Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation

Jacob Hickson

We are at war. 150 years ago, Lincoln was immersed in a similar sentiment. The war in which he delivered his succinct and inspiring speech was horrendous, violent, and motivated by deep spiritual and moral issues. Today is no different. I cannot speak from experience of human military conflict, and in no way do I mean to diminish the harsh realities therein. I can speak personally from the human experience, however. The fact of war is itself a painful reminder of the conflict that rages presently. Evil, whether the devil, sin, corruption, or human selfishness, fights using tactics we consider inhumane. It goes for the heart. Our present state, rich with anxiety and numbness, ambition and failure, depression and narcissism, apathy and indifference, reflects the effects of our own evil hearts that are victimized by lies and delusions of grandeur. It is what leads to vile wars and bitter violence. It is what leads to suicides and ruined lives. It is the evil outside us that arouses the evil within that fights us so aggressively. Good goes for the heart, too. The reason this is a war and not a slaughter is because good fights as hard, and good causes us to revile against the evil in our own lives and to suffer and die until it is completely defeated. And God has defeated evil already. We are just in the midst of the residual battle, waiting to be destroyed completely by our own selves or to have the evil within us destroyed by a good and loving savior. We are at war, and we must die one way or the other.