Thou, therefore, endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ" (2 Tim. 2:3).
What if there were conscientious objectors in the Lord's army? Actually, our Lord does not have any noncombatant soldiers whatsoever in His service, since the battle line extends from the front all the way to the rear; to say nothing of the fact that we are all camped in enemy territory.
"Luther, speaking to the young preachers of his day, said: I did not learn to preach Christ all at once. The devil has been my best professor of exegetical and experiential theology. Before that great schoolmaster took me in hand, I was an unweaned child, not a grown man. It was my combats with sin and with Satan that made me a true minister of the New Testament. It is always a great grace to me, and to my people, for me to be able to say to them: "I know this text is true! I know it for certain to be true!" Without incessant combat, and pain, and sweat, and blood, no ignorant stripling of a student ever yet became an effective preacher.'"
"Every bit of truth we receive, if we receive it in faith, will take us into conflict and will be established through conflict. It will be worthless until there has been this process. Take any position the Lord calls you to take, and, if you are taking it with Him, you are going through things in it, and there will be an element added by reason of the pressure. You have taken a position, yes; but you have not really received as yet, the true value of it has not yet been established. You have not come into the real significance of the truth until there has been some sore conflict in relation to it." -T. A-S.
"I bear willing witness that I owe more to the fire, and the hammer, and the file, than to anything else in my Lord's workshop. When my schoolroom is darkened, I see most." -C.H.S.
"We also exult in our sufferings, knowing as we do, that suffering produces fortitude; fortitude, ripeness of character" (Rom. 5:3, Wey.).
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