The question is not, Are we spiritually oppressed, but Where and How? Think of it—why does every story have a villain? Little Red Riding Hood is attacked by a wolf. Dorothy must face and bring down the Wicked Witch of the West. Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wan Kenobi go hand to hand against Darth Maul. To release the captives of the Matrix, Neo battles the powerful “agents.” Frodo is hunted by the Black Riders. (The Morgul blade that the Black Riders pierced Frodo with in the battle on Weathertop—it was aimed at his heart). Beowulf kills the monster Grendel, and then he has to battle Grendel’s mother. Saint George slays the dragon. The children who stumbled into Narnia are called upon by Aslan to battle the White Witch and her armies so that Narnia might be free.
Every story has a villain because yours does. You were born into a world at war. When Satan lost the battle against Michael and his angels, “he was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him” (Rev. 12:9). That means that right now, on this earth, there are hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of fallen angels, foul spirits, bent on our destruction. And what is Satan’s mood? “He is filled with fury, because he knows that his time is short” (v. 12). So what does he spend every day and every night of his sleepless, untiring existence doing? “Then the dragon was enraged at the woman and went off to make war against…those who obey God’s commandments and hold to the testimony of Jesus” (v. 17). He has you in his crosshairs, and he isn’t smiling.
You have an enemy. He is trying to steal your freedom, kill your heart, destroy your life.
And that’s the memo.
By John Eldredge from Waking the Dead