The Lord is asking you, “Are you AWOL?” For those unfamiliar with this acronym, it stands for “absent without leave.” AWOL is a military term. It was/is used in the military for those who leave their position or job without permission, where they abdicate or relinquish their responsibilities.
God has called ALL of us to be part of His army. Joel 2:11 says “The Lord utters His voice before His army. Surely His camp is very great. For strong is he who carries out His word.”
The terminology of war is seen throughout the Bible. One of the most obvious is seen in the name God frequently used to describe Himself. The Lord of Hosts. He used this name to describe Himself more that ALL other names of God COMBINED!
Lord of Hosts? What does “Hosts” mean? The definition of “hosts” is the same in the Old Testament (Hebrew) as it is in the New Testament (Greek). It means an army; it’s an assembly of people organized for war. We are called by God to be an army and He defines Himself as the Lord of Hosts. Lord of the armies. We are to be an army and therefore go into battle, with the Commander of the Lord’s Army leading us. Moses had an experience with the Lord at a burning bush in Genesis 3; Joshua actually met the Lord as Commander of the Army of the Lord in Joshua 5:13-15.
In 2 Corinthians 10:3-4 we see the terminology of war being used. It says, “though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God….”
God wants to use us all, men, women and children, to be enlisted in His army, so that Revelation 11:15 will occur:“The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our God.” Dr. Brian Simmons, author of The Passion Translation, defines the “kingdom of the world” as the kingdom of finance, culture, and government, both religious and secular.
Since believers are to be an army, my question is, “Are you doing your part?”
Jesus taught His disciples to pray in Matthew 6:9-15. Verse 10 is very interesting. It says, Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” Tradition has caused us to recite what we call the Lord’s Prayer without the necessary understanding. We quote it by rote and sometimes it’s meaningless. Verse 10 quoted above is not a petition or wishful thinking like begging God for His will to be done here on earth. The verb is in the imperative tense and therefore it is a command. It should be spoken as a command. I state it this way: “Kingdom of God COME! Will of God be DONE! HERE on earth as it is in heaven.” It has great power and authority when spoken in the imperative verb tense as it was written. It’s not begging God for Him to do something. He gave us the authority. See Matthew 28:18-20 and Mark 16:15-18. God is looking to us to cause our cities, regions and nations to reflect heaven.
There is another aspect of being AWOL. Jesus stated that the gates of hell will not prevail against the Church. The passage in Matthew 16:15-19 says that Jesus asked His disciples, “ ‘Who do you say I am?’ Simon Peter answered and said, ‘You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.’ Jesus answered and said to him, ‘Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it.’ ”
What is Jesus saying? I believe He is saying that on that “rock”, the revelation Peter had of Jesus being “the Christ, the Son of the living God,” Jesus was going to build His church, and the gates of Hell would not prevail against it. We frequently see today that Hell, or evil, is prevailing. Why? What’s wrong? We know Jesus’ words are truth so what’s wrong here?
What much of the present-day church culture does not understand is the definition of “church”. Many think it refers to the building. Others believe church refers to Christians, followers of Jesus. But neither of those definitions are accurate. The word “church” in Greek is Ekklesia or Ecclesia. Ekklesia means a ruling assembly, a governing body, a legislating congregation.
Are you a part of a governing body? Are you taking authority and ruling? In order for the “gates of Hell” to NOT prevail against us, we must be ruling over the darkness … taking the authority Jesus gave His followers to rule over the demonic realm in His name. Much of the Church has not stepped into this authority. When or if we pray, it is usually a request or a petition. A ruling assembly would mean that in addition to prayers of petitions or requests, we would be speaking out decrees and declarations…picking up the staff of authority Jesus gave us and ruling. I will speak more about declarations and decrees in another blog.
In summary, God is calling His army to come forth. If you’ve been AWOL, repent. He wants you to get into position, to rule with His authority, and be a functioning part of the Ekklesia, governing your life and the situations around you. In essence …
It’s time to arise!
You can make a difference! We all can make a difference!
From one enlisted in His army,