(Bible quotations are from the NIV unless otherwise stated)
Stand firm in your faith, Part 1
5th June 2009
Things were getting scary. The armies of Israel and Syria had invaded Judea, and had reached the gates of Jerusalem. Ahaz, the king of Judea, was trapped inside Jerusalem, and could see no way out. He was frightened for his life:
God sent Isaiah the prophet to speak to Ahaz.
As a Christian, you will experience frightening circumstances sometimes. God's words to Ahaz apply also to you, and to me:
Be careful, keep calm and don’t be afraid. Do not lose heart.
You have been redeemed through the love and power of God. You have been brought this far by the same love and power. You have learnt to trust in God. And when a crisis looms, and you can't see a way out, your faith is being tested. Are you going to continue to trust God, or are you going to look for an unrighteous way to fix your problem?
Just like Ahaz, we face real problems, as Isaiah went on to say:
This was no imagined danger. It was real, and deadly serious. But God promised through Isaiah:
What are nations? What are kings? They cannot stand against the purposes of God. He raises them up and he throws them down. Who are the people threatening you? Can they fight against God and prevail? Never!
But God goes on to say:
If we stop trusting in God, and look to ourselves to save our skins, we will fail. God knows what He wants you to do in response to the situation you find yourself in. And His solution to your problems does not include you choosing to sin in an attempt to save yourself.
If God wants you to suffer, you will. If God wants to bring miraculous deliverance for you, He will. Nothing can stop Him, either way.
But we are called to stand firm in our faith. And to trust God that his will for us will be done, that he is always for us, that He is all-powerful, and that He loves us. And we will be rewarded for our obedience, even if it costs us our lives, or our finances, or our reputations.