By Brian Blackwell, Message Staff Writer
PINEVILLE – Major battles have been fought throughout history but all those pale in comparison to the ultimate battle each person faces.
For this battle has eternal implications, Fred Luter said Thursday, Feb. 23.
“It’s a battle between your spirit versus your flesh, right versus wrong, your advocate versus your adversary, the Lord versus Lucifer, the devil versus the divine,” Luter told students during Louisiana College’s chapel service. “And because it’s the ultimate battle, this battle will determine whether you spend an eternity in heaven or spend eternity in hell. It’s the battle for your soul.”
In this battle, each believer must be mindful of the shepherd’s provision, the serpent’s plan and the shepherd’s promise, Luter said.
Luter, who is pastor of Franklin Avenue Baptist Church in New Orleans and the first African-American Southern Baptist Convention president, recalled how he battled a bully who would take his lunch money in school. When he was tired of fighting this battle with the bully, he stood up to her, despite threats of personal injury to himself.
In the end, the bully backed off and left him alone.
“Some of ya’ll just have to stand up to the bullies in your life,” Luter said. “Many of you sitting here today have been through such battles in your life. Despite all of the battles that you’ve been a part of, none can even compare with the ultimate battle.”
Citing John 10:7-11, Lutter said God is the good shepherd and cares for His sheep.
“God’s a good God,” Luter said. “He will give you abundant life. In other words the shepherd promises a life that the world can’t give and that the world can’t take away.”
However, he said the serpent has a plan to harm the sheep, by trying to steal, kill and destroy their dreams, hopes and Christian witness. But the shepherd has a promise of abundant life found in Christ.
“Jesus won the ultimate battle,” he said. “And because He won the ultimate battle, you can win the ultimate battle. In the name of Jesus, we have the ultimate victory.”
Luter’s message in chapel is part of LC’s celebration of Black History Month