A Spiritual War with Human Meat Shields (Psalm 17)

There is an emphasis by some on spiritual warfare today, but most of it should be tossed into the looney bin. Many would have us flailing our spiritual fists wildly in the air praying against territorial demons and rebuking the evil spirits in hurricanes.

There is another contingency that thinks we’ll win by niceness. Love can be a potent weapon in war, but niceness is a limp-wristed way of handling a Scottish claymore that’ll result in hurting more friendlies than enemies. Love will make a man throw his body over razor wire so his platoon can escape enemy fire. Niceness will politely hold the wires apart for your allies while signaling the enemy, “We’re over here. Please come to our side.”

Then there are the Westboro militants. You get the impression that the only thing that keeps them from using Satan’s more gruesome weapons is the law of land. They say they’re building God’s kingdom, but they’re using the devil’s tools.

We are in a spiritual war that uses human meat shields. The meat shield shouldn’t keep one from using the imprecatory psalms. They enlisted for their own agenda. The psalms are not a dead language meant primarily for reflective reading and not for active singing.

How aware are we of this war? I think the pathetic nature of our strategies and tactics display that we don’t get it. While some are off playing Dungeons and Dragons in a virtual world, others think we’re in a Nerf gun fight with friends. There are real evils in this world, human and demonic. We must take refuge in God and we must call in heavenly artillery.

Jesus is a King and He is an opposed King. If you think Uncle Sam can draw a line down the middle of the back seat so that we kids play nice and get along, you’re as naive as a five year old. The agenda of the enemy isn’t to maintain space, but to advance space. Jesus said we’re sent out as sheep among wolves. We have all the tactical brilliance of thinking we are sheep among cows. Sure, they’re big and they may hurt us, but we can coexist, grazing peacefully in the same pastures.

Our fundamental confession is “Jesus is Lord.” All the pastures are His. That’s His grass. Repent and bow the knee to Christ as Lord. Persist in your hatred of Him and His bride, and know there is a judgment. 

Let us love our enemies, but let us also sing and lament all rebellion against our King, certain of His glorious judgment to bring us into the fullness of salvation and peace.

This Is Not a Clashing of Zax (Matthew 21:23-32)

You’re the general manager of a restaurant that is a national chain. Soon you’re to open for dinner, so you gather the staff to speak to them. A call briefly diverts you. When you return a mystery man is rearranging the furniture, telling the employees to take certain things down and throw them in the dumpster, while instructing them as to how things will be done from now on. You run up interrogating, “Who do you think you are? By what authority do you do these things?”

This is what the Jewish leaders are doing here. They do not realize that the Owner is in the house. They are getting themselves fired.

Why did I identify you with these corrupt managers? If you read this text and identify with Jesus as a rebel bucking corrupt authority you need to realize this—you are not Jesus. If you are shouting “Yeah, boo authority,” you are just like the high priests. Don’t identify with Jesus as a rebel against authority. Identify yourself with the leaders as rebels against the supreme authority. Jesus isn’t a rebel for you to identify with. He is a King for you to submit to. Jesus isn’t subverting their authority, He is saying He trumps it. He is showing that the authorities have no authority over Him.

Two parties have clashed rejecting the authorities of one another. This is not a meeting of a south-going Zax meeting a north-going Zax. This isn’t the meeting of two equally stubborn creatures. The crucial issue here is who has the authority. That is whose rejection matters. If an officer pulls you over and starts to give you a ticket it does you no good to say, “I reject that badge, toodeloo.” Likewise, when you reject Jesus, you’re not the one in authority. Worse yet, the one rejected, is King, so your crime becomes treason. Even worse still, He is the King of kings; there is no higher court of appeal.

Repent, and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ.