I’ll admit it. I’m a fan of the Military Channel and the History Channel. It’s partly for my love of history, but it’s also because the study of history is a study of war and weaponry. Don’t misunderstand. I don’t like war and I hate the destruction that weapons cause in the wrong hands, but there’s something that fascinates a man’s soul about the destructive potential of high-powered sniper rifles and the attack agility of an A-10 Warthog (that’s a fighter jet, not an animal).
As a Christian, I’m involved in warfare daily, and one of Satan’s most clever tactics is to get me to fight the wrong enemy with the wrong weapons. Paul put it this way to the carnal Corinthian Christians…
For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does.
– 2 Corinthians 10:3 (NIV)
I’ve grown up in a somewhat church-saturated culture (though not what I consider a “Christian nation”) in which we fight hard to preserve our way of life. We get angry when people believe and live differently. We fight. We shout. We condemn and demand that people submit to a God they don’t yet know or trust. And fighting like this hasn’t gotten us any closer to our goal. It’s just created a lot of casualties of war.
I’ve joined the wrong battle myself at times. I’ve even been guilty of turning in criticism toward my fellow spiritual family members over secondary issues while taking my eyes off the real enemy who is roaming about, seeking whom he may devour. And I’ve even engaged the right enemy with the wrong weapons, assuming that my willpower and my natural mind are enough for the victory.
But at the end of the day, you and I need to remember where we live. Earth, for now, is a battleground. But people aren’t our enemies. Don’t declare war on the Democrats, Republicans, or Independents. Don’t aim your weapons at the liberals, conservatives, or moderates. It’s certainly okay to stand for truth and engage in meaningful conversation about the issues of our times, but if you ever start to believe that another human being is the real enemy, Satan has won.
Remember where you live (earth). And remember where you now belong if you’ve trusted in Jesus (heaven). And remember that the divide between the two is great. We are citizens of a different Kingdom on a temporary mission trip to a foreign land. So let’s fight the good fight of faith so we can take others with us.
photo credit: CHUCKage