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Open for Attack…?

July 25, 2016

Here’s an old joke: the minister announces that he’s going away on holiday. After the service, a member immediately corners him and says: “You know, the devil doesn’t take a holiday!” To which the minister replies, “You’re absolutely right – and if I don’t take one, I’ll become just like him.”

When this bulletin goes out, I will be away visiting family in Sweden. I hope my congregation will not be cowering in their pews while I’m away, fearing the devil might take the opportunity to attack them…

The church member’s objection is still worth considering, for the obvious misunderstanding it reveals. They’re of course correct in saying the devil never takes time off (despite a 2001 song by The Electrics which claims that “the devil takes his holidays in Lossie-by-the Sea”); but quite incorrect in assuming that the pastor should therefore be on duty all day, every day (on that thinking, would a minister ever be allowed to sleep?).

The fact is, the battle against Satan’s schemes isn’t primarily the pastor’s job; it’s what the church is engaged in, daily and hourly. Together we stand up for justice and against evil; together we proclaim the gospel and seek God’s will in prayer; together we proclaim God’s victory in praise and worship, and together we resist Satan and his minions.

Whether the pastor is present or not is irrelevant; it’s the church that is the body of Christ on earth, and it’s the whole church that fights against the devil. Let’s continue standing firm in our resistance, united in spirit and faith, knowing that the victory is the Lord’s!

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From → Christianity, Faith, Jesus

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