“If it had not been the LORD who was on our side, now may Israel say” – Psalm 124:1
How often is a team’s confidence boosted by a lone player of stature and strength? They rely on that person to make the difference and win the game. On the field of play [or battle], the team looks to him and when he is upbeat, they are upbeat; when he is downcast, they are downcast. They look to him for inspiration, to be the playmaker, and many times to conjure up a miracle to get them out of trouble and secure the victory.
On the battle plains of Socoh in Judah, the Philistines defied the Israelites with taunts through the mouth of their champion, Goliath. The Bible says that on hearing the Philistine’s words, Saul and all the Israelites were dismayed and terrified. It continues to say that when the Israelites saw the man, they all ran from him in great fear (1 Samuel 17:11,24). Yet, a mere shepherd boy stood up and said, “Who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he should defy the armies of the living God? Let no-one lose heart on account of this Philistine; your servant will go and fight him” (1 Samuel 17:26b,32). And when Goliath was slain, the Philistines ran away! How weak our enemy truly can be! As did David, you come against your “enemy” in the Name of the LORD of Hosts. The world comes in the strength of their “champion”, but you come in the strength of your Champion – Him who blotted out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to His cross; and having spoiled principalities and powers, He made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it (Colossians 2:14,15). Shout, therefore, the battle cry, and bring forth the victory song – it is our God, our Champion, who has won!
God stood up for Israel in Egypt; He carried them through the wilderness; He brought them into the Promised Land; and all the while they remained obedient to Him, He delivered them from their enemies. How then, as a child of the Living God, will He not do the same for you? Look to your Champion, and keep your eyes fixed on His countenance, His steady hand and confident presence. If such a Champion is at your side and fights your battles, need you fear? Draw from the words to Job in his despair, “He [God] shall deliver thee in six troubles: yea, in seven there shall no evil touch thee” (Job 5:19). Mix this in your morning drink, and with joy let it fill your being. Be encouraged O feeble heart, and let your knees be steadied by the pillar of your strength – the Lord Himself. Let your mind recall these wondrous mercies and your thoughts dwell on His power. Become steadfast in your walk, knowing that if the LORD had not been on your side…but He is! Thank and praise Him forever.