Originally scheduled for July 8
One of the more enduring tales to be told in
books and movies is the romantic vision of a band of heroes
struggling against an overwhelming evil. We have seen several movies
featuring the “Jedi Knights” struggling against the “dark side.”
Those knights are patterned after the nights of medieval romance. It
seems improbable that the Jedi would need a laser powered sword. But
the image of the medieval knight requires a sword, and therefore so
does the Jedi. Some of us of an older generation may even remember
the name Davy Crockett. Dig back further and you’ll find Robin Hood
and William Tell. It is a common theme in our fantasies. There are
common elements in all of these:
There is always a variety of roles:
Robin Hood had Little John, Luke Skywalker had Han Solo. There is
often in there someone who is of great wisdom, like Yoda.
A variety of roles comes with a
monotony of courage. All of these heroic souls are courageous.
It also seems that they require some
sort of regular conclave. They get organized.
But — did you know that this vision of heroic
souls is based on reality? It is true — and you’re part of the
story. The apostle John tells us this:
We know that we are of God, and that the whole world lies in the
power of the evil one.
(1 John 5:19 NASB)
The subject of Satan is not much preached these
days. We don’t believe in the guy with the red tights and funny
looking tail. But that’s not the real Satan, and we should know
that. You recall that in the temptation of Christ Satan offered to
give him all the kingdoms of the world if he would but fall down and
worship him. That’s the first thing to know about Satan: he is the
ruler of this world. We are the one opposed to him. We know little
about Satan’s origin; we do know, however, that he is an angel in
rebellion against God. More important to us is the fact that he is
the enemy of our souls. God loves us; Satan wants to prevent that
from getting through. He does this by temptation and sometimes by
demon possession. But you can count on it: if God loves you, Satan
Satan has a clear set of intentions. One
scholar put it this way, that Satan “wants to break the bonds of
communion between God and man.” He wants to separate you from God.
If that’s what Satan is trying to do, those of
us who are opposed to him should rather strengthen the bonds of
communion between God and man. Combat Is with the Sword of the
Spirit, but the ritual of Communion has a very important part to
play. The Lord’s Supper is the persistent reminder of God’s great
love for us. That great love is the basis of our bond of communion
with the Lord. We need to remember that it is important. That’s why
we do it solemnly. It is our conclave with the Almighty God.
So let me encourage you: with all solemnity and
all pure intention, receive the body and blood of Christ this
morning. Take, eat — and be one with God.