Topic: Present but Passive
Text: 1 Samuel 4:1-22
Key verse: Help! Who can save us from these mighty gods of Israel? They are the same gods who destroyed the Egyptians with plagues when Israel was in the wilderness.
Right from Egypt God had made a name for himself, his power had subdued the gods of the Land, and their sorcery had been swallowed up by the power of God. Miraculous things had happened along the way from Egypt to the Promised Land; supernatural provisions, divine acts of deliverance and God had even given them a token of his presence as a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire. These were before he gave them the Ark as a constant reminder of his presence in their midst.
Every time they went to battle with the Ark of God, miracles happened in their favor. God always kept the promises he made to them in the scriptures.
“The Lord will conquer your enemies when they attack you. They will attack you from one direction, but they will scatter from you in seven! Deuteronomy 28:7
In our text today, l hope you read it completely, you will observe a different outcome during that battle, it seems God was present but passive towards Israel. The daughter in law of Eli the priest summed it up by saying, the glory has departed.
Then she said, “The glory has departed from Israel, for the Ark of God has been captured.”
Wow! How did this happen? How can the glory depart from God’s people? Before we attempt to answer this question let’s lay a small foundation to the subject of glory.
The people of God always knew when God visited them in the wilderness because they saw his glory. When Moses went up to the Mount and stayed in God’s presence for 40days, he came back carrying the glory of God upon him so much so they could not behold his face. God’s presence in our lives is evident in the glory we carry. You may not see it physically but those in the other kingdom see and know its power.
To the Israelites at the foot of the mountain, the glory of the Lord appeared at the summit like a consuming fire. Exodus 24:17
“what are mere mortals that you should think about them, human beings that you should care for them? Yet you made them only a little lower than God and crowned them with glory and honor.” Psalm 8:4-5
Do you know you carry God’s glory upon you, this glory is a shield and defense for you? This glory is active when you wear your armor of righteousness.
But you, O Lord, are a shield around me; you are my glory, the one who holds my head high Psalm 3:3
God’s presence is in your life daily, God wears you like a robe and manifests his power through you by the working of his Holy Spirit living in you. But God abhors sin and wickedness, when you accommodate sin in any form you are indirectly removing your armor of righteousness, and you are exposing yourself to the enemy’s attack.
If a warrior puts on all the whole armor of God and neglects the armor of righteousness which is your breastplate, you expose your vital organs.
The Sons of Eli as priests were living immoral lives, they desecrated God’s sacrifices and even when God warned their father, they didn’t repent. These same people were the ones carrying the Ark.
The Philistines attacked and defeated the army of Israel, killing 4,000 men. 3 After the battle was over, the troops retreated to their camp, and the elders of Israel asked, “Why did the Lord allow us to be defeated by the Philistines?” Then they said, “Let’s bring the Ark of the Covenant of the Lord from Shiloh. If we carry it into battle with us, it[a] will save us from our enemies.”
They had lost the battle the first time and instead of examining themselves to seek God’s face for the cause of the situation, they presumed that merely carrying the Ark as a talisman to battle will make the difference.
The glory of God in your life does not require any physical token, oil, cross, mantle, or water. Righteousness is the secret of the glory you carry. God will never be passive in your life when you carry the glory.
The Ark did not lose its power, it was just in the wrong hands. When the Philistines took it away, the glory of God began to torment them.
When the people realized what was happening, they cried out, “We can’t keep the Ark of the God of Israel here any longer! He is against us! We will all be destroyed along with Dagon, our god.” 1 Samuel 5:7
Dear believer, l want to remind you that your God is the same yesterday, today, and forever. He wants to fight for you in the battle of life, don’t limit God by your indifference or your complacency. Awake the power of God on your behalf, rid yourself of anything that can defile; fear, unbelief, murmuring against man and God. Rise in worship to the mighty man of war, the all-consuming fire! As you worship him, his glory will come down upon you and his glory will start to blind and torment your adversaries in Jesus’ name.
The word of God is not powerful as a bible under your pillow, its power is unleashed as the sword of the spirit when it is spoken in faith from your heart through your mouth. Yes, your mouth must speak it out! Then it comes out as a weapon.
Don’t be armed and passive arise and fight for what is yours today. Everything that belongs to you the devil is contesting must be recovered in Jesus’ name! Amen. In Jesus mighty name l release the spirit of might upon you as you rise to contend for what is yours today! You will return with testimony in Jesus’ name! You will not be put to shame again in Jesus’ name! Amen.