Physical and spiritual warfare
Published 4:45 pm Tuesday, March 9, 2021
In 1942, the war in Europe was raging. I was a young teenager, but like everyone around me I was taking in a historical moment in time.
Not long after the initial blow had reached our shores at Pearl Harbor, both our leaders and people understood we had been blind to our vulnerability, the subject of an invasion. The army was quickly built up with volunteer men and women and companies began working on components needed by the military. Many buildings where people were working went to 24-hour shifts. We were coming together for one reason: to save our freedom as a nation. We were in it together. We submitted to rationing of essential products. Essential foods and gasoline were reserved for those who were serving our country. We could see what we were up against and there was one goal — preserving a hope for the future of ourselves and our children.
This was physical warfare. Before we became too weary of the battle, we knew all our efforts had brought about victory. We settled down to a comfortable lifestyle. There were other battles, but for the next 70-plus years, we felt somewhat secure as a nation. We did not realize nor understand how an unseen enemy was seeking control of every area of our lives. Spiritual blindness was covering our eyes. In 2020, we began experiencing a dramatic change which continues.
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Today, that warfare is being unmasked. It seems an anomaly to suggest this pandemic, with all its evil, brought us insight of how evil can operate unseen, leaving us spiritually vulnerable. We forgot to seek the Creator God and His will for our lives, for our future as a nation. We became egocentric. In short, we became idolatrous (Galatians 5:19-21). Truth, a reliable commodity, was now in short supply. The varying political and ideological opinions were making it almost impossible to fight an unseen enemy. What has been the effect on us as individuals, as a people, as a nation? One Christian cardiologist saw it as a “sickness” he called “spiritual bondage.”
We are creatures who live in hope. Without hope in the Creator God, we cannot survive and prosper. Our spirits are bound up when we feel hopeless, but where do we get hope when the well seems to have run dry? With today’s blatant hatred so strong and truth at a premium, who and what can we believe? How do we reinstate hope when we reach a low point when imagination takes over, making us fearful about what we might face? Only God can help us fight that.
There are some answers for all who are willing to read what the psalmist in the Bible said about the God Who is not silent, Who allowed us to be born (Psalms 42:5, 43:5, Psalm 139). He said hope in God will bring about praise and the “health of (our) countenance” — our faces will show it. With hope in God comes freedom, an “anchor for our spirit and soul” (Hebrews 6:17,18). All Jesus asked of the man in Matthew 12:13 was to stretch forth his hand.
Reaching out brought change. The apostle Paul said we can be made a new creation when we come to God through Christ (II Corinthians 5:17). We can accept or reject God, but we go His way or lose our way. We can’t blame God if we don’t read and believe what He has told us in the Bible.
Diablos is not a fictional character. He is real, seeking a takeover of God’s creation. How do we fight an undefined enemy? We do it by turning over our hearts and lives to the only One Who understands our helpless condition. In desperate circumstances, we have all cried out, “Oh God, help me.” Now is the time to ask His help for salvation from what is insidious and which we cannot fight because it is unseen.
Myrtle V. Thompson, age 93, is a retired missionary, educator, Bible teacher and writer. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.