“Fight the Good Fight of Faith” I Timothy 6:12
“While women weep, as they do now, I’ll fight.
While little children go hungry, as they do now, I’ll fight.
While men go to prison, in and out, in and out, I’ll fight.
While there is a drunkard left, while there is a poor, lost girl on the streets,
while there remains one dark soul without the light of God,
I’ll fight – I’ll fight to the very end!”
Rousing words spoken by an ardent crusader full of fire and vim, preparing to lead the charge against the forces of darkness?
Yes & no. These words were spoken by William Booth in 1912. He’d reached the age of 83, now his health and eyesight were both failing and his warfare was almost over. He died just a few weeks after giving this testimony. No “flowery beds of ease” distracted him; he was a warrior to the end.
He wasn’t just out for social improvement; he was speaking of spiritual warfare. This man had caught a vision of what the Gospel of Jesus Christ could do for his fellow man and he devoted his life to carrying the torch into many dark corners to show captives the way out the prison houses of addiction, misery and crime.
William Booth organized his workers after the fashion of an army and they went out to battle Satan and free captives. From England they carried the Good News to many other countries. My Mom F, whose mother was dedicated to the Book of Mormon, tells me she heard the preaching of the Gospel and the need for a New Birth from the Salvation Army group in their small Saskatchewan town.
As I read his testimony my prayer is that all who name the name of Christ would first of all love the Truth of His Word, that we’d embrace it with our whole heart and give ourselves in obedience to it. Then spread the good news.
Doctrines may confuse some people at times, but amongst non-Christians in my family circle the general sentiment I pick up is that Christians talk “religious” and live in sin – especially covetousness. (Sad to say, they can bring up some great examples of this, too.) I feel religious words won’t cut it anymore; the best light we can display to unbelievers is the fire of God burning the impurities out of our own lives. MY own life! When they see those fires, then they’ll sit up and take notice of what the Gospel can do.
Grand crusades to “save the lost” are going to fizzle if there is sin in the Christians’ camp. If we let the Lord purify us, then even in our remote little corner we may spread the good news of victory. If we can ignite even a few other fires around us, our world will be that much brighter.
“How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!” Isaiah 52:7: