Agreeing With Your Enemy
Businessman Pushing Heavy Stone Onto His Enemy
The pain of disagreeing
An interesting thing happened at Sunday morning service – an elderly lady requested prayer for a sore leg. There was nothing unusual about that and I and a couple of other leaders prayed for her, petitioning God to heal her. After the prayer she said she felt much better, but when she turned to go she winced painfully and it was apparent that her leg was still sore. I said nothing as I watched her clinging to the pews for balance. She was back for evening service and I asked how she felt. She smiled and said she felt fine, she knows that God touched and healed her. The expression in her eyes, however, told a different story, one of defeat and pain.
It’s time for Christians to be real.
The Christian Life is a real life of flesh and bone. There are times when we have plenty and times of shortage, days filled with joy and others with sorrow, we feel pain and cold and loss, but there are so many Christians today living a life of denial, believing that doing otherwise shows a lack of faith, people who insist that positive thinking is the same as faith.
Moses, in the wilderness did not thank the Lord for a wonderful, obedient group of people that he was to lead to the Promised Land. In fact, the Lord, Himself, called them stiff-necked and disobedient (Exodus 32:9) and Moses complained bitterly about his lot. He did not thank the Lord for making him such an important leader, he realized that he was leading an ungrateful lot of grumblers.
David at Ziklag, after the Amalekites and burnt the city and kidnapped his family and the families of his men, cried out and lamented his loss. He did not shrug and say all will be fine.
Hezekiah, surrounded by enemies, brought the letter calling on him to surrender to the Assyrians, before the Lord and literally cried out, “Open Your eyes and read what they have written. I am unable to fight them.” He accepted his situation and his inability to do anything about it, and because he did, God could work.
Jonah in the belly of the fish accepted that he was dying and unable to do anything about it.
Paul did not testify to a life of success upon success, he admitted to hardship and pain, punishment and deprivation.
These are all men of faith who believed for victory even in the adverse circumstances they found themselves. They did not deny or try and change the situation or the hardship with positive thought, they did believe God for relief and help. What form that help would take, they did not know, and it was not always with healing or freedom. Often it was with more problems, more hardships and new works.
Who is your enemy?
Being positive is good, it is therapeutic and motivational but there comes a time when we need to be honest, not only with ourselves but also with God and our problem or adversary.
Agree with your adversary quickly, while you are in the way with him; that the opponent not deliver you to the judge, and the judge deliver you to the officer, and you be thrown into prison. (Mat 5:25)
Your adversary need not be the devil or sin. Pain or lack, heartache or addiction or even our own bad decisions can be just as oppressive and debilitating.
‘Adversary’ in the original Greek is ‘antidikos’ which is made up of two words: ‘anti’- which means opposite or contrasting with and ‘-dike’ which means right. Simply put adversary is the opposite of what is right. Jesus tells us to agree with our adversary before we are judged. When we are hurting admit it, anything else is a lie.
Why the pain?
It is good to believe God for anything according to His will – it is also good to know and believe that God tests us. He tests our faith and our obedience. Agreeing with your adversary i.e. acknowledging my leg is sore, I prayed but it is still sore brings us to a place where we can move a step up the spiritual ladder, where we can ask “why”. Why is it still sore? What is God teaching me by not healing me immediately? How can I grow spiritually through this experience?
The quicker we accept the situation, the quicker we learn, the quicker the answer, the quicker the solution, the quicker we can move on to greater things in our spiritual walk.
Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
No greater cause of pain than money.
The greatest cause of pain in its various forms is money. A large proportion of problems can be traced back to ‘filthy lucre’. When it comes to money and the wicked or evil mammon we never seem to have enough to meet all the demands or satisfy all our needs. We blame the economy or the government or the boss but hardly ever ourselves. What money we have seems to disappear the moment we get it and when some one asks how it’s going, we smile and say “FINE! It’s just a very long month.”
Haggai 1:6... and he that earns wages earns wages to put it into a bag with holes.
Jesus has a bit of advice for us. Instead of complaining about or denying the situation:
Luke 16:9 And I say unto you, Make to yourselves friends of the mammon of unrighteousness; that, when ye fail, they may receive you into everlasting habitations.
You don’t give your friends away cheaply or for no reason. Once we accept we have a problem we can address it. Most times we will find that the problem is not money but ourselves, some habit or trait that needs to be corrected or a bad decision for which we are now paying; but while we deny the situation it can never be fixed. Acceptance of the fault is the first step to deliverance.
Mat 11:28 Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
© 2019 Warren du Plessis