Japan surrendered the Philippines in WWII
Then I saw the lesson. And I told him, “It’s like what happened on our whole planet. A war happened over us and Jesus has to conquer us in order to give us back our independence. Because when Satan had conquered us, we lost our independence.”
WWII was a massive war effort on many fronts. Germany was fighting us from the east and Japan from the west. Both of those nations were amazing industrialized machines, that even though small countries, created formidable forces against America and the rest of the world.
But a couple of months before the war ended, as one website states, “July 1945, General MacArthur retakes Philippines Islands after Manila’s fall to Americans in May. Japanese surrender here after inflicting 60,000 American casualties.”
In order to give the Philipinos back their freedom a terrible battle had to occur. The enemy wasn’t going to give up his territory easily. Many lives were lost. Many mothers and fathers and wives and children mourned the losses.
Even so, our fallen race will be won back to its original freedoms only by heavy losses. Of His redeemed race, the Lord has said, “Since thou wast precious in My sight, thou hast been honourable, and I have loved thee: therefore will I give men for thee, and people for thy life.” (Is. 43:4).
Why so many grievous wars with so much pain and suffering? Why so many in the Holy Scriptures? By God’s own people? God will not be so remiss as to leave us without a knowledge of a much, much bigger conflict that has lasted for ages—a great cosmic controversy—something indescribably grander than this life and its experiences; which we can comprehend if we are open to the influence of His Spirit.
“We must inevitably be under the control of the one or the other of the two great powers that are contending for the supremacy of the world.” Desire of Ages, p. 324.
In all the wars and conflicts, the bloodshed and torture and terrible destruction of this world, God and His work are glorified, and God’s love is revealed. Why the terror and tragedies and struggle with life, with real pain and real suffering and real death which we experience or see so often in our lifetime, and which leaves so many disillusioned with God? It is to give us a sobering shake up from our presumptuous, fallen natures. It is so we can get a small taste, but a real taste of what God has experienced in our rebellion and defection to His enemy’s side, and the great effort He has made in order to win us back to Him and into real security and true independence.
But we aren’t alone in the great battle.
“Every man is free to choose what power he will have to rule over him. None have fallen so low, none are so vile, but that they can find deliverance in Christ. The demoniac, in place of prayer, could utter only the words of Satan; yet the heart’s unspoken appeal was heard. No cry from a soul in need, though it fail of utterance in words, will be unheeded. Those who will consent to enter into covenant relation with the God of heaven are not left to the power of Satan or to the infirmity of their own nature. They are invited by the Saviour, ‘Let him take hold of My strength, that he may make peace with Me; and he shall make peace with Me.’ Isaiah 27:5. The spirits of darkness will battle for the soul once under their dominion, but angels of God will contend for that soul with prevailing power. The Lord says, ‘Shall the prey be taken from the mighty, or the lawful captive delivered? . . . Thus saith the Lord, Even the captives of the mighty shall be taken away, and the prey of the terrible shall be delivered: for I will contend with him that contendeth with thee, and I will save thy children.’ Isaiah 49:24, 25.” Ibid. p. 258.
“Every soul that refuses to give himself to God is under the control of another power. He is not his own. He may talk of freedom, but he is in the most abject slavery. He is not allowed to see the beauty of truth, for his mind is under the control of Satan. While he flatters himself that he is following the dictates of his own judgment, he obeys the will of the prince of darkness. Christ came to break the shackles of sin-slavery from the soul. ‘If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.’ ‘The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus sets us ‘free from the law of sin and death.’ Romans 8:2.
“In the work of redemption there is no compulsion. No external force is employed. Under the influence of the Spirit of God, man is left free to choose whom he will serve. In the change that takes place when the soul surrenders to Christ, there is the highest sense of freedom. The expulsion of sin is the act of the soul itself. True, we have no power to free ourselves from Satan’s control; but when we desire to be set free from sin, and in our great need cry out for a power out of and above ourselves, the powers of the soul are imbued with the divine energy of the Holy Spirit, and they obey the dictates of the will in fulfilling the will of God.
“The only condition upon which the freedom of man is possible is that of becoming one with Christ. ‘The truth shall make you free;’ and Christ is the truth. Sin can triumph only by enfeebling the mind, and destroying the liberty of the soul. Subjection to God is restoration to one’s self,—to the true glory and dignity of man. The divine law, to which we are brought into subjection, is ‘the law of liberty.’ James 2:12.” Ibid. p. 466.