If we had stood at Golgotha on the day of the Crucifixion, our material eyes would have seen Roman soldiers nailing Jesus to the Cross. But our eyes of faithfulness would have seen the young Warrior, ready to do battle, about to use this Weapon of Peace, the Trophy Invincible, as His means to enter into Hades, smash down its doors, and to defeat the devil and death.
Deep within every human person is the desire to be like God—to be immortal, to achieve and experience the fullest possible potential, to see reality as it truly is, to be elevated above the mundanity and struggle of this earthly existence.
Why put these resurrectional themes into a psalm about judging the gods, about putting the fallen angels in their place and working justice upon them? It is because the whole cosmic narrative of the Scripture is about the war begun by these fallen ones against God.
The targeted demonic attacks we experience especially in this holy season are real, and we can spot them because of how they are so specifically designed to pull us away from participating in it. But these things do indeed come out by prayer and fasting.
You will be in communion with something, even pigs, even demons. There is no neutral space. You have to eat.
The cosmic war between God and His enemies the fallen angels is going on all around us and even within us. And we have been given the Cross, the very Staff of God, as a weapon against the demons.
The Forerunner, having announced Christ’s coming to those on earth, is beheaded now and sent to preach even in Hades, announcing His coming even to that place. And his shout rings throughout the underworld, warning that the Lord of Life is coming to break open the gates of death, throw down the lord of death from his throne, and to release those who lie in hope in the underworld.
Make this gospel of Jesus Christ the very center of who you are. Make this gospel the center of your home, the center of your families, the center of this parish. Make this gospel what this parish is known for. Make this gospel what informs every thought that you have, every decision that you make. Teach this gospel to your children, share it with your neighbors, cultivate it in your families, bear it with you where you work and everywhere you go.