The Battle Against Spiritual Wickedness

In Mark 14:53-65 the account is given of Jesus at His night trial before Caiaphas the high priest and the Jewish leaders.

In Mark 14:61 Caiaphas says to Jesus: “Art thou the Christ, the Son of the Blessed?  Matthew 26:63 records this same question by Caiaphas with more detail: “I adjure thee by the living God, that thou tell us whether thou be the Christ, the Son of God.”

In Mark 14:62 the answer of Jesus is brief: “I am: and ye shall see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.”

Leaving aside the mystery of iniquity and of skeptical unbelief occurring at that moment in history…for today’s Spirit-born Christian attempting to understand the unique nature of biblical faith…as Jesus stands before Caiaphas and the Jewish leaders at this hastily assembled night trial…Jesus is absolute perfect goodness and brilliantly pure spiritual light…incarnate.

For people of faith today who have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ…people who know that He is risen and is the Son of God…Jesus at his night trial before Caiaphas and the Jewish leaders…was then and still is today…in terms of absolute goodness and brilliant pure light…Isaiah 9:6-7 to perfection.

In hindsight we know that the divinely composed life-script for Jesus was to fulfill Psalm 22 and Isaiah 53.  At that precise point in human history we did not need Isaiah 9:6-7 in its final fulfillment…we needed a Savior…a Redeemer…the Lamb of God atonement for our sins.

What is truly remarkable and beyond the capacity for this writer to fully take-in and grasp…which is another apologetic argument for its divine origin…is that the soon to be condemned Jesus is the greater standing before the lesser personified in His accusers.  Even though Jesus here is on trial for His life…His accusers are in actuality the condemned (1 Cor. 2:8).  The cross is not a defeat…it is one of the finest victories…if not the finest…in terms of goodness, character, and light…in all of eternity.  The resurrection of Christ from the dead enables Jesus to give eternal life to all who will look to Him for salvation…because Jesus now has the keys to hell and to death (Rev. 1:18; Jn. 14:19).

How can Spirit-born Christians make sense out of all of this contrast…with worldly conventional normalcy appearing to win…yet God-composed journey of faith life-scripts soaring out-of-sight above the consensus of conventional thinking in the zone at or near the top of the vertical graph-line delineating good and evil, and light from darkness, on a graduated scale with goodness and light at the top?

How can we make sense of our own adventures of faith…when we are operating on a higher moral and ethical plane than we ever have before our conversion to Christ…yet be rejected and condemned by the world like Jesus was during His night trial…for not conforming to conventional thinking (1 Pet. 4:4)?

What if after asking Jesus if He was the Christ, Caiaphas took the same tact as Nicodemus in coming to Jesus at night…and in a humble and teachable spirit…and asked Jesus how to live a life truly pleasing to God.  Jesus would have answered Caiaphas the these Jewish leaders in the same way He spoke to Nicodemus in John chapter 3.

One key to understanding biblical faith is that evil is not a stand-alone, independent entity…it is on the same vertical continuum line as absolute good.

The temptation by Satan in the Garden of Eden was not a random, poorly thought-out, ill-planned strategy.  Satan had already rebelled against God…into self-autonomous self-sovereignty…and he wanted to pass this rebellious independence off on the human race…having the most heinous and destructive motivation imaginable.

Rebellion against God lands us part-way down the vertical graph-line of goodness and light…somewhere within the zone of worldly conventional normalcy where autonomous self-rulership is considered the norm.  This is the zone…the segment on the vertical graph-line…where the night trial of Jesus occurred.  The crucifixion of Jesus the next day dropped down a few incremental points lower in terms of goodness and light.  But during all of this time Jesus is consistently operating at the top-most level of absolute goodness and brilliant pure light.

For me, this is a helpful way to view Ephesians 6:12 that tells us that we wrestle against spiritual darkness…against spiritual wickedness in high places…and that we become overcomers through Christ Jesus by rising up to the same high level He operated at during His life and ministry…at or near the top point on the vertical graph-line of goodness and light…through the power of the Holy Spirit.

This is one explanation for why Spirit-born Christians are rejected and condemned by people who choose to remain in the zone of worldly conventional normalcy.  The blood of Christ, and a God-composed adventure of faith takes us to the top of the vertical graph-line continuum, where faith and trust are manufactured by God, and where we through lived-experience come to know God in a personal way that will benefit us and others for all eternity.

Author: Barton Jahn

I work in building construction as a field superintendent and project manager. I have four books published by McGraw-Hill on housing construction (1995-98) under Bart Jahn, and have six Christian books self-published through Create Space KDP. I have a bachelor of science degree in construction management from California State University Long Beach. I grew up in Southern California, was an avid surfer, and am fortunate enough to have always lived within one mile of the ocean. I discovered writing at the age of 30, and it is now one of my favorite activities. I am currently working on two more books on building construction.

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