In his message this past Sunday, Pastor Doug used the story of Samson found in Judges 15: 9-20 to teach us about areas we need to be aware of in dealing with the enemy.
He also pointed out strategies that won’t work when we are trying to defeat the enemy of our souls. During this period in the history of Israel they were confronted by the powerful Philistine army. Although they vastly outnumbered their enemy they so feared them that instead of trying to defeat them, they tried to live with them.
Samson knew that tolerance would result in an eventual deterioration. He chose instead, to confront the enemy. In faith he used the unlikely weapon God provided (the jaw bone of a donkey) and single-handedly dealt the Philistines a deadly blow.
We too face a seemingly overwhelming enemy - one who seeks to destroy us. He is very subtle in his attack, slowly infiltrating the fabric of our society. It began when prayer was taken out of our public schools and has escalated until it is difficult to recognize our own country. One of his most effective weapons is called tolerance, and he skillfully uses it to help advance his agenda.
When the people of God take a stand, they are accused of being unloving and intolerant. The barbs sting, but God has called us to take a stand. Like Samson he calls us to faith and equips us to fight the battle.
This quote from Josh McDowell sums it up well:
"Tolerance says, “You must approve of what I do.”
Love responds, “I must do something harder; I will love you, even when your behavior offends me.”
Tolerance says, “You must agree with me.”
Love responds, “I must do something harder; I will tell you the truth, because I am convinced ‘the truth will set you free.’ ”
Tolerance says, “You must allow me to have my way.”
Love responds, “I must do something harder; I will plead with you to follow the right way, because I believe you are worth the risk.”
Tolerance seeks to be inoffensive; love takes risks. Tolerance glorifies division; love seeks unity. Tolerance costs nothing; love costs everything."