One of the most horrendous wars ever to be fought was called “The Great War” because of its scope and scale. Trench warfare became a graveyard for freezing, gassed masses of men who could not advance beyond the new inventions of war (machine guns, deadly gas, etc.). It was a dirty war, leaving a lost generation of disillusioned, mind-scared casualties. War is not literally Hell (as per the Bible’s revelation) but it is certainly its near kin. In WWI, there was no middle ground.

Because of these horrors, many Americans would advocate “Isolationism” when Hitler rose to power and it kept us out of WWII for a long time. Yet, had we not joined the Allies, the global situation would have been very ugly indeed and many historians believe America would not have been able to stave off a “Hitlerized” Europe. It was not the preference but we had to fight.

Two sides of another great war are found in the book of Galatians; it is waged daily by those souls destined for eternity, two opposing worldviews and eternal enemies. On one side are the works of the flesh (Galatians 5:19-21) and on the other, the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). The stark distinction between the two is constantly being blurred because Satan’s most effective attack lies in deceit (John 8:44). The more smoke he can blow to cloud the issue, the more confusing the theater of war becomes and the better he likes it. “Let us make peace,” he cries (Jeremiah 6:14; 8:11), “Let’s compromise fellowship, ignore requirements for salvation and live as worldly as we can.” And, with sleight of hand and euphemism, the Devil leads souls to everlasting destruction. This may sound a bit dramatic, until you consider the consequences of the latter choice, where “there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth” (Matthew 8:12).

We live in a spiritual demilitarized zone. Equipped with spiritual weapons (Ephesians 6:10-18), we can do battle successfully, wielding the sword of the Spirit in defense of the Faith. Our loyalty is seen in how we prioritize, our dedication to service, our sacrifices, our perseverance in everyday living; these define allegiance. Only a traitor rides the fence (Matthew 12:30). Spiritually speaking, “Isolationism” is not possible; there is no neutrality between the trenches. Therefore, “be sober, be vigilant” (1 Peter 5:8-9) because we are of God and “greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world” (1 John 4:4).

Jeff Sweeten