"He trains my hands for battle;
my arms can bend a bow of bronze.
You make your saving help my shield,
and your right hand sustains me;
your help has made me great."
Psalm 18:34-35 (NIV)
Yesterday while sitting in church I had the strongest realization that we, the global worldwide church, are at war. There is a clash of kingdoms, you know. Good vs. evil. The kingdom of light is at war with the kingdom of darkness. Until Christ returns for His church, we have a job to do. We are to advance, advance, and never retreat!!!
How will we advance our part of the kingdom if we are not a well armed force? I wondered.
I've heard stories of America during WW2 that as men went out to fight, the women went to work to arm them for battle. My own grandmother moved her family from Ohio to Detroit to work as a Rosie the Riveter while her husband, my grandfather, went off to war. It was an "all for one and one for all" mentality until America celebrated in VICTORY.
The church is not only the saving vessel for mankind, it also stands of the front lines of battle for every neighborhood, city and nation. Not all within the church are called to fight, but we are all responsible to be ready, fit, and able to lift one another up, to provide solace for the fighters, to train, and to supply arms.
To provide arms, weapons and tools for the hands of fellow warriors is something we do when we decide to give. Whether through our obedience to tithe, or when we step out in faith and give beyond, through offerings and gifts, we are saying, "I will not leave you empty handed. I will not leave you exposed. I will not only fight beside you, I will advance the fight, and I will help make you a better equipped warrior."
Our giving is an act of war because our funds provide training, education, books, and tools to equip people for battle.
Our funds allow the church to have a quick community response in times of emergency, which breaks the back of our enemy who depends of fear, lack and poverty to keep a stranglehold over our cities. Our giving allows us to be ready for every what-if contingency.
If the enemy can keep the church broke, poor, and powerless he gains further access to people who need the light and love of God to be expressed through the church so desperately.
We hold the hope of the world within us. Hope itself is a powerful weapon, and when the church is well funded, that voice of hope can be broadcast across the nations and the Kingdom of God expands. Warriors can be supplied and sent out.
"But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the Scriptures say, “How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!”" Romans 10:14-15 (NLT)
Yes, we give as an act of obedience, but in reality, it is so much more. When we give, we arm the church for battle and we advance the kingdom. God chooses to use the structure and apparatus He put in place to save the world, and that is His church. The church triumphant. The church victorious. That is why your giving becomes your act of war.