Combat Casualties

I write this on Good Friday. . .

So much has gone on during the last three weeks. Tornadoes and other extreme weather, terror attacks in Israel, a former president under indictment, and children and their teachers murdered. Spring flowers have blossomed in South Carolina, but they bring little comfort.

A few people have wondered why I have not commented on the recent Nashville events or the public responses to those events. One reason was that I mourned; another was that I didn’t know what to say. I did not wish to write out of my feelings; I wanted to hear the Lord's words.

Yesterday morning, during a quiet time, the Lord began to speak softly to my spirit. It was not a big, solemn moment of His glory manifesting; it was more like a friend quietly pointing out the obvious. During this time, God did not comment directly on what was happening in the political realm or about the tragedy in Nashville. He did not even speak of His own sacrifice. Instead, the Lord gently but firmly spoke to the church's situation in the spiritual realm.

[Now, before you go on, you should briefly read about the Allied campaign in the Pacific during World War 2. I suggest you read about the Battle of Guadalcanal, the Battle for Saipan, and the Battle for Okinawa. I previously had some slight knowledge of these things because of my relatives who fought in the Pacific campaign and lived to talk about it. However, I have been reading more about these battles to understand better what God said to me yesterday].

God spoke to me about the Church [the Ekklesia] in an allegory. He used the historical battles mentioned above to represent the more abstract spiritual ideas or principles He desired for me to understand.

 In a nutshell:

Guadalcanal was where the tide of the war in the Pacific turned. Although the outcome was not at first apparent, US control of Guadalcanal forced the Japanese from an offensive into a defensive posture. This battle extended for months, and while the US took control of the island quickly, the US contingent faced fierce counterattacks for an extended period.

  •  When Saipan was taken, the US could launch land-based B-29s at Japan's home islands.
  •  The blood battle for Okinawa would be a “last stand” of the Japanese army to protect the Japanese homeland from the USA and her allies.  

 How do these World War 2 events apply to Ekklesia today?

I believed that God showed me that the universal Church [the Ekklesia] is preparing the launch for the spiritual battle for Saipan (the physical island from which the USA and her allies launched B-29s on the Japanese homeland). However, right now, we are still at our spiritual Guadalcanal. In taking that place and holding it, the tide has turned against the enemy.

So what does the spiritual “Guadalcanal” look like?  Guadalcanal is where believers are willing to cross the river to enter into active battle with the spiritual forces of the enemy.  Guadalcanal is where believers take a stand in prayer, knowing they have the authority to rebuke the enemy through the blood and the name of Jesus. This is also a place of danger because if we do not walk closely with the Lord and unite with our brothers and sisters in Christ, we will be bogged down by disappointment, heaviness, and despair.

Note: Guadalcanal was named by the Spanish explorer Álvaro de Mendaña de Neira. The name derives from the Spanish form of Arabic wadi, "river," and “guadal,” which means a sandy bog, swamp, or muddy area.

The lesson of Guadalcanal: Realize that while we can easily conquer the enemy through the name and blood of the Lord Jesus Christ, we must be on alert to hold onto our victory. The enemy will try our faith and perseverance through counterattacks. He wants us to surrender our authority in Christ in unbelief because of his counterattacks using despair, disappointment, fear, and general heaviness. Yet if we stand in faith and remain active in worship and praise, the enemy forces will fall before us.

Saipan is where the Ekklesia will begin to achieve victories for the Lord, permanently impacting all areas of culture, including politics, education, business, the family, and media. Social ills will be addressed, and freedom and liberty will come to people trapped in darkness. Violence, cruelty, and terror will no longer stalk the weak.

The lesson of Saipan: It is not enough to rest on the victories [ both in the spiritual and the natural] that we have experienced. While guarding “Guadalcanal,” we must prepare to take Saipan to gain the “high ground” from which the gates of hell cannot withstand the combined prayers, praise, and testimonies of the Ekklesia. United, Spirit-directed intercessory prayers will be like the bombing raids of the B-29, which brought horrendous destruction to Japan [only these “raids” will disrupt and disarm the principalities and powers of darkness]. We must also strengthen ourselves in the Lord for all the fierceness the enemy will attempt to bring against us as we gain spiritual territory.

[Now, in speaking of these things, I am not suggesting in any way that we attack Japan! The Lord used allegories based on historical events to help us understand the spiritual warfare that all believers are involved in, whether they like it or not].

The Lord then declared to me that the Ekklesia must not give up or rest because there are spiritual objectives that we are commissioned to achieve.

At this point, the Lord’s tone changed from a simple explanation to sadness and gentleness. [Jesus understands the pain of loss. He was betrayed by a friend, and along with being despised and tortured by his own people, He lost his earthly father Joseph when he was still young].

The Lord said, “Spiritual warfare is real warfare. Casualty reports are real, yet they are deceiving.”

I cannot express all that I received in my spirit, for there was a flash of revelation that I could not fully comprehend. However, I can say this. There will be sadness, pain, and suffering in this life. Christians are not immune to pain any more than our Lord was. Some will be cut off from this life, yet they will arise on that last day; they will stand before the Lord—healed and full of joy—and receive the victor’s crown.

 But we don’t want you to be ignorant, brothers, concerning those who have fallen asleep, so that you don’t grieve like the rest, who have no hope. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep in Jesus. 15 For this we tell you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will in no way precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with God’s trumpet. The dead in Christ will rise first, 17 then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air. So we will be with the Lord forever. 18 Therefore comfort one another with these words—1 Thessalonians 4:13-18.

Meanwhile, those of us who remain will think of those who are with the Lord even as we continue our race, bringing the good news of Jesus to all the world.

 33 I have told you these things, that in me you may have peace. In the world you have trouble; but cheer up! I have overcome the world”—John 16:33

 As I said, I write these things on Good Friday, the day Jesus went to the Cross on our behalf. He paid the cost for all our sin and selfishness. Through His unbelievable suffering, He destroyed the power of sin and death and stripped the devil of all authority over humanity. Because of Jesus’ Resurrection, we have hope of seeing our loved ones again.

 Today we mourn our losses; on Sunday, let us shout, “He has risen!” with hope in our hearts.


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