Camille Paglia, the anti-feminist feminist, in a recent widely quoted interview expressed the belief that the rise of transgenderism in the West is a symptom of decadence and cultural collapse. “Nothing,” she observed, “better defines the decadence of the West to the jihadists than our toleration of open homosexuality and this transgender mania now.” Her concern is how we are defining ourselves to the world. In her studies she has found, “… that history is cyclic, and everywhere in the world you find this pattern in ancient times: that as a culture begins to decline, you have an efflorescence of transgender phenomena. That is a symptom of cultural collapse.”
Her comments suggest to me that men reading this blog should consider themselves as cultural warriors by being “warrior of the light.” I first heard that phrase, many years ago, in a song by Phil Discroll. We are told in Roman 13 to put on the armor of light. “And do this, understanding the present time: The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. The night is nearly over, the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light” (vs. 11-12). When a confirmed secularist warns us of a cultural collapse, I would suggest that we have been living in darkness. But the promise is that day is almost here.
We are to “wake up” from our slumber by putting off the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. One of the tactics of the enemy is to create spiritual darkness, blinding us to the realities screaming at us through the daily headlines we read about and see on TV. “The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God” ( II Cor 4:4). But we are to live as children of the light. “For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light…” ( II Cor 5:8). As darkness has descended on our culture, the light of the gospel shines brighter. “Let us walk in the light of the Lord” (Isaiah 2:5).
So men, let us rise up as “Warriors of the Light” knowing that God is working in the darkness. A war is being waged between light and darkness. Economics, politics and education will not win this battle. As wildmen we see the battle as between Jesus who is the light of the world and the one who Jesus called “the prince of darkness.” Jesus has invaded enemy territory – “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it” (John 1:5). Culture is blind to this epic battle. But as warriors behind enemy lines we are engaged in this battle.
Therefore, we put on the “armor of light.” I suggest that this means we intentionally live in the presence of Jesus in our daily lifestyle. We practice an outward, upward posture of beholding the Lord’s presence. “My heart says of you, ‘Seek his face!” Your face, Lord, I will seek” (Ps 27:8). Above all else, we keep our gaze on Jesus. “Nothing between us and God, our faces shining with the brightness of his face. And so we are transfigured much like the Messiah, our lives gradually becoming brighter and more beautiful as God enters our lives and we become like him” (II Cor. 3:18 – Message). Men transformed by the light are warriors in the darkness.