46 God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
‘The Lord is with you’. I have both heard and used this expression to encourage myself and others during dry seasons, but never truly understanding the weight and magnitude of it. Until recently, I humbly thought this was only meant to comfort the believer who felt alone and discouraged.
After being compared to David, Saul became jealous of the man after God’s own heart. In 1 Samuel 18:12-15 we see how Saul became afraid of David. Was it because David was a mighty warrior? A gifted musician? A comely looking lad? No. The king was afraid because the Lord was with David. There was a time when Saul knew what this felt like, but sadly the Lord had departed from him.
Despite Saul seeking to harm and kill him, David behaved himself wisely in all his ways. So what does it mean when we say, ‘The Lord is with you’? It means that in the face of adversity, we as the Church must respond with wisdom. The beginning of wisdom is the fear of the Lord. Giving honour and reverence to our God means that the enemy of our souls has no choice but to be afraid of His chosen people. ‘The Lord is with you’ is not meant for the believer alone, but also for the opposition.
The opposition will often respond with threats to harm, to kill and destroy. We need not look far. When Jesus had entered the world to dwell among us, King Herod sought to kill the Messiah. Emmanuel, which being interpreted is God with us, had struck fear in the camp of the enemy. Moses understood this simple yet powerful principle very well.
And he said unto him, If thy presence go not with me, carry us not up hence.
Moses knew that without the presence of God there was nothing he or the people of Israel could do to prevail against the enemy. With God on his side, however, he could find refuge and comfort, as well as the strength to pursue and conquer. God is a very present help in time of trouble, so when fear comes knocking on your door remember the Lord is with you sending a clear message. Greater is He that is within us than he that is against us.