Judges 15:14-15 “And when he came unto Lehi, the Philistines shouted against him: and the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon him, and the cords that were upon his arms became as flax that was burnt with fire, and his bands loosed from off his hands. And he found a new jawbone of an ass, and put forth his hand, and took it, and slew a thousand men therewith.”
Growing up, my father was my hero. In my eyes, he could leap tall buildings in a single bound. He carried the weight of the world on his shoulders. He was strong, respected, and ran his house with a strong hand. He did what he could do to provide for his family. My father worked two jobs for the better part of ten years.
It wasn’t until I saw that he truly had feet of clay, showed more human qualities than superhuman, that my view of him dimmed a bit. Every person we lift up always does. Depending on our level of worship of that one we put on our pedestal; when we see that they are human and not a god, we can be severely disappointed.
All of us are liars. All are sinners. God declares it. Our trust should be always in God.
Psalm 118:8 “It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man.”
Proverbs 25:19 “Confidence in an unfaithful man in time of trouble is like a broken tooth, and a foot out of joint.”
When situations and circumstances become so overwhelming, we turn to someone or something to save us. For some, they turn to a man – a father figure; a strong man; a deliverer. Others will turn to their government. Some have such staunch beliefs that their government will do right by them and never lie, cheat or steal – even when history has told us otherwise.
As I read in the book of Judges about Sampson, there were some keywords that struck a chord with me.
Judges 13:5 “For, lo, thou shalt conceive, and bear a son; and no rasor shall come on his head: for the child shall be a Nazarite unto God from the womb: and he shall begin to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines.” (emphasis mine)
‘Begin to deliver’. It was as if God was telling Samson’s mother that he would be unable to complete the task given him. We have a propensity to turn to that which we can see and leave off trusting by faith that which God has promised and provided for us. God tells us:
Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”
‘All thine heart’. I will be very transparent here – God does not have my whole heart all the time. There are times when my mind, or my pain or even my stomach has more attention than God – for the moment. The trust of my whole heart went to God a long time ago. In my learning about Him, I found Him to be worthy of ALL my trust; ALL my faith and ALL my life.
I could lie and tell you it’s 24/7 with me and God and I would have to repent of lying. I fight with my selfishness, my laziness, my pride and my apathy. When I find a man that can lead me out of those things, he is a much better man than I and I want to follow him. It is at this decision point that we must take heed.
My Father sent His Son to be my Deliverer. There is not one thing that I will face in this world that me and God cannot handle. Even in the bleakest, most impossible of situations, God says to us:
Mark 10:27 “And Jesus looking upon them saith, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible.”
It is faith that looks beyond the capabilities of man. A good many people have wonderful qualities. Some are gifted far more than others with talents to administrate, to draw men together, to lead. Still, faith must be my ‘modus operandi’ – my mode of operation.
People will say things like “God failed me” or “God didn’t answer my prayer”. God will NEVER fail and always answers prayer. I must realize that at times, I project expectations on God in situations and narrow His ability to work. When I expect God to answer in way “A” or “B” and He chooses “3” or I ask amiss to consume it upon my own lusts… what then?
In the process of trusting God to deliver me from situations and circumstances beyond my control, He reveals to me His love, His mercy, the joy of His presence and forms a bond of trust that grows deeper with every trial I face.
There are those who trust in man. Some trust in their government to deliver them. Others think that because they have the majority thought or belief of the day that they will prevail. Still others in Smith & Wesson. None of these will bring peace.
The Deliverer. It is one of Jesus’ names. He has delivered me from the power of death and hell. He conquered both of them in one act of love. My soul is settled and at peace because I trust in the God of peace to deliver me. Whenever I am looking anywhere other than to Him, doubts arise, fear creeps in and if not dealt with properly, they will overpower my faith with fear and lock me in bondage until I cry unto God to deliver me.
The martyrs looked beyond this vale and saw the God of Heaven far more worthy of their faith and trust that when put to the test, He showed Himself faithful and a Deliverer beyond their reasoning.
We think that because our bodies are consumed in death that there is no deliverance. Sometimes the answer to a prayer of healing is to take that child of God home. If we pray only that God would get the glory, I can be at peace with whatever final decision He makes. God knows best.