36). 2. Christian soldiers are involved in spiritual warfare (Ephesians 6:12). 3. (1 Timothy 6:12) We are instructed to "fight the good fight of faith." B. To fight successfully we must fulfill some additional responsibilities. 1. We must be able to identify our enemy. a. The devil is our enemy (1 Peter 5:8). b. He is to be resisted (1 Peter 5:9). 2. We must "endure hardness" (2 Timothy 2:3). a. This is what "a good soldier" does. b. A good soldier will be properly armed so he can endure hardness (Ephesians 6:10-11, 13-18). 3. We must avoid being entangled with the affairs of this life (2 Timothy 2:4). a. (Romans 13:12) "Let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light." b. The reason for this is so we may please Him who chose us to be soldiers in His army.
1. Last Wednesday great emphasis was placed on some wonderful virtues such as duty, honor, and sacrifice. 2. These virtues are also important to soldiers in God's army. 3. Those who fulfill their duty to the best of their ability, maintain their honor, and sacrifice on the Lord's behalf look forward to receiving a special blessing (2 Timothy 4:7-8).