Read Ellen G. White, “Importance of Seeking True Knowledge,” pp. 312-314, in Testimonies for the Church, vol. 8;“The Color Line,” pp. 219, 220, in Testimonies for the Church, vol. 9; “O God! Help Me to Higher Levels,” p. 105, in My Life Today; “Called to Reach a Higher Standard,” pp. 311-315, in The Acts of the Apostles.
“In every soul two powers are struggling earnestly for the victory. Unbelief marshals its forces, led by Satan, to cut us off from the Source of our strength. Faith marshals its forces, led by Christ, the author and finisher of our faith. Hour by hour, in the sight of the heavenly universe, the conflict goes forward. This is a hand-to-hand fight, and the great question is, Which shall obtain the mastery? This question each must decide for himself. In this warfare all must take a part, fighting on one side or the other. From the conflict there is no release. . . . We are urged to prepare for this conflict. ‘Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.’ The warning is repeated, ‘Wherefore take unto you the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.’” -Ellen G. White, Sons and Daughters of God, p. 328.
“We must put on every piece of the armor, and then stand firm. The Lord has honored us by choosing us as His soldiers. Let us fight bravely for Him, maintaining the right in every transaction. Rectitude in all things is essential to the welfare of the soul. As you strive for the victory over your own inclinations, He will help you by His Holy Spirit to be circumspect in every action, that you may give no occasion for the enemy to speak evil of the truth. Put on as your breastplate that divinely protected righteousness which it is the privilege of all to wear. This will protect your spiritual life.” – Ellen G. White, The SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 6, p. 1119.
- However much this week’s lesson emphasized the personal aspect of the struggle in which we’re all engaged, as Christians we are part of a larger community. How can the community as a whole help one another in their individual conflicts? What are the practical things that the community can do to help those who are in spiritual need, in whatever form that need may come?
- How does the military imagery that Paul uses reinforce the reality of the great controversy motif that is so central to the Bible? Why is it always important to keep the reality of this conflict before us? Who could imagine a soldier, in the battlefield, forgetting that he was in a war? How much more important is it for us not to forget either?