Thursday, July 25, 2013

Is Charity (or Any Other Virtue) Really Worth The Fight?

I think with the battles for self-control and developing Christ-like attributes, it can be easy to forget what we are up against.

Sun Tzu wrote something that I think applies very well in these struggles of self that roughly translated goes like this:
"So it is said that if you know your enemies and know yourself, you can win a hundred battles without a single loss.
If you only know yourself, but not your opponent, you may win or may lose.
If you know neither yourself nor your enemy, you will always endanger yourself."
Who exactly are our enemies?  I think we can all agree that the first is the Adversary, and the second is given to us in Mosiah 3:19: "For the natural man is an enemy to God".

C.S. Lewis I think put it in a slightly different way in the preface to Screwtape Letters when he warned that it is equally dangerous to display either too much or too little interest in the Devil.  I think this can also apply to the dangers of having too much or too little interest in (i.e. "understanding of") the natural man.

Recently, I ran across a few resources online that expanded my understanding of the natural man, and gave me a little better idea of what we're up against in our quest to become like Christ.