Forward Christian soldiers!

Why did ancient Israel have an army? Was it because they had no faith? Did they believe in themselves instead of trusting God? Did they insist on fighting their own battles, rather than letting God make war for them?

Why did God fight for Israel in Egypt? Did they exercise faith then? Did they somehow lose their confidence in the desert, after seeing the mighty miracles of God? Makes sense? They had heard what God was going to do to Egypt from the beginning, and they saw with their own eyes what God did through 10 consecutive plagues. After defeating the world’s only superpower, had God used up His energy?

God faced the gods of Egypt singlehandedly. He did not want Israel’s involvement so that his liberation would not be misinterpreted as a successful slave revolt. He took a slave people to become His Servant-Nation. Israel had only changed masters.

When God brought Israel out of Egypt through Moses, He deliberately told Moses to bypass the hot spots where Israel would encounter hostile forces, lest they opt for the “safety” of Egypt (Exodus 13:17). They did everything they could to avoid war! They don’t seem like they were eager to fight when you read the accounts of their complaints and grievances with Moses (Exodus 14: 10-12).

Moses, full of faith, encouraged the congregation to believe in God. The first time Israel participated in the battle it was at the command of Moses! He instructed Joshua (also faithful) to gather a fighting force and defeat the troublesome Amalekites (Exodus 17: 8-16).

God had fought the first rounds against Israel’s enemies, showing Israel that He would destroy their enemies. Now God would fight in Israel and for Israel! Moses’ raised hands of blessing and authority ensured Israel’s military success. It was clear to everyone where his true strength came from (Ps. 33:16). Israel was only an instrument of struggle in the hands of God (Isa. 41:15, Micah 4:13).

Many people understand that the commandment against slaughter should be translated as “murder.” God commands his ministers of state to execute judgment and use capital punishment for various offenses (Rom. 13: 4). We are told to remember the law of Moses and obey it (Malachi 4: 4). God has authorized the State to act within the guidelines of His Book of Laws.

Israel was not eager to enter Canaan, they were afraid! Moses admitted that the Canaanites outnumbered and armed them, but assured Israel that GOD would be with them and grant them a supernatural victory (Deut. 7: 1-2, 16-24). When the spies brought their report to Moses about the men and power of Canaan, they wanted to run with their tails tucked between their legs (Numbers 13:31). Only Joshua and Caleb put things in perspective and encouraged people to trust God (Numbers 14: 9). Israel had no faith in their own ability or in God’s!

What many have not realized is that ancient Israel was not going to enter the Promised Land by faith alone; It was going to require faith and works! God wasn’t going to do all the work for them. Israel had to actively claim its inheritance. Isn’t that the way we too?

Israel lacked faith that GOD could work miracles through them! They knew that God could stand up to their enemies, but they doubted that He could work through them. They focused on their weakness rather than God’s strength. God expected Israel to fight their battles and guarantee their success. Israel took one city at a time, progressing slowly but surely, subjugating the land and defeating its enemies, and yet giving God all the credit, as our conversion process (Ps. 44: 1-8).

Even David, a man after God’s own heart, fought numerous battles for God and His people, but considered God the Victor. David asked God if he should attack at this time or place, and what to do, when and how, and God answered him (1 Chron. 14:10).

Did Abraham, the father of the faithful, sin by waging war against those who had kidnapped his relatives (Gen. 14)? Melchizedek blessed him, he did not rebuke him! Levi and his sons, following Moses’ call to arms (at God’s command), went through the camp of Israel and killed those who had sinned with the golden calf (Exodus 32:28). Did you lack faith? Not! They were acting faithfully! They put God before family and friends. Couldn’t God have sent a plague? Yes. But he worked through men.

Since God works through men, why didn’t Jesus let Peter defend him? 1) Because the prophecy had to be fulfilled and 2) because the Kingdom of God had not yet been established; otherwise, Jesus said that His servants should fight. This example teaches us that loyal citizens must be willing to fight and defend their king and country!

We currently have “dual citizenship”. Paul did not deny that he was a Roman citizen nor did he hesitate to exercise his civil rights (Acts 16:37, 22:25, 25:11). He didn’t just turn the other cheek when he was about to get spanked! There is a time and a place to wage war or declare peace (Ecc. 3: 8); suffer persecution and death, or run for your life (Matthew 24:16, John 8:59).

Spiritually speaking, we must all understand that we are only mortal, that we establish temporary residence on earth, and therefore we must be aware of eternity and live accordingly, waiting for our eternal inheritance in the Kingdom of God (2 Cor. 5). : 1, Ps. 39:12, 2 Peter 3:11).

