Thursday, September 16, 2010

Fighting the Cosmic War

{2 Corinthians 10:3-6}
For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ, being ready to punish every disobedience, when your obedience is complete.

This world is the battle ground of a great cosmic war. Satan and the Kingdom of Darkness are trying their best to lay waste to God’s great creation. God and the Kingdom of Light are at work to restore creation. You need to understand something very important: in this war you on one side or the other. You cannot remain neutral. The way you live determines whether or not you are a soldier of Satan bringing destruction to the wonderful creation God has given us or a servant of the Living God working as an agent of reconciliation and restoration. You either belong to the Kingdom of Darkness or the Kingdom of Light.

I realize that it seems a little dramatic to use war language. After all it doesn’t feel like war, it feels like life. Since the bullets aren’t flying and there are not great D-Day like invasions in the works it is easy to believe that we aren’t part of this war being fought for creation. Yet, if you really took the time to examine your life you would realize that the best explanation for the great evil in the world, the oppressive regimes which take advantage of the people they are to serve, the twisted thoughts and philosophies being promoted, and even temptations and sins you struggle with everyday is that there is an active campaign being waged against the Sovereign God and His creation.

Take a moment and think about the words of the apostle Paul that are recorded in 2 Corinthians 10:3-6. I believe this passage gives us three important insights to help us understand our role in this cosmic war.

The first insight is a truth to remember: For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh.

We may be human and living in bodies of flesh, but that doesn’t mean we fight this war in the same way humans fight wars. This is a different type of fight and it isn’t about killing and destroying other people. It is about bringing God’s love and restoration to the world. This war requires different tactics and different weapons.

This war between the Light and the Darkness should not be equated with the “culture war” that is being fought in the United States. We are not at war with the atheist, the Muslim, or the Hindu, but with philosophies, teachings, and institutions that keep them in bondage to sin and death. We will be opposed by people who have been tricked into serving the Enemy, but our fight isn’t with them. Our fight is against the Kingdom which keeps them in darkness.

The second insight is God has given us weapons to use: For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds.

The weapons God has given us are different from the guns, swords, missiles, and bombs used in our human warfare. They are even different from the spin and propaganda used in the “culture war”.

Jesus has provided us with two great weapons for this war. These weapons are unconditional love and uncompromised truth. When we love unconditionally we will reach out and serve people simply because they need help. When we speak the God’s truth we allow His Word a chance to effect the hearts of people who may have never had the opportunity to hear the truth before. We won’t win any popularity contests by loving people and telling the truth, but that is the role God given to us.

The third insight is that God has given us a purpose to follow: We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ, being ready to punish every disobedience, when your obedience is complete.

In this war we are not to attack our fellow man, but we are to challenge the philosophies and lifestyles that hold people in darkness. If we insist on attacking other people it shows then we are not following God’s battle plan for winning this war and bring restoration to creation.

The only way we can free people from the control of the Kingdom of Darkness is to level the light of God’s Word at the lies Satan and to love people. That is the only way they will understand that there is a better way to live. People will not abandon their kingdom until they understand that God’s Kingdom is the best kingdom. They will not leave their way of living until they know that following Jesus is the best way to live.

We are in the middle of a great cosmic war. This conflict is being fought, not over physical territory, but for the human heart. It is of the upmost importance that we learn to guard our hearts and do battle to fight for the hearts of those we love, for those people Jesus died to save. It is time to go to battle. Let’s follow Jesus to victory.

Point to Ponder: We live in a world at war.
Passage to Remember: 2 Corinthians 10:3-6
Prayer to Pray: Lord God, open my eyes to the the battle that is being fought for the hearts of people.

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