You may recall me mentioning the read through the Bible in one year program I am following. I am currently in Deuteronomy and before I get into this post I want to say, once again, how much I love this reading program. If you have never read through God's Word completely and systematically, let me encourage you to check out the link above and get started on an incredible journey!!!
The other day I read chapter 7 and have been thinking about it quite a bit since then. Up to this point in the book Moses has been recounting for the Israelites what God has been doing for them, reminding them how they have responded to Him, and exhorting them to love God and follow His commands. Now he is telling them about how God is going to drive out the nations before them, so He may deliver them into the land which He promised their forefathers He would give them.
Usually, I try to keep my blog entries from getting too long and I don't normally quote long portions of scripture because I know you have a lot to do and probably not a lot of time to read.
Today, however, I am going to quote Deuteronomy 7:17-24 and I am going to ask you to read it thoughtfully and carefully. I believe God's Word will speak for itself, so I am only going to comment briefly about it at the end. I think this is a very encouraging piece of scripture and I don't want you to miss it.
You may say to yourselves, "These nations are stronger than we are. How can we drive them out?" But do not be afraid of them; remember well what the LORD your God did to Pharaoh and to all Egypt. You saw with your own eyes the great trials, the miraculous signs and wonders, the mighty hand and outstretched arm, with which the LORD your God brought you out. The LORD your God will do the same to all the peoples you now fear. Moreover, the LORD your God will send the hornet among them until even the survivors who hide from you have perished. Do not be terrified by them, for the LORD your God, who is among you, is a great and awesome God. The LORD your God will drive out those nations before you, little by little. You will not be allowed to eliminate them all at once, or the wild animals will multiply around you. But the LORD your God will deliver them over to you, throwing them into great confusion until they are destroyed. He will give their kings into your hand, and you will wipe out their names from under heaven. No one will be able to stand up against you; you will destroy them.As I read this passage I was at once impressed with God's power and faithfulness - reflecting on all He had done in bringing the Israelites out of Egypt. Surely, they had no reason to fear!
But it is verse 22 which has really stuck with me. The LORD your God will drive out those nations before you, little by little. You will not be allowed to eliminate them all at once, or the wild animals will multiply around you. It isn't just His power and faithfulness which are perfect, but His wisdom, too.
I thought of several friends for whom I have been praying. There is one with a sick daughter, one with an injured daughter, another has a daughter in a far away country she is waiting to adopt, and yet another is waiting for God to open the doors to begin the adoption process. I am praying for a woman with an ill husband and a prodigal son, for a friend dealing with stresses of sickness and the delicate balance between work and family, and for a young man struggling to come out of a brain injury.
Surely, each of these individuals could say they are facing a "nation" which is much stronger than they are. I guess there is a pretty good chance you have a nation of your own which you are facing today. So we pray, and we ask God to drive out the nation, and we trust He is able to do it. But we wonder why "nothing" seems to be happening.
Could it be God is driving out your nation little by little - as He knows best?
My friend, whatever the nation is before you, which you are waiting for God to drive out, I pray you will be encouraged as you recall His faithfulness to you in the past and trust His wisdom for the present and future.
He will deliver!!!