About the Author: I am Joshuah Ellis and I have been working, full time, with the Hub City church of Christ since June 1, 2016. I have never considered myself much of a writer. Perhaps that is why I like the blog format so much. For me, it feels like there is less pressure to be perfect with a blog as opposed to a more formal article In this blog, you will find personal stories, anecdotes, humor and maybe a bit of sarcasm, but the aim of each post will be the same: to encourage, inspire, and challenge the readers to dig deeper and work harder in their service to God. If you would like to offer feedback, leave a comment or contact me here.
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Once upon a time, in a land not so far away, lived a psychopath. He was evil and cruel and liked to taunt and mistreat other people for his own enjoyment. He lived in an abandoned high school, which he converted into his own sadistic little playground. Each day, he would go out and abduct people and lure them back to his compound where he would imprison them. His victims were free to roam about the building, but they could never leave.
Each day, the psychopath would dress as one of his victims and roam about the building. He would tell those on the first floor that those on the second floor thought they were superior to all other people. This would cause those on the first floor to become angry with those on the second. Feuds would arise and the victims would begin to harm one another. Then, those on the third floor would take a side. This would anger those on the fourth floor because they disagreed with the choice of those on the third floor. Eventually, chaos ruled the day.
Over a hundred people were abducted by this psychopath and because of his cunningness, not a single one ever resented their captor; their Enemy. Why? Because, he convinced them to hate one another. Think of how much money he saved on restraints and locks for the doors. Think of what his victims could accomplish if they could only see the true enemy, and stop seeing enemies in one another. Clever trick, wouldn’t you say? It’s a good thing we’re too smart to ever fall for a ruse like that…right?
Yet, here we are. It’s the year 2016. We have all the wisdom in the world at our fingertips, yet we still allow ourselves to be manipulated by a psychopath. The devil tricks us daily (2 Corinthians 11:14), seeking to destroy us (1 Peter 5:8). He whispers in our ears, encouraging us to forget what Jesus taught and pushing us to hate those whom we have been commanded to love (Matthew 5:44; Mark 12:31). Now, it appears that we have become so focused on what we hate about one another that we have forgotten the one truth on which the devil’s power rests completely:
He. Has. Already. Lost.
He has no real power in our lives unless we give it to him (James 4:7)!
So let’s stop giving it to him! Rather than falling into his traps and increasing in our contempt for one another, let us unite in our appropriate hatred of the real enemy! Hate the devil! Hate him all day long (Romans 12:9)! He deserves it. Your fellow man does not! Regardless of what you may see when you look into the eyes of another person, we need to remember that God sees someone worth saving (John 3:16). If God sees a valuable soul in every person on this earth, so should we (Isaiah 55:8-9).