The Prophet Ezekiel wades in the
"sacred flow" of living water that comes from the temple altar and continues to
flow out into the "desert of the world". Ezekiel wades in intervals of 1,000
cubits. Now at 3,000 cubits we read in Ezek. 47:4B, "Again he measured off a
thousand and had me wade; the water was up to my waist." A maturing
intercessor whose life is more "immersed" in God is called to pray into yet
another area of need. In Ephesians chapter six, St. Paul exhorts the Ephesians
to put on the armor of God in the battle against evil. At one point he says,
"Stand fast, with the truth as the belt around your waist"
(Eph. 6:14--NAB, 1970 trans.).
For a Roman soldier, the belt at
the waist was the 'unifying point' where various pieces of his clothing and
armor came together (including the string ties of the breastplate). The belt at
the waist was the first thing put on before the other pieces. The belt
also held the scabbard where the sword was placed. How imperative it is for an
intercessor's life to be rooted in truth at all times--the truth of God's word
(the sword of the spirit), and the truth that is the foundation of
righteousness--and, hence, holiness. The word of God tells us that "God is
love" (1 John 4:8). God is also Truth! Ephesians 4:21 tells us, "Truth is in
Jesus"; and , in John 14:6 Jesus states, "I am the way and the truth,
and the life.":
"God is Truth itself,
whose words cannot deceive. This is why one can abandon oneself in full trust
to the truth and faithfulness of His word in all things."
In The Book of Revelation, John
beholds the crucified-resurrected Lamb of God poised for spiritual war:
"Then I saw the heavens
opened, and there was a white horse; its rider was [called] "Faithful and
True"…the armies of heaven followed him."
intercessors, living in union with the Lamb of God and empowered by the Holy
Spirit, are called to 'wage war' against the unseen entities of the kingdom of
darkness, and various aspects that manifest as lies, deceptions and distortions
by the dragon. The word of God tells us that "God is light, and in him
there is no darkness at all" (1 John 1:5). Another name for the armor of
God--of which the belt of truth is part of--is the "armor of light"
(Rom. 13:12). This spiritual armor and weaponry is of God:
"For the weapons of our
battle are not flesh but are enormouslypowerful, capable of destroying
(2 Cr. 10:4)
weapons expose the tactics and deeds of darkness andoppose them successfully. Jesus himself,
anointed with the Holy Spirit, is the "Ultimate Weapon" in spiritual battle.
Recall the question that the unclean spirit asks of Jesus in Mark 1:24: "Have
you come to destroy us?"; and, recall the words of 1John 3:8: "Indeed,
the Son of God was revealed to destroy the works of the devil".
In the opening prayer for mass on the
13th Sunday of Ordinary time we pray:
"that we may not be wrapped in the darkness
of error but always be seen to stand in the bright light of truth"
(R.M., collect, 13th Sunday, p. 327).
in our nation and world, there is an onslaught of error. Intercessors are being
called to pray, in love, for truth to prevail in this "blitzkrieg". Perhaps an
acronym for the word, light, might be:
"L.ivingI.nG.od's H.olyT.ruth". As intercessors, our lives
must always be grounded in intimate relationship with the God of 'light',
'truth' and 'holiness'--and 'love'; for, love is our greatest weapon!
We have received the Spirit of
truth. He is the living water who flows from the wounded side--the breached
"Temple wall"of Jesus' Body-- from the
"Altar of his Heart": "When he comes, the Spirit of truth, he will guide
you to all truth"(John 16:13). Intercessors must live in God's holy truth at
all times. We beg God in prayer for others--that they may make the Passover
from lies, deception and error into the 'bright light of truth'. Both authentic
holiness and righteousness find their foundation in God who is Truth. Without
truth--without God--there can be neither a genuine holiness nor a righteousness
that is conformity to God's will(see Eph. 4:24).
(To be continued)
1) Has God
revealed an area of my life where I have been living in deception?
2) Am I
praying for anyone right now who needs to make a Passover from lies and deceit
scripture from the text; Gal. 5:7-8; Eph. 1:13; Eph. 4:15; 2Ts. 2:13.