Pastor Thomas Smith   -  

“And his armourbearer said unto him, Do all that is in thine heart: turn thee; behold, I am with thee according to thy heart.” I Samuel 14:7

Jonathan, intending to make an attack against a garrison of Philistines, asked his armorbearer to accompany him. The two of them would be greatly outnumbered by this company of troops. Despite the odds, the armorbearer immediately agreed, saying to Jonathan, “Do all that is in thine heart: turn thee; behold, I am with thee according to thy heart.” The brave Jonathan would not be alone when he faced the Philistines. Together they killed about twenty of the enemy.

Support, fellowship, and encouragement are so important in the Christian fight. Like Jonathan, we realize how terrifically outnumbered we are in this world. The values we hold, the priorities we live by, the Bible we believe and obey, and the Savior we serve put us in the minority. As true soldiers of Jesus Christ, we want to stand true to our Master and His Word, even if it means standing alone. However, it definitely strengthens our resolve knowing that we are not alone. What an encouragement when someone comes alongside us and says, “I am with thee.” Thank God for family and friends who share our convictions and accompany us in this journey. Thank God for those who are there to lift us when we fall. “Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up” (Ecclesiastes 4:9, 10).

It is for this reason that we should make sure we are associated with the right kind of friends. We need companions who will encourage us in the right direction, not influence us away from the Lord. This is also one of the important benefits of church membership and fellowship. We need the support and encouragement of the brethren in a sound church family. Even if they do not always vocalize it, we know our brothers and sisters in Christ are there for us. We are not alone. For some, the assembly of the church is only a place to occasionally meet for some spiritual food; but for us, it is much more than that. We belong to Christ and to each other. And remember, our Lord is always with us. He says, “I am with you alway” (Matthew 28:20). When we feel there are more against us than for us, Christ is by our side. Through Him, we can be victorious.