But let's stow the macho talk for a second and get down to the sweat and blood of what's to come.

Your Attitude and Your Stand

Your attitude about evil reflects your stand against evil. The great men of faith understood this, and as God's man, so must you. To help you with this, we need to think about evil and our fight with it in uncomplicated terms that are consistent with Scripture and practical to apply. We need to think better before we can fight better. The "We've got Jesus, yes we do. We've got Jesus, how about you?" approach is as effective as it sounds. The Bible does not support it, though it might work at vacation Bible school. In fact, the more emotional you are in warfare, the sooner you die. So in the interest of living to fight another day, let's replace emotional and unsuccessful strategies with intelligent and intentional ways of thinking about and fighting evil. For starters, let's wipe the board clean of what we think we know about evil and resolve to stick to Scripture's direction and plan for how we are going to prepare for the fight.

On the whiteboard in my office you will see this written at the top:

INFORMATION WITHOUT APPLICATION IS HALLUCINATION.

As in the other books in this series (Risk and Dream), the overriding objective is real-time application of spiritual truth. That means it's time to embrace these five Fight principles in order to change your attitude and, consequently, your personal stand against the evil powers of this present age. You will be pushed, in increasing ways, to

Face the Reality of Evil

Integrate Intel of the Enemy

Grow Progressively More Aware of Evil

Handle Your Weapons with Consistency and Confidence

Take the Fight to Evil

These are the core tactics connected to owning the night and not letting evil hide under the cover of deceptive masks.

1. Face the Reality of Evil

There was a time before September 11, 2001, when counterterrorist agencies possessed good intelligence about a group called Al-Qaida. We knew who their leader was and where he was, we knew where their training facilities were, we knew how to "touch" them, and we knew the United States was the object of their Islamofascist brand of hatred. And yet, with so many other higher-priority issues, international and domestic crises, and lack of "actionable intelligence," we didn't assign enough attention to this character Osama bin Laden and his terrorist network.

The world knows the rest of the story. Granted, foresight is always 20/40, or worse. You can see some things, but not much of it clearly. You can discern a good portion of the picture, but the small details and facts are a little fuzzy. Hindsight, on the other hand, is always 20/20, or better. The pain or trauma acts like window cleaner. We learn from our mistakes; we evaluate and assess what went wrong. Between foresight and hindsight is a crucial lesson in the battle with evil:  when all you have is fuzzy foresight, you must focus more attention and resources on the Enemy who wants your head on a platter. If you do, your future hindsight will be much less painful.

Of all the lessons America learned from the 9/11 terrorist attack, the biggie was that we simply did not connect the threats with the reality of such a large-scale operation on our own soil. We believed the terrorists were out there, but we acted like we "sort of " believed the intel. Sort of believing in a real enemy and real threat produces a sort-of response that sort of gets people killed. We no longer sort of believe in terrorists who want to kill us. We have been baptized by fire into a new reality regarding the lethal intentions, scope, and scale of global terrorism.

Satan unequivocally wants you dead or at least neutralized (living but not a threat). For God's man the most tragic mistake you can make is to sort of believe in evil, its existence, and its specific designs on your life. When God's men approach the reality of evil this way, we send a clear message to our enemy. What we are saying is that intellectually and mentally we believe there is an evil ringleader guiding plots against us, but practically we act as though he has nothing to do with what befalls us. We behave like all our problems have natural causes and solutions; none have supernatural causes and divine solutions. We end up responding to problems that require supernatural responses with human wisdom and natural solutions. We are firing water pistols at an armed destroyer.