Pondering God (Part 7)

7 May. Continuing our study of God. He's not on your side. He is above the fray of human contest. Joshua was a general who was about to conquer the land we now call Israel, and to take it from the 7 nations in those days. (about 1400 BCE) "Now it came about when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, a man was standing opposite him with his sword drawn in his hand, and Joshua went to him and said to him, “Are you for us or for our adversaries?” He said, “No; rather I indeed come now as captain of the host of the Lord.” And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and bowed down, and said to him, “What has my lord to say to his servant?” (Joshua 5.13-14)

In this era of caustic tribalism and binary thinking, and on this day which is still celebrated in the Russian world as THREE things: 1) Day of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation
2) Radio Day (holiday of workers of all industries due, like Labor Day), and 3) The day of the Presidential regiment. Whose side are you on? (Remember the movie "Das Boot"? Or any 007 or Dr Strangelove or any Cold War thinking?)


Isn't this the sound of the stridency of the last US election, the French election, Brexit, and so much of our inability to get along with one another? In Australia, Labor vs Liberal is almost a sport.
God is not 'on our side.' He is above 'sides.' He wants us to follow Him. Some have entertained angels unawares. Our inability to look beyond human war zones prevents our seeing him. 


I remember a few years ago watching on the television the end of a gridiron game between Notre Dame and Boston College. There was less than a minute left in the very close contest. The tv zoomed in on both benches. Uni students from each side linked arms and some knelt. They were praying to the God in whom they believed. Eventually one team won; the other lost. Their prayers for victory were misguided. God is not on your side. 


One last image. The Apostle Paul was annoyed by having people follow behind him, changing the new teaching he was giving by mixing in a legalistic consideration. Without following their laws, they said, you could not really be saved. Paul had taught a clearer message. He asked God three times to 'choose sides' and to get rid of them. God's answer? "God said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me." (2 Cor. 12.9)


Turn your eyes on Yeshua, the Messiah today. Justice will "roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream." (Amos 5.24) If we are smart, we will be 'for Him.' Agree?

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