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Shipwreck of Compromise


Don't get shipwrecked by Compromise!

Compromise is a Power Robber.

When we have learned about God’s disciplinary pattern, we know that there is no place for compromise.  It will rob us of our power to progress, stop our growth and cause us to slide backward.  We must develop a fierce determination to always wear the whole armor of God and “when we have done all, to stand” (Ephesians 6:13).  Truth can’t be compromised.  A half-truth is a whole lie.


God’s ways often do not make sense to the natural mind, because they don’t seem to be “logical.”  “The just shall live by faith” (Hebrews 10:38).  Faith doesn’t require logic, just total confidence in our omnipotent, omniscient God.  Common sense tells us when things are going great and stress has gone on to harass someone else, that this is just where God wants us to be.  However, God doesn’t always operate on our common sense.  His ways are as high above ours as the heaven is the earth. 


While we do have reprieves now and then, our walk with the Lord is an ongoing, ever-learning, still-growing process.  What if a flower finally pushed its way out of the dark earth and said, “Whew, I finally made it through, now I can just sit back and relax.”  It would cease to grow and never become the beautiful flower it was meant to be.  It still has to be nurtured with nutrients, moisture, sit in the hot sun, survive the stormy winds, lose its close neighbors who have been thinned out (Some were weeds anyway!), pruned, pinched back and maybe even transplanted.  It finally reaches its potential.  Even then it will have its spent flowers deadheaded, more pruning and possibly cut off from the main plant and end up in a flower vase; but the beauty and the fragrance is enjoyed in a different environment. “Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you” (1 Peter 4:12).


Paul likened living in this life to a race.  We know that we can’t stop and have a pity party because our legs are tired and our muscles are screaming from fatigue if we want to win the race.  We just keep going, giving it all we’ve got until we reach the finish line.  This race will just make us stronger and more confident that we can win the next one – and the next one.  Thus we learn to “run with patience” (perseverance) the race that is set before us.  It will consist of many laps, hurdles and even those who would try to hinder our progress, but “he that endureth to the end” will be the winner.  And in this race, all who finish are winners!


There was a time when the church and those who chose to live for Jesus were subjected to severe persecution.  Instead of withdrawing from pain and rejection, they just drew closer to God and were empowered to do even more for the Kingdom.  When the apostles were imprisoned and released during the night by an angel, they didn’t breathe a sign of relief and go into hiding.  The next day, early in the morning, found them at the most popular place, the temple, speaking “words of this life” (Acts 5:20).  They declared that they ought to obey God rather than men.  They were made stronger in their testimony by the persecution.


It isn’t very had to stop persecution.  All we have to do is compromise whatever stand we have taken for the Lord and the standard we are trying to uphold.  Compromise will cause the persecution to cease. But standing firm and holding fast to God’s standard will invariably bring some kind of persecution, and sometimes it will come from an unexpected direction.  Regardless of the visible source of persecution, the real source is Satan.  It would be good for us to realize that the person we are looking at who is wounding us is not the real enemy.  “…we do not war after the flesh.  For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of the strong holds” (2 Corinthians 10:3-4).  Our real enemy is Satan.


The only effective weapon in this warfare is the “sword of the Spirit” (the Word).  When Jesus faced Satan in His wilderness trial, that was the only weapon He took into the wilderness with Him and He won the battle; in fact, He won the war!  Actually the battle is not ours; it is the Lord’s.  We are just warriors called by God to fight in His war.  When individuals or churches compromise, they have already lost the battle.  But as long as we hold up the banner of God, He is leading and victory is assured.


Compromise may bring temporary relief from the war, but the results will be disastrous.  Complacency will set in and there will be a false sense of peace.  “Where there is no vision, the people perish; but he that keepeth the law, happy is he” (Proverbs 29:18).  In order to compromise, the conscience has to be put to sleep.  But there is no real, lasting peace in a sleepy conscience.  To be happy, we have to “keep the law.”  Now we know that no one is capable of totally keeping all the law, but Jesus did it for us and absolved us from the penalty of breaking it by taking it upon himself.


