Fit for Engagement Chapter 5 – We Are to War Together and Not Alone

In Luke 9, Jesus called His disciples together and gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure disease. Jesus had modeled His ministry to them and then empowered them to go and preach the Kingdom of God, and to heal the sick. They were sent as a unit to learn together what it was like to minister with Jesus’ authority and power. They had their first opportunity to represent Christ to the multitudes. When the apostles returned to Him, they told Him everything that they had done.In Luke 10, Jesus appointed seventy other disciples and sent them two by two into every city and place where He Himself was about to go. As He prepared to send them, He envisioned for them the harvest and the challenges they would face from many hated Jesus. He gave them strict orders on what to take with them. He instructed them with whom they should stay and how to handle people, both those who received them and those who did not. Jesus instructed them to heal the sick and declare, “The kingdom of God has come near you.” (Luke 10:9b NKJV).Jesus also said that some cities would not receive them. Jesus told the disciples, “But whatever city you enter, and they do not receive you, go out into its streets and say, ‘The very dust of your city which clings to us we wipe off against you.’” (Luke 10:10 NKJV). He pronounced judgment on the cities of Israel that reject His apostolic company which He was sending to them. This continued for a generation after the resurrection of our Lord.When the seventy returned with joy to Jesus, they said, “Lord even the demons are subject unto us in Your name.” (Luke 10:17b NKJV). Jesus then instructed them further, and underscored their authority by saying, “Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you.” (Luke 10:19 NKJV).

Fit For Engagement Chapter 4 continued

The Salvation of Our BodyLastly, we must consider the salvation of our body. Even as Christ’s body was raised from the dead, each believer’s body will be raised from the dead at the physical return of Christ. “But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.” (Romans 8:11 NKJV). This part of our salvation is known as glorification.The body has five natural senses that God gave us to help us navigate our physical lives. They are necessary for maximum functionality. We are aware of the world and all it has to offer such as the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, which are all fed through these senses. These natural senses must be brought into subjection to Christ through the Word of God and the power of the Holy Spirit. This begins with seeking God through prayer, giving ourselves to the Bible, spending time with other mature believers, and bearing witness of our faith to a lost world.Having taken the time to look in detail at the three-fold salvation which our Lord has provided to us, we should understand the connection with the First Principles that make up the foundation of our life in Christ. My hope is that you can:Comprehend why repentance from dead works is so necessary.Understand why we apply faith toward God.Know that faith toward God leads to the baptisms commanded in the Bible.Know that the laying on of hands is a means of impartation to give what God has available to give through other believers.Know how important it is to understand the resurrection of the dead and how it applies in our life in the now, not just in the future.Understand the subject of eternal judgment that declares how an account to the Lord must be given.Our salvation is built upon these principles and when properly applied will produce maturity in us and in our ability to fight the good fight of faith.

