Stand Strong
“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his power; put on the whole armor of God, so that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil, for our struggle is not against blood and flesh but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers of this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, so that you may be able to withstand on the evil day and, having prevailed against everything, to stand firm.”
Ephesians 6:10-13, NRSV
Have you noticed how zombies seem to show up everywhere in our popular culture these days? The Walking Dead, Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” video and children’s programs about monster hunters are just a few of examples. The zombie, often portrayed as an undead, flesh-eating, decaying corpse, has enjoyed a popularity surge. But what are zombies and are they real? According to Wikipedia, the term comes from Haitian folklore in which a zombie is a dead body reanimated through various methods, most commonly magic such as voodoo.
As Christians, we know that Paul’s words in Ephesians 6 are true: “For our struggle is not against enemies of blood and flesh, but … against spiritual forces of evil.” We may tell stories about zombies and vampires as ways to explore the world of the spiritual, but the real spiritual battle is much more real than that.
We battle against injustice, racism, greed, a divided world, hate and consumerism to name but a few. Paul reminds us that there is an enemy and to fight it we will experience pain. We will have struggles in this life, and they will be both physical and spiritual.
He tells us to stand strong by putting on the full armor of God and applying the Gospel to all of life. One reason that some people remain stuck in dark places and continue to repeat unhealthy patterns is that they don’t realize anything is wrong. They think they can’t change their situation.
By faith in our Lord and Savior and by the grace that He gives us in abundance we can and will overcome evil. We are created in the image of God to love, and He has given us armor to protect us against our enemies. He has given us the truth, the gospel of peace and faith. We can prayerfully stand strong in this knowledge.
The Rev. Gill B. Keyworth
Deacon, Pastoral Associate
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