Stand Your Ground – Lessons From Watchman Nee’s Classic “Sit, Walk, Stand” – The Path To Christian Maturity – Part Five: STAND!

Stand Your Ground (Lessons From Watchman Nee's Classic "Sit, Walk, Stand") -  The Path To Christian Maturity - Part Five: Stand!

Click to read: Stand Your Ground – Lessons From Watchman Nee’s Classic “Sit, Walk, Stand” – The Path To Christian Maturity – Part Five: Stand!

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In reality, I laugh at this picture, but I don’t laugh in the face of danger. 

I flee. 

I flee fast and far. 

Unless, of course, someone’s messing with one of my children, then they’d better flee fast and far.

(But then again, my son is a black belt, so I think he can handle himself. And for that matter, my youngest daughter is pretty tough with a plastic rifle and pirate hook, as you can plainly see.)

The attacks of the Enemy, however, are nothing to laugh at.

The devil isn’t a myth or a silly creature in a red suit.

He’s a liar and a thief, who seeks only to steal, kill, and destroy, but he’s no match for the power of Christ, who lives inside every Christian.

Thus, against every weapon of Satan, we can — and must — STAND.  

Which brings us to the lessons I’ve learned from the final section in Watchman Nee’s classic book Sit, Walk, Stand.

But first, a quick review.

SITOur first step is to SIT with Christ and remain there. Don’t get back up. 

WALK: Our next step is to WALK by Christ, from our seated position, redeeming the time.

Only after we’re established in the truth of SITTING and WALKING, are we truly ready for the next step:

STAND your ground in Christ.

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might.
Put on the full armor of God,
so that you will be able to STAND
firm against the schemes of the devil . . .
that you will be able to resist in the evil day,
and having done everything,
to STAND firm.

~ Ephesians 6:10-11,13

Watchman Nee points out that the phrase stand against, actually means to hold your ground.

“By the resurrection, God proclaimed His Son victor over the whole realm of darkness, and the ground Christ won, He has given to us.

We do not need to fight to obtain it. We only need to hold it against all challengers.”1

“We don’t fight for victory. We fight from victory.”⁠2 (Click to tweet)

I love that last line!

The moment we begin to fight to gain the victory Christ’s already given us, we’ve lost the battle. We’ve stood up from our seated position with Christ and wandered right where the Enemy wants us. 

Satan can’t snatch Christians from God’s hand, but he can destroy our experience of peace and our testimony to the world simply by unsettling us.

He wants us to stop resting in Christ and start retreating — or to rush forward on our own and/or in our own strength — straight into failure. 

“Because victory is His, therefore it is ours. If only we will not try to gain the victory, but simply to maintain it, then we shall see the Enemy utterly routed.

We must not ask the Lord to enable us to overcome the Enemy, nor even look to Him to overcome, but praise Him because He has already done so. He is victor  . . . 

If we believe the Lord, we shall not pray so much, but rather we shall praise Him more.”⁠3

This is powerful.

Will we believe it? 

If we believe it, how do we actually do it?

 

How do we STAND our ground?

Watchman Nee suggests these four essentials as a firm foundation on which we can stand our ground:

1. A Revelation of the Eternal Purpose of God

2. A Work Conceived by God Alone

3. A Work Dependent on God’s Power Alone

4. A Work Designed for God’s Glory Alone

Just like a platform that’s held up by four legs, if even one these legs is missing, our work — or whatever it is we’re doing — will crumble to the ground, and it won’t be a funny picture. 

 

1.  A True Revelation to our Hearts of the Eternal Purpose of God

“We cannot do without this. If I am working on a building, even as an unskilled laborer, I must know whether the objective is a garage or an airplane hangar or a palace.

I must see the plan or I can’t be an intelligent worker.”⁠4

The eternal purpose of Christianity isn’t evangelism.

It’s the preeminence of Christ. 

God’s eternal purpose is that Christ be first and last in all things. God’s plan of redeeming man back to Himself through Christ fulfills that purpose.

that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW,
of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and that every tongue will confess
that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
~ Philippians 2:10-11

 

2. A Work Conceived by God Alone

“If we plan work and then ask God to bless it, we need not expect God to commit Himself to it.”5

We can’t get this step backwards.

The choice isn’t always between good and bad, but good and best.

Even if you’re doing a work for God, if it isn’t a work conceived by God, let it go. (Click to Tweet)

Wait on Him. He’s not in a hurry, and He’s always on time.

 

 3. A Work Dependent on God’s Power Alone

“We’ve got to learn that even where God has initiated a work, if we are trying to accomplish it in our own power, God will never commit Himself to it.”6 

“We must be brought to the place where, naturally gifted though we may be, we dare not speak, except in conscious and continual dependence on Him.”⁠7

“For divine work can only be done with divine power, and that power is to be found in the Lord Jesus alone.”8  

We will face difficult circumstance as we move forward in God’s work, but we can STAND because God’s power is more than enough.

If God calls you to it, He obligates Himself to do it. (John 15:5)

“God never asks us to do anything we can do.

He asks us to live a life which we can never live and to do a work which we can never do. Yet, by His grace we are living it and doing it.”9 

As Hudson Taylor, founder of the Inland China Mission, once said, “God’s work done God’s way will never lack God’s supply.”

 

4. A Work Designed for God’s Glory Alone

“Finally, the end and object of all work to which God can commit Himself must be His glory. This means that we get nothing out of it for ourselves . . .

True, there is a deep, precious joy in any service that brings Him pleasure, and that opens the door to His working, but the ground of that joy is His glory and not man’s.”⁠10 

When our goal is His glory, with none for ourselves, it’s wonderfully freeing.

We no longer worry about our feelings, our success, or how long our journey will last.

When we do God’s work with His power for His glory to achieve His eternal purpose we will STAND our ground like a tree planted by a river.

Some of us, along the path of Christian maturity, will be called to stand our ground as we walk on a bright, exciting path.

Some will be called to stand our ground along a dark path, like the 21 Egyptian Christians who were beheaded by ISIS. 

God called Stephen to such a path in Acts 7, when he was stoned for his faith, and he stood his ground well.

God didn’t fail Stephen or those 21 men. And He will never fail us, even on the darkest path. 

None of those 21 men were saved from being beheading, but each of them are receiving eternal rewards that far surpass anything they sacrificed.

Ultimately everything they suffered — everything we suffer — God uses for our good and His great praise and glory — and the Enemy’s demise.

Pray and STAND strong.

You are standing on resurrection ground that will not fail.

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Thank you for joining me in this five-part series through the powerful truths in Watchman Nee’s Sit, Walk, Stand. 

I pray these truths will sink into our hearts and minds, and that we’ll let them transform us as God works in and through our lives according to His unchanging, matchless truth for His glory.

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1 Watchman Nee, Sit, Walk, Stand. pg. 48.

2 p. 48.

3 p. 50.

4 p. 57-58

5 p. 59

6 p. 59

7 p. 60

8 p. 61

9 p. 61

10 p. 61-62

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