World, Flesh, Chess

I had some of the young people round for supper after chapel on Sunday. Rightly or wrongly, I introduced to them three-way chess. Instead of two people facing each other across the board, all three move forward, their pieces against the other two sets. It is a significantly harder game; plans and skilfully calculated moves are wrecked as unnoticed pieces from the other player scupper strategy.

Do you ever feel that this sums up the Christian life? We have not just one opponent against which we must wrestle, but many, and they attack us simultaneously. The devil is such an opponent, but so too the world with its allurements and false values; so too, apostate Christianity; so too my own fallen sinful nature, the most terrifying of the lot. As I successfully grapple with one, so the others strike. As one is silenced, so the others take up the cry. The Christian life is a battle, let’s not forget this. We must always be on our guard and be ready to fight till that day the war is over and the battle be won.

Every one of the builders had his sword girded at his side as he built.

Neh 4:18