Lately I've become enamored of the word "champion". One of the definitions is: "a person who fights for or defends any person or cause: a champion of the oppressed." Actually, the picture I have is of one who not only fights for us, but who motivates us by their presence in the midst of battle. I've been reading a history of the American Revolution called "1776". It paints a picture of the first year of the war when the Continental Army had just about lost everything: most battles, most of its men to sickness and discouragement. A ragtag clump of less than 10,000 men without shoes. food or clothing remained loyal to the cause. The end appeared close and the Declaration of Independence seemed like a short-lived dream. Indeed many, if not most, Americans had given up and signed oaths of loyalty to the King of England. The army took a chance on two last desperate surprise attacks on the enemy in Trenton and Princeton. They gained bold and surprising victories that sustained the cause. The direct physical presence of their courageous general, George Washington, inspired them there. Here is a quote from one young American officer: "I shall never forget what I felt...when I saw him brave all the dangers of the field and his important life hanging as it were by a single hair with a thousand deaths flying around him. Believe me, I thought not of myself". You see, General Washington designed the strategy for victory and also risked his own life to inspire successful execution of the battle plan. Is this not an apt parallel to our Lord Jesus, who crafted the plan to defeat our sin and then laid down His own life to achieve victory. Just as George Washington inspired his men to fight on, through his physical presence, so our Lord inspires us to this day by His presence on the cross, His resurrection after the cross and His occupation of our hearts.
Revelation 6:2 I looked, and there before me was a white horse! Its rider held a bow, and he was given a crown, and he rode out as a conqueror bent on conquest.
We are motivated to stay in the battle by our Savior, who has conquered sin and death and rides with us still !