A while ago I made the statement “As long as you are on God’s side, it doesn’t matter who is on the other side, even if it means that you are standing alone.” You may ask, What does that mean? In the world today it seems that an ever growing majority of people are abandoning God and the teachings of his word. This is nothing new. History has repeated this over and over again as recorded in the bible. The question is, do we learn from this history? What stance should we take? Let’s look at some characters of the bible who stood for God in the midst of a vast majority (or all) of the people who stood against them and against God.
Noah lived in a time of great wickedness as it describes in Genesis 6:5 “And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.” So God said that he would destroy the entire earth and everything in it. But verse 8 is a wonderful verse for us all. It says “But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.” In the midst of an entire world of wickedness there was still one man that stood for God. God gave Noah specific instructions to build an ark, and what to fill it with, and verse 22 says “Thus did Noah; according to all that God commanded him, so did he.” There is little doubt that Noah was scorned and ridiculed during this time. But because Noah stood alone for God, in the midst of millions of people who were wicked, he and his family were saved while all others were destroyed. And the New Testament says this about Noah in Hebrews 11:7 “By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith.” I’m thankful that there was a man named Noah who stood alone for God.
David was a young man who lived in a time when there was a Philistine giant named Goliath. Goliath was calling for someone to be brave enough to fight him while cursing the God of Israel. There were thousands of Israelite soldiers and their leader Saul (who was the tallest among them). The bible says that Saul and all of these soldiers were sore afraid of this giant and allowed him to continue mocking God for 40 days. They remained silent and did nothing. David was sent by his father to the battle, with food for his brothers, who were among the soldiers in Saul’s army. When David heard this giant mocking God, he wanted to kill this Philistine giant. David’s brother was angry at David for even suggesting fighting the giant. But David answered him “Is there not a cause?” Saul said David could not fight the giant because he was just a youth. But David answered him “The Lord that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine”. Saul agreed to let David fight and placed his armor and sword upon David. But David said that he had not tested that armor, and took it off. He would fight with what he knew. He took his sling and gathered five smooth stones. David fought in the name of the Lord and won the battle that day. He killed the giant and the great Philistine army fled in fear. He did not need great armor. He only needed courage and God by his side. I’m thankful that there was a man named David who stood alone for God.
Elijah was a prophet who lived when there was a wicked King of Israel named Ahab. Ahab had led the people to abandon serving God and had built an altar unto Baal. God told Elijah to go and present himself before Ahab. The bible records their conversation in 1 Kings 18:20-22 “So Ahab sent unto all the children of Israel, and gathered the prophets together unto mount Carmel. And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? if the Lord be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him. And the people answered him not a word. Then said Elijah unto the people, I, even I only, remain a prophet of the Lord; but Baal’s prophets are four hundred and fifty men.” So Elijah was standing up for God, but the people were silent. Elijah presented a challenge to these four hundred fifty prophets of Baal. In 1 Kings 18:24 Elijah says “And call ye on the name of your gods, and I will call on the name of the Lord: and the God that answereth by fire, let him be God. And all the people answered and said, It is well spoken.” So those prophets cried out to Baal, prophesied, cut themselves but the fire never came. Then Elijah built an alter for the Lord. He put on the sacrifice and told them to pour water over it. And then pour more water over it again and again until the entire trench was filled with water. Then Elijah called out to God and then this happened in 1 Kings 18:38 “Then the fire of the Lord fell, and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench. And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces: and they said, The Lord, he is the God; the Lord, he is the God.” I’m thankful that there was a man named Elijah who stood alone for God.
Daniel lived during a time when the king’s name was Darius. Darius loved Daniel and the king was going to make Daniel as his second in command. The king’s other men wanted this position and schemed to come up with a way to bring down Daniel. It says in Daniel 6:4-5 “Then the presidents and princes sought to find occasion against Daniel concerning the kingdom; but they could find none occasion nor fault; forasmuch as he was faithful, neither was there any error or fault found in him. Then said these men, We shall not find any occasion against this Daniel, except we find it against him concerning the law of his God.” So they tricked the king into signing a law that allowed only worship of the king himself for 30 days. Daniel heard the law but he continued to pray 3 times a day just as he had always done. The men caught Daniel breaking this law and had him thrown into the lion’s den. But God sent his angel to close the mouth of the lions. After God did this for Daniel, the men who accused Daniel were thrown into the lion’s den and eaten. Then Darius wrote that all men should fear and serve the God of Daniel, and Daniel went on to prosper and reign alongside king Darius. I’m thankful that there was a man named Daniel who stood alone for God.
These all have a common theme. They were men who stood for God in the midst of a wicked world. What lessons can we learn from these men?
- Will you be a Noah? Will you stand up for God and do precisely what God instructs you to do in a world that is evil continually?
- Will you be a David? Will you stand against those that openly mock God. Will you fight alone for God while all the other Christians are too afraid and stand silently aside?
- Will you be an Elijah? Will you fight to turn people’s hearts back to the one true God and his word when seemingly everyone else has turned their back on God?
- Will you be a Daniel? Will you serve God no matter who tells you that you can’t. As government becomes more and more anti-God, will you continue to serve God as you should?
Throughout history there have been times when it is easy to serve God, and there have been times when it has been life threatening to serve God. And while we are still free to serve our God right now, I believe that we are heading towards a difficult time to serve our God as we should. As greater and greater majorities of people mock and spit on the name of our God, will you become silent? Will you join in mocking to fit into the crowd? Or will you stand for God, even if that means you are standing alone? As we can see from history, standing alone when we are on God’s side, is not standing alone at all. God has never, nor will ever, be defeated. It takes courage to stand up in the crowd and do what is right. Fitting in with the crowd is the easy thing to do. Be courageous and stand alone with God and I can promise you that you will never be alone again. We should not be concerned if God is on OUR side, because we often times fail. We should only be concerned that we are on God’s side because he is always right and he never fails. I want to be a David and stand up to the giant majority who mock my God. Will you?
Jeremiah 20:11 “But the Lord is with me as a mighty terrible one: therefore my persecutors shall stumble, and they shall not prevail: they shall be greatly ashamed; for they shall not prosper: their everlasting confusion shall never be forgotten”
Romans 8:31 “What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?”
Deuteronomy 20:4 “For the Lord your God is he that goeth with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.”
Deuteronomy 3:22 “Ye shall not fear them: for the Lord your God he shall fight for you.”
Deuteronomy 31:6 “Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee”