However numerous the arguments regarding various aspects of truth, we must never forget that our chief foe is Satan, who seeks to keep within the church the spirit of controversy and conflict. Unity is not a matter of small consequence (Rom. 15:1-7; 1 Cor. 1:10; Phil. 1:27-29). We must prayerfully seek unity based on the Word of God.
What group of people is under special assault, and how do they overcome? Rev. 12:10, 11, 17.
While it is true in a general sense that Satan walks about like a roaring lion indiscriminately seeking his prey (1 Peter 5:8), it is no less true that he targets those who obey God's law and testimony. But in Christ, their spiritual defense is sure. The Lord Himself strengthens them to repulse Satan's onslaughts.
What promise of protection does the Lord extend to His faithful people, and on what condition? Ps. 18:29-38; Ps 91:9-16; Ps. 144:1, 2.
God bids us to be always alert for the enemy. If we trust God, He will never abandon us. His angels stand at the ready to guide and protect us. "As His children draw near to Him for protection from evil, in pity and love He lifts up for them a standard against the enemy. Touch them not, He says; for they are Mine. I have graven them upon the palms of My hands." - Prophets and Kings, p. 571.
"Christ desires nothing so much as to redeem His heritage from the dominion of Satan. But before we are delivered from Satan's power without, we must be delivered from his power within." - Christ's Object Lessons, pp. 174, 175.
"The life of Christ was a life charged with a divine message of the love of God, and He longed intensely to impart this love to others in rich measure. Compassion beamed from His countenance, and His conduct was characterized by grace and humility, love and truth. Every member of His church militant must manifest the same qualities, if he would join the church triumphant." - Our High Calling, p. 366.
Ours is an aggressive warfare, yet we are to be a people of peace, in whom dwells the peace that passes all understanding. Stay close to the Captain of your salvation.
How should the principles of this day's lesson influence our behavior when controversy breaks out in the church?