Undying Evil

From the Fullmetal Alchemist Wiki

I’ve been watching the anime Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, which, by the way, is fantastic.

The bad guys are known as homunculi. They are nearly impossible to kill. They keep regenerating whenever hurt, and only sustained, brutal beatings can take one out.

This type of thing occurs all the time in movies. The evil creature is nearly invincible. Vampires need stakes and silver bullets. Zombies, unfeeling and unthinking, come in masses that cannot be stopped. If injured, the bad guy rises one last time to set off the bomb or shoot the girl. When evil dies, it gets reborn in some other way, in some other body. Evil refuses die.

And, yet, how seldom is good portrayed in this way! Part of this is dramatic, but the other part is truth (for the time being). From our vantage point, evil is persistent, tenacious, and always reasserting itself. We are sinful beings, living in a sinful world, and we intrinsically know that we tend toward evil.

There are many fascinating things about the book of Revelation. One is the final battle between Satan and God. It’s not a titanic fight. Evil gathers countless armies, but it takes less than a verse to throw them aside:

7 When the thousand years are over, Satan will be released from his prison and will go out to deceive the nations in the four corners of the earth—Gog and Magog—and to gather them for battle. In number they are like the sand on the seashore. They marched across the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of God’s people, the city he loves. But fire came down from heaven and devoured them. -Revelation 20:7-9

As a writer, it’s certainly worth showing the power evil has in this time, but such a truth is not final, and it’s worth showing that as well.

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