Praise the Lord and Pass the Ammunition

21 March 2022

7.3 MINS

Although restrictions are being lifted and we can breathe a sigh of relief, we cannot be complacent. The spiritual battle rages on around us, and we are called to fight on.

When we come to salvation in Jesus Christ, we enlist in a war. Regardless of what we understand, that’s the state of play. We instantly become a soldier for Christ, and the enemy of Satan and his league. The sooner we get our heads around that fact, the better we will learn to identify our leader and our opponent.

Praise the Lord and Pass the Ammunition was a song written in response to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbour which plunged the United States into World War II.

Legend and fact might be interspersed here, but it was reported that it began as a rallying cry repeated by Lt. Howell M. Forgy, chaplain aboard the USS New Orleans, who shouted the future song title during the attack to urge the crew members to keep fighting.

This is my version, a cry to rally against an enemy and be prepared for his attacks. He hasn’t left the battlefield!

Ongoing Battle

When I last penned an article, it was The Tale of Two Flags. The battle flag, or the white flag of surrender to an oppressor, are our choices. Spiritual warfare is as real as the sunrise; so too, is the physical struggle to retain democracy and freedom from oppression in these oft-harrowing times.

Totalitarianism and socialism are on the rise, disguised in terms that brook no discussion. Two years of absolute power corrupting absolutely has taken the world by the throat and shaken it.

We’ve been taken into captivity.

Fight or Flight.

The battle rages, and a lull doesn’t mean a cessation of hostilities. Just like the saying and song proclaims, we can praise the Lord, and justifiably thank Him for His mercies. We also need to be prepared to use the ammunition He has given us. Let’s rally the troops.

Back from Captivity, or still dangling on the Leash.

Just as in the days of Nehemiah, we are in great need of rebuilding the walls and the faith of the people of God. I choose to praise the Lord; I also choose to load my gun and pick up my sword in defence of freedom and the Gospel. God’s enemies didn’t want the walls of Jerusalem to be rebuilt, or the people of God to return home from captivity. Restoration, revival or even survival doesn’t work for Satan.

Choose this day whom you will serve.

One of the most disturbing aspects of this has been the behaviour and choices made by shepherds of the flock.

Shepherds of old, referred to in the Bible, were special indeed. In the Middle East, the shepherd knew each sheep, and they knew him. They responded only to his voice. Often, arid lands meant the water holes could be visited by many herds each day.

Because the sheep knew their shepherd’s voice, the herd would settle at his command, and wait until others had drunk; only when they heard his voice would they take their turn to drink. Hundreds of animals, yet they knew and responded only to their master’s voice! Now that’s amazing.

When they returned to the enclosure the shepherd would finish his tasks and the gate/pen would be closed for the night. Another shepherd or hireling would guard the animals until morning.

However, if they were on high pasture and away from home the shepherd would guard his flock with his life; no wolf or bear would decimate them on his watch. (1 Samuel 17:35) A mere hireling would not be trusted to guard and defend the sheep, for fear of neglect or abandonment.

These last two years have exposed a huge chink in our armour. Perhaps it’s because the West, including Australia, hasn’t been exposed to true oppression and persecution of the Church for many, many years. In the case of Australia, we have never been exposed to the WHOLE testing of our stamina, will, faith and principles we say we staunchly believe in.

Stop, Revive, Survive.

We all remember this slogan, and it’s certainly true when it comes to driving for too long — lethargy and tiredness can kill. Perhaps this stillness, lack of pressure and stimuli have rocked the church asleep.

Going through the motions of Sunday morning and evening, singing some songs, having a cuppa and hanging our hat back on the doorknob as we enter our home for another week; it’s a sad reality, in my opinion, that the church has been greatly tested by external forces and found to be lacking.

We’ve been asleep at the wheel, and like the circumstances in the real world, when it happens, we don’t know it until we have run off the road into a ditch, or collided with another car, tree, kangaroo, pedestrian. By the time we are shaken to awareness, the damage is often catastrophic.

We’ve sustained damage.

Recently, Premier Dom Perrotett, Premier of New South Wales, agreed that contact tracing and QR codes were nothing more than a response to media pressure for governments to ‘do more’. Kerry Chant (may she continue her exit) didn’t say that; it was all about the science — but it wasn’t. Lockdowns don’t work, but we were told to shut our mouths behind the mandatory mask and toe the line. Retaliation and sanctions both personal and corporate loomed for the ‘rebel’ element of society.

Spilling over to the church, pastors, priests and leaders acquiesced to the demands of the government and its bunch of bureaucrats with just about the fear and trembling that should be reserved for the God we serve; the good old threats of the stick and the carrot of money took us to a place of compromise and fear.

So few mentioned prayer meetings, or check-up calls with the flock. If you were fortunate enough to be in one of those fellowships, you would have been grateful, no doubt.

