WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
JULY 23RD, 2021
TOPIC: DON’T BE INTIMIDATED BY YOUR ENEMIES
BY T. O. BANSO
“Don’t be intimidated by your enemies. This will be a sign to them that they are going to be destroyed, but that you are going to be saved, even by God himself” (Philippians 1:28 New Living Translation).
Whatever is your current challenge, have faith in God. Believe that the battle is not yours; it is God’s. Let your trust not be in any other thing, person, or yourself. Don’t be intimidated by the credentials or reputation of the opposition. That is immaterial when God is fighting for you.
Psalm 33:16-17 says, “The best-equipped army cannot save a king, nor is great strength enough to save a warrior. Don’t count on your warhorse to give you victory — for all its strength, it cannot save you” (New Living Translation).
Goliath had far better credentials than David but David still cut off his head. You will cut off the head of that challenge because God is fighting on your side. Saul had said to David, “You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him; for you are a youth, and he a man of war from his youth” (1 Samuel 17:33 New King James Version). Saul underrated David because of what he knew about Goliath.
1 Samuel 17:4-7 describes Goliath thus: “And a champion went out from the camp of the Philistines, named Goliath, from Gath, whose height was six cubits and a span. He had a bronze helmet on his head, and he was armed with a coat of mail, and the weight of the coat was five thousand shekels of bronze. And he had bronze armor on his legs and a bronze javelin between his shoulders. Now the staff of his spear was like a weaver’s beam, and his iron spearhead weighed six hundred shekels; and a shield-bearer went before him” (New King James Version).
From a natural point of view, David was no match for Goliath. When he confronted Goliath, David did not put on armour. He only had his staff in his hand and chose five smooth stones from the brook, and put them in a shepherd’s bag, in a pouch. He also had a sling in his hand (1 Samuel 17:40).
His sight angered Goliath. He felt slighted by his sight. He was expecting someone who would give him a real challenge, not someone whom he must have thought came to waste his life or commit suicide! Unlike David, Goliath had a man who bore the shield going before him. “And when the Philistine looked about and saw David, he disdained him; for he was only a youth, ruddy and good-looking. So the Philistine said to David, ‘Am I a dog, that you come to me with sticks?’ And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. And the Philistine said to David, “Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air and the beasts of the field!” (1 Samuel 17:42-44 New King James Version).
Goliath’s credentials have gone to his head. He couldn’t imagine David surviving before him. But David replied boastful Goliath, “You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the LORD will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you. And this day I will give the carcasses of the camp of the Philistines to the birds of the air and the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. Then all this assembly shall know that the LORD does not save with sword and spear; for the battle is the LORD’s, and He will give you into our hands” (1 Samuel 17:45-47 New King James Version).
Eventually, David defeated Goliath. David didn’t have to use more than one stone. The only stone that he slung struck Goliath’s forehead and sank into it. He fell on his face to the earth. David had no sword. He stood over Goliath and used Goliath’s sword to cut off his head.
2 Corinthians 10:4 says the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but mighty before God to the casting down of strongholds. If God is fighting for you, it makes no difference who is fighting against you (Romans 8:31). They are already defeated. Do not fear; those who are with you are more than those who are with them (2 Kings 6:16). He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world (1 John 4:4).
The battle is the Lord’s. Jonathan told his armour-bearer that they should go across to see the pagan Philistines encamped against them in battle. He declared, “Perhaps the LORD will help us, for nothing can hinder the LORD. He can win a battle whether he has many warriors or only a few!” (1 Samuel 14:6b New Living Translation)
True to Jonathan’s faith declaration, God fought for them. They defeated an army stronger and better equipped than the Israelites. The Bible says the army of Israel was deeply afraid of the Philistine army. 1 Samuel 13:6 says, “When the men of Israel saw the vast number of enemy troops, they lost their nerve entirely and tried to hide in caves, holes, rocks, tombs, and cisterns” (New Living Translation). It was so bad. Verse 7b says, “Saul stayed at Gilgal, and his men were trembling with fear” (New Living Translation).
