God’s plans stand firm forever. The purpose of His heart will be established through all generations. His love for each one of us was manifested in Jesus Christ (John 3:16). Because His plans stand firm, our confidence should only be placed in Him.
When Jesus came to earth, it was to fulfill Isaiah 61. He came to set the captives free from the penalty of sin and to have life. Paul writes to the Galatians to remind them that Jesus came to set them free. During that time, they were trying to follow Jewish customs as Gentiles. Legalism had become more important than following the new covenant under Christ. At the same time, he didn’t want them to slip back into former ways of living. Paul’s passion is seen in Galatians 5:1 when he admonishes them to stand firm in their faith.
Paul’s words in 2 Corinthians remind us that it is only by God’s grace that we can stand firm in Christ Jesus. With Him, all things are possible. God’s power and presence equips us to stand firm in the face of adversity.
Why do we need to be “on the alert”? Why do we need to be strong and “act like men”? Peter echoes Paul’s words in his first epistle and warns Christ followers that the enemy, the devil, prowls around like a lion looking for someone to devour (1 Peter 5:8). To stand firm against the devil’s schemes, we must be strong and prepared.
Paul warns the church in Ephesus about standing firm against the devil’s schemes by putting on the full armor of God (Ephesians 6). What armor do Christians need? Christians must wear the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, feet fitted and readied for peace, the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit. Standing firm in the faith requires character, hope, and perseverance when we face trials (Romans 5:3-4).
In one of Jesus’s teachings, He admonishes His disciples to stand firm when facing trials and persecution. He warns them that as His disciples, people will hate them. They are engaged in a war that is bigger than themselves. The devil doesn’t want the Gospel spread. The enemy will use whoever and whatever he can to keep people living in darkness. In telling them to stand firm, Jesus offers the prize: “…you will win life.” Jesus came to give us eternal life, an abundant life in Him that never ends.