Introduction: It is an evident fact that faithful Christians are militant, from the First Century through the present. There are numerous examples of militancy found in the New Testament (Acts 4: 16-20, 5: 17-21, 25, 27-29). I. Christians indeed are militant.
A. This is, first of all, because God requires his people to be militant. " and exhort you," Jude writes, "that ye should earnestly contend for the faith " (Jude 3).
B. Paul wrote of himself: " knowing that I am set for the defense of the gospel" (Phili. 1:17).
a. Paul practiced what he taught because when he encountered false teachers his conduct was: "To whom we gave place be subjection, no, not for an hour " (Gal. 2: 5).
b. Paul and Barnabas "had no small dissension and disputation" with some false teachers (Act 15: 1, 2).
II. Why did early Christians evince such spiritual aggression?
A. Jude explains that the faith concerning which he commands Christians to "earnestly contend" had been "once for all delivered" (Jude 3, ASV, see also Heb. 9: 26, 27, 28, cp. 6: 4).
a. We must speak as oracles of God (I Pet. 4: 11).
b. Any change regarding the gospel is forbidden (Rev. 22: 18, 19, Gal. 1: 6-10).
B. Paul stated that the reason he militantly dealt with false teachers was "that the truth of the gospel might continue with you" (Gal. 2:5, cp. Lk. 1: 1-4).
C. Another reason for the militancy is the fact we must worship God in truth and the truth sets us free (Jn. 4: 24, 8: 32).
III. Moreover, the reason for such aggression is seen in the fact that Christians are at war.
A. Timothy was to "endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ" (2 Tim. 2: 3).
B. Timothy was also to "reprove, rebuke, and exhort " (2 Tim. 4: 2, cp. Tit. 1: 9-14).
C. Paul explained the nature of the Christians warfare (2 Cor. 10: 4-6).
a. Christians are to "have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness " (Eph. 5: 11).
b. However, Paul did not stop there: " but rather reprove them." True Christianity is not watered-down, namby-pambyism, it is forceful, aggressive and militant.
Conclusion: Christians are militant because they hate sin and false doctrine (Ps. 119: 104, Rom. 12: 9). When will man learn that our attitude toward truth and God's commandments reveals our attitude toward God and our consequent relationship with God (I Jn. 5: 3; 2: 3-5).