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Friday, June 16, 2017

Trusting God when circumstances seem difficult


Biblical examples of trusting God when circumstances seemed difficult:

The Israelites at the Red Sea, and at Jericho.

Rahab and Ruth, aligning themselves (a few generations apart) with an alien culture.

Jonathan, Saul’s son, and his armor-bearer: (1 Samuel 14:1-15). 14:6 Jonathan said to the young man who bore his armor, “Come! Let’s go over to the garrison of these uncircumcised. It may be that Yahweh will work for us; for there is no restraint on Yahweh to save by many or by few.” 7 His armor bearer said to him, “Do all that is in your heart. Turn and, behold, I am with you according to your heart.”

The result of this two against many venture was a victory, wrought by God.

Ahab (!) against Syria: 1 Kings 20: 13 Behold, a prophet came near to Ahab king of Israel, and said, “Yahweh says, ‘Have you seen all this great multitude? Behold, I will deliver it into your hand today. Then you will know that I am Yahweh.’”
[Later, after God delivered the Israelites once.] 26 At the return of the year, Ben Hadad mustered the Syrians, and went up to Aphek, to fight against Israel. 27 The children of Israel were mustered and given provisions, and went against them. The children of Israel encamped before them like two little flocks of young goats; but the Syrians filled the country. 28 A man of God came near and spoke to the king of Israel, and said, “Yahweh says, ‘Because the Syrians have said, “Yahweh is a god of the hills, but he is not a god of the valleys;” therefore I will deliver all this great multitude into your hand, and you shall know that I am Yahweh.’”
29 They encamped opposite each other for seven days. So it was, that in the seventh day the battle was joined; and the children of Israel killed one hundred thousand footmen of the Syrians in one day. 30a But the rest fled to Aphek, into the city; and the wall fell on twenty-seven thousand men who were left.

Jehoshaphat and the Ammonites, Edomites and Moabites: 2 Chronicles 20:5 Jehoshaphat stood in the assembly of Judah and Jerusalem, in Yahweh’s house, before the new court; 6 and he said, “Yahweh, the God of our fathers, aren’t you God in heaven? Aren’t you ruler over all the kingdoms of the nations? Power and might are in your hand, so that no one is able to withstand you. 7 Didn’t you, our God, drive out the inhabitants of this land before your people Israel, and give it to the offspring of Abraham your friend forever? 8 They lived in it, and have built you a sanctuary in it for your name, saying, 9 ‘If evil comes on us—the sword, judgment, pestilence, or famine—we will stand before this house, and before you (for your name is in this house), and cry to you in our affliction, and you will hear and save.’ 10 Now, behold, the children of Ammon and Moab and Mount Seir, whom you would not let Israel invade when they came out of the land of Egypt, but they turned away from them, and didn’t destroy them; 11 behold, how they reward us, to come to cast us out of your possession, which you have given us to inherit. 12 Our God, will you not judge them? For we have no might against this great company that comes against us. We don’t know what to do, but our eyes are on you.”
13 All Judah stood before Yahweh, with their little ones, their wives, and their children.
14 Then Yahweh’s Spirit came on Jahaziel the son of Zechariah, the son of Benaiah, the son of Jeiel, the son of Mattaniah, the Levite, of the sons of Asaph, in the middle of the assembly; 15 and he said, “Listen, all Judah, and you inhabitants of Jerusalem, and you, king Jehoshaphat. Yahweh says to you, ‘Don’t be afraid, and don’t be dismayed because of this great multitude; for the battle is not yours, but God’s. 16 Tomorrow, go down against them. Behold, they are coming up by the ascent of Ziz. You will find them at the end of the valley, before the wilderness of Jeruel. 17 You will not need to fight this battle. Set yourselves, stand still, and see the salvation of Yahweh with you, O Judah and Jerusalem. Don’t be afraid, nor be dismayed. Go out against them tomorrow, for Yahweh is with you.’”
18 Jehoshaphat bowed his head with his face to the ground; and all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem fell down before Yahweh, worshiping Yahweh. 19 The Levites, of the children of the Kohathites and of the children of the Korahites, stood up to praise Yahweh, the God of Israel, with an exceedingly loud voice.
20 They rose early in the morning, and went out into the wilderness of Tekoa. As they went out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, “Listen to me, Judah, and you inhabitants of Jerusalem! Believe in Yahweh your God, so you will be established! Believe his prophets, so you will prosper.”
21 When he had taken counsel with the people, he appointed those who were to sing to Yahweh, and give praise in holy array, as they go out before the army, and say, “Give thanks to Yahweh; for his loving kindness endures forever.” 22 When they began to sing and to praise, Yahweh set ambushers against the children of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir, who had come against Judah; and they were struck. [They attacked each other.]

Surely, if I am living as I should, I can similarly trust God when my circumstances seem difficult. (At the moment, they aren't, for which I am grateful.)

Thanks for reading.

2 comments:

FancyHorse said...

I haven't had extremely difficult circumstances yet but it is very encouraging to know that God is always with us!

Martin LaBar said...

I haven't, either, but I agree with you.

Thanks.