Assyria was a formidable enemy; they were evil, cruel, and ruthless, and God’s people were in their sights. After a successful campaign of capturing and ravishing the northern kingdom of Israel, this powerful enemy had Judah, the southern kingdom, in her vicious cross-hairs. Short of a miracle, Jerusalem, that glorious city where years prior “David dwelt,” would be overrun by this godless foe. “Hath any of the gods of the nations” been able to stand against me, was the question posed by the haughty Assyrian king, as he mocked and blasphemed Jehovah God. Judah needed help, and SOON!
Have you been there? Have you stood alone in a situation, a problem looming on the horizon that is so overwhelming that desperation and panic have consumed you? Is God aware of my need? If so, why does He not rescue me? Why is He silent? I don’t see Him working and time is short; I must dig in and help Him out, take things into my own hands, right? Wrong! With the shadow of Assyria bearing down on her, Judah panicked and birthed a plan, a scheme to help out the powerful God of the universe. They would seek assistance from Egypt, their pagan neighbor to the south. Yes, that’s the same Egypt from which God had delivered them many years prior, the same Egypt that held the children of Jacob as slaves for 400 years. God’s people would load up their donkeys and camels with treasures, traversing the wilderness on a journey to Egypt, in a foolish attempt to purchase protection from one enemy nation to save them from another enemy nation.
So, let’s examine the logic of Judah’s plan closely: they are traveling to the land of their former captivity to avoid future captivity? That’s the plan? Isaiah sternly warns God’s children that seeking help from Egypt was foolish and futile, “for the Egyptians shall help in vain, and to no purpose: therefore I have cried concerning this, their strength is to sit still,” or Rahab-Ham-Shebeth in the Hebrew tongue. Rahab is the Hebrew word for pride, the term also referring to a primeval sea creature mentioned in the book of Job, a term identified with chaos, confusion, noise, and powerlessness, aka, a big-mouth-do-nothing. Isaiah was warning the Hebrews that prideful Egypt would sit idly by as Assyria troubled and attacked Judah; their hope should not rooted in Egypt, but in the God of the universe.
There is real danger in self-help, trying to assist God in solving our circumstances, for He exhorts us that “In quietness and in confidence shall be your strength.” I recently read this observation: Faith means being prepared to trust where we are not permitted to see. God’s got this, even if we can’t see His hand at work; He knows our situation because He has already walked the path. Trust safely in Him, not in a chaotic, powerless scheme that we hatch in our own strength.
Psalm 40:4 Blessed is the man that maketh the LORD his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies.
Lord, sometimes I am tempted to fret when my situation becomes pressing. It is in those moments that I attempt to help You, to find solutions to my problems. Help me, Lord, to put my trust fully in YOU, resting in Your providence.<div class='sharedaddy sd-block sd-like jetpack-likes-widget-wrapper jetpack-likes-widget-unloaded' id='like-post-wrapper-164683012-1062-63d7e163d85b4' data-src='https://widgets.wp.com/likes/#blog_id=164683012&post_id=1062&origin=wp.blog.grandmasgleanings.com&obj_id=164683012-1062-63d7e163d85b4' data-name='like-post-frame-164683012-1062-63d7e163d85b4' data-title='Like or Reblog'><h3 class="sd-title">Like this:</h3><div class='likes-widget-placeholder post-likes-widget-placeholder' style='height: 55px;'><span class='button'><span>Like</span></span> <span class="loading">Loading...</span></div><span class='sd-text-color'></span><a class='sd-link-color'></a></div>