When in war, it is a terrible mistake to misidentify the enemy. As Christian soldiers, we are often guilty of shooting our own -- or shooting those who are held captive by the enemy.
Luke 9: 49-50 relates the following incident:
"Master," said John, "we saw a man driving out demons in your name and we tried to stop him, because he is not one of us."
"Do not stop him," Jesus said, "for whoever is not against you is for you."
John had misidentified the enemy.
I came across an interesting article this morning, entitled "Non-Christians: Friends or Foes?" by Ginger Plowman. Listen to how her words appropriately address this subject.
I used to view non-Christians as outsiders. I looked at them as mere projects that I needed to check off my "I shared Christ with them" to-do list. Unfortunately, I must admit, that while I had a heart for obeying God in sharing the Gospel with the lost, I did not have a heart for the lost. I can recall telling several people about Jesus and not grieving over their negative response to his plan of salvation. God convicted me that I was viewing non-Christians as a type of enemy, an enemy that I needed to conquer in the spiritual war of evangelism. I would faithfully put on my armor, swing the sword of truth at whoever came my way, and walk off the battlefield without giving a second thought to where the wounded fell. I simply counted my efforts as medals toward spiritual heroism. But Jesus doesn't view non-Christians as the enemy, but as captives of the enemy . . .
Sometimes I need to be reminded who the enemy is . . . and who it's not. Blessings.