Heavenly battles fought in England

A reader has pointed me to the blog of another retired UK doctor, who evidently shares my conviction that the current unusually disordered state of the human world has an element of the demonic to it. In fact he expressed surprise that things have deteriorated less quickly than he predicted last year. Interestingly he attributes the present easing here to the role of Christians, as opposed, sadly, to the general response of denominations and church leaders both to COVID in particular, and the rise of what James Lindsay usefully labels “Identity Marxism” in general.

What is most interesting about the good doctor’s analysis is that it seems to reach an explanation beyond – or even independent of – informed opposition by Christians to the lies being told, although that certainly exists. The blogger seems to be speaking of something more existential.

I laid out my attitude to what the New Testament sometimes calls “the powers and principalities” back in 2015 here, and I developed the idea further, in the context of both world history and salvation history (essentially the same thing) in my book The Generations of Heaven and Earth. For the purposes of this essay, a key point is the fuzzy line between evils attributable to sinful human beings in the world – such as acquisitive lust for money and power, violence, knowing deceit and so on – and satanic spiritual powers pulling the strings, and following a bigger agenda, which somehow stand behind them.

Once again, regular readers will remember that, the year before COVID broke into our consciousness (and whilst it was breaking out of its cosy lab in Wuhan!) I was writing my e-book Seeing Through Smoke, in which I linked the increasing evidence of widespread deception in our world to the “spirit of antichrist,” and conceivably even to the final deception described in 2 Thessalonians 2 and elsewhere in Scripture. The congruence of key biblical prophecy and current events was a warning, I wrote, to keep our eyes open… and then we got into the COVID insanity.

The blogger with whom I introduced this piece seems to be correct in saying that in England, for the moment, the madness has eased off. He regards that as a temporary respite, and I suspect he is right, if we look at the situation across the world. The USA is struggling under increasing civil restrictions, parts of Australia are virtually police states, and even as close as Lithuania people are reporting that refusing to get a vaccine passport is pretty much as great a threat to continued existence as Revelation’s mark of the beast would be, by preventing non-bearers from buying or selling even food, or earning a living.

There is, even in England, a palpable sense of continued threat even as the visible signs of fear and restraint are receding. On the the one hand, I visited a village pub in the Midlands last week, to find no masks in sight, a relaxed crowd of locals, and – perhaps most significantly – conversations about families, work and life generally, and not about viruses, tests or vaccines.

And yet the threat of vaccine passports remains in the Government’s “Plan B,” and there are some indicators that if the waning COVID risk fails to trigger it, then exaggerated fear of common or garden flu might. Already flu vaccines are being touted as a civic duty in the mold of Pfizer boosters, to invoke guilt and division rather than the rational self-help that vaccinations ought to be. Scotland has already introduced passports, by just one vote occasioned by an “against” voter being prevented from getting to the session in time.

A parliamentary report on the pandemic today rather predictably criticises the government for failing to lock down hard and fast enough, as well as for more genuine errors, which appears to seal that useless policy into future responses instead of being consigned to the waste-bin of history as it should be.

And of course we now have plenty other crises which may easily provide excuses for the further removal of civil liberties: with supply-shortages provoking panic-buying, and an energy policy widely regarded as untenable, centred on the mirage of zero-carbon by 2035, many are predicting climate change lockdowns before long. Furthermore, if the widely-predicted worldwide economic collapse occurs, caused by governments printing trillions of dollars worth of inflationary money on top of an already unstable debt-crisis, all illusions of a return to normality will be swept away. In that case watch out for the Great Reset and serfdom, and queue up for your digital identity and universal basic income in lieu of the dignity of work.

Now to me, it has been important (and inordinately difficult) to make my fellow-Christians aware of what is going on around them in plain sight. It is important not only out of love for the brethren, but because the New Testament makes it clear that the Church – the spiritual body of elect believers rather than any institutional representation thereof – is Christ’s chosen instrument not only for the long task of evangelizing the world, but specifically as God’s weapon against Satan and his forces during the final days of this age. Unlike the blogger (as I understand his position) the stubborn resistance of individual savvy “preppers” is not what Jesus has in mind, but the corporate witness of the Church as his earthly body.

For that body, in its local manifestations, to be providing an alternative narrative to the Big Lie, living it out and offering it to the wandering sheep, is of great importance. And for the body also to be praying, from a sound understanding, against the triumph of evil is also vital. Some of that has, I’ve no doubt, been happening in this country as well as elsewhere, albeit it as yet amongst a minority of believers. And who knows how much that insightful activity here has so far held back the worst excesses of what we have seen across the rest of world?

But it might well be, I now realise more fully, that successful “spiritual warfare” has also been going on somewhat unconsciously, amongst those who, though faithful to Christ, have not yet seen through the nudges and the propaganda. Here’s what I mean.

I have long been struck by the pair of images presented in Revelation 12, the first of which (vv7-9) pictures the war between good and evil as a battle fought by angels in heaven, and the second (10ff), counterposed with it, as the defeat of Satan by the Church not by force of arms, nor cunning strategy, nor political action, but simply “by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony.” In other words, real spiritual warfare consists, for Christians, simply of being what they are called to be in Christ – faithful unto death.

Ephesians 3 – which I’m due to preach on next week – expands that insight, by describing the salvation of the Gentiles, together with the Jews, as a “mystery” (a word meaning a secret now revealed) hidden within the Godhead since before creation. It is a mystery by which God’s wisdom is made known to the “powers and principalities in the heavenlies,” accomplishing his eternal purpose in Christ, so it is no trivial secret.

