“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” Ephesians 6:12
This verse is being quoted often these days as a constant reminder that we are engaged in a battle. It also helps us remember that it is not people we are fighting, but an unseen enemy. Sometimes we swing at the ones we can see. As believers, we are to “…have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them.” (Ephesians 5:11). The question is, how do we do this without sinning? How do we not “grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed on the day of redemption.” (Ephesians 4:30)?
When we look to scripture, we find the help we need as “imitators of God as dear children.” (5:1). We are to, “…walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God…” (5:2). Paul also writes specifically about our words when he says, “Let no corrupt word proceed from your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.” (4:29). Also, “Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice.” (4:31). So, I have to ask us, how are we doing as followers of Christ?
One of my girls and I discussed this topic. She said maybe it has to do with our intentions. When we disagree or want to expose darkness, is our tendency to clamor to be heard and prove ourselves right? Things can get heated pretty quick when we are passionate. Maybe we need to ask ourselves if we are edifying, giving grace, speaking truth or simply bashing someone we disagree with? Have you ever been won over to another way of thinking because of angry words being shouted at you? Yeah, me neither. We know “the days are evil” (5:16) and should respond accordingly, even when it comes to our words. Perhaps this will cause us to stand out as light and not contribute to the ever increasing darkness of hate.
Let’s shine bright, friends!