2.      Manipulated Relationships 

It seems clear from our primary text that emotions and relationships are manipulable by spirit forces, and they can be weaponized.  So, sustaining smiles or avoiding wars may not altogether depend on the meticulous adherence to textbook rules on relationship and romance (Genesis 11:7-8).  One can sow all the right relationship seeds and still reap enmity if there is a spirit-cause unknown or ignored. 

Spirits can engineer wars between partners.  For example, when the time came for the curses of Jotham to fall upon the people of Shechem for their bloody conspiracy with Abimelech, it was God Himself who sent an evil spirit between Abimelech and the men of Shechem,” between those erstwhile ethnic and political lovers (Judges 9:23).  When divine judgment was ripe over King Ahab, God it was who “put a lying spirit” into the mouth of all his trusted ‘special advisers,’ so that he would be lured to the place for his termination (1 Kings 22:23).  King Rehoboam the successor of Solomon took the wrong option of two counsels.  Whereas it would seem like the king had acted out of personal choice, in truth, “the CAUSE was of God.”  In other words, God was the ‘Cause’ of the king’s foolish diplomatic choice that was to lead to the crisis that was to lead to the division of his kingdom that was to fulfil the word of the Lord “which he spake by the hand of Ahijah” the prophet.  God was the ‘putter’ of the enmity between Rehoboam and Jeroboam (2 Chronicles 10:15).  Furthermore, who was responsible for the tragic ‘breakdown in communication’ between the hitherto very committed partners in the Babel Tower Project?  It was God and His Counsel of Heaven, their aim being to stop the Babel Project (Genesis 11:7-8).  God is a God of peace, but in His love, He plants creative and productive enmities also.  Satan also does, which is why constant discernment is crucial. 

Not only with individuals but also at national and international levels, emotions and relationships can be manipulated by spirit forces to achieve predetermined goals.  Of Egypt, for instance, God said, “And I will set the Egyptians against the Egyptians: and they shall fight every one against his brother, and every one against his neighbour; city against city, and kingdom against kingdom” (Isaiah 19:2).  In other words, at the individual level of ‘brother’ and ‘neighbour,’ at the municipal level of the city, and at the international level involving kingdoms, relationships can be manipulated by spirit forces to achieve certain goals.  Here, God clearly owns up in advance of the conflicts, before the devil is blamed for the unseen Finger of God.  Down that chapter, we read again, 

The LORD hath mingled a perverse spirit in the midst thereof: and they have caused Egypt to err in every work thereof, as a drunken man staggereth in his vomit (Isaiah 19:14). 

All foolish choices are not because someone was such a fool.  Sometimes a spirit had been involved in the equation.  All enmity might not be because someone did not know ‘how’ to manage a relationship.  Sometimes a spirit was involved, ‘mingling’ perverseness “in the midst thereof.”  Peace is good, but sometimes, “the very God of peace” (as He is entitled in 1 Thessalonians 5:23), sows the seeds of discord among parties so that a word might be fulfilled, or a victim released. 

To be so blindly religious as to think that you must be at ‘peace’ with everyone, especially as a mark of spirituality, is to get bruised by serpentine heads that you could have crushed earlier.  Note that there are two parts to the Genesis 3:15 declaration by God: Part 1: her seed will bruise the head of the serpent; Part 2: the heel of her seed will be bruised by the serpent.  Logically, there will be no Part 2 if Part 1 is effectively achieved, because a crushed head cannot turn around to strike anyone.  So, crush the serpent’s head before he bruises your heel.  It is war, and God is the ‘Causer’ of it.  He is the ‘Putter’ of enmities between parties that should no longer be fond chatting pals over forbidden fruits that truncate multiple generational destinies.  Nobody can be more loving than the God of love.  If enmity sometimes serves His purpose, then my imperative inclusiveness, my holy theology of love, needs revising. 

From The Preacher’s diary, 

February 28, 2022.

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