Living in a Post-Christian World: Behind Enemy Lines

crossIn their case, the god of this age has blinded the minds of the unbelievers so they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. – 2 Corinthians 4:4 (HCSB)

There have been two endearing movies and a book not so well known about a soldier or group of soldiers being trapped behind enemy lines. Perhaps the most familiar are taken from real life events and adapted by Hollywood to be movie blockbusters, Behind Enemy Lines (2001) and Lone Survivor (2013). The third is a book published in 2016, 102 years after the events covered within its pages. The book is Trapped Behind Enemy Lines: Accounts of British Soldiers and their Protectors in The Great War. All three have some interesting facts in common:

  1.  All three involve a soldier or soldiers
  2. All were helped by local host nation civilians
  3. One or some survived to share the story and those who did not were honored
  4. All were exposed to extreme conditions and a determined enemy.

The three renditions mentioned above do not encompass all stories of those who were, are/or will be trapped behind enemy lines but they certainly provide some insight and information for us as Christians in the world today and in the future. Whether we realize it or not, Christians are in a manner of speaking behind enemy lines (Ephesians 6). Jesus entered this world in the same situation (Matthew 1, 2, 4; and Revelation 12) and conquered life, death, and the grave. Like those covered in the stories above who lived to share the story, Jesus encourages us, “I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Be encouraged! I have conquered the world.” John 16:33 (HCSB) Similarly:

  1. Christians are at times are referred to as “soldiers”. (2 Timothy 2:3-4)
  2. Christians are at times torn between two citizenships. (Romans 13:1-7; Philippians 3:20; Titus 3:1-8)
  3. Christians are called to be persons who over come the enemy of this world and honor those who came before us. (Revelation 12:11; Hebrews 11; 13:7)
  4. Christians are not exempt from suffering through tough times and a determined enemy but Jesus has already won the war. (2 Corinthians 4:17; Ephesians 6:1-18)

handsboundLikewise, the life of the Christian is a narrative and true story of being behind enemy lines. However, we are not alone and not the only ones to have passed this way. In effect, we are not “trapped”. We are serving God from behind enemy lines; much like the inspiring stories of Brother Andrew. If you have not read the small book titled after his name, I highly recommend that you do. Those who do not know Christ are trapped and part of our job as believers is to share the truth with them in an effort to save some. You don’t have to be a minister or serve in a church position in order to lead someone to Christ or to point them in the right direction. You just need to value your salvation enough to want others to experience it as well.

One way to prepare your self for events such as these is to seek out a discipleship program that is working. Many churches have programs but few are achieving their purpose. Those that lead their members to a deeper understanding of God’s grace and encourage a desire to see others equipped with the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ are most beneficial. That said most of these church programs need nothing more than willing participants. Think of churches as embassies and their constituents as ambassadors. They are here to represent God’s kingdom and to be available to you and me as dual citizens.

May we be the peculiar and saved people we have been justified and sanctified to be: “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore, honor God with your bodies.” 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

When behind enemy lines, live as one set apart for and by God!

Mijikai Mason
Disclaimer: The thoughts and views published on the Veterans to Christ blog are those of Mijikai Mason and in no way are meant to represent the United States Army or the Armed Forces.

Bio: Mijikai Mason is an Ordained Southern Baptist minister and Chaplain in the United States Army. He has been in the Army for 26 years both as an enlisted Soldier and now as an Officer. He has been stationed at various bases in the United States and in United States Army Garrison Schweinfurt, Germany. He holds an undergraduate degree in Religion from the University of Mobile, a Master of Divinity degree from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary in Theology and Evangelism and a Master of Arts degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Webster University. Chaplain (MAJ) Mijikai Mason was selected by the Army in 2013, to become a Family Life Chaplain and began his service in this field starting 15 May 2015. He is the Deputy ESC Chaplain and Family Life Chaplain for the 593 Expeditionary Support Command at Joint Base Lewis McCord. He has deployed four times: Desert Storm (1991), Iraq twice (2005-2006; 2007-2008), and Afghanistan (2012-2013). He has a total of 42 months deployed in combat and logistics operations. Mijikai and his wife, Ashley, have been married for 17 years this May and live near Joint Base Lewis McChord, Washington with their four daughters.