How the opposition is perceived has everything to do with their ability to dominate or be dominated.
Isaiah 54:16-17 (NIV)
16 "See, it is I who created the blacksmith who fans the coals into flame and forges a weapon fit for its work. And it is I who have created the destroyer to wreak havoc;
17 no weapon forged against you will prevail, and you will refute every tongue that accuses you. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and this is their vindication from me," declares the LORD.
How the opposition is perceived has everything to do with their ability to dominate or be dominated. Where they are seen as much more developed in size and skill, surrender and submission may be chosen over resistance and conflict. However, the vision of an opponent of lesser power and fully understood strategies and methods inspires confidence and boldness to successfully resist and overcome any threat they may pose.
I was very fortunate to be on a football team that won the state championship my junior year in high school. The wonderful thing about being on a team is that the confidence, strength, ability and perception of a few can affect and carry many of the teammates who may not be nearly as competent. Our team was definitely not the biggest or necessarily the fastest, but we had a coaching staff that had been trained in skills for taking down what might appear to be a bigger and faster foe. We also had some key players that were able to lift the perception of the whole team to one of state championship status, and overcome significant challenges and formidable opponents. Many who would not have otherwise prevailed were able to celebrate the victor’s identity right along with those who actually made it happen. Also, as great as was the personal perception of the key coaches and players, their fulfilled potential was in need of the rest of us joining them in their vision. It was us together with them that the trophy required. Each one supporting and filling their role brought the perception of a few to the triumphant claim of the whole.
In the first word of this passage from Isaiah, our triumphant champion is calling us to join him in a perception that will transform how we approach conflicts with our enemy. He is asking us to see that the Greater One inside has an understanding that goes way beyond casual familiarity. He actually was involved in the creation of any opposing force and knows everything about them. If there is any weapon or threat that arises, it is not unknown or of a size and strength even close to that of our key coach and player. For those who actually join Him in this perception He gives the role of “refuting every tongue “ that threatens with accusations of inability and defeat. As great and invincible as He is, the victory He has already secured is that of a team, where each one is joining together with His perception and rejoicing in the same championship celebration.