The fascinating thing (apart from the fact that few of us nowadays see such significance in the fact that Jesus saves Gentiles as well as Jews) is that the amazing spiritual insights of the first three chapters of Ephesians are used by Paul not to call Christians to take over the world in the knowledge of their predestination to sit eternally as co-heirs with Christ, nor even to astonish the world with miraculous signs and wonders as the prosperity gospellers suppose. In fact, Paul does not even emphasise “getting out there and witnessing to the lost.” Instead, the fruit of this mystery, which knocks Satan’s plans out of kilter, consists of living the practical lives of love and righteousness laid out in the last three chapters.

A. W. Tozer wrote:

The popular notion that the first obligation of the Church is to spread the Gospel to the uttermost parts of the earth is false. Her first obligation is to be spiritually worthy to spread it.

He wrote this in the context of purifying the Church to make world mission effective, but it also implies that “spiritual worthiness” has value even before the word is proclaimed to the world.

I think Paul’s point in Ephesians is that the original aim of Satan was to demonstrate in the court of heaven that because mankind is incorrigible, God has no option but to destroy the race (and incidentally vindicate Satan’s accusations from the Garden of Eden onwards). Instead, for even the abandoned Gentiles to live godly lives through Christ vindicates God’s original plan for mankind (Ephesians 1), and completely disarms Satan’s accusations, rendering the devil himself liable to final judgement.

In other words, it seems to me, whatever Satan’s deceptive plans for the end times may be, they are held back in some far-from-obvious spiritual way by the very existence of a faithful Church, until the time when God himself chooses to let the devil loose to hang himself (2 Thessalonians 2:7).

So, brethren, though it may be of great value to bring what is dark into the light, to prepare our churches for tough times ahead, and so on, the primary task may be what we have been told to do all along: to teach the church to be faithful to the gospel. The rest, I suspect, will follow naturally.

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About Jon Garvey

Training in medicine (which was my career), social psychology and theology. Interests in most things, but especially the science-faith interface. The rest of my time, though, is spent writing, playing and recording music.
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5 Responses to Heavenly battles fought in England

  1. ChrisS says:

    Just seen this; maybe you have – https://www.stopworldcontrol.com/monopoly. Has some bad language near the end, unfortunately, and the ‘alternative ending’ is not the new heavens and the new earth; still, explains well what is going on here below. Also, this podcast touches on the same issues: https://delingpole.podbean.com/e/alex-thompson-1627933030/
    Thanks for the above post.

    • Avatar photo Jon Garvey says:

      Hi Chris

      There seems to be such a convergence of understanding on the current subversive game plan(s) for the world that the details are be secondary, whether one simply takes the WEF and UN publications at face value, or gets into the realm of Lizard People. Or in my case, if one takes the biblical teaching on the spirit of antichrist to be a real description of the world.

      We really shouldn’t be surprised at the ubiquity of the deception if we believe John when he says, “We know that we are of God, and that the whole world lies in the power of the evil one” (1 Jn 5:19).

      It seems to me the only question is the extent to which they will succeed: the technocrat eugenicists (funded by the same Rockefellers etc as ID2020 etc) were defeated in Hitler’s time, and may well be again, given that they seem to be stupid despite their power and wealth.

      But if not, it will look even more like the 2 Thessalonians scenario, and will not last long. The same blogger mention in the article has a new piece with a useful reminder that it is less important to understand evil than to recognise and resist it, which is a matter of spiritual awareness rather than research. Seems right to me.

  2. Robert Byers says:

    i see the “pandemic” as a minor thing relative to seven billion people. indeed a trivial new virus turned into a great plague. Incompetence probably dominates it all.
    Remember Joseph crying to the Lord about the defeat after jericho. God said GET OFF YOUR STUPID FACE. I told you if you did wrong this and that would happen.
    Well! Was there evil being done by the American/Canadian/european nations? At the level of killing innocent people? I don’t know for sure but i do know that all these nations instigated and propagated war in syria to kill them enoiugh to change the Assad government. this leading to other wats by other groups. Hmmmm.
    Did not old england get the war of the Roses because she brought a hundred tears of war to the French? I suspect so.
    It still was merciful because it tended to hit those who had lived the longest.
    I suspcet but am not sure. these are great things.
    There is no marxist identity etc. They just did the same thing as anyone who imposes thier will in things they insist they get thier way. It was not noticed before.

    • Avatar photo Jon Garvey says:

      I think it was Ruth Graham who said that if God did not judge America (for which read also “the West”) he would have to apologise to Sodom and Gomorrah. I believe she was referring to sexual immorality, though the Scripture also refers to selfish ease as a reason for the destruction of Sodom.

      But it would equally apply to waging war on falsified premises – not only fake WMD in Iraq, but staged Syrian gas attacks to give an excuse for more air strikes – that’s pretty well documented now.

      • Robert Byers says:

        Yes. The syria stuff was a great deal. Even after changing of presidents they all still insisted on Assad being destroyed and so helping the rebels or rather helping to lill Syrians. I suggest also its for the Israel cause.
        Yes sodom was also about the misuse of the poor and the violence.
        I see homosexuality as evil and repulsive and to be not samctioned by government of society BUT its not important enough to destroy cities. it was the violence hehind this evil, the Lot case, that was, plus general injustice, why sodom was destroyed according to the bible.
        I do not know but I do know the WEST waged war against innocent Syrians for a long time for no just reason.At least in Iraq they imagined WMD and Saddam as a active enenmy. I opposed that too but its not as bad as syria.
        I suspect the great flu after WWi was because of the populations consenting to that terrible war. i don’t know but sispect it was not just the men too suffer.
        The bible says nations are punished in our times because they are not punished like persons in the afterlife. so gos punishes nations but not really persons.

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