“The Christian sleeping in false security may be taken by surprise.” ~ William Gurnall
The Christian is often warned to be alert and keep watch (cf. Ephesians 6:18; Matthew 26:36-46). One cannot fulfill the duty of Christian while sleeping. Only when alert and on guard can the Christian be ready to stand.
The call of duty is a call from Christ. It’s importance is conveyed both in the nature of the call and the nature of the caller. Having been delegated authority, Christ’s call comes from One has jurisdiction over our lives. It was Christ who bought our lives at a great price. The call to stand is of utmost gravity and attention because of the one issuing it.
The importance of such a calling is further conveyed in the nature of the calling. The command to stand conveys a great level of details often overlooked. In previous chapters of The Christian in Complete Armour our attention was drawn to the fact that stand requires a firmness in foundation so that one does not flee or crumble under the pressure from the enemy and it requires that one stand in his or her own place to fulfill a personal duty. Now, we come to realize that the command to stand requires attention and awareness.
While simple in words, the action of standing underscores the need to be well-appointed towards that duty. One must be watchful and alert to the surroundings. To watch requires one must do so constantly, universally, and wisely:
- Constantly: To stand requires a constant watching. Standing cannot be dutifully done from a sleeping posture.
- Universally: It also requires one to watch completely taking into account the surroundings. Enemy engagement can come from all directions.
- Wisely: One must be a wise watcher when standing. The enemy is deceitful and thus one must watch wisely in order to discern the enemy’s movements and tactics.
For the Christian, perhaps the greatest advice is to watch the area that you find weakest, because surely it is this area that the enemy will attack. God has given the necessary tools, the armour to defend against such an underhanded enemy. He has issued a battle cry that compels us to stand for our Savior. Therefore, we stand aware of the need to not be caught off our guard and sleeping, but alert and watching.
This concludes our reading of William Gurnall’s The Christian in Complete Armour. I hope that you have enjoyed and learned much from the book. Next week I will do one final review and then I urge you to keep checking back for a future project to read together.