There are some Christian teachings that focus pretty much on a hell and damnation aspect of Christianity. There are others that seem to delete that from their message, and focus on a loving, kind God, and never talks about hell. I admit, I prefer the latter, too. And in my life, because I know God to be loving and just and kind, I talk a lot about that to people.
But in my life, I also have seen Satan’s attacks in many ways, trying to keep me powerless in the kingdom of God in various ways…illness…financial hardship…marital and family troubles…discouragement…in the past, trying even to put doubts in my mind about God’s power and presence. That, not so much anymore, because it doesn’t work with me. And I’m getting stronger in the other areas too so that even now, being sick and stuck here so much…I have this blog and I am going to talk about Christ in it and all that he’s done in my life.
So, even here there has been an attack, ridiculing my beliefs and calling them unfounded. It hasn’t worked either. I’m still here, proclaiming Christ.
I don’t like talking about hell, and I don’t like focusing on ‘mean ol’ Mr. Devil’, as Ted used to call him sometimes. I’d just as soon kick his butt out of the picture altogether. Truthfully though, the whole picture includes all of it. You can’t talk about either one, and exclude the other, if you’re going to give a complete picture of Christianity. God is good. The devil is bad. We have the choice who we will believe, and thereby be serving, and ultimately whether we will be choosing heaven or hell when this life is over.
I know which one I choose, and you?
New International Version (NIV)
The Armor of God
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. 19 Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.
21 Tychicus, the dear brother and faithful servant in the Lord, will tell you everything, so that you also may know how I am and what I am doing. 22 I am sending him to you for this very purpose, that you may know how we are, and that he may encourage you.