If God Is For Us

I believe one of the greatest needs in our world today is hope. I would even go so far to say that one of the greatest needs in the church today is hope. Especially with the rise of technology in recent years, we are constantly bombarded with information, much of which is so negative that it can depress and discourages us without us even realizing it. It’s possible to become so consumed with the report of the world that we lose focus of the truth of God’s word. See, hope isn’t a feeling or just a desire for something to happen. Biblical hope is the expectation of something you know is promised and it must be founded in the Word of God.

Hopelessness is simply putting your faith in the wrong place. It’s believing in your circumstances and the report of the world over the word of God. There’s a story in the Old Testament that illustrates this perfectly. In 2 Kings 18 and 19 and 2 Chronicles 32, the Bible records the story of the Assyrian siege on Judah. At that time, the king of Judah was a righteous man named Hezekiah and the Bible tells us sought God with all of his heart. During his reign Sennacherib, the king of Assyria, who had conquered many other nations, invaded Judah. King Hezekiah fortified the city of Jerusalem, cut off the water that flowed through the land, and closed his people up in the city with the food they had stored. He strengthened their miliary, set watchmen on the walls of the city and encouraged the people saying,

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or dismayed before the king of Assyria and all the horde that is with him, for there are more with us than with him. With him is an arm of flesh, but with us is the LORD our God, to help us and to fight our battles.” And the people took confidence from the words of Hezekiah king of Judah” (2 Chr. 32:7-8)

Now, what happens next is so interesting. The Assyrians didn’t just attack the city but instead sent messengers to mock God and try to persuade the people to fear saying,

“On what do you rest this trust of yours? Do you think that mere words are strategy and power for war? In whom do you now trust that you have rebelled against me. You say to me, “We trust in the LORD our God,” …How can you repulse a single captain among the least of my master's servants, when you trust in Egypt for chariots and for horsemen? Moreover, is it without the LORD that I have come up against this place to destroy it? The LORD said to me, “Go up against this land and destroy it.’” (2 Kings 18:19-25)

The king of Assyria actually came and lied to the people that their own God had sent him to destroy them. He then tried to make them turn on Hezekiah saying,

“Do not let Hezekiah deceive you, for he will not be able to deliver you out of my hand. Do not let Hezekiah make you trust in the LORD by saying, The LORD will surely deliver us, and this city will not be given into the hand of the king of Assyria.’

Do not listen to Hezekiah when he misleads you by saying, “The LORD will deliver us.” Have any of the gods of the nations ever delivered any land out of the hand of the king of Assyria? Where are the gods of Hamath and Arpad? Where are the gods of Sepharvaim, Hena, and Ivvah? Have they delivered Samaria out of my hand? Who among all the gods of the lands have delivered their lands out of my hand, that the LORD should deliver Jerusalem out of my hand?’” (2 Kings 18 29-35)

Take a moment to think about this tactic of the enemy. First, they lied to the people that their own God had sent them. How could they hope in God if they believed that their enemy was sent by Him? They then tried to make them doubt the leader that God had set over them and the word of the Lord that had been prophesied by Isaiah. Finally, the enemy reminded them of the facts. They listed all of the nations Assyria had previously defeated and asked what exactly Judah thought made them different.

The enemy’s plan is no different today. The only tactic the enemy has ever had is doubt and fear, borne in lies. He tried to get them to doubt God’s intentions and then to look at their circumstances instead of the promises of God. Think about your own life. If you believe something harmful is from God, how can you believe Him to deliver you from it?

God will always defend His people and nothing harmful is ever from Him. The story didn’t end well for the Assyrian army that mocked God. Isaiah prophesied:

“Thus says the LORD: Do not be afraid because of the words that you have heard, with which the servants of the king of Assyria have reviled me. Behold, I will put a spirit in him, so that he shall hear a rumor and return to his own land, and I will make him fall by the sword in his own land.’” (2 Kings 19:6-8)

Judah didn’t even have to fight a battle and they won! One of the greatest needs in the church, and the world, today is hope and we can only be without hope to the extent that we believe a lie. The truth that Hezekiah understood thousands of years ago is still true: If God is for us, no one can be against us (Romans 8:31). Jesus lives on the inside of us and “in His name all the nations hope” (Matthew 12:21). I want to encourage you this week to hope in God’s promises like you never have before! Just as God delivered Judah, He will deliver you from whatever you’re facing, if you will believe Him over the mocking lies of the enemy. He loves, defends, and provides for His people as much now as He did then. There has never been a better time to hope! As Hebrews 10:23 says, “Let hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.”

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