The Power of Subtlety

I remember one of the most frustrating feelings when the 9/11 attacks happened was not understanding who the enemy was.

It was easier to identify enemies in the past.  Hitler was easy to identify.  When the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, it was easy to understand who the enemy was.

The same was true in the early days of the church.  The enemies of Christ and His church were the ones who arrested, abused and murdered His followers.  In the midst of the attacks, Jesus’ followers continued their attempts to cause the enemies of Christ to switch sides and become His followers- a truly bizarre warfare tactic until we remember the words of Paul from Romans 5:10 –

10…while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son…

One thing that is very easy for us to forget is that there is only one true enemy, Satan himself.  He was the one who was ultimately behind the 9/11 attacks, World War II, the attacks on the early church and so much evil that it cannot be named.

In the early days of the church, Satan’s attacks were vicious, resulting in the death of untold numbers of the followers of Christ.  However, he could not have anticipated the results of his attacks.  The result of the early persecutions of the church was an explosion of growth of the church.

He has learned from his mistake and now works in the most developed countries in the world, the ones that have tv cameras pointed everywhere, in more subtle ways.

The attacks come through the education system, through the media and through all of the most popular mediums of the culture.

In the less developed countries, the violence has never stopped. 

In our country, what once began as subtle attacks are increasingly becoming more and more direct.  The church has not met with physical persecution yet, but it doesn’t take much imagination to see it on the horizon.

The church needs to remember two very important things in the midst of the changes we’re seeing in the world around us: 1) God wins in the end and 2) We are called to be lights in the darkness.  Like the early church, we’re to be about the business of praying for, and loving and trying to convert those who would do us harm.

And don’t forget who the real enemy is, 2 Corinthians 10:3-5-

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ

Much love,

Wes LeFlore (918) 607-8489 or