In Mere Christianity, an excellent book by C.S. Lewis, planet Earth is portrayed in a unique way: ” Enemy-occupied territory – that is what this world is. Christianity is the story of how the rightful king has landed, you might say landed in disguise, and is calling us all to take part in a great campaign of sabotage”, writes Lewis. Like every great Christian author, we need to “test everything” and “hold on to what is good.” Lewis is brilliant in this first quote, but he continues to say something that falls flat, when he practically applies this truth about sabotage. He writes, “When you go to church you are really listening in to the secret wireless from our friends: that is why the enemy is so anxious to prevent us from going…”
While this may have been true at some point in history, it is not true any longer. The church is no longer the center of society. The whole town does not stop what they are doing and gather together when they hear the church bells. Spirituality has become compartmentalized and trivialized in the hands of religious leaders over the centuries. The American culture (as well as many others around the world) views church as a place where people go to participate in religious activities. This is an extreme opposite of the “ecclesia” (a “who” not a “what”) described in the New Testament in which the only ongoing/repetitive religious activity was the Lord’s Supper. The rest of what they did was an outpouring of who they were, coming and going, living, breathing, eating, and drinking with all the normal people.
What better way to keep the world safe from believers than to put them in little boxes?
What better way to ensure that the time, talents, and resources of God’s spies are segregated, resulting in the most minimal effectiveness in the world?
God’s spies have gotten side-tracked, full of themselves and their activities. Each spy is equipped in specific ways, with certain talents, passions, and interests. If the spy is invested more in the box than in the “great campaign of sabotage”, then the enemy is likely saying, “ROFLMAO… what a bunch of suckers!” You won’t be getting a “secret wireless” message in the box. The box is locked down tight, very high security, with spiritual police and preemptive protocol for exterminating anything that won’t fit neatly in the box.
*As a side-note, for those “who have ears to hear”, God is ultimately concerned about the world and is working out His plan of redemption in the world. However, there’s a “secret wireless” message which indicates that in this age, the “enemy territory”is institutional religion, and the sabatours’ “great campaign” is the “calling out” of spies from within their boxes, freeing them to be and do according to plan God predestined for them. These people and this message are referred to in the book Daniel, which hints at what the age to come might hold:
…at that time do thy people escape, every one who is found written in the book. And the multitude of those sleeping in the dust of the ground do awake, some to life age-during, and some to reproaches – to abhorrence age-during. And those teaching do shine as the brightness of the expanse, and those justifying the multitude as stars to the age and for ever. And thou, O Daniel, hide the things, and seal the book till the time of the end, many do go to and fro, and knowledge is multiplied.
[…] And I have heard, and I do not understand, and I say, “O my lord, what [is] the latter end of these?”
And he saith, “Go, Daniel; for hidden and sealed [are] the things till the time of the end.”