Colossians 2:15 tells the world and all its venomous purveyors of evil, both human and spirit, that Jesus “disarmed the powers and authorities and made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.” In other words, the war against evil has been won.
And Jesus’ resurrection proved it. Hate-filled people and evil spirits used every trick in the book to get him killed – false accusations, a kangaroo court, mob madness, corrupt politicians, and all the usual stuff we see repeated today to twist good into bad – and only three days later, in the greatest triumph ever, Jesus came back to life again.
No wonder Jesus told his disciples in Matthew 10:28, “Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the one who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” And “the one” Jesus is talking about in that verse is now himself, because on coming back to life again, “All authority in heaven and earth has been given to me,” Matthew 28:18.
But this was the “reason the Son of God appeared,” 1 John 3:8 – “to destroy the devil’s work.” And now in his resurrected state he has all the powers of the heavenly realm at his disposal to do it. And he’s displaying that power and making it known through us, his disciples, who, knowing that “we are children of God” means he will “keep us safe” so that “the evil one cannot touch us,” 1 John 5:18.
So rise up Christians, the war is won. “The world (for now) is under the control of the evil one” (1 John 5:19), so expect evil to hate us like it hated Jesus, and it will keep on trying to destroy us, but only in our bodies, never our souls. Our souls live on, eternally safe and indestructible.
We also know in Romans 6, that if we follow in Jesus’ footsteps, joining him in the crucifixion of our bodies – in our case the crucifixion of our old selves ruled by the evil one (verse 6) – we are “certainly united with him in his resurrection,” verse 5, so what have we got to lose? Because as Paul tells us in Ephesians 2:6, we are already “raised up with Christ and seated with him in the heavenly realms, and in Colossians 3:3, our lives are “NOW hidden with Christ.”
So when Paul says in Ephesians 5:11, “Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them,” what are we afraid of?
Physically speaking, exposing evil can be a frightening prospect, as we’ve seen in the reaction of the powers that be to those even hinting that the measures mandated during the Covid pandemic have done more harm than good. But Christians recognize evil when they see it, and know the source of it too, that “our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against rulers, authorities and the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms,” Ephesians 6:12.
But our Christian defence against such evil is simple. It’s just three words, “He is risen,” and we, the billions of his disciples worldwide, are risen with him, with nothing to lose in this life but our bodies, which one day die anyway.
So how do we expose evil without resorting to evil ourselves? In 1 John 5:4, John tells us that “everyone born of God has overcome the world.” How? “This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.”
But faith in what exactly? Verse 5: “Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.” And it’s that undying belief in his disciples that Jesus is the living, indestructible, resurrected Son of the mighty God of the universe and beyond, that constantly proves to evil that it has lost the war against God. And try as it might to wipe out the good people and wreck the plan of God to restore our world with his kingdom instead, the powers of evil cannot destroy those through whom Jesus is doing that restoring.
So rise up Christians, the war is won, and it’s our belief in that, that makes us fearless, no matter what happens to us physically.