But what about “spiritual fornication”? If we exercise our right to vote and get involved in politics, aren’t we polluting ourselves with the system of this world? Only if and when it contradicts God’s commandments. We must never disobey God to follow men (Acts 5:29). We are in this world and actively participate in its government and education system every time we go to work and pay taxes or send our children to school or university! We are only to avoid those aspects of this world’s system that are biblically incorrect (1 John 2:16).

Joseph served in the Pharaoh’s administration. Was he spiritually desecrated? Daniel was in the belly of the beast, Babylon, but he served the king and God. Whenever a conflict of interest arose, Daniel put God first, as we must always do. Nehemiah worked in the Persian government, but he was also blameless before God. God even referred to Cyrus and Nebuchadnezzar as his servants.

God is our heavenly King over all, so we cannot allow others to try to usurp His authority over our lives. He is our Husband and listening to anyone who dares to go against His Word is spiritual adultery and fornication. This is one of the greatest sins of modern Israel: yielding to international peer pressure instead of obeying God.

However, God is not our only ruler. He has ordained that men must not remain in a state of lawlessness, but must obey the laws of Noah that bind all mankind: establish a system of justice, refrain from idolatry and immorality, and refrain from eating blood ( Acts 15:29).

Even Christ will be King of kings and Lord of lords; It will not rule alone. God is our Minister and Jesus Christ is our High Priest, but we are not opposed to having human ministers as well. Do we have a double standard when it comes to politics? We talk about “dirty politics”. And there is too much bribery and corruption. But what about religious scandals? Perverted preachers and adulterous ministers? Does that mean that we should reject the idea that God has human servants? “Dirty religion?” Both Church and State must allow Christ to cleanse their actions (Malachi 3: 3).

God did not forbid Israel to have a king or a high priest. He simply imposed restrictions on them and offered them guidelines. The king was to be an Israelite; It should not rely on financial securities or gold, nor should it rely on a huge army or arsenal of weapons for the defense of Israel; and he was to study the Scriptures daily (Deut. 18: 15-20). A symbolic military force made up of volunteers was allowed (Judges 7: 2, Deuteronomy 20: 5-9). The priest was to bless the troops of Israel before they went into battle, encourage them that God would fight through them, and sound the alarm with the sacred silver trumpet (Deut. 20: 1-4, Numbers 10: 9 , 31: 6). .

God was upset with Israel when they demanded a king, but not because they wanted a king – He had made a concession for that through Moses – but because they were rejecting God as their Supreme Ruler (1 Sam. 8:20). by sight, not by faith, overconfident in human leaders (Ps. 118: 9).

Kings were to lead the way (Ps. 1: 10-11). They were to follow in the footsteps of King David, who promulgated the law of Moses (1 Kings 2: 3). Israel was only to follow men as they followed God. The prophet Samuel warned them about greedy rulers, excessive taxes, and corrupt administrations, but they still decided to go ahead with their political choices. Not that the religious world was faultless (1 Sam. 8: 3). And God reveals that the best man should not always win (Dan. 4:17). But if we pray for God to guide us in deciding who to vote for or against, it is his responsibility to let us know what to do. Of course, we should study the party platforms and see which one is more aligned with biblical principles. It is vain to think that our vote could frustrate the Will of God! He will promote and degrade whoever He wants (Ps. 75: 7).

Ancient Israel was both Church and State: a theocracy. God recognizes these two branches of government and encourages us to do the same (Malachi 4: 4-5). The two anointed positions in Israel were priest and king (Zech. 4:14). The oil was representative of the Holy Spirit of God that Israel prayed to guide and direct their leaders.

We have seen how God has authorized human leaders to take lives (Leviticus 20). They are free to delegate a police force (to protect and defend communities), as well as to use the armed forces to defend their country and their relatives.

God holds his leaders accountable for not becoming greedy or bloodthirsty. We should not enjoy war, but use it as a last resort (Deut. 20: 10-12). We must hate the sins of our enemies and learn to love them, knowing that they are also made in the image of God and will hopefully return to their senses one day; We are not to rejoice or gloat over the fall of our enemies (Prov. 24:17).

God is going to use Israel to punish various nations during their journey back to the Middle East (Isaiah 11:14). And God will fight through the Jews in Jerusalem (Zech. 14:14). Christ will return to earth to wage war before peace begins!

God has not only intervened for Israel. He has determined the outcome of various wars and battles to allow one group of Gentiles to defeat another (Deut. 2: 19-23). Moses also said that it would have been a sin if the different tribes of Israel did not come together to defend themselves (Num. 32: 20-23). And it is a disastrous sin to go to war if God’s servants instruct otherwise (Deut. 1: 42-45).

Everything is a matter of faith and obedience. We must realize that God is our true Commander-in-Chief and Captain of our Salvation, and follow the leading of His Holy Spirit (Jos. 5: 13-15, Heb. 2:10). But let us not forget that God can and does work through inspired men (Neh. 9:27).

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