No one can deny that we live in a time of drastic, even chaotic, cultural transition. Not merely the wide acceptance of homosexual and lesbian marriage, but also the growing hostility of the populace toward biblical Christianity and Christians and the drift of Christian churches and other institutions into what Francis A. Schaeffer termed “accommodation with the world spirit” are now stark realities. Religious persecution is on the rise, not just in Muslim and Marxist cultures, but also in the secular West. If we looked only at these trends, we’d likely be overcome with pessimism.
But a heartening counter-trend has emerged: a minority but increasing number of Christians cognizant that our culture is engaged in a moral suicide mission and won’t stand for it any longer. They are disturbed by the dishonor our culture brings to the name of Jesus Christ. They are arming themselves to combat this cultural blasphemy. We Christians live in what Thomas R. Schreiner has called “an eschatological war zone.” The holy powers of the world to come have invaded the evil powers of the present world in the Person of Jesus Christ. This is why Paul writes (Eph. 6:10f.) that we don’t battle against flesh and blood but against the demonic powers of this age. We must not shrink from the implications of this biblical truth: in resisting secularism, illicit sexualization, socialism, multiculturalism, radical feminism, video-game machismo, and the other cultural evils of our time, we aren’t chiefly combating fellow humans, but Satan and his minions. Let’s not succumb to a soft-core naturalism that strategizes with humanity alone in mind. We are fighting a supernatural battle with supernatural enemies; we must fight with supernatural weapons. The stakes are huge. We are battling for God’s good creation. More importantly, we are battling for God’s honor. We are destined to win, but there are no victories without battles.
Ours is the eschatological war zone.