Recently I read Horse Soldiers, which documents the real-life story of the first American soldiers on the ground in Afghanistan during the fall of 2001.  Unexpectedly and by necessity, they rode horses during the first battles of the war, as they fought side by side with Afghan soldiers.

It’s a bizarre thought in the 21st Century – soldiers riding into battle on horseback, living in primitive conditions, going without food for days, all while carrying the most sophisticated technology ever used in warfare.  From a passing glance, you would have thought they were stuck in time.

Sometimes it appears that the Church is behind the times too, as we fight the good fight of faith with weapons that seem weak in the eyes of the world.  

Don’t misunderstand me.  The battle has already been won.  It was finished on Calvary.

But as the Church, we are called to take our stand against the enemies of the kingdom of God.  We are called to fight against what is opposed to His ways and His rule, both in the world and in ourselves.  Yet, we are not called to wage war on earthly sod, fostering division with our words, attitudes, and actions.  We are called to wage war in the heavenlies through prayer and servanthood.  It is on our knees that we follow our King into battle (Rev. 19:11-16).

And though it seems counterintuitive, it is the example set for us by our God, who always fights on our behalf.

He is the one who told us to love our enemies and then let His own thrash and pierce Him for our salvation. 

He is the one who “is kind to the ungrateful and wicked” and calls us His friends (Luke 6:35, John 15:13).

He is the one who told us that our friendship with Him would mean we have enemies on this earth, but that we were not to treat them as such (John 15:20, Romans 12:20).

At times, it seems as though our culture is quickly giving up on the Church, deeply unsatisfied by the perception that we must not believe what we say or our lives would be radically different.  We often neglect to live our lives with the urgency that the Gospel is real and that God is making all things new, starting with us.  We are prone to forget that our words and actions on earth are part of an invisible war being waged in the spiritual realm.  

But our forgetfulness does not diminish the fact that it is so.    

It may seem foolish to fight an unseen war, but “the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom” (I Cor. 1:25). 

And the weapons with which we fight may seem antiquated and outmatched from an earthly viewpoint…

… but we do not fight against flesh and blood (Eph. 6:12).