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Volume 31 - Page 178 of 181 Index | Zoom | |
War in Heaven (An Analogy).
The Field Surveyed.
pp. 167, 168
In this opening article we must explain the general scope of the series, and the object
we have in view.
Behind all the enmity that belongs to the world of human history, lies the greater and
deeper enmity that exists in the spiritual world. In these studies we shall attempt to
survey this conflict of the ages, and seek to discover the respective goals that the
conflicting parties have in view. By examining Israel's history we shall obtain many
sidelights on our subject, and we shall discover in the demands made upon the loyal
citizens of an earthly kingdom, something analogous to the demands made by the Captain
of our salvation. On the negative side, we shall learn a good deal about the character of
the great Enemy by studying the careers of such men as Pharaoh, Abimelech, Saul,
Nebuchadnezzar and Sennacherib. We shall also receive help by considering the events
associated with the Exodus from Egypt, the Jordan, Jericho, the conquest under Joshua,
and the overcoming record of Caleb. Furthermore, we shall perceive the relation which
the three great callings bear to this conflict of the ages, and particularly that of the
dispensation of the Mystery.
It will also be necessary to examine "the weapons of our warfare", both defensive and
offensive, and we must also learn with whom we should and should not fight. Moreover,
the nature of the final victory must be included in our survey, as well as an understanding
of the essential nature of scriptural peace. There will also be many pointed lessons to be
learnt from the conditions, limitations and demands imposed upon the world by reason of
the present conflict, as compared with the corresponding conditions, limitations and
demands that concern "the good soldier of Jesus Christ".
If we can accomplish this purpose, we shall feel that in some degree, however small,
we have "redeemed the time" and turned the present distress to our spiritual advantage.
We have adopted the words of Rev. 12: 7 as the title of the series, because we feel that
this "war in heaven", in which Michael and his angels fought against the Devil and his
angels, was reflected in the conflict that raged upon the earth.
In the Book of Kings, when the servant of the man of God saw the host of chariots and
horses that encompassed the city, he cried: "Alas, my master! how shall we do?"
(II Kings 6: 15). The young man saw nothing beyond the encompassing host of Syrians,
but his master, Elisha, saw the heavenly host as well, and he replies: "Fear not: For they
that be with us are more than they that are with them" (II Kings 6: 16). Whether this
statement would have been received by the young man, without proof or argument we do
not know. We read, however, that Elisha "prayed", saying, "Lord, I pray thee, open his
eyes that he may see", and as a result: "He saw: and behold the mountain was full of
horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha" (II Kings 6: 17).