Israel was so disadvantaged to the point that none among the Israelites had a sword or spear, except Saul and Jonathan (verse 22). So, physically speaking, it was a lost battle. But God always responds to the faith of people who believe in Him. 2 Chronicles 16:9a says the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him. Jonathan and his armour-bearer were daring; they had faith in God, and God fought the battle for the Israelites.
The Philistines were roundly defeated. God will do the same for you if you will trust Him to fight your battle for you. I decree, all your Philistines will flee before you in Jesus’ name. According to the word of God, “The LORD will cause your enemies who rise against you to be defeated before your face; they shall come out against you one way and flee before you seven ways” (Deuteronomy 28:7 New King James Version). So shall it be in Jesus’ name.
Without the children of Israel fighting any battle, God defeated the Egyptians. He buried them in the Red Sea. Also, without the people of Judah using any weapon, God destroyed 185,000 Assyrian soldiers and boastful King Sennacherib ran home from camp. He couldn’t enter Jerusalem just as the prophet had said.
Isaiah 37:33-35 says, “Therefore thus says the LORD concerning the king of Assyria: ‘He shall not come into this city, nor shoot an arrow there, nor come before it with shield, nor build a siege mound against it. By the way that he came, by the same shall he return; and he shall not come into this city,’ Says the LORD. ‘For I will defend this city, to save it for My own sake and for My servant David’s sake’” (New King James Version).
It was a national disaster for the Assyrians, a massacre! God did it for the Israelites because Hezekiah, the king of Judah, cried to Him for deliverance (verses 15-20) and God took over the battle as His. Expectedly, the enemy lost. When King Sennacherib who, overwhelmed by the mysterious death of 185,000 soldiers in his army got home, he was killed by his sons, Adrammelech and Sharezer, right before his god (Isaiah 37:36-38)
Don’t be intimidated by the reputation of your enemies. Hezekiah told the people of Judah, “Be strong and courageous; do not be afraid nor dismayed before the king of Assyria, nor before all the multitude 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 were strengthened by the words of Hezekiah king of Judah” (2 Chronicles 32:7-8 New King James Version).
Similarly, the LORD defeated the Ethiopians when King Asa of Judah put his trust in Him alone. The Ethiopians were overthrown, and they could not recover. They were broken before the LORD and His army. Consequently, the people of Judah carried away very much spoil (2 Chronicles 14:9-13).
Under normal circumstances, the Ethiopians would have defeated Judah. They had a superior army of one million men and three hundred chariots. But, as King Asa of Judah said, it wasn’t a problem for God to help with many or with those who have no power (2 Chronicles 14:11). Judah defeated the Ethiopians.
The God who defeated Goliath, the Philistines, and the Ethiopians will defeat all your enemies. Cry unto Him as Hezekiah cried. Cry unto Him as Asa did. Put your trust in Him. Don’t be intimidated by your enemies.
Philippians 1:28 says, “Don’t be intimidated by your enemies. This will be a sign to them that they are going to be destroyed, but that you are going to be saved, even by God himself” (New Living Translation).
The LORD told the Israelites, “When you go out to battle against your enemies, and see horses and chariots and people more numerous than you, do not be afraid of them; for the LORD your God is with you, who brought you up from the land of Egypt” (Deuteronomy 20:1 New King James Version). Don’t be afraid of whatever the enemies depend on. Some may trust in chariots and some in horses but remember the name of the LORD your God (Psalm 20:7). Don’t be intimidated by your enemies. Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths (Proverbs 3:5-6).
Don’t be intimidated by your enemies – the devil and his human agents.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto you today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and resurrected the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank you, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like the palm tree and grow like the cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: Holy Spirit, I repent of putting my trust in chariots and horses but not in You. Father, I will put my trust in You from today. I will not be intimidated by the reputation of any Goliath that confronts me. I will no more fear my enemies but put my trust in You. Father, deliver all Your children that are held hostage by the fear of their enemies.
(For over 600 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President, Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
Phone No: +2348155744752, +2348033113523
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