THE SERVANT GENERAL
WARRIORS - 2
Solemnity of the Birth of St. John the Baptist
John the Baptist was one great holy warrior, who prepared
the way for Jesus.
be holy is to be set apart. John was set apart from his birth
to serve the Lord. “Then Zechariah his father, filled
with the holy Spirit, prophesied, saying: ‘.... And
you, child, will be called prophet of the Most High for you
will go before the Lord to prepare his ways” (Lk 1:67,76).
Then John literally and physically set himself apart from
the world, as “he was in the desert until the day of
his manifestation to Israel.” (Lk 1:80b). In the desert
he prayed and fasted and prepared himself as a holy warrior.
calling John to prepare the way for Jesus, what did God intend?
Well, Jesus “visited and brought redemption to his people”
(Lk 1:68). Jesus brought “salvation from our enemies
and from the hand of all who hate us” (Lk 1:71). Israel
he “rescued from the hand of enemies” (Lk 1:74a).
This was engagement in spiritual warfare, to enter a world
of darkness and sin, engage the enemy, and bring God’s
light and peace. Jesus’ saving act was “to shine
on those who sit in darkness and death’s shadow, to
guide our feet into the path of peace.” (Lk 1:79).
prepared the way for Jesus, as he was tasked “to give
his people knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness
of their sins” (Lk 1:77). John proclaimed the salvation
of God, to be brought about through repentance and forgiveness
of sin. “John heralded his coming by proclaiming a baptism
of repentance to all the people of Israel” (Acts 13:24).
This is the work of evangelization. This is assaulting the
kingdom of darkness.
God had been working throughout salvation history to raise
holy warriors. One such holy warrior used by God was David.
Holy? But was not David an adulterer and murderer? Yes, but
he repented. Just goes to show: God can use any and all of
us, who are all sinners.
did David find such favor with God? God Himself testified,
“I have found David, son of Jesse, a man after my own
heart; he will carry out my every wish.” (Acts 13:22b).
David was a warrior. And he became God’s holy warrior.
He was set apart, to be totally obedient to and at the disposal
of God. He was the kind of willing instrument that was perfect
for God’s purposes.
such, God used David in a most profound and mysterious way,
as “from this man’s descendants God, according
to his promise, has brought to Israel a savior, Jesus.”
(Acts 13:23). Might not God also use us as powerfully? As
holy warriors, we are privileged to bring to the world the
What makes for a holy warrior who will experience the victory
he knows what is his duty, which is to serve God as God’s
warrior, fighting God’s battles. He knows he cannot
overcome the enemy on his own. He looks only to God, rejoicing
in the great privilege of serving in God’s army. “I
am honored in the sight of the Lord, and my God is now my
strength!” (Is 49:5c). He goes forth in the power of
the Holy Spirit.
he allows God to form him for battle and he trusts in God’s
protection. “He made my mouth like a sharp-edged sword,
concealed me, shielded by his hand. He made me a sharpened
arrow, in his quiver he hid me.” (Is 49:2). Whom God
calls, God equips and takes care of. The holy warrior is supremely
confident of God’s abiding presence. “Behind and
before you encircle me and rest your hand upon me.”
he works with endurance and perseverance, not deterred by
obstacles, not counting the cost, not discouraged by seeming
defeats, always plodding on. “Though I thought I had
toiled in vain, for nothing and for naught spent my strength,
yet my right is with the Lord, my recompense is with my God.”
(Is 49:4). He just seeks to serve God, no matter the outcome
of the battles. His consolation is not in victory (well, that
too), but in the glory of God.
he is humble in the face of great things God accomplishes
through him/her. Thus, “as John was completing his course,
he would say, ‘What do you suppose that I am? I am not
he. Behold, one is coming after me; I am not worthy to unfasten
the sandals of his feet.’” (Acts 13:25). Some
warriors become arrogant in victory and power. Some even think
they are the messiah. The holy warrior knows that
he is nothing apart from God. And in being used by God, he
is humble and not proud.
What is the call of a holy warrior? “My brothers, children
of the family of Abraham, and those others among you who are
God-fearing, to us this word of salvation has been sent.”
(Acts 13:26). They fear God, and they go forth proclaiming
the salvation of God.
a call! Holy warriors, God says, “I will make you a
light to the nations, that my salvation may reach to the ends
of the earth.” (Is 49:6b). Onward!