The compromiser has to try to fill the void that is left when he turns from keeping the law and depending on Jesus.  The compromiser has to turn from the Word, the only effective weapon he has, because the Word will convict him of his condition.  He has to reject the wooing of the Holy Spirit as He tries to awaken the sleeper and draw him back into the safety of the Lord’s war.  That sounds like an oxymoron, but we are flirting with doom when we try to do battle ourselves.  The only safe place to be is in God’s army, battling God’s enemy with God’s weaponry.  He supplies all the armor and weapons we need.  “Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil” (Ephesians 6:11).  That clearly tells us who the enemy is, and we are no match for the devil without the weapon God provides.  We are no match for the “principalities, powers, rulers of the darkness, spiritual wickedness” (Ephesians 6:12).  The Word is the only weapon we need.


The Word is not intended to make us feel comfortable.  It is to transform us to the image of Jesus and help us walk in God’s will.  This is why some people compromise; they don’t want the Word to expose their sin because they don’t want to give it up.  They would rather be “at ease in Zion” (Amos 6:1) than have to cease from their disobedience and repent.  “Be not conformed to this world but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God” (Romans 12:2).


A hunter in the woods met a bear.  The bear asked the man what he was doing there.  He replied, “I need a fur coat to keep me warm.  What are you doing here?”  The bear said he was just hungry and needed to fill his stomach with food.  The bear went away with his stomach satisfied and the man had a fur coat.  If we live in rebellion, we may get what we want right now, but if it isn’t what God wants, we have compromised what would be in our best interests with what satisfies at the moment; and the price will be far more than we expected to pay.


Compromise is deceptive.  The “ease” it brings is really spiritual quicksand.  It will soon swallow up all our spirituality and our contact with God.  The more we compromise, the less we will desire God’s presence, the less time we will spend in His Word, the more we will avoid those who are standing firm and holding up God’s banner while doing battle with the enemy.  We will just sink deeper into the quicksand until it swallows us.


Compression:  The degree of compressing of gas in an internal combustion engine just before ignition.  Tests and trials “compress” us, motivate us to seek God in prayer and search His word for answers.  They “fire our engines” and without the “compression,” we become spiritually lazy and at ease.  We lose the spiritual thrust that gives us momentum and motivation.  Trials stretch us to look to God, to live by faith because we don’t have the solution to the problems that threaten us.


Without that compression, the ability to utilize the fuel to run the engine is hampered and ability to carry out the internal combustion to fire the engine is lost.  The result is loss of power which causes loss of momentum.  Our flesh resists trials and tests.  If we walk after fleshly desires, we will seek a life free of tests.  To avoid persecution, we will try to compromise.  Compromise will destroy the compression necessary in our inner person to drive us to God and His Word which will give us greater momentum for the Kingdom of God and make us victorious over the enemy.


If Satan can lure us into a compromise, he will give us a false security, steal our power (destroy our “compression”) and we will lose the battle.  But if we stand firmly on God’s Word and march obediently in His army, we will have real security, keep our momentum (firing with the proper internal combustion) and we will win the battle.  Jesus knew we would suffer persecution because of Him but He also told us how to be victorious—don’t compromise, stand on the Word, having done all (that we can), to stand and He would lead us to ultimate victory and great rewards now and eternally.  There is great purpose in our trials—our salvation!

We already know how it all ends! 


Points to Ponder

Compromise is a synthetic fuel which mimics the genuine fuel of uncompromised commitment.  Our power source lies outside ourselves.  If we try to be self-propelled, our fuel supply will soon be depleted and fatigue will halt our progress.

To compromise any part of God’s plan is to accept a substitute.  Any substitute for the truth is a lie.  Jesus is the “Truth,” and there is not so much as a “shadow” of variance in Him.  That is His essence.

As the Body of Christ, we can expect persecutions.  It is part of Satan’s plan to shipwreck as many as will sail on the sea compromise.

We can expect tests which will expose our weakness and turn us toward God.  The Word tells us that we will never be tested beyond our ability to “bear” it or it will be removed before we overreach our endurance.

Our aim is to finish the race, to gain the prize, so we cannot afford to use any inferior racing shoes.  The Gospel of Peace brand will provide traction to keep up the pace on the God-marked route.  There are “nearly look-alikes” available, but we must not compromise quality for a cheap substitute.  Only the Truth will stand throughout eternity.

The Straight and Narrow Road ahead may loom scary at times with trials and persecutions casting dark shadows on the way.  We might be tempted to compromise and look for an easier route, but we have learned we can trust our Shepherd who will lead us safely through any valleys with shadows of death.  A shadow has no substance, and when the “Son” is present the shadows disappear.









Music "All of My Heart" by Songs of Praise

Copyright There's Good News October 2006

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