February 01, 2008


"Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring to you today … The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still." (Exodus 14:13, 14)

Modern warfare requires subterfuge and aggression. But here, in the encounter at the edge of the Red Sea, the Lord commanded His people not to be afraid, to simply stand still, exposed before the Egyptian cavalry, with the sea at their backs. Even with a pillar of cloud separating them from their enemies, the Israelites were terrified. God promised to fight for them, to show His glory through a demonstration of His power. That must have conjured up some interesting pictures: God, with a band of angels at His back, sword drawn and on the attack being one of them. The Israelites probably never imagined death by drowning.

Despite the reassurances, they lost their faith the moment the Egyptian chariots hit the horizon. The natural reaction would have been to run; except there was no place to go. Instead they had to watch and see how God was going to rescue them—something they would never have seen while running for their lives, or with their faces in the dirt begging for mercy from their enemies. They were to stand and watch.

When the Egyptians were finally defeated, Moses stood before the people and sang a song of gratitude to the Lord: "In your unfailing love you will lead the people you have redeemed. In your strength you will guide them to your holy dwelling. The nations will hear and tremble … by the power of your arm they will be as still as a stone—until your people pass by, O Lord." (Exodus 15:13-16)

When we face a humanly insurmountable problem, we often practice modern warfare: dodge, dart, evade, avoid, run, hide, surrender, hit the ground, head for a foxhole, kill, or be killed. God tells us to not be afraid, to stand still and watch Him do His thing. And, unlike modern warfare, there isn't even a button to push. Just stand still.

Remember: It's not who has the biggest guns that counts, but who has the best commander in the field.

1 comment:

  1. "except there was no place to go"
    I love that line! And I love being in that place. As difficult as it may be, when we finally quit running and stand still, we see God at work. What a well-written reminder! Thanks!


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