You can’t negotiate with it, appease it, get along with it or make “deals” with it. Evil demands capitulation, death or both. Its weapons are deception, manipulation and bald-faced lies.

The only thing that ever gets evil’s attention is power — power greater than itself.

Today, the true enemy of man has deployed an arsenal of weaponry. We don’t have to look any further than Ukraine, where evil plans are on display.

In a recent Wall Street Journal commentary, headlined “Dispatches from the Mariupol Siege,” an incredibly brave and bone-weary Ukrainian soldier is pictured in a rare moment of rest as his regiment continues to take its implausible stand at the city’s steel plant. The soldier exclaims, “Kids and women are dying. They are being killed and raped … It’s hell in Mariupol.”

But it’s what he said at the end of the interview that stopped me in my tracks.

“Evil doesn’t understand agreements and negotiations,” he said. “Evil only understands power … And waiting only causes a lot of innocent human victims.”

This comes from a reliable source, a man staring violent death in its serpentine eye every day.

It’s tempting to trace the source of the Ukrainian evil back to a single individual like Vladimir Putin, especially when we read the late Secretary of State Madeleine Albright’s uneasy impressions after meeting the Russian president the first time 20 years ago.

She wrote in her final commentary before her death in March, “Flying home, I recorded my impressions. ‘Putin is small and pale,’ I wrote, ‘so cold as to be almost reptilian.’”

But not so fast. Evil goes further back than that — to the dawn of mankind, as noted in Genesis 3:1-5:

“Now the serpent was more cunning than any animal of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, ‘Has God really said, ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’? … The serpent said to the woman, ‘You certainly will not die! For God knows that on the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will become like God, knowing good and evil.’”

Up to that time, God’s freshly minted imagers had never known evil, only good. So, they bought into the serpent’s blasphemous slurs on God’s character and fell for the Devil’s offer to become masters of their own fate, without all that “God stuff” to hold them back.

The rest is history.

Putin is a pawn in a long line of hopelessly deceived devotees to the lie that they, too, can “become like God.” And you and I are just as prone to the same disastrous error, admittedly on a smaller scale.

Every time we decide to “do it my way”— Frank Sinatra style — the Devil smiles. Every time an addict relies on his “willpower,” the Serpent gives an “atta boy!” Every time someone denies the reality of God, the Devil says, “Gotcha!” And, every time someone dismisses who Jesus truly is, the Devil says, “Another one bites the dust.”

But there is a way to wipe that smile off the Devil’s face. Start by never again bringing “a knife to a gunfight.” You are outmatched against an enemy who’s been in business for thousands of years.

There is power that the enemy cannot handle. As told in Acts 1:7-9:

“But He (Jesus) said to them … ‘but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and Samaria, and as far as the remotest part of the earth.”

When a person is born again by inviting Jesus Christ to be Lord of their life, they immediately receive a supernatural connection with the Spirit of God and are sealed as God’s own possession, as explained in Ephesians 1:13.

Now, they’re “in business” with the Lamb of God, and no one will want to mess with THIS Lamb, from Revelation 5:11-13:

“Worthy is the Lamb that was slaughtered to receive power, wealth, wisdom, might, honor, glory and blessing. And I heard every created thing which is in heaven, or on the earth, or under the earth, or on the sea, and all the things in them, saying, ‘To Him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be the blessing, the honor, the glory, and the dominion forever and ever.’”

Jesus came to earth the first time as a Lamb to be slaughtered as our substitute to pay for our sins and to make peace with God on our behalf. Revelation 5:5 explains that that same Lamb will return to earth a second time in the future as the Lion of Judah to summarily vanquish His enemies. Trust me, you want to be on His side.

How About You?

Still duking it out with evil on your own? Since evil only understands power, why not call in divine artillery?

Remember the words of that Ukrainian soldier, “waiting only causes a lot of innocent human victims.” Going it alone is exactly what the enemy of your soul wants.

That way, he can zero in his ballistic missiles of deceit on his target: Your eternal soul. Instead, take Jesus up on his offer, and send the enemy in retreat.

D.C. Collier is a Bible teacher, discipleship mentor and writer focused on Christian apologetics. A mechanical engineer and internet entrepreneur, he is the author of My Origin, My Destiny, a book focused on Christianity’s basic “value proposition.” Click here for more information, or contact him at [email protected]. Click here for previous columns. The opinions expressed are his own.

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