Wednesday 13 February, 2013

1 Sam 4:1b-11

The people of Israel went out to fight against the Philistines. The Israelites camped at Ebenezer. The Philistines camped at Aphek. 2 The Philistines brought their forces together to fight against Israel. As the fighting spread, the men of Israel lost the battle to the Philistines. The Philistines killed about 4,000 of them on the field of battle. 3 The rest of the Israelite soldiers returned to camp. Then the elders asked them, “Why did the Lord let the Philistines win the battle over us today? Let’s bring the ark of the Lord’s covenant from Shiloh. Let’s take it with us. It will save us from the power of our enemies.” 4 So the people sent men to Shiloh. They brought back the ark of the covenant of the Lord. He sits there on his throne between the cherubim. He is the One who rules over all. Eli’s two sons Hophni and Phinehas were with the ark of the covenant of God in Shiloh. 5 The ark of the Lord’s covenant was brought into the camp. Then all of the people of Israel shouted so loudly that the ground shook. 6 The Philistines heard the noise. They asked, “What’s all that shouting about in the Hebrew camp?” Then the Philistines found out that the ark of the Lord had come into the camp. 7 So they were afraid. “A god has come into their camp,” they said. “We’re in trouble! Nothing like this has ever happened before. 8 How terrible it will be for us! Who will save us from the power of those mighty gods? They struck down the people of Egypt in the desert. They sent all kinds of plagues on them. 9 “Philistines, be strong! Fight like men! If you don’t, you will come under the control of the Hebrews. You will become their slaves, just as they have been your slaves. Fight like men!” 10 So the Philistines fought. The people of Israel lost the battle. Every man ran back to his tent. A large number of them were killed. Israel lost 30,000 soldiers who were on foot. 11 The ark of God was captured. And Eli’s two sons Hophni and Phinehas died.

The Israelites had come to rely on the Ark of the Covenant as a kind of good luck charm

thinking that the Ark would deliver them from the power of their enemies. Here they found out that this was a false hope.

It’s easy to fall into the trap of relying on external things to protect

you rather than relying on God Himself.

Even if external things fall apart – loss of a job or a loss Generic viagra made in india of health – God Himself will never fail You. He is faithful and will bring His victory in His way and in His time.

Lord, help us to rely upon You and Your great faithfulness and love for us in all of the battles of life.

Written by Shelley Witt

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