“Our walls can’t be breached.” – Hector, from Troy (2004)
In Homer’s Iliad (or the movie, Troy, for those of you who prefer Hollywood to Greek classics), the city of Troy is besieged by a coalition of Greeks led by Agamemnon. The Greeks are trying to achieve the impossible feat of breaching the walls of Troy, which are known to be impregnable.
After trying unsuccessfully for some time to get past the city’s defenses, Agamemnon finally admits defeat…or does he? The Greeks leave the shores of Troy (or so it seems), and leave behind a gift: a giant wooden horse. The Trojans take their trophy of victory back into the city, and after plenty of celebration, retire for the night. Once all is quiet, movement stirs within the Trojan Horse. While most of the Greeks had left Troy, some remained hidden within this wooden horse. They climbed out of their hiding place, opened the gates of Troy, and signaled the rest of the Greek forces, who then waltzed right through the front door and laid waste to the city and its inhabitants.
A while back I read one of my favorite verses, and it reminded me of this story from the Trojan War. It is one of the few verses that I have memorized because of its power during tough times.
“My soul finds rest in God alone;
my salvation comes from him.
He alone is my rock and my salvation;
he is my fortress, I will never be shaken.” – Psalm 62:1-2 (NIV)
What stood out to me is that we as Christians are just like the city of Troy. When we rest in God’s fortress, the walls are impregnable. Satan, like Agamemnon, has accepted this as an inconvenient truth, but he has not admitted defeat. Instead, he leaves false gifts upon our doorstep every day to tempt us to let him in. When we accept his Trojan Horse (as I am sometimes prone to do) and bring it inside our fortress, he waits until the time is right, and he lays waste to our hearts, minds, and relationships.
Maybe the Trojan Horse is a song, a movie, a website, a second glance at someone that is not your spouse, a vain ambition, a bottle, a syringe, or even a love interest with someone that you know you shouldn’t be around. At first glance, it seems as if you have been blessed with an awesome opportunity to indulge. I mean, come on, you deserve it right? You can handle it, right?
What a dangerous gamble to take because if the gift turns out to be a Trojan horse filled with malicious intent from the enemy, and you willingly invite it into your life, it will not matter how impregnable your fortress is. You will be attacked from the inside and be perfectly defenseless against the enemy’s grasp. Like the Viet Cong during the Vietnam War or the American militiamen during the American Revolution, Satan knows that he has no hope of taking the field against a superior military force. He must use deception, trickery, and guerrilla warfare if he is to succeed in his war aims.
“The thief [Satan] comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” – John 10:10 (NIV)
On the other hand, if we rest in the fortress of God and trust in his protection, he promises us that we will never be shaken. In the end, the walls of Troy never fell. It was the Trojans themselves who invited in their own demise and destruction. This is a tragedy that you and I can and should avoid.
Featured Image Source: Swords and Sandals