“He said, “Do not be afraid, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” Then Elisha prayed and said, “O LORD, please open his eyes that he may see.” So the LORD opened the eyes of the young man, and he saw, and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.” 2 Kings 6:16-17
I will be the first to admit to you that I love sci-fi and the Lord of The Rings. Ray Bradbury and Kurt Vonnegut are two of my favorite writers, and in Tolkien I find a rare brilliance that is unmatched in most other writers of his genre. I love reading stories of aliens who attack the world, or supernatural spheres that attack rocket ships, or wizards and ghost armies who go up against a great fiery eye. My imagination soars as I read them and find the supernatural completely believable and accessible in the context of fiction. However, there is another part of me that has a difficult time reconciling the presence of the supernatural within the context of non-fiction history. Wizards are great in fiction, but hold little weight in non-fiction. As I read through the Bible, the problem of the supernatural comes to the forefront. Things happen in the Bible, which is purported as a non-fiction book, that I naturally only accept in the medium of fiction. I think Elisha’s servant had the same problem. When faced with the armies of the Syrians, he wasn’t ready to accept Elisha’s explanation that supernatural forces were there to fight for him. So Elisha asks God to show the supernatural in the natural world. As difficult as it is to accept, the supernatural isn’t only a figment of imagination. There is a different dimension of the world that exists that we will likely never see, but is nonetheless real. I must admit, this is something that I need to struggle through in prayer, because as much as I like the idea of angels and demons battling and intervening constantly in the natural world, I have a difficult time fully accepting it as true. I want to believe its true because faith in their presence means a strengthening of courage when facing adversity in life. Opposition is less daunting knowing that the angels of heaven are fighting the battle alongside me. The enemy seems powerless knowing the God of the universe and his armies are fighting against them.
Lord Jesus, let what we can only see as fiction become facts that we find our strength in. Give us eyes to see your real presence in the natural world!