Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. (Ephesians 6:10-13)
Enemies abound in this world. We have our foreign enemies, our political enemies, enemies among our neighbors, enemies among our families, and even enemies among fellow Christians. It is almost as if we have come to embrace division as a virtue.
Division, while inevitable (Matthew 10:34-36), is an imperfection of this fallen world (Psalm 133). It not something to be sought or encouraged (Titus 3:9). Even when it becomes absolutely necessary, it not something to take pride in or rejoice over.
God’s children are called to walk in lowliness, meekness, longsuffering, and love (Ephesians 4:1-2). We are to strive to keep unity (Ephesians 4:3). Instead, we are often blatantly guilty of pride, aggression, impatience, and hate. We will not only justify our ungodly actions, but go as far as to brag about our right to condemn others–sometimes in God’s name.
If we don’t understand the law of love–the law of Christ–we will never understand true godliness and discipleship. I have personally witnessed the destruction of my brethren in Christ by those believing they were fighting a righteous fight. For instance, I’ve seen the damage of the unbridled tongue as it lashed out at one of God’s own because he/she was ignorant over the subject of grace. Perhaps no book of the Bible teaches grace better than Romans which also states:
Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good. Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another; Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord; Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer; Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality. Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not.
Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep. Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits. Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men. If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. (Romans 12:9-18)
Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law. For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law. (Romans 13:8-10)
As we destroy one another, often over relatively insignificant matters, Satan himself looks on with pleasure. He has been successful at diverting our attention from him–the true enemy of Christian disciples–and turning it to one another.