Victory through community. As the nubile nation of Israel escaped from Egyptian incarceration, they quickly fell prey to the marauding Amalekites. In a queer display of divine intervention, the Israelites only achieved victory while Moses held up his arms; however, as the strength of man fails, so too did Moses arms, but victory was achieved through brothers of the faith (Aaron and Hur) who each upheld Moses' arms (Ex. 17:8-13). King Solomon's wisdom echos this strength in numbers by revealing how even cords of multiple strands are not easily broken (Eccl. 4:12). The Kingdom of God cannot advance with lone-wolf Christians who forsake the assembly, but calls for community that spurs one another on toward love and good deeds as the various body members of the church (Heb. 10:23-25). Contrary to common cultural opinion, victory over sin can never be achieved by individual strength or will-power alone, but can only be found in a community of believers who mutually confess and pray for one another so that they may be forgiven and that they may be healed (James 5:15-16).
What is the church? Compare the NT church with that of the illegal, imperial, (medieval) ages. What is your definition of Church?
A distinction must be drawn between The Church vs. A Church. The Church consists of Christ's true followers in all the earth and in all time regardless of denomination. A Church is one part of The Church, as a community of Christ Followers fulfilling The Great Commission.
Fear God alone. As the Hebrew population grew unchecked in the land of Egypt, two midwives defied imperial orders to engage in an early form of eugenics. These women recognized that God supersedes all other authorities; therefore, God alone should be feared, regardless of the ramifications (Ex. 1:15-19). As a result of their faith, God blessed these two midwives and the entire Hebrew people by their actions (or in-actions) (Ex. 1:20). The Psalms and Proverbs are filled with praise for those who fear The Lord and condemnation for those who fear man (Prov. 29:25), defining Godly fear as the fountain of life (14:27) and the beginning of wisdom (Psalm 111:10). Even Jesus affirms that only God should be feared since man can only kill the body, while God can destroy both body and soul in hell (Matt. 10:28). Fear may be recognition that God will call us at a moment's notice to forsake wealth and family to reach impoverished nations. Once on the mission field, and faced with a martyr's death, Christians should still reserve fear for God alone, who will deny those who deny the son (Mark 8:38).
Brett Yardley: Warrior for Christ. Devoted Husband. Proud Father. Martial Artist. Hopeful Philosopher & Theologian. Aspiring Teacher & Writer.