Does God fight your Battles
We enjoy watching War movies, but in reality, war is a very dreadful thing. A rough estimate by Historians says that around 150 million to 1 billion people might have been killed by War so far. In the twentieth century alone, at least 100 million people have died in a war. The difference between a war and a battle is that war is a large scale event comprising of many battles.
Origin of Wars and Battles
Isaiah 14: 12-17 records the first battle of the Universe. It was fought between God and Satan (then Lucifer, an angel of God). Lucifer was once the flagship of God’s creation. He was an anointed Cherub (Angel), sealed in perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty (Ezekiel 28:11-19).
Satan corrupted himself because of his wealth (Ezekiel 14: 16) and beauty (Ezekiel 14:17). He was filled with Pride and finally wanted to become God. He was even smart enough to convince one-third of the angels and fought against God, his creator. The war ended with God banishing Satan and his host of angels from his presence. He was not destroyed completely but awaits his final destruction in the lake of fire (Rev 20:10).
Why do we face battles in life?
Of the many reasons, the top three reasons are,
- Ever since Satan’s defeat, his job has been to turn God’s creation against Him in rebellion. Therefore, we as God’s creation are at war whether we like it or not. We have only one choice; to fight for God or against Him.
- Sometimes God takes us through a battlefield experience so that our faith is tested and we are made complete in Christ. Without a battle, we cannot wear a victor’s crown.
- Some, because of their foolishness, end up as prisoners in the enemy’s camp. They need to battle their way out by the power of the Holy Spirit. The longer you are held as a prisoner, the bigger the battle it is. Satan is not going to let go of his prized possessions that quickly.
God’s participation in Battles
The Lord will Fight for you – Exodus 14:14
Whatever may be the reason for our Battle, God is willing to help us overcome it. The Bible tells us that God’s participation in Battle was never passive. He was involved right from the beginning until the end – from strategizing to handling battle spoils. God moved mightily in the camp of Israelites. Though they had a leader and a king, He was their Supreme Commander. God was in every battle that Israel fought. Most of the time, He fought for them, and they won. But shockingly sometimes, He stood against them, and they lost.
We shall look at seven significant ways in which God participates in his people’s Battles.
1. Decision to battle belongs to God
Many a time, we ask God to fight our battles. But the right thing is to ask God if we need to fight. Sometimes it is not God’s will to fight a particular battle. When we go against his will, we end up defeated. When David was crowned the King of Israel, the Philistines came up against David. Before he went to fight them, He inquired of God and sought his permission. David was successful because he never went to battle alone. (2 Sam 5:19,23)
On the contrary, we come across a regrettable incident in the book of Numbers, Chapter 14. When the children of God murmur against Him, He gets furious and forbids them from entering the Promised Land. But they refuse God’s command and take his presence for granted. God allows the Canaanites and Amalekites to defeat them. It is imperative to obey God. Without God, we are nothing but losers.
2. God orchestrates the battles
When Israelites crossed Jordan, their first battle was the “Battle of Jericho.” Jericho was not an easy city to conquer. It was heavily fortified and breaking through was not easy. But, we find from Joshua, chapter 6, that God orchestrated the entire battle of Jericho. He was their chief strategist. It was one of the greatest victories for Israel. After this battle, everyone was scared of Israel and their God.
3. God teaches how to battle
Ps 144:1 – David, the greatest King of Israel who had won many victories says, it was God who had trained his hands for war and his fingers for battle. In Psalms 18:34, again we read that God taught David how to fight. In 1 Sam 5:23, we see God giving special instructions to David as how he should fight against the Philistines. When people of Israel left Egypt after 400 years of bondage, all they knew was to bake brick from straw and clay. It was God who taught them how to fight against Amalekites under the leadership of Moses.
4. God fights on your behalf
When Sennacherib, King of Assyria attacked Judah, King Hezekiah sought the help of God. and cried out to Him. God spoke through Isaiah the prophet and assured that He will defend the city for His name’s sake. On a certain night, God sent his Angel to the Assyrian camp and killed 185,000 of them (2 Kings 19:35). In the morning there were only dead bodies and Sennacherib was forced to return back and stopped pursuing King Hezekiah. God does not always involved us in his battles.
Similarly we find in 2 Kings 7:6 that Ben-Hadad the king of Syria has besieged Samaria. There grew a famine so severe that they did not mind killing their babies and eating. God was moved with compassion and decided to deliver them. God had caused the Syrian army to heard a great noise of chariots, horses and great army and they panicked of a bigger attack and fled. Some time God makes us just spectators and our job is to just admire his salvation.
5. God’s de-briefs what to do after the battle
When Israel defeated Jericho, their next battle was Ai. Ai was a tiny place when compared to Jericho, and it had very few people. Israel could have easily defeated them but to everyone’s shock they are routed very badly. (Joshua 7:1-12). Israel was defeated because Achan had disobeyed God and kept few of the war spoils to himself. War spoils denote the Glory associated with a Battle. We need to be careful to attribute to God what belongs to him.
What we do after a battle determines the outcome of the next battle. It is a general tendency to become proud and conceited after winning a battle. By doing so, we lower our protection and expose our weakness to our enemy. Our war spoils may not be battle treasures but the good times that follow after a deliverance. Does it not belong to God?
6. God’s joins in battles
God’s presence is the deciding factor to succeed in Battles. God is the supreme commander. Without Him, we are on the losing side. We would not be able to win even the easiest of battles. In 1 Sam 28:16, we read a very sad story; Saul going into battle without the presence of God. The result is that He and his son are killed. Ex 33:15 -Moses knew the importance of God’s presence and did not want to go anywhere if God’s presence is not with him. Also, we read in 2 Chronicles 12:5 that when Lord left Rehoboam, he lost the battle with the Egyptians.
7. God punishes disobedience through battle
Whenever the people of Israel disobeyed God and did not follow his commandment. He allowed their enemies to defeat Israel. After Joshua died, the people did not have a good God fearing leader. They started worshipping idols (Judges 2:12) and God became angry and delivered them into the hands of their enemies who despoiled them.
We read in Scriptures that Israel lost many battles, even their promised land and went into exile because they disobeyed God and forgot Him. Finally, he allowed Nebuchadnezzar, the King of Babylon to carry his people to captivity.
God’s active participation in Battles reveals to us that, God is always there to fight for us. We can only be defeated when we don’t heed his voice and forsake His Presence. Today, we may not fight many physical battles as they did in the Old Testament days, but we have battles that are as real as theirs – Spiritual Battles. We need Spiritual weapons to fight our invisible foes (Ephesians 6:11-20). The battles for the promised land in the Bible is a shadow of our fight to reach our Promised Land (Heaven). We are soldiers whether we like it or not.
Good News – Jesus has fought our battle and has won the victory for us to enter into the Promised Land. We don’t have to conquer anything like the people of Israel did. However, we just need to defend our victory that is purchased by Jesus blood. Remember God never wants us to fight our battles alone. David and Moses knew this secret and were successful. Let us ask Holy Spirit to train us to use the spiritual weapons effectively and help us to hold our fort.
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