To follower of Jesus should be surprised when confronting conflict. You were "born again" in the crucible of conflict. The word of the Gospel not only informs men of a differing order, but of the means of entering into it. Entrance into this everlasting kingdom necessarily involves an exit from the competing "fashion of this world," which is "passing away" (1 Cor 7:31).

Conflict is the experience of competing influences. It is an experience uniquely belonging to the moral arena. Nature, it is true, "groans" and travails in pain. But their's is not the experience of conflict as ours. They do not wrestle with inhibiting influences, but have been "made subject to vanity" without the involvement of their will (Rom 8:20). By nature, they are "waiting for the manifestation of the sons of God" (Rom 8:19). It is not so with mankind. We must be apprized of Divine provision, and then constrained by intelligent communication to "lay hold of eternal life." Conflict is the unavoidable result of temporality. When we have been ushered into eternal realms, there will be no more conflict.

The presence of good and evil provides us with the opportunity of choice--the employment of our discretionary powers. It also mandates the expression of resistance. One of the antithetical realms must be resisted. They cannot both be embraced or rejected simultaneously. One must be received, and one rejected. There is no other alternative.

The perception of truth occurs in the arena of conflict. Unlike the glory that is to come, truth is made accessible to men amidst contradictory influences. The soul must lay hold of truth by overcoming rational hindrances. These obstacles are not only around us, they are within us, striving to frustrate us. Progress in the apprehension of the truth reveals progress in overcoming the world.

Our current conflict requires that we be alert and diligent. "Be sober, be vigilant," the Apostle urges, "for your adversary the devil walketh about as a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour." The only way to successfully counteract his activity is to be "steadfast in the faith." Conflict is not strange thing, and the correct handling of it by those professing faith should not be strange either. A spiritual perception of the nature of inward struggle neutralizes its effect upon the believer!