Eyes That See

“I Once Was Blind”

Spiritual Warfare From the Corner of First and Market Streets

If you stand on the corner of First and Market Streets in downtown Louisville, KY, you can see two historical marker signs from a moral battle in the history of this country.  If you look to the south, there is an inconspicuous sign that marks where there was once a slave pen.  In the 1800’s, where this marker stands there stood a place where people of one skin color bought and sold people of another skin color.  Rather than being judged by the content of their character, these slaves were judged by the color of their skin and condemned to slavery.  They were forced to walk down to the Ohio River and were shipped to the plantations of the south.

However, if you look to the north from the same street corner, there is another historical marker.  From the same time period in the 1800’s, this marker tells of a church/seminary where African-Americans were- illegally- taught how to read, and how to read.  In this wonderful country, it was legal to buy and sell African-Americans as slaves, but it was illegal to teach them how to read.  In opposition to this unjust law, and less than 50 yards away from a slave pen, people were teaching them how to read anyway.

Jesus said that His kingdom is not of this world, and that there were “more than twelve legions of angels” at His beck and call.  We read about spiritual warfare in the book of Daniel.  What spiritual warfare must have been taking place at this street corner, as one side obeyed unjust laws and the other side disobeyed them?  The angels of the living God must have been fighting as people who were created in the image of God were being oppressed and bought and sold.

There is still much spiritual warfare going on around us today, and the corner of First and Market Streets is still an intense battleground.  Where the church/seminary once stood, there now stands a crisis pregnancy center.  At this center, women who have an unplanned pregnancy are able to have a free ultrasound of their baby and free counseling about the alternatives to abortion that are available to them- all of which are better than abortion, both for the mothers and their babies.

Also, from this battleground/street corner, you can see a juxtaposition of two “historical markers,” if you will, of probably the two most intense spiritual moments of my life:


Just down the street from a place where African-Americans were treated as property, unborn babies are now tread as property.  Just down the street from a place where the rights of African-Americans were bought and sold, sometimes resulting in their death, the rights of unborn babies are bought and sold, always resulting in their death.

Abortion was never as real in my mind before I saw pictures of babies who had been aborted as it was after I saw those pictures.  And, abortion became even more real- and exponentially so- when I saw mothers take their babies into the EMW Women’s Surgery Center.  The vaguely named abortion clinic is in the middle of this picture, and you can see its white awning extending almost to the street.

Looming large behind the clinic is the Kentucky International Convention Center.  You can see the east side of the KICC spanning most of the picture, and its north side runs along Market Street to the right of the pic.  This was the site of the 2008 Togeter 4 the Gospel conference, where my voice was among 5,000 others singing praises to the almighty God and listening to 8 of the premier theologians in the world speak.


August 15, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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