Fit For Engagement Chapter 4 – Memory and Conscience

MemoryJesus told His disciples in the upper room, “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.” (John 14:26 NKJV).Paul made known the Gospel to the Corinthians. They received the Gospel and he told them: “in which you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast (keep in memory) the word which I preached to you—unless you believed in vain.” (1 Corinthians 15:1b–2 NKJV).Over the years I have met people who at one point believed but did not keep in mind what they received, and their faith turned out to be vain. David instructed us when he wrote:How can a young man keep his way pure? By keeping it according to Your word. With all my heart I have sought You; Do not let me wander from Your commandments. Your word I have treasured in my heart, that I may not sin against You.Psalm 119:9–11 NASBDavid treasured God’s Word by committing it to memory and applying it in his daily walk. Solomon reminded us: “the memory of the righteous is blessed.” (Proverbs 10:7 NASB).Jesus promised His disciples that the Holy Spirit would bring all things to their memory. Paul told the Corinthians that salvation is rooted in remembering what he preached. That is why we should study, review, memorize, and meditate upon the Word of God.ConscienceOur conscience is a very important part of our five soul senses. Paul told Timothy that:The purpose of the commandment is love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith.1 Timothy 1:5 NKJVThis constitutes a healthy mind. Paul contrasted this when he spoke of latter times:Now the Spirit expressly says that in the latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed todeceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron.1 Timothy 4:1–2 NKJVIn the Garden of Eden, Eve believed a lie when she was deceived by the devil and had her conscience seared. This is implied, as she no longer had a concern for God’s will, but only for her own desires. Thank God for the blood of those innocent animals and their skins that covered Adam and Eve’s sin. It is implied that their conscience was healed at the moment that they accepted the shed blood. They looked ahead to the promised seed of the woman: Christ, the son of David, the Son of God. The writer of Hebrews declared: “For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh, how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleans your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?” (Hebrews 9:13–14 NKJV).A good conscience is necessary for us to be able to navigate our lives with the guidance of the Holy Spirit. If our conscience is dull from not being listened to, it produces an inability to hear the guidance of the Spirit. The writer of Hebrews made the contrast between the Old Testament sacrifice of the blood of goats and bulls and the New Testament sacrifice of the blood of Jesus. The writer stated that the sacrifice of animals was “sanctified for the cleansing of the flesh.” (Hebrews 9:13 NASB). Then he asked, “How much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?” (Hebrews 9:14 NASB).Your conscience gives you an awareness of God’s will. Many years ago, I walked through a very difficult period in my life. Because of my hurt, I made some poor decisions. In my choices I disobeyed God when I ignored my conscience. I found that it became easier and easier to choose a dead work over obeying God. One day I came under deep conviction, turned my will loose, and declared, “Lord, I only want Your best!” Immediately I experienced the “blood of Jesus cleansing my conscience from dead works to serve the living God.” My conscience was back in full operation and once again, I was able to make difficult, but correct decisions. I thank God for the cleansing blood of Jesus! That experience taught me that the Word of God is true regarding a “seared conscience.” (1 Timothy 4:2 NASB).Our conscience becomes our guidance system because it is cleansed by the blood of Jesus and surrendered to the Holy Spirit. I believe that the conscience was part of the “Divine DNA” given to man when God breathed into man’s nostrils the breath of life as recorded in Genesis 2:7. When man fell, the divine life departed, and man was left with a natural life. The conscience remained and carried a sense of right and wrong. It helped give man a moral guidance but was very deficient without the Spirit of God. Man was left to his own devices. Through the new birth, the conscience once again is connected to the “Divine DNA” through the Holy Spirit.In our awareness of God’s presence and His will, the Holy Spirit can release spiritual gifts. A good conscience is vital for us to be sensitive to the Spirit’s guidance through gifts like wisdom, knowledge, and discernment of spirits. Ask the Lord to search your heart and show you any areas in your conscience that need cleansing. Allow the Spirit to apply the blood of Jesus to any areas of your life which He reveals to you. A fully operating conscience will cause you to be more sensitive to the Holy Spirit’s will in guiding your life.These five senses are part of the soul and are directly related to the many Bible verses that deal with the heart of man. When you read the Bible and it mentions the heart, consider these five senses and how those verses relate to each part of your soul.

Fit For Engagement Chapter 4 – Threefold Salvation

Our soul consists of five senses which need the salvation of our regenerated spirit man. Salvation must be applied to the natural areas of the soul. Those five senses are: reasoning, affections, imaginations, memories, and conscience. Each is controlled by our intellect, emotions, and will. The world, the flesh, and the devil influence these three controls of our soul and then attack the five senses of the soul in order to dominate our life. It is important to commit these five senses to God and the power of the Holy Spirit every day. The Bible specifically addresses each of these senses.ReasoningFrom Jesus to Paul to Peter, they each interacted with people who were reasoning against the servants of the Lord. It is noteworthy to understand that the area of reason is also connected with the heart or the depth of one’s emotions. Jesus asked, “Why do you reason about these things in your hearts?” (Mark 2:8b NKJV).Paul reasoned with unbelievers for the Lord. Paul “as his custom was, went in to them, and for three Sabbaths reasoned with them from the Scriptures,” (Acts 17:2 NKJV). Paul “reasoned in the synagogue with the Jews and with the Gentile worshipers, and in the marketplace daily with those who happened to be there.” (Acts 17:17 NKJV). Peter told us to always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope in you. He warned that we must respond with meekness and fear: “But [a]sanctify [b]the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear;” (1 Peter 3:15 KJV).