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Fight Wisely.

Fight Wisely.

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" So fight, not as one that beateth the air — 1 CoR. ix. 26.

" So fight, not as one that beateth the air — 1 CoR. ix. 26.

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Published by: GLENN DALE PEASE on Dec 02, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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FIGHT WISELY. BY EDWARD MEYRICK GOULBURN, D.D.," So fight, not as one that beateth the air — 1 CoR. ix. 26. The three elements which enter into the composition of the Spiritual Life, are Acting, Fighting, and Suffer-ing. Of the first of these we have spoken ; and now, from the consideration of the Christian in his duties, we  pass to the consideration of him in his temptations, or, in other words, we proceed to consider him as fighting. Two of the main sources whence temptations arise are the Devil and the flesh ; or, in other words, our great spiritual adversary, and the traitorous correspondence which he meets with from the heart of man. Now the heart being, according to the sure testimony of God's Word, deceitful above all things, and Satan's method of operation, too, being by stratagem rather than open violence, the first method, therefore, of meeting temptation aright must be to meet it wisely. Policy in.] Fight ivisely. 201
must be opposed by policy according to the warning of the Holy Apostle : " Lest Satan should get an advan-tage over us ; for we are not ignorant of his devices.'^ How then shall we fight wisely 1 This is our ques-tion in the present Chapter.  Now to fight wisely is not to figlit at a venture, but with a definite aim. " So fight I," says the Apostle, '^not as one that beateth the air." In which words he is drawing an innage from the boxing-match in the Isthmian games, and declares that in the spiritual com- bat, he does not wear out his strength by vain flour-ishes of his hands in the air, but plants each blow cer-tainly and with a telling aim (o^Vw ttvkt^vw Jjs ovk depa 8epo)v). We read indeed that King Ahab was shot by an arrow sent at a venture, that is, without deliberate aim :  but this is told us to magnify the Providence of Almighty God, who in His designs of wrath, can direct the aimless shaft whithersoever it pleases Him ; not surely to teach us that aimless shafts are likely on com-
mon occasions to be successful. Yet what is the warfare of many earnest and well-intentioned Christians but the sending of shafts at a venture % They have a certain notion that they must resist the evil within and without them ; but then this evil presents itself in so many forms, that they are bewildered and confounded, and know not where to begin. And so it often comes to  pass that their time and labour is thrown away in re- pressing symptoms, where they should be applying their M'hole energy to the seat of the disorder. On the other hand, the first work of the politic spiritual warrior will be to discover his besetting sin, or sins, and having discovered it, to concentrate all his disposable force before this fortress. 9* 202 Fight wisely. [part Just as each individual has a certain personal con-figuration, distinguishing him from all other men at first sight ; just as his hair has a certain colour, his

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