THE ARMY OF GOD
A popular chorus back in the “charismatic renewal” days of the 70’s and 80’s, before some of you were born, came to mind recently and with it the following thoughts. First let me give you the words of this chorus.
“God’s got an army marching through the land
Deliverance is their song, with healing in their hands
Everlasting joy and gladness in their heart
And in this army I’ve got a part.”
I’m not so sure that God has ever had an army, in the true sense of the word. We could sing the songs and pretend that we were, but when it came to going into battle against the enemy forces, many people went “AWOL” (Absent Without Leave) in case you’ve never heard the term! Two of my brothers were involved in WW2, one in the R.C.A.F. and the other in the Merchant Marines. I was too young of course to be involved, but I heard lots of stories after the war ended with the celebrations of VE Day.
I’m sure that God wants an “army” to do battle against His enemy Satan and his kingdom of darkness, but does such an army really exist? Consider what an army, or “armed forces”, the more politically correct term used today, actually consist of. The methods of fighting a war have changed drastically since WW2, but the requirements for the armed forces involved has not changed much. Basic “boot camp” is still the starting point for new recruits, where they learn the difference between their old life as a civilian and their new life as a soldier. This includes, but is not limited to, learning to obey orders even if they don’t make sense. Some day their life may depend on it! How many believers do you know that have learned to obey a command given by their leaders to do something that they don’t understand the reason for? We live in a society that is very “independent”, and accustomed to making our own decisions based on what we think is best for us, with no thought to how it might affect anyone else! This is definitely not allowed in an army setting! We must know our “superior officers”, and obey their commands. One of the problems in the church today (who we consider to be God’s army) is that they are not submitted to leadership who has been appointed by God to lead His people. We have more “self appointed” leaders today, or ones elected by a group of people, and not set in place by God. How can we consider this thing we call a church the “army of God”?
This is just one more way we have been deceived in our understanding of what the word “church” really means from God’s perspective! That's how I see it anyway!