Where is the True Power Struggle?

November 10, 2020

When we think about voting, we're actually thinking about who's going to be in power, who's going to run the United States of America.

Today's reading is a lot about power, but another passage that I want to bring up for us is Ephesians 6:12:

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

When we have our political discussions and when we think about who we are voting for, are we fighting against people? Or are we fighting against unseen forces? And I say that because in our political discourse, we can often be really contentious, we can often point the finger and yell at people. We act as if our enemy is the person in front of us rather than what Paul is encouraging us to recognize: our fight is not against flesh and blood.

We have to recognize that the power of this world is not flesh and blood. As Christians, we have to face the reality that if we think about a person who votes differently, or has a different political agenda than us as our enemy, we've lost as Christians.

If we think about a person who votes differently, or has a different political agenda than us as our enemy, we've lost as Christians.

If we think about people as our enemies, that they have some kind of agenda to destroy us, or as some kind of enemy that we should destroy first, then we've actually missed the reality that, as Paul tells us, they're not our true enemy. It's these unseen forces. It's the reality in Scripture of the accuser, these dark forces, this spirit of the Anti-Christ, that is doing whatever it can to stop the kingdom of God from being built. And if we engage in struggles of power, in terms of flesh and blood, we are actually engaging in that same bad spirit.

As we're voting, we vote recognizing that we're not in a power struggle with people. We should be praying before going to the polls, we should be praying about who to vote for, but also praying for those we might think is our enemy. If we do that, we actually start to think about our political world in a different way. That person who lives in it, who exist in a different political mindset is not my enemy. They're just not. They may think differently than I do. They may think the candidate to vote for is a different one than I do. Yet, they aren't my enemy and we can be friends. I can pray for them and they can pray for me. We have to recognize that as Christians, we're engaging in a much bigger reality than our political world is going to.

So as we move forward thinking about power, we're going to discuss in the next few days what things to think about when actually voting. But today, I encourage you to think about this question: How have you engaged in the power struggle? And where have you misunderstood where the power struggle really lies? Answering that might help us have a bit more peace as we think about those who might look, think and act differently than us in this election season.

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