You boast, “We have struck a bargain to cheat death and have made a deal to dodge the grave. The coming destruction can never touch us, for we have built a strong refuge made of lies and deception.” – Isaiah 28:15
16 Therefore, this is what the Sovereign LORD says: “Look! I am placing a foundation stone in Zion, a firm and tested stone. It is a precious cornerstone that is safe to build on. Whoever believes need never be shaken.”
17 “I will test you with the measuring line of justice and the plumb line of righteousness. Since your refuge is made of lies, a hailstorm will knock it down. Since it is made of deception, a flood will sweep it away.”
18 “I will cancel the bargain you made to cheat death, and I will overturn your deal to dodge the grave. When the terrible enemy sweeps through, you will be trampled into the ground.”
There is a lesson to be learned for America in general, and the Father’s children in particular. Sometimes it is necessary to lay down our disagreements and form coalitions for the greater good. In 2020, with the outbreak of COVID-19, is it such a time?
Beginning in 2019, after intense political mudslinging and “fake news,” and three subsequent elections, none of the candidates were able to form a needed majority coalition to become prime minister of Israel. Suddenly everything changed. Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s current prime minister, and Benny Gantz, his major opponent, compromised. Why?
Benny Gantz, head of the Blue and White party stated, “I chose the only path possible at this time, a national emergency government!” Why?
Gantz explained as follows, “We are facing one of the most serious challenges in the history of our country. It is a global challenge of exceptional magnitude, and it has hit Israel at a time of crippling political deadlock and unbearable divisions – a lethal combination. Leadership has never been more necessary. Leading has never been more difficult.”
“As a soldier who has dedicated my life to protecting the State of Israel, I have vowed to carry my commitment to the country forward and inform my decisions as a political leader. At this time of crisis, I had no choice but to put politics aside and choose the only path that allows us to avoid a fourth election. Because at a time like this, pulling people out to the polls again – many of whom have lost their livelihoods and are riddled with anxiety about the future – is inconceivable. I chose the only path which positions Israel to effectively fight this horrific pandemic: the path of a national emergency government.”
“More than ever, Israel needs unity. Israel needs strong and capable leadership, able to relentlessly fight the coronavirus, while protecting Israel’s democracy.”
“And let me state clearly: No matter how fierce the battle, I will never compromise on democracy. I will never compromise on the principles underpinning the votes of the more than one million Israelis who voted for Blue and White.”
If there was ever a balancing act that required wisdom, discernment, and direction from the Father, it is dealing with enemies.
On the one hand we are to trust the Father with all of our hearts in every and all situations. We are to depend upon Him, and Him alone. Before the children of Israel entered the promised land, they were sternly warned. And the Father told them why. The Father provided sufficient reason for caution and the need to obey Him.
32 Make no treaties with them or their gods.
33 . . . they will cause you to sin against me. If you serve their gods, you will be caught in the trap of idolatry.
But they did not listen and did the exact opposite and eventually began to worship idols and false gods.
There were to eschew foreign alliances and depend upon the Father alone for their safety. But again they did not listen.
2 For without consulting me, you have gone down to Egypt for help. You have put your trust in Pharaoh’s protection. You have tried to hide in his shade.
3 But by trusting Pharaoh, you will be humiliated, and by depending on him, you will be disgraced.
5 all who trust in him will be ashamed. He will not help you. Instead, he will disgrace you.”
Isaiah 28:15 You boast, “We have struck a bargain to cheat death and have made a deal to dodge the grave. The coming destruction can never touch us, for we have built a strong refuge made of lies and deception.”
In each and every case, the results were disastrous. We as the Father’s children should take His advice and obey His commands for our own well-being and protection. And regrettably we do the same thing, do we not? The Old Testament is replete with remarkable miraculous intervention by the Father on behalf of those He loves (Joshua 10:11-14).
But this is a double-edged conundrum.
REFLECT & PRAY
Too often we think we have a “better idea” than the Father. Really?
Father thank You that You have provided a firm foundation stone, a tested stone, a precious cornerstone, upon which I can stand and never be shaken. I have only to believe and trust You and the Lord Jesus Christ Your perfect provision. I need not panic nor be disturbed.
Sometimes there is wisdom in and necessity for forming alliances with our enemies, when we face a threat from an even greater enemy.
The enemy of my enemy is my friend, is an ancient proverb. Perhaps it is derived from principles set forth in the Art of War, by Sun Tsu. It suggests that two opposing parties can or should work together against a common enemy.
Winston Churchill made reference to this principal during World War II when America and Great Britain became allied with Russia to defeat Hitler. Churchill said, “If Hitler invaded Hell, I would make at least a favorable reference to the Devil in the House of Commons.”
There is an old story told of the Father’s children being inside of a fort. An enemy attacked them, and the soldiers threw stones over the wall at them. And what did the children of the King do? They picked up the stones and began to throw them at one another. It is so easy to be a stone thrower, is it not?
All the children of the King face far greater enemies than each other: the world, the devil, and the flesh to name but a few. Should we not lay aside our often-petty differences regarding practices or beliefs? Should we not stop acting like infantile 5-year-olds in a sandbox fighting over toys? Is it time to put on our grown-up clothes?
In 2020, entirely new practices were put into place for people’s safety worldwide: social distancing, stay-at-home, shelter-in-place, lockdown, working from home, and telemedicine.
How often do we bicker over silly things with those we love? Is this the time to lay down our stones and work to enhance our family relationships? Perhaps it is a marvelous God-given opportunity to renew our vows, fall in love again or grow deeper in love for one another and once again become best friends.
What is the alternative?