Have you been listening to the President of the United States lately? If you have, you’re probably aware of much of the language that he’s using when speaking about how they are dealing with COVID-19. You’ll probably hear him use the term “hidden enemy”. Many people have a strong inclination that he is referencing more is going on than dealing with a plague.
If you have firm faith in God, you may understand the reality of a hidden enemy or enemies. In fact, Paul the apostle spoke of the hidden enemies that Christians face in his letter to the Ephesians. In the sixth chapter, he tells them to put on the full armor of God (verse 10). Then he tells them why: “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” (verse 12) Paul goes on to instruct the Ephesian church to put on the armor of God. So they will be able to withstand or resist the enemy in the day of evil (verse 13).
We know, just as in our present-day military, we are equipped with armor. And we have weapons to fight our enemy. This is only part of what is needed. In addition, we must properly vest ourselves. And know how to use all that we have been given. Then we can wage a good warfare. The helmet protects our head, our mind, and our thinking. The breastplate protects our heart and other vital organs. The belt or girdle guards our vulnerable lower parts. The shoes protect our feet from stumbling or stepping into trouble. Our shield helps us to not only deflect but also to push back and gain territory. The sword is our weapon to slay and cut down the enemy.
Now, Paul used these items as a way of reminding the people of his day of the type of fight they were in. Many of them were familiar with the natural battle they faced. They were unfamiliar even as they faced battles in the coliseum. Yet, it also gives us a picture of the spiritual battle today that we face with our hidden enemy. We are not fighting a literal flesh and blood battle. The weapons and armor we have help us face those powers that Paul spoke of. He told the people of Corinth that the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh. But divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses (see 2 Corinthians 10:4 NASB).
The Battle Of The Mind
In the very next verse, Paul then says something very unique. He says “We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ, being ready to punish every disobedience, when your obedience is complete.” (2 Corinthians 10:5-6)
How often do we forget that the biggest battle we face is one of thought? How much of what we face is rooted in an anti-Christian or a non-biblical worldview? Each of the seven spheres of culture is influenced by them. Our greatest battle is restoring God’s reverence and place in those areas. The spiritual influences that have strongholds in those places have to come down.
If we are to destroy argument and lofty opinions at are raised against the knowledge of God, there must be an understanding that the critical places where these thoughts and opinions chiefly come from the mountain of education, the media, and arts and entertainment. Those three mountains influence the other four (family, faith, government, and business).
Hidden Enemy: Final Words
There must be a shift and our battle strategies so that we are redeeming these places and restoring the wisdom and knowledge of God. Taking captive thoughts is an internal struggle for the mind and the soul. Yet, destroying arguments can be both internal and is also external. No longer can we accept that it will just happen. Resistance is forceful, aggressive, and offensive. The pulling down of strongholds comes with confrontation and you have to be ready to confront the strongholds of your ow thoughts and those that are told to you that lie about who God is and who He is to you. Use the strategy that God has given you and fight a good fight against your hidden enemy.