Crabtree Acres

Gandalf vs. Balrock
by Carolyn Bost Crabtree

Most of you by now have probably seen Tolkien’s stories portrayed in The Lord of the Rings movie series. The books were full of symbols of good and evil and the battles that go on between them until good finally defeats evil completely. As you watch the movies there are characters which almost seem to parallel the lives of Jesus, Satan and people like us. Frodo is a quite-loving normal person who is thrown into a quest that requires him to sacrifice his own comforts in order to save his fellow men. Gandalf is a type of Jesus and the Balrog is Satan, while the orcs are Satan’s demons. In the scene where Gandalf and the Balrog are fighting in the mines of the dwarfs, Gandalf has led his companions over to safety and stands between them and the Balrog. There is a very important scene that is sometimes missed by the moviegoer here where Gandalf forcefully tells the Balrog, “You shall not pass!” At first the Balrog seems to be defeated because he recognizes the authority of Gandalf and does not seem to go on against the companions of Gandalf. But suddenly the Balrog reaches out and pull Gandalf into the depths of the earth with him and the battle between the two is a great one. Gandalf seems to die and go to heaven, but returns to earth eventually as a totally different person with totally different powers. The Balrog was thrown into the pit and dies there. In the Bible God tells us that Satan will be defeated finally by Jesus Christ, the great coming king who will rule the earth forever and ever.

It dawned upon me as I was watching the movies again that we have the same power promised to us that will keep Satan away from our lives. With the Holy Spirit living in us we can stand and say, “You shall not pass!” Satan cannot pass into our lives past the work of the Holy Spirit. Jesus said that He who is in us is greater than he that is in the world. Why do we allow Satan to pass the line and defeat us in so many areas of our lives? I believe it is because we are weak in our faith and may be ignorant of the power is available to us. We do not put on the armor of God that is mentioned in Ephesians 6:13-20. We must have truth, righteousness, the preparation of the gospel of peace, the shield of faith. Of course, we must have the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is God’s word. David said, “Thy word have I hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against Thee.” The passage in Ephesians goes on to say we must pray at all times and be on the alert at all times for each other. Gandalf was not alert when the tentacle of Balrog came up and pulled him down to the pit with Him. We are never free of Satan’s arrows and tentacles until we are in heaven with Jesus, but we do have the Holy Spirit warning us and alerting us to the enemy’s ways. Prayer keeps us alert and keeps us close to the Power Source Who protects us.