At my place of employment each year we are required to complete a safety refresher course, at least those who have completed the initial course requirements. In this day long series of classes we rehearse the actions necessary for the continuance of not only our own lives but those around us in many different situations, everything from recognizing the situation to accomplishing our own individual tasks within them. Up until recently, we were taught that the first phase of any developing emergency or crisis was to assess the situation, but as many things do when dealing with those that live only in and for the transitory things of this world, we were informed this year that the new first initial step was to protect ourselves, something I thought as quite basic and fundamental before this major announcement, but which I did not mention. Those who live for the world and the transitory things of it are by their own nature filled with pride, and sometimes for the Christian it is just best to sit back and enjoy the show.
Of course, many of the situations that were discussed could be classified as emergencies, and the vast majority of these included the possible loss of life or limb to any within the affected area, and so they are in themselves important. Out of all the scenarios though there was one constant theme, protect yourself first, so that when the calamity either begins to diminish or is over, you can assist others. Herein lies the topic of this letter to you, and it is in Matthew 16:25, “For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it,” this verse is part of the context, in its totality it is the main topic, though it may come before us in different ways, it is the truth of it that we must seek out in relation to our opening statements, and these things I leave up to the discretion of the Holy Spirit.
In our context here, those that jump into the fray, as it were, after, or even during the crisis, are today around the world considered heroes, and when the situation is under control, when all is back to normal, as much as the world today could be considered normal, these individuals that are lifted up as heroes are given accolades, medals and recognition, for what if we fulfilled the Scriptures we should all do anyway. “Who is my neighbor.” (Luke 10:29) I am not belittling in any way those that perform the task at hand in these crisis moments with no regard to their own personal safety, in fact, just the opposite, for in these letters to you encouragement and conviction are the central focus, directly after lifting up the Name of Jesus Christ our Lord. And that is exactly the point, how are you losing yourself in this world and seeking the one to come.
The world says we are to protect ourselves so that we can help others, the Word of God says we are to lose our life for His sake, so exactly who are the heroes. For many Christians, this verse when simply glossed over is simple, do not be part of the world, and there are many other verses that will inform us of this truth, the problem is, I have never met that Christian, and I doubt you have either. There were those in days gone by, and to a small extent still are, that lived a monistic lifestyle, relegating themselves to the purpose of God as they believe it to be, separating themselves from the world, but even they can only do this to a small degree, for one must still maintain the flesh to exist in the mortal shell, and the flesh is of the world, and in essence requires the things of the world to continue in its existence. We are not speaking here of those who live after the flesh, (Rom. 8:13) but of any one single individual who actually believes that they can exist without the accoutrements of the world that are necessary for the body, one cannot eat spiritual food and expect the body to continue. Those in the monistic lifestyles, those who are in religious organizations who believe that they are heroes of the faith because they are subjecting themselves from the things of the world as much as possible are being deceived, for the world is where the battle is for the Christian, and we are commanded in the Scriptures in many places to enter into this battle.
Be sober, be vigilant, flee fornication, have not a carnal mind, walk in the spirit, keep our bodies under subjection, whether we like to admit it or not, the flesh needs the things of this world that God has created to exist, but our minds do not, our spirits do not. Those who jump into the battle in the world are by the world called heroes, those who recognize that the fight is in the spiritual, by the world are called names we will not mention here, but those in the world and of it do not know that the battle in the spiritual is the only reason they can continue fighting their skirmishes here on earth.
It is almost impossible to explain to those in the world that their wars, the emergencies, the crises that erupt on nearly a daily basis are not going to stop, that it is not going to get better, that in fact it is going to get worse, for they need their heroes to help them see that there is a possible hope, that if we pull together, if we would just try to be nice to each other, everything will be all right. They cannot see, or will not admit that from the dawn of creation unto even today, nothing in this area of sin has changed, that wars and calamities are the norm, that the heroes of the world are only maintenance men who came and fixed the current problem, and then were replaced with the next brave champion of the next current situation. Forgive me if this seems demeaning to those who have given their lives in the battle, whatever battle it was, but the point needs to be made, if the battle was only for the continuance of men and the world in which he lives, and not for the glory of God, their rewards were received here, and they were not even here to accept them. The lost need their heroes, they need to lift one of their own up as the shining star, as the victor of the day, as the one we should all emulate, to give them hope, and very soon their one true hero will arrive, and the whole world will wonder after him to their great demise. (Rev. 13:3)
If you want to be a hero my friends, I can tell you how. Strive to be by the power of the Hoy Spirit one that the world is not worthy of, (Heb. 11:38), search the Scriptures and learn what they say about the powers that we are at war with, (Eph. 6:12) use the examples of those written in the Word of God that came before us, those who gave their lives for the glory of God, learn what it truly means to love not your own life to the end, (Rev. 12:11) fully comprehend Philippians 1:21, “For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.” Then the only one true hero, the one that the world does not know, our Lord Jesus Christ, will look at you on that day with a smile on His face and say to you, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant.”
Give thanks to those who risk their lives for the lives of others here on this planet, that have devoted their lives to the safety and welfare of their fellow man, but do not lift them up beyond where they should be, for they will be forgotten, and replaced with the newest hero of the day, there is only one who deserves all of our praise, only one true hero who gave all for everyone, emulate Him. Your reward when you arrive home will be everlasting, and of infinite greater value than any you could ever receive here.