I have been followed Paul Kingsnorth on the internet.  He posts at “The Abbey of Misrule.”  He has recently become a committed Christian.  For me, he puts into words the spiritual conflict taking place in the West.  Recently he wrote a blog entitled “Chasing the Dragon.”

“When I look forward,” notes Kingsnorth, “I can’t see anything much that is fixed or holy or pegged down.  All I can see…….is that dragon.” He wonders if we are moving into a dragon time.  “If this is a dragon time,” He ponders, “what is our age’s serpent saying?  What has it come for?  Perhaps our dragon is the beast rising from the sea.  Perhaps it is the return of the wild nature we have crushed outside and inside of us for so long………Is it the consuming passion of the Machine, which will end up consuming us all?……. Does it come to destroy us or to redeem us – or are they both the same thing?”

I am fascinated by Kingsnorth’s intuitive struggle to understand the modern day struggle between good and evil.  It takes me to Revelation 12, where we read about Satan as the great, red dragon.  “Then another sign appeared in heaven: an enormous red dragon with seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on his heads. (Rev. 12:3).  We are told, about a war in heaven. “Michael and his angels fought against the dragon.” (v 7). 

Michael is victorious, causing the dragon to lose its place in heaven.  “The great dragon was hurled down – that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray.  He was hurled to the earth” (v 9).  Heaven rejoices at the victory, but we have these fateful words regarding  the dragon.  “But woe to the earth and the sea, because the devil has gone to you! He is filled with fury, because he knows that his time is short” (v 12). 

We are told, “the dragon was enraged at the woman and went off to make war against the rest of her offspring – those who obey God’s commandments and hold to the testimony of Jesus” (v 17).  This is the believing church throughout history.

Eugene Peterson has this observation about the bluster of the dragon.  “Our problem is that we overestimate the politics of earthly governments and underestimate the politics of heaven.  John’s imagination is a rush of adrenaline to those of us with little faith.  And so infused, we’re again fearless, unimpressed by the bluster of the dragon.”

I appreciate Kingsnorth’s wondering about our time being a dragon time.  I understand this to mean the power of darkness which seems to be clouding our civilization.   Could there be an intensifying of the battle between light and darkness in our Post Christian culture?  So many signs point to a deepening of a battle between good and evil.  

Only our heavenly Father knows the day of the Lord.  But could the crises and chaos of our time be pointing in that direction.  I sure can see our age being a dragon time.  Peterson give us this warning: “The political metaphor of a kingdom insists on a gospel that brings everything and everyone under the rule of God.  People love to hear that God is powerful and that he rules.  They aren’t as enthusiastic when they discover the means by which he exercises his rule.” 

Men, the battle has already been won through Jesus death and resurrection.  We live in the time of the “not yet.”  Victory against the dragon is assured.  But how the battle will play out is not for us to determine.