(Preached at Newtownabbey FPC.)
II. A RIGHT RESPONSE ON OUR PART IS MET BY A GLORIOUS RESPONSE ON GOD'S PART!
"And when they began to sing and to praise, the LORD set ambushments against the children of Ammon, Moab, and mount Seir, which were come against Judah; and they were smitten," v 22. What wonders God has set aside for His people! 1 Cors 2:7-10.
1. There was no delay. Such an immediate response was needed. "God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble." Ps 46:1. Ps 69:17; Isa 65:25. The word 'present' really means 'He has been found to be'! He has always been there to help His people.
2. How gloriously sovereign the Lord is! Vs 22-24. Here is why 'trouble', in a sense, ought to be welcomed. It gives God opportunity to show His mighty power! Earlier years of the FPC saw such power as prayer was answered!
3. Judah had only to look on. V 17. Old time religion, Ex 14:13.
God still works for those who seek and believe Him as He did of old!
III. THE LORD CAN TURN APPARENT DOOM INTO ABUNDANT DELIVERANCE FOR HIS PEOPLE
I could illustrate this from so many other places in the Scriptures as well as from 2 Chronicles 20. I have already mentioned the deliverance at the Red Sea, Exodus 14. But I want to show you a deliverance that is promised in the future and which we all will experience. I refer to that ULTIMATE victory which will occur at the return of Christ.
1. Israel, who experienced so much of the Lord's power in the centuries past but which presently is forsaken because of their unbelief, will see again the mighty power of Jehovah working on their behalf. Zech 14:1-3. This is future but surely not that far away. History will be repeated as it were before the eyes of the world!
2. Likewise, for the living saints, there will be a glorious deliverance. The last days will be days of trouble for the saints of God. Rev 12:9-17. This refers to the troubles of the Church in Israel at the end of this age but I am sure it depicts what God's people generally will be facing at time! But the Lord preserves them and delivers them GLORIOUSLY at His coming, Rev 20:1-4. 1 Thess 4:13-18.
3. The dead saints will also share in this glorious deliverance. The last that was seen of them was them lying in a coffin which was lowered into a cold grave. The world thought that was the end of them. Not so! 1 Thess 4:13-18. It is likely that each Christian here will have part in this aspect of the great day of victory. Look well at these verses and "comfort one another with these words." Please note dear Christian, we ought to talk about these truths with one another. How the devil has robbed many of this comfort!