The tragedy in Charleston, SC involving the nine people shot down during Bible Study is still troubling to me. These people were gathered in a safe place worshipping their God and were shot down in cold blood by a young man caught up in a sick racist agenda. How could this happen? Why were the people not on guard?
Why should we be on guard? After all church is a place of peace. It should be a place of safety. Don’t people know that the church is sacred? Didn’t the church used to be a place where you could go and not worry about violence?
Whether it’s a temple, mosque, or church; places of worship should be but are not always free of satanic attack. Evil is everywhere. That is why we are warned to put on the full armor of God. Even in the Old Testament temples were under attack. Black churches in America have been under attack for years. Emmanuel church where the shooting took place was built in the late 1800’s and was burned down by racist fire only to be touched again by gunfire. This should be a wake up call for each of us to guard what we have been assigned to.
When Jehu, king of Israel, destroyed the evil King of Judah his mother Athaliah started killing the whole royal family so there would be no one left to rule. This sick young man that killed the 9 people in Charleston thought he was purging blacks from taking over by starting a race war. What he did not count on was people coming together to guard what makes us a great country. People came together and marched. They demanded that the confederate flag come out of the state house. Walmart has declared they will stop selling confederate flags. People are on guard against racism.
It’s up to us to guard what we are assigned to. There was one son left that Athaliah did not assassinate. The killer in Charleston left one woman alive so she could tell everyone what happened. Joash was the soul survivor and they hid him in the temple until he was old enough to rule.
Joash represents the younger generation who is hiding out in a church under attack. We are under attack from racism. We are under attack for our belief in God. We are under attack for our values and its time for everyone in the house of God to be on guard.
1. Station yourself around the King. Levites, which were temple servants, had to station themselves in strategic places to keep Athaliah from coming to kill the King while he was in development. Each person who is a member of the church must find an assignment where you can be on guard. Some can guard the children. Some can guard the youth. Some can guard the parking lot. Some can guard the leaders but you need to be on guard.
2. Be on guard with a weapon in your hand. Our weapons are not carnal but spiritual. Our primary weapon is the spirit of God that helps us discern good from evil. Our secondary weapon is a gun to protect the house of God. There should be trained people who have guns to guard that, which are important. When Jesus was facing crucifixion he told his disciples to protect themselves. Luke 22:36, 38 Then He said to them, “But now, he who has a money bag, let him take it, and likewise a knapsack; and he who has no sword, let him sell his garment and buy one. So they said, “Lord, look, here are two swords.” And He said to them, “It is enough.”
3. Kill anybody that comes in unauthorized into the temple. One of the things they teach you in self-defense is to avoid a fight at all costs. The same day of the shooting in Charleston another church was attacked with a man wielding a machete saying he was going to kill all the “niggers.” An armed off duty police officer held him at gunpoint until the police arrived. Anybody that comes in the Lord’s house to take a life must be stopped by any means necessary.
4. Stay with the King wherever he goes. Joash was the rightful king and he needed to be protected. He was the leader God had anointed to lead his people. Leaders in churches need to be protected. Just as Peter protected Jesus, Disciples should protect their pastors and members.
I wish I didn’t need armor bearers. I love people and I’m a people person but Jesus told us to be as innocent as doves and as wise as serpents. These are evil days we are living in and we must be on guard.
Children’s workers need background checks. Parking lots need to be patrolled. Surveillance cameras need to be recording. Saints need to be praying. Men need to be in position and visible. Women need to be trained on self-defense. Armor bearers need to be trained and equipped to prevent violence against God’s house and the people of God need to be on guard. Watch and Pray!
The days are evil and we must be on guard. Don’t let our hearts grow cold as we are on guard. Help us to be open armed and discerning at the same time. Let people see our love before they see our guns. I pray that every house of God would continue to be a safe place free of violence and vandalism. Show us how to be on guard and trust you to watch over the house because unless you watch over us all our watching is in vain. Put your angels all around us so we will not have to live by the sword even though we have one. Help us to prevent violence by demolishing arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. Help us to be on guard. We fight not against flesh and blood but dark powers and principalities in high places. Help us to be on guard.
In Jesus Name,