01/06/W – The Protection of the Lord

1 Chronicles 1:1-33; Acts 23:11-15; Psalms 3:6-8; Proverbs 1:29-33

NT: “The following night, the Lord stood by him and said, “Have courage! For as you have testified about me in Jerusalem, so it is necessary for you to testify in Rome.” When it was morning, the Jews formed a conspiracy and bound themselves under a curse not to eat or drink until they had killed Paul. There were more than forty who had formed this plot. These men went to the chief priests and elders and said, “We have bound ourselves under a solemn curse that we won’t eat anything until we have killed Paul. So now you, along with the Sanhedrin, make a request to the commander that he bring him down to you as if you were going to investigate his case more thoroughly. But, before he gets near, we are ready to kill him.”” (‭‭Acts‬ ‭23:11-15‬ ‭CSB)

After Paul was arrested, he was brought before the Sanhedrin (the religious leadership) for questioning. That meeting devolved into a shouting match between the Pharisees and Sadducees, with Paul stuck in the middle. The Romans pulled him out and placed him in their custody before he was injured in the melee. Dissatisfied with how things were proceeding, a group of zealous Jews plotted with the Sanhedrin to bring about Paul’s demise. The Lord, however, wasn’t done with Paul. He still had much for Paul to do, including taking the Gospel message all the way to Rome. One thing that we say in our church is that a saint of God is indestructible as long as God has purpose for his life and he remains faithful to that purpose. That was the case with Paul. Even though there was a covert plot to take his life, Paul still had purpose and an assignment from God… and Paul was steadfastly faithful to that heavenly vision and purpose. Because of that, Paul would not die prematurely. The same is true for us. No matter where God may call us or what He may call us to do, the safest place in the world is in the middle of God’s will. If we are faithful to follow the Lord and walk in obedience to His will, His purposes for our lives will reach completion.

Psalms: “I will not be afraid of thousands of people who have taken their stand against me on every side. Rise up, Lord! Save me, my God! You strike all my enemies on the cheek; you break the teeth of the wicked. Salvation belongs to the Lord; may your blessing be on your people. Selah” (‭‭Psalms‬ ‭3:6-8‬ ‭CSB)

Why was David so fearless in the face of death? It wasn’t because the Lord was on his side. It was because he was on the Lord’s side. He knew that because he stood for righteousness and was faithful to the Lord, the enemies that opposed him did so because they opposed God. When we are aligned with God and committed to His purposes, our purposes are fulfilled as God fulfills His… and He always fulfills His purposes. Whether or not we are part of God’s purposes is up to us… up to our faith and obedience. When we align ourselves with God’s purposes, we are saved, protected, and blessed. Selah… meditate on that for a while and let that truth get rooted deep within you and give you peace.

Proverbs: “Because they hated knowledge, didn’t choose to fear the Lord, were not interested in my counsel, and rejected all my correction, they will eat the fruit of their way and be glutted with their own schemes. For the apostasy of the inexperienced will kill them, and the complacency of fools will destroy them. But whoever listens to me will live securely and be undisturbed by the dread of danger.” (‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭1:29-33‬ ‭CSB)

Proverbs describes the fate of those who choose to not align themselves with God’s word, will, and ways… who choose to reject the wisdom of God and walk according to their own wisdom and self-prescribed purpose instead. While they may gain the world for a time, they will lose their soul and live in an absence of true sustainable peace. However, those who fear the Lord, listen and act according to His counsel, and welcome His correction – they will be secure and undisturbed by the dangers and fears of the day. As our world slips further and further into uncertainty, we can remain above the turmoil, fear, and anxiety by trusting in the certainty of the Lord.

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