Darkness can never fight against light, it can only exist where there is no light.
Human existence is a long history of an unceasing battle between two invisible forces: the power of darkness and the authority of light. Christ alone attributed â€˜powerâ€™ to darkness. â€œBut this is your hour, and the power of darknessâ€ (Lk 22:53). And all those who deliberately hate the light of the Gospel, love and remain in the power of darkness (Jn. 3:20).
All of us are either in the â€˜kingdom of darknessâ€™ or in the â€˜kingdom of light.â€™ Christ by his coming has effected a transference from the reign of darkness to that of the light. â€œHe has delivered us from the dominion of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Sonâ€ (Col. 1:13).
Good soldier of Christ Jesus
The envisaged spiritual battle is not easy to be launched and won. It is a battle for the perseverance of oneâ€™s faith. The devils are determined to destroy our holy faith and they strike at the root of our belief and trust. And so, every Christian has to â€˜take the share of suffering as a good soldier of Christ Jesusâ€™ (2 Tim. 2:3). And his/her aim is to â€œsatisfy the One who enlisted him/herâ€ to defeat the enemy (2 Tim 2:4). St. Paul describes the nature of our war and the type of the weapons that we need to put on daily (Eph. 6:10-18).
We are not battling against any human being, but against a power that is beyond â€“ the power of darkness of the heavenly places. In fact, the Israelites â€œwent up out of the land of Egypt fully armed for battleâ€ (Ex. 13:18) and they did not have any â€œexperience of any war in Canaanâ€ (Judges 3:1). And they would often pray: â€œGive us help against the foe, for the help of man is in vainâ€ (Ps. 108:12). And the enemiesâ€™ strategy is to strip the believer of his weapons (2 Sam 2:21), so that he can easily defeat him/her. The disarmed Christians would become easy prey to the enemyâ€™s eyes.
The only offensive weapon that we have at our disposal is the â€œsword of the Spiritâ€ (Eph. 6:17). But unfortunately, most of the Catholics neglect this mighty weapon in their life. And so, â€œon the day of the battle, there was neither sword (of the Spirit = Word of God), nor spear found in the hand of any of the peopleâ€ (1 Sam 13:22).
We are kept busy
All of us are busy with schools, colleges, hostels, dispensaries, social works etc., that we have no time to reflect about the acquisition and use of the acquisition and use of the â€œsword of the Spirit.â€ And so, we are easily defeated by the enemies of our life. Our attention is easily and readily diverted to superficial things of life, so that we are deprived of the most essential, spiritual and offensive weapon â€“ the Word of God. Thus we easily get worn out with a spiritual syndrome called â€œburnt outâ€ souls.
â€œHe shall speak words against the Most High, and shall wear out the saints of the Most Highâ€ (Dan 7:25). In fact, unconsciously we are all kept busy with many mundane things and the enemy is quite happy. â€œMy child, do not busy yourself with many matters, if you multiply activities you will not go unpunishedâ€ (Sir. 11:10).
Believe in the Lord
When the Israelites had to face a three pronged battles (the Moabites, the Ammonites and the Meunites), King Jehoshaphat got frightened and â€œsought help from the Lordâ€ (2 Chr. 20:3). He proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah. In his great humility the King prayed: â€œWe are powerless against this great multitude that is coming against us. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are upon theeâ€ (2 Chr 20:12). Godâ€™s Spirit took control of young man named Jahaziel and he told the people: â€œFear not, and be not dismayed at this great multitude; for the battle is not yours but Godâ€™sâ€ (2 Chr. 20:15).
What would be the core factor to the success of the battle? Let us listen to what Jehoshaphat had to tell the inhabitants of Jerusalem and Judah: â€œBelieve in the Lord your God and you will be established; believe his prophets, and you will succeedâ€ (2 Chr. 20:20).
– – – written by J. Eapen SDB