Any little girl who has brothers will probably tell you that she felt secure and protected by them. Add a doting father to the equation and you have the perfect environment of safety for that little girl. I admit, all that masculine reinforcement gets us a little proud, maybe even arrogant because we know that we have an army of men who are always ready to defend their little sister.
Anyone who even thought about causing me harm in primary school or the community must have had to thoroughly contemplate whether they were prepared to deal with my 3 older brothers. Well that’s the way I thought about, hence my peacock like disposition in the face of opposition. I love my brothers for many reasons, especially as we’re getting older, but I never forget the absolute safety I felt as a child because of their presence. I was always 100% certain that they would never let anything happen to me.
The Israelites were just delivered from their oppressors in Egypt and were making their way as far from any remembrance of slavery when Pharaoh had a change of heart. The realisation that he just released a million strong work force did not sit well with him, so he sent his army to pursue the Israelites. The bible says that “the people of Israel looked up and panicked” when the captivity they thought they escaped was close on their heels. They cried out to their leader Moses and this was God’s message to His people:
“Don’t be afraid. Just stand still and watch the Lord rescue you today. The Egyptians you see today will never be seen again. The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.”
Panic is an instinctive response to trouble. However, God quickly rebutted this natural response by saying to them, ‘wait, hold up, don’t panic!’ Don’t give in to any thought that this danger will consume you, don’t you dare think now that the battle is at your doorstep I will leave you to be defeated. Stop! Don’t panic! He meant, ‘I AM RIGHT HERE’.
God was not about to let the Egyptians lay a finger on His people. He was so incensed with Pharaoh that He decided to deal with their enemies all by himself. When difficulties come our way it is easy to forget that God is right here with us. The battles of life aren’t ours and some battles are won in rest rather than in war. Some battles are won the moment we decide to listen to His voice to just stand still. This can sometimes mean doing absolutely nothing other than exercising your faith in the truth of these words that God will always rescue us. “He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.” (1 Corinthians 10:13)
Which brother, father, mother or husband will see you in danger and not jump right in? Which one will not put themselves squarely in the path of danger to save your life? God was Israel’s go between. The cloud that was previously above them, descended between the Israelite camp and the Egyptians and His presence confused the enemy. “You have hedged me behind and before and laid your hand upon me” (Psalm 139:5). God will step in to rescue you from danger, sickness, attacks on your integrity, snares, strongholds and every other battle.
It’s okay if you don’t feel equipped to fight or if you just don’t have the strength. It is especially those 'back against the wall', nowhere-to-run, no-solution or way-out battles, that God pronounced this truth for His people then and now. Stand still and watch the Lord rescue you from that situation.
Every time you get the inclination to act in self-defense, it helps to remember that when your battle feels as big as a powerful Egyptian army, you need God on your side. We don’t battle flesh-and-blood enemies, ‘but evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, mighty powers in this dark world, and evil spirits in the heavenly places’ (Ephesians 6:12). The battles we face warrant the mighty intervention of a powerful God, so don’t try to show up to a gun fight with a knife.
God never lost a battle and He isn’t planning to start with yours.
Don’t panic …
God is personally fighting for you!
“This is what the Lord says: Do not be afraid! Don’t be discouraged by this mighty army, for the battle is not yours, but God’s.”
(2 Chronicles 20:15)
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