Instead, most of the months passed with silence or a cheerio message by email; all the while, the flock was scattered and divided, left to roam on the hills all alone. Some preached medical interventions, saying temporary inconvenience was for the good of humanity. But do it, or when the church opens, we can’t have you attend.

Some may never attend again — a sad reality. I know a pastor when asked by a parishioner if they would come and lay hands on him, should he be inflicted with virus, emphatically said, ‘No, I’m following the health advice.’ A strange dichotomy when compared to James 5:14-17 (Amplified Version) ~

“Is anyone among you sick? he must call for the elders (spiritual leaders) of the church and they are to pray over him, anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord; and the prayer of faith we’ll restore one who is sick, and he if he has committed sins he will be forgiven.

Therefore, confess your sins to one another [your false steps, your offenses], and pray for one another, that you may be healed and restored. but heartfelt and persistent prayer all the righteous man(believer) is able to accomplish much [when put into action and made effective by God — it is dynamic and can have tremendous power].”

This scripture was almost rendered useless in the light of many shepherds and elders who chose not to believe in it, or act in its wisdom and power.

It’s not about the blame, but we can’t stay the same!

Perhaps you were asleep at the wheel when the car ran off the road. Maybe you were merely a passenger. We all bear some blame when it comes to the church and its lack of valour in the face of enemy fire.

Make no mistake, that’s what we had. If we’re realistic and honest, we are still under fire. As I said earlier, whether we knew it or not, at the moment of our salvation, the Holy Spirit came to dwell inside us — what a privilege and honour, and what a target we make for the enemy.

We are in a war, and the sooner we realise this, the better we are at equipping ourselves and other saints. We need to know what’s at stake here; the big picture can well be the direction of national leadership itself, and fostering goodness in government.

On the personal level, we need to know how desperately we need God’s goodness and mercy, His love and faithfulness, and His forgiveness. To have Christians or indeed unbelievers treated with suspicion, anger and loathing because of the decisions they made in good conscience one way or the other must bring tears to God’s eyes; it certainly has mine.

So where do we go from here?

Will going back to Sunday morning service be enough for us? Will waiting for another load of burdens to be placed upon our backs by governments, or indeed hirelings, satisfy some innate need to feel ‘safe’?

Perhaps it’s time to look deep inside ourselves and question what we are prepared to put up with (that often flies in the face of the Gospel) in these perilous times, to keep the peace and a target from our back.

Peace at any cost is merely acquiescing to the terms of an undeclared war.

Are we willing to ask the Holy Spirit to sharpen our ears and our minds to what is being said, perhaps even from the pulpit — are we listening to the words of good shepherds, or the placating words of hirelings?

It’s OK to question leadership. It’s OK to call them out, if in your spirit you know something is amiss. The elevation of church leadership that borders on worship of men and placing our full trust in men, rather than God and His Holy Word has never ended well. We are, after all, human. We make mistakes, and so do they.

While there is a lull, however small here in our land, it’s time to take stock.

I hunger and thirst for revival in our country. I know many of you do too. We pray for the prodigals to come back to the fold. We pray for the walls of the sheep’s enclosure to be reinforced with the shield of faith and have shepherds wielding the sword of the spirit without compromise, flinching or deserting in the face of enemies surrounding us.

Perhaps you feel my words are harsh. Jesus and the apostles didn’t mince words. I’m far from being an apostle, but neither will I. How can we honestly and earnestly pray for souls to be saved, prodigals returned, and ‘greater works than these’ to be performed, if we are quaking in our boots when every howl of the wolves are heard?

The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same.

We need to be aware that our enemy doesn’t change their tactics: “For the thief cometh not but to kill, steal and destroy.” Nehemiah rebuilt the walls with a trowel in one hand and a sword in the other.

That’s a story from the Old Testament I would like to expand upon next time I write. The question will be posed to each of us: What can I do?


Photo by Daisa TJ from Pexels.

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  1. Gloria Delahunty 22 March 2022 at 5:18 pm - Reply

    Very well written Leonie, sad but true.

  2. Lenka 22 March 2022 at 7:46 pm - Reply

    Love your insights and fearless courage for truth 🤗

    • Gerry Phipps 24 March 2022 at 12:55 am - Reply

      Very well written, Very Sad but so Very True Leonie

      • Leonie Robson 24 March 2022 at 6:25 pm - Reply

        Thanks brother. Sad indeed.

  3. Leonie Robson 23 March 2022 at 9:07 am - Reply

    Thanks so much Gloria.
    We can and will do so much better if we are willing to move forward with courage and determination.
    Personal and corporate repentance and drawing closer to our Hope. He’s the only answer. Don’t we know! Xx

  4. Leonie Robson 23 March 2022 at 9:09 am - Reply

    Thanks dear Lenka.
    Appreciate your encouragement so much. Xx

  5. Warwick Marsh 3 April 2022 at 8:45 pm - Reply

    Great work Leonie!,,,,,

    • Leonie Robson 4 April 2022 at 8:46 am - Reply

      Thanks mate. Always appreciate your feedback.❤️

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