Protection from an Invisible Enemy2
The opportunity to get home came late in the night. We received a phone call from a travel agency that the Embassy had secured a special flight out of Amman. It would be in just a few days and we had to decide right there and then. The cost was going to be high, but if we didn’t take this flight, another might not come along for months.
So, we started packing and on Thursday, April 9, we boarded a bus for the airport. Of course, we all wore masks. The mood was somber and surreal. Since all other forms of transportation were forbidden, this bus literally needed to pick up every passenger from their homes. Altogether there were more than a dozen buses and our first stop was the Embassy.
Before going to the airport, we had to get off the bus and register. Then we had to wait until the airport was actually open before we could get back on the bus and continue on. In addition to wearing masks, we had to keep six feet apart. Everything was pleasant, but at the same time very serious. There was an invisible enemy that everyone feared - Covid-19. You couldn’t see it, but it could kill you.
The Bible also talks about an invisible enemy. It is the devil himself. A lot of people don’t believe in a devil, but Jesus did. In fact, the Bible says that Jesus “came to destroy the devil’s work” (Hebrews 2:14) and Jesus himself said to his Father, “My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one” (John 17:15). Throughout the life and ministry of Jesus, this enemy, though invisible to us, was quite real and threatening.
For those who have a hard time believing in an actual devil, it certainly isn’t hard to believe in actual evil. We see it in the news and it surrounds us. The real problem, though, is that it is also inside us - because when we are at our worst, it just shows up and everyone else’s needs are secondary to ours. We know this to be true. We also know that even when we try to line up with God’s will, we just can’t always do it. The Bible says it this way:
“I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing” (Romans 7:18-19).
So, where is the good news in all of this? Covid-19 is still around and the propensity for us to do evil is still within.
The good news is that Jesus came into our world to fight the invisible enemy. He said, “In this world you will have trouble, but take heart, I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).
- He overcame his own temptations from the devil (Matthew 4:1-11; Hebrews 4:15-16).
- He promises us the same ability to resist temptation (Hebrews 2:18; 1 Corinthians 10:13), but even when we don’t, Jesus has the power and authority to forgive sin (Luke 5:22-25; 1 John 1:8-2:2).
- He went to the cross, paid the price and came out victorious (1 Corinthians 15:3-8, 55-57, putting death in its place and offering eternal life to all who believe (John 11:25-26; John 1:12-13; Romans 6:23).