Praise the Lord, who is my rock. He trains my hands for war and gives my fingers skill for battle. - Psalm 144: 1 (NLT) Christianity has become lazy in these; the last days. It is not difficult to see why. It is what is being preached from the pulpit and what is reinforced by leadership. To follow Christ used to cost something. It required something from you. Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me. - Matthew 16: 24 (NLT) But the seeker friendly church models do not want to talk about turning from your selfish ways because their selling strategy is to convince you that you can have your salvation and wallow in your sin too. The purpose the purpose driven model wants to give you has nothing to do with taking up your cross. No beloved, the modern day church message sells a lazy Christianity. No need to pick up your cross. No need to follow Jesus. Just hold hands, sing kumbya, and enjoy the view along the broad path to destruction. Christians have been turned into consumers but Christ is not a product. The Gospel is not meant to be packaged with slick marketing. Preaching is supposed to be centralized to the life changing Gospel of Jesus Christ, not a new sermon series on how to be blessed. Worship is supposed to lift up God in our lives not be overly focused on man and what we feel God owes us. Prayer, the forgotten discipline, is supposed to be at the core of everything we do; not a mere talking point we reference. Perhaps the real damage from all of this is the creation of a generation of lazy Christians. Lazy in reading the Bible in their lives. Lazy in their personal prayer life. Lazy in the spiritual war they are oblivious to the fact that they are in. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. - Ephesians 6: 12 (ESV) There is a real enemy to the souls of men. The Bible says that he is seeking whom he may devour and I have watched him devour Christians who were completely clueless to the war they are in. I have written extensively against the Grace Alone heresy from the likes of Joseph Prince because it breeds lazy Christianity. Hearing half the Gospel produces half a Christian and the devil loves half-Christians. If you deny the spiritual war you are in that will only ensure the enemy’s success against you. Because like it or not, we are in a war. This brings us to our key verse today. God prepares our hands for war and our fingers for the battle. God would not be preparing us if we did not have battles ahead of us in the war we are in. Sitting in a pew each week listening to candy coated messages reinforcing how many blessings God wants to give us is not going to prepare anyone for the battles or the war. The devil is not worried about Christians who chase the things of this world because he is the lord of this world! Christians following fake signs and wonders and lapping up false teaching is not going to strike fear into the enemy. The devil wants the Gospel watered down. He laughs when he sees mega churches stretching towards the sinful world to try and find relevance rather than refusing to compromise and remaining a shining city on a hill. Because very few of the people then will be properly trained for the battles which will ensue. How does the Lord train our hands and give our fingers skill? His training guide is His Word. The Word of God arms us against the wiles of the enemy. It prepares us for the battles because we will know the truths of God to wield against the lies of Satan. It prepares us for the war we are in so that we can better discern what is from God and what is not - even within the church. We are responsible for our own walk and relationship with God. We cannot expect to stand before Christ and say we were just following our church or our pastor. Get back in the fight today beloved. Pick up your field manual for these battles every single day and you will find yourself winning the war simply by correctly following Jesus. Rev. Anthony.