From start to finish, battle scenes make up a large portion of the movie. The battles are not against other Middle Earth dwellers, but some ugly demonic things called Orcs and Uruk-Hai. Orcs and Uruk-Hai never stop in their pursuit, and no matter how many of them are killed, more fill in as replacements. Sure, they are easily vanquished. It seems that one swipe of a sword is enough to take them out. Even so, it's only a momentary victory. Replacements are being made in deep caverns of darkness, and they will be back.
Doesn't this mirror our own lives and the battles that engage us? Every day, something arises that requires the use of our sword. Armor that is ours to wear and apply is a necessity for our day to day encounters. Our journey with Christ is one big series of battle scenes.
Sometimes I get tired of fighting off the Orcs and Uruk-Hai that interupt my journey and the lives of those around me. Just when I think I can take a rest, I find out quickly that Orks never rest. Instead, they wait for an opportune time to strike.
In 1 Chronicles 19, David has sent out his army and mighty men, under the command of Joab, to fight against the sons of Ammon and the Arameans. Joab divides the army into two divisions. He will command one and Abshai the other. Joab says the following; "If the Arameans are too strong for me, then you shall help me; but if the sons of Ammon are too strong for you, then I will help you. Be strong, and let us show ourselves courageous for the sake of our people and for the cities of our God," vs. 12-13.
The words; be strong and courageous in that passage, have the same meaning. The word in Hebrew is Chazaq, and it means to be bound fast to, to support, to make firm, and it is frequently used to describe battle scenes.
The Body of Christ, the Family of Believers, the Church, is called out as an army. A group of "mighty men". Warriors. We have a Kingdom to advance together and we have been equipped to do so.
An strong and advancing army has some specific qualities to it. It is made up of soldiers that are available and ready. Soldiers that pay attention to the battle around them and where they can assist and support fellow soldiers. They are also bound fast to one another.
In our individualistic, self-focused, self-sufficient lives; being bound fast to one another in the battles of life is challenging. A lot of us prefer to valiantly stand alone in our battles because we are taught by our culture and traditions to do so. We stay away from the battles of others because we're tired from our own. We're taught "not to get involved". And sometimes, we just don't care enough to be bound to someone's battle.
An army is only as strong as it's committed soldiers. Committed to each other and the cause they fight for.
How far could the Kingdom be advanced and the army strengthened this week, if we were to be like Joab and Abshai; bound fast to one another?
"If they are too strong for you, then I will help you. If they are too strong for me, then you shall help me."