“Friends, we are now in the midst of an epic battle, a brutal and vicious war against and Enemy who knows his time is short. Open war is upon you, whether you would risk it or not.” ~ John Eldredge; Waking the Dead
We have a tendency to forget that we live in a world that is at war. I am not talking about the war in Iraq, but the spiritual war that rages all around us. We choose to ignore its reality, but it is there none the less. We tend to chalk the negative experiences and bad things that happen to us up to life. While I would agree that those things happen as a consequence of living in a fallen world, but that doesn’t negate the reality that there is an Enemy that wants to destroy you.
Our modern western mindset has really turned us off to anything about the supernatural. The talk of a cosmic war or a spiritual war, for most people, seems to be the stuff of superstition. We might believe that, we think, if we were uneducated savages, but we are too educated to buy into that junk.
We do this to our determent. By living as if we are not at war we become very vulnerable to the attacks Satan makes upon our lives. Just because we choose to ignore the spiritual reality around us doesn’t make it disappear. The Enemy is taking shots at us and we don’t have the sense to take cover.
The apostle Paul thought is cosmic battle was real. This is what he wrote in Ephesians:
A final word: Be strong with the Lord’s mighty power. Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies and tricks of the Devil. For we are not fighting against the rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against those mighty powers of darkness who rule this world, and against wicked spirits in the heavenly realms. Use every piece of God’s armor to resist the enemy in the time of evil, so that after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the sturdy belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News, so that you will be fully prepared. In every battle you will need faith as your shield to stop the fiery arrows aimed at you by Satan. Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Pray at all times and on every occasion in the power of the Holy Spirit. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all Christians everywhere (Ephesians 6:10-18; NLT).
I realize that this language of war seems to be melodramatic when we have soldiers who are actually dying on foreign soil. Let me assure you it is not. Yes, we are experiencing the harsh reality of war, as every generation has, but that doesn’t mean the war of physical combat is any more brutal than the spiritual war that we are involved in. Everyday people are wounded and destroyed because of the war Satan is fighting against God’s Kingdom. We are his targets because we are God’s ambassadors, agents, and soldiers in this world.
Every suicide, every drug addict, every abused child, and every murdered person are victims of this war. Divorces, pornography, drug abuse, and terrorism are all the result of a world being torn apart by war. Satan isn’t out to tempt you to do wrong. He is out to destroy your life. This is the spiritual reality that we ignore.
Christians, we can no longer afford to ignore the spiritual reality going on around us. It is time we stand our ground and fight. Fight with truth, fight with love, and fight with prayer. Be prepared to take hits and be willing to handle the suffering that happens in combat. Remember, we can make a difference, but we have to be willing to pick up our swords and stand our ground. The fight is on, are you ready to do your part?