Know your enemy … and know yourself as Christians

Someone told me today that we are all in trauma. There is probably truth in that. We have all had our lives turned upside down and inside out. We can’t meet the people come across day by day as a matter of routine – we’ve even had to lock up our churches.

A couple of days ago I came across an article on one of the ABC (Australian Broadcasting Co) Ethics and Religion pages: “Fear not, sneer not: A healthy Christian response to COVID-19”. One of the passages that caught my eye was …

an ancient Chinese saying explains the key to victory against any enemy: “If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.” To know our enemy, and to know ourselves as Christians: with the two together, we can respond intelligently and appropriately as Christians.

The article goes into some depth about the virus we are facing – our enemy – informative stuff.

It then goes on to talk about ‘knowing ourselves as Christians’ and turns to Luther as an example. He lived through times of plague but in 1527 refused to leave Wittenberg as others were …

Luther regarded the epidemic as a temptation that tests and proves our faith and love: “our faith in that we may see and experience how we should act toward God; our love in that we may recognise how we should act toward our neighbour.”

How can we show love in this context? Perhaps keeping to the rules to slow the spread of the virus is an act of love. If we are fit is there someone who needs our help? If we are in one of the ‘at risk’ groups, is there someone who might be lonely would might value a call?

How do we know ourselves as Christians now?

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