WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
SEPTEMBER 17, 2021
TOPIC: WHEN YOU DON’T UNDERSTAND WHAT THE LORD IS DOING
BY T. O. BANSO
“Jesus replied, ‘You don’t understand now what I am doing, but someday you will’” (John 13:7 New Living Translation).
Judges 20:18-48 records the war between the tribes of Israel and the tribe of Benjamin, one of the tribes of Israel. Some men of Gibeah of Benjamin had raped to death the concubine of a Levite (Judges 19:22-30).
Israel demanded that the tribe of Benjamin should deliver up those who committed the crime. However, the Benjamites refused, and Israel was, therefore, forced to go to war with them in order to punish this evil.
Before the children of Israel went to that war, they went up to the house of God to inquire of God, which of the tribes of Israel should go up first against the tribe of Benjamin. The LORD said that it was Judah. They went to fight the people of Benjamin, following God’s instruction. Unfortunately, instead of defeating the people of Benjamin, all the other tribes of Israel were roundly defeated.
The first time, Benjamin’s warriors killed twenty-two thousand men of the Israelites (Judges 20:21). After this defeat, they encouraged themselves and asked the LORD again if they should still go to fight the Benjamites; He said yes (verse 23).
However, Benjamin’s warriors killed an additional eighteen thousand Israelites (verse 25). This was not because of any sin, as in the case of the battle of Ai. Achan had sinned in the war against Jericho and the Israelites were defeated at Ai. It was after Achan had been fished out and stoned to death together with his children (Joshua 7) that they could defeat the people of Ai. However, in the war that God gave the tribes of Israel approval to go and fight against the Benjamites, they did not sin. Yet, they were defeated.
After the erring tribe of Benjamin had defeated the other tribes of Israel the second time, the Israelites were not bitter against God, though they cried and fasted and sacrificed to God. That showed they still trusted Him; they had not given up on God for disappointing them!
Judges 20:26-28 says, “Then all the children of Israel, that is, all the people, went up and came to the house of God and wept. They sat there before the LORD and fasted that day until evening; and they offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before the LORD. So the children of Israel inquired of the LORD (the ark of the covenant of God was there in those days, and Phinehas the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron, stood before it in those days), saying, ‘Shall I yet again go out to battle against the children of my brother Benjamin, or shall I cease?’ And the LORD said, ‘Go up, for tomorrow I will deliver them into your hand’” (New King James Version). Did you see that?
The Israelites continued to trust God, even when they didn’t understand why He would ask them to go to war, only for them to be killed by the erring tribe of Benjamin tribe when they had not sinned against Him. On the third attempt by the Israelites, the Benjamites, who were deceived that they would kill and defeat the Israelites as before, pursued them again.
Judges 20:31-32 says, “So the children of Benjamin went out against the people, and were drawn away from the city. They began to strike down and kill some of the people, as at the other times, in the highways (one of which goes up to Bethel and the other to Gibeah) and in the field, about thirty men of Israel. And the children of Benjamin said, ‘They are defeated before us, as at first’” (New King James Version).
At the end of the battle, the tribe of Benjamin (one tribe) lost about 25,000 strong warriors (Judges 20:46), and the Israelites burnt their cities. The other tribes of Israel lost altogether slightly over 40,000 warriors (verses 21, 25, & 31).
Why would the LORD ask the other tribes of Israel to go to war against the tribe of Benjamin and still allowed the Benjamites, with a fewer number of soldiers, to defeat them twice before finally giving them victory over the tribe of Benjamin? The Bible does not tell us the reason.
Sometimes, the children of God are in situations that they don’t understand what God is doing in their lives. You must know what to do when you don’t understand what God is doing in your life.
For instance, it is not every time God tells you to do something that you get a favourable result immediately. When this happens, there is the tendency to doubt whether God actually told you what you thought He told you! You can begin to doubt yourself first and then you extend it to doubting God! But God is not a man that He should lie (Numbers 23:19).
2 Corinthians 1:20 says, “For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen, to the glory of God through us” (New King James Version). God’s will may, sometimes, encounter some problems! However, if God says it, He will do it. Understand that God’s will is not always exempted from difficulties, but it will eventually prevail if you don’t give up.
You could have prayed and fasted. You could have received some assurances of answers to your prayers. However, you’ve been waiting for some time for the manifestations. They’re yet to come. You are now wondering what God is doing in your life.
You don’t understand what is really happening. You may not understand, but God does. He is not confused. Neither has He forgotten you. The LORD says, “At the right time, I, the LORD, will make it happen” (Isaiah 60:22b New Living Translation).
In John 13, before the Feast of Passover, Jesus, after supper with His disciples, began to wash their feet and to wipe them with the towel He had around Him. When He came to Peter, Peter asked why He would wash his feet. “Jesus replied, ‘You don’t understand now what I am doing, but someday you will’” (verse 7 New Living Translation).
There are things the children of God don’t understand now. There are some things we may never understand at this time. But later we shall understand. God may not explain to you some things now or answer some of your questions. Someday, you will understand. It may be here on earth or later in heaven. Someday, you will understand. For now, you must put your trust in Him knowing that, no matter what happens, you are in the safe hands of God. Have faith in God.
1 Peter 2:23 says when Jesus was being reviled and He suffered; He didn’t retaliate but left his case in the hands of God, who always judges fairly. The prophet Isaiah prophesied this about Jesus: “He was oppressed and treated harshly, yet he never said a word. He was led as a lamb to the slaughter. And as a sheep is silent before the shearers he did not open his mouth. From prison and trial they led him away to his death. But who among the people realized that he was dying for their sins — that he was suffering their punishment? He had done no wrong, and he never deceived anyone. But he was buried like a criminal; he was put in a rich man’s grave” (Isaiah 53:7-9 New Living Translation). Acts 8:32-33 refers to this scripture.
God is a righteous judge. Leave your case in His hands. He will judge your case well, even when you don’t understand what He is doing. When you don’t understand what God is doing in your life, trust Him that He knows what He is doing and has your best interest at heart.
You are safe in the hands of God. Everything shall work for your good. All shall be well with you. Hallelujah!
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that 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: Father, I will put my trust in You even when I don’t understand what You’re doing in my life. I know You know what You’re doing. Have Your way; let Your will be done. Holy Spirit, help me to patiently leave my case in the hands of God even when I don’t understand what He is doing. I come against anxiety, doubt, and unbelief. They shall not have control over me in Jesus’ name.
(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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