I know a preacher on Facebook who was advertising to teach self-defense classes. I jokingly responded, “So that’s what you call bible study eh?” (or something to that effect). And though he didn’t seem to think it was that funny, it did get me thinking about a Christian’s “Self-Defense”. Just hoping that Satan will never attack us is like hoping we can jump in the ocean without getting wet. As best I can tell, these are the 6 parts of self-defense that every Christian should be intimately familiar with in order to live in faithfulness.
1. Knowledge - Without knowledge the other 5 parts of self-defense are virtually useless. A gun, or mace, does you no good unless you know how and when to use it. Likewise, a bible is useless without acquiring the instruction within to help you overcome trials, temptations, and tribulations. (II Tim. 3:16-17) Knowledge is the beginning of wisdom (Col. 1:9-10), and without it we cannot walk in a manner pleasing to the Lord, and we cannot overcome the power of Satan. (Lk. 4:4, 8, 12)
2. Training – If you read in a book how to mobilize an attacker, you may have the knowledge, but you don’t actually have the benefit of experience that comes with training. Would a responsible army send its soldiers off to war with only “book knowledge”? We should not go off to war (Eph. 6:11-12) without preparing ourselves through training. Listening to sermons, watching debates, participating in Bible classes are all great ways to train ourselves for dealing with the realities of evil we face daily.
3. Alertness – To physically protect ourselves from harm it is important to always be aware of our surroundings and the potential dangers.(I Cor. 16:13) Every time I find myself driving through a “bad” neighborhood I can still hear my mother’s voice telling me, “Lock the doors.” People who are unaware of the situation they are entering become easy targets for predators (Pro. 7:6-27), and there is no predator as cunning as Satan himself (I Pt 5:8). Don’t put yourself in risky or compromising situations. (Prov. 4:14-15)
4. Help – It’s important to know when we are in over our head. Or perhaps not even that, but just realize that there is “strength in numbers”. People are taught in self-defense classes to call for help. You may call 911. A police officer may call for “back up”; the army – “reinforcements”. Whatever you want to call it, we have to make sure our pride doesn’t get in the way of us asking for help. As Christians, that’s what the church is for; we are NOT in this fight alone. (Acts 20:28-31; Heb. 3:12-14; 12:12-13)
5. Flight – It’s important for us as Christians to realize that there are times we need to just turn around and, not walk, but RUN away. This imagery is found in scripture; such as to flee from idolatry (I Cor. 10:14), sexual immorality (I Cor. 6:18), and greed (I Tim. 6:10-11). There is NO shame in running from sin (and sinful situations)… there is life in it. (Gen. 39:12) Any self-respecting self-defense class teaches the value of fleeing from danger first.
6. Fight - “Resist the devil and he will flee from you.” (James 4:7) In self-defense, fighting is the option of last resort. It is that last bastion of hope between death and survival. For us not to perish to the perils of sin we must be ready and willing to fight. We have the imagery in scripture that we as Christians are soldiers, and we have the instruction that we must fight. If we resist the devil, He will flee from us (Lk 4:13)
Unfortunately, in physical self-defense that is pretty much it. You either win and live to fight another day, or your lose and possibly perish. But thanks be to God, that when our defenses fail us, we have the power of God to overcome sin and death through the resurrection of Jesus Christ our Lord. And so may we continue to remain “steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord”. (I Cor. 15:57-58) And with our knowledge of self-defense may we fearlessly defend ourselves from Satan, as we faithfully live for Christ.
By David Osteen via Texas City Grace Gazzette March 27th, 2011 Volume 6 Article 11
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