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The Daily Word of Righteousness
Changing Our Strength, continued
We do not want you to become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised. (Hebrews 6:12—NIV)
God teaches us that man does not live by material resources alone. Man is utterly dependent on the words continually flowing from the mouth of God on behalf of each individual. Our barrenness, and then the fulfillment of the promises made to us, cause us to understand what actually is true of every human being on earth and in the heavenlies—that we are living by the Words of God and not just by what the world provides.
Sometimes, as was true of Abraham and Sarah, we become impatient and take matters into our own hands. We feel we have waited on God long enough. Maybe there actually is a verse in the Bible, we think, that says "God helps those who help themselves." (There isn't, of course!)
Abraham and Sarah helped themselves and the result was Ishmael. Sarah soon came to grief over her decision as she felt the scorn of the pregnant Hagar. Abraham came to grief when he had to send Hagar and Ishmael off to die in the wilderness. The descendants of Ishmael have been a source of pain to the Jews to the present day.
You want to bring forth a "wild man"? Act before God's time. Try to overcome your barrenness in your own strength and wisdom. Observe the result!
Who among you fears the LORD and obeys the word of his servant? Let him who walks in the dark, who has no light, trust in the name of the LORD and rely on his God. But now, all you who light fires and provide yourselves with flaming torches, go, walk in the light of your fires and of the torches you have set ablaze. This is what you shall receive from my hand: You will lie down in torment. (Isaiah 50:10,11—NIV)
When we are walking in the dark, when we have no light, let us trust in the name of the Lord and rely on our God. Let us remember Job, Abraham and Sarah, Joseph, the mother of Samson, Hannah, and Elizabeth. Let us see what will come forth when God finally acts!
We understand from the above passage that those who go forth in their own strength and wisdom, even their own strength and wisdom in the work of the Gospel, displease the Lord greatly . "You will lie down in torment"!
Let us wait on the Lord and not move until we know what we are doing. I am speaking of major decisions, not of faithfully performing the daily tasks that have been entrusted to us. It often is better, for example, for young people to go to trade school or college rather than to shut themselves in a closet and fast and pray in the hope of forcing God to answer. I will tell you this: God does not like to be forced to answer!
Proverbs advises us to not depend on our own understanding but to acknowledge God in all our ways—in all our ways! When we acknowledge God in all our ways He seldom answers us by speaking to us but He always directs our paths.
God always helps those who place their trust in Him.
To be continued.