Saturday, October 13, 2012

Our Divine Help

UV 546/10,000 I Samuel 7 v 12 Our Divine Help “ Then Samuel took a stone, and set it between Mizpeh and Shen, and called the name of it Ebenezer, saying, Hitherto hath the Lord helped us.” The name “ Samuel” means “ heard of God.” When we are heard by God in our hour of distress, we need to set up a memorial as Samuel did. A memorial need not be a stone monument –it can be a place and time we remember, mark and record the glorious ways in which the Lord had helped us and our spiritual and physical forebears including Samuel in the past. Samuel praised the Lord God of Israel for helping them. Thanks to the Lord’s help, the Philistines, the mortal foes of the Israelites under Samuel’ s leadership, were subdued, defeated, controlled and contained. Ebenezer is one of the titles by which we praise God. As the Psalmist writes, “ our help comes from the Maker of Heaven and Earth.” He helps us even as He does not undertake to do all of it on our behalf. He helps us with encouragement from Scripture. He helps us out of tight situations and crises in life. He helps us become successful and effective. Since He is the Maker of Heaven and Earth, He is the ultimate owner of all heavenly and earthly resources. There is no limitation on the extent of help or the kind of help He can render us. The Lord does not maintain an aloof, stand-offish stance by just setting up a helpline for us to access Heaven. He could have merely commanded His army of angels to help us but He Himself delights in being our Helper. Indeed, given our need and vulnerabilities and the odds against us, we are in constant need of His help. Every believer, indeed every human being needs His help but many are too proud and independent to acknowledge it. But, it is interesting that even the doubtful agnostic or the hardened atheist in distressing situations do not call out to their parents or friends, but they cry out, “ Oh, God!” The word “ hitherto” implies that since our past experience is that the Lord has helped us, we base our faith not on a blind trust but on the evidence of experience. The Israelites had a history of being helped by the “Ebenezer God” from the time of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob to the time of Moses and beyond. In the time of Moses, the Israelites were helped in amazing ways in being freed from the bondage of Egypt- the first freedom movement in history. Similarly, the Lord proved Himself sufficient and dependable in diverse situations in our lives. It is interesting that the Lord Himself as mentioned in the book of Revelation writes a new and divinely selected name for us on a white stone. That name on the white stone will indicate how we lived our lives for Him on earth and how we helped to bring His kingdom or rule on earth. Prateep V Philip

No comments:

Post a Comment