PROTECTION FOR THE RIGHTEOUS
Psalm 91:7-16 New King James Version (NKJV)
7 A thousand may fall at your side,
and ten thousand at your right hand;
but it shall not come near you.
8 Only with your eyes shall you look,
and see the reward of the wicked.
9 Because you have made the Lord, who is my refuge,
Even the Most High, your dwelling place,
10 No evil shall befall you,
Nor shall any plague come near your dwelling;
11 For He shall give His angels charge over you,
To keep you in all your ways.
12 In their hands they shall [a]bear you up,
lest you [b]dash your foot against a stone.
13 You shall tread upon the lion and the cobra,
the young lion and the serpent you shall trample underfoot.
14 “Because he has set his love upon me, therefore I will deliver him;
I will [c]set him on high, because he has known my name.
15 He shall call upon me, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble;
I will deliver him and honour him.
16 With [d]long life I will satisfy him,
and show him my salvation.”
THE BIBLE SAYS” WITH LONG LIFE I WILL SATISFY YOU AND SHOW YOU MY SALVATION.”
IN SPITE OF THIS PROMISE OF GOD, I HAVE WITNESSED UNCOUNTABLE BELIEVERS WHO DIE BEFORE THEIR TIME. IS THE WORD OF GOD NOT TRUE? DOES GOD LACK THE POWER TO PROTECT US FROM PREMATURE DEATH? IF NOT, THEN WHAT IS THE CAUSE OF THE MYSTERIOUS AND PAINFUL DEATHS SOME BELIEVERS HAVE FACED?
I AM AN ANALYTICAL BELIEVER WHO SEEKS ANSWERS TO HARD QUESTIONS SO I DON’T ACCEPT DISASTERS BY SPIRITUALISING THEM AS GOD’S WILL, WHEN IT MAY BE FAR FROM HIS WILL FOR OUR LIVES .IN THE LORDS PRAYER, THE IS THIS PHRASE . DELIVER US FROM THE EVIL ONE.
IF JESUS ASKED US TO PRAY SUCH PRAYER , THEN HE WAS VERY MUCH AWARE OF WHAT THE EVIL ONE IS CAPABLE OF DOING TO US .
HOW DOES JESUS DESCRIBE SATAN? JOHN 10:10
John 10:10 New King James Version (NKJV)
10 The thief does not come except to steal, to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
THIS VERSE GIVES A PICTURE OF THE DEVIL’S INTENTIONS IF WE WERE TO ACCIDENTALLY FALL INTO HIS TRAP . FOR THAT REASON, OUR PARAMOUNT PRAYER POINT MUST BE TO PRAY AND RESIST EVIL ATTACKS. THE BIBLE SAYS IN JAMES 4: 7 “RESIST THE DEVIL AND HE WILL FLEE….”
LET US LOOK AT SOME FEW EXAMPLES OF HOW MASTERMINDED PREMATURE DEATHS IN THE EARLY CHURCH.
Acts 12:1-7 New King James Version (NKJV)
Herod’s Violence to the Church
12 Now about that time Herod the king stretched out his hand to harass some from the church. 2 Then he killed James the brother of John with the sword. 3 And because he saw that it pleased the Jews, he proceeded further to seize Peter. Now it was during the Days of Unleavened Bread. 4 So when he had arrested him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four [a]squads of soldiers to keep him, intending to bring him before the people after Passover.
Peter Freed from Prison
5 Peter was therefore kept in prison, but [b]constant prayer was offered to God for him by the church. 6 And when Herod was about to bring him out, that night Peter was sleeping, bound with two chains between two soldiers; and the guards before the door were [c]keeping the prison. 7 Now behold, an angel of the Lord stood by him, and a light shone in the prison; and he struck Peter on the side and raised him up, saying, “Arise quickly!” And his chains fell off his hands.
FROM THIS TEXT, CERTAIN FACTS STAND OUT WHICH ILLUSTRATE THE EXTENT THE ENEMY IS WILLING TO GO IF HE FINDS A WINDOW OF OPPORTUNITY. LET US NOT FORGET THAT HIS MAIN AIM IS TO “KILL, STEAL AND DESTROY.”
- JAMES, THE BROTHER OF JOHN, WAS A DISCIPLE OF CHRIST.
- THE EVIL ONE ORCHESTRATED HIS ARREST.
- THE MAIN AIM WAS TO PLEASE THE ENEMIES OF THE BODY OF CHRIST.
- THERE WAS NO APPROPRIATE FIGHT BACK FROM THE CHURCH AFTER JAMES’ ARREST
- JAMES DEATH WAS NOT AS A RESULT OF ANY SIN HE HAD COMMITTED
- THERE WAS SADNESS WITHIN THE GROUP WHEN JAMES DEATH OCCURRED.
IN THE SAME TEXT, WE HAVE A SIMILAR SITUATION BUT DIFFERENT RESPONSE PRODUCED A DIFFERENT OUTCOME. THE FOLLOWING FACTS STAND OUT FROM THE TEXT.
- THE ARRESTED THE OTHER DISCIPLE, PETER, IN THE SAME WAY
- THIS TIME ROUND, THE CHURCH RESPONDED BY PRAYING THROUGHOUT THE NIGHT.
- THEIR PRAYERS TRIGGERED ANGELIC INTERVENTION
- THERE WAS NO INDICATION THAT PETER WAS MORE RIGHTEOUS THAN JAMES WAS.
- THERE WAS GREAT JOY WHEN PETER WAS RELEASED.
JAMES DEATH WAS PREMATURE. IF PRAYER COULD PREVENT PETER’S EXECUTION, PRAYERS COULD HAVE ALSO PREVENTED KILLING OF JAMES. WE CAN CONSEQUENTLY CONCLUDE THAT THE LACK OF CHURCH OR CONGREGATIONAL INTERVENTION CAUSED THE PREMATURE DEATH OF JAMES, AN APOSTLE OF CHRIST.
WE SHOULD PRAY FOR ONE ANOTHER FAMILY.
THE CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST.
OUR NATIONS SOUTH AFRICA.
AND THE PEACE OF JERUSALEM.
2 Kings 20:1-6 New King James Version (NKJV)
Hezekiah’s Life Extended
20 In those days Hezekiah was sick and near death. And Isaiah the prophet, the son of Amoz, went to him and said to him, “Thus says the Lord: ‘Set your house in order, for you shall die, and not live.’ ”
2 Then he turned his face toward the wall, and prayed to the Lord, saying, 3 “Remember now, O Lord, I pray, how I have walked before You in truth and with a loyal heart, and have done what was good in Your sight.” And Hezekiah wept bitterly.
4 And it happened, before Isaiah had gone out into the middle court, that the word of the Lord came to him, saying, 5 “Return and tell Hezekiah the leader of my people, ‘Thus says the Lord, the God of David your father: “I have heard your prayer, I have seen your tears; surely I will heal you. On the third day, you shall go up to the house of the Lord. 6 And I will add to your days fifteen years. I will deliver you and this city from the hand of the king of Assyria; and I will defend this city for my own sake, and for the sake of my servant David.” ’ ”
COULD IT BE THAT GOD WAS TRYING TO SEE HIS REACTION TOWARDS PREMATURE DEATH? IT IS CLEAR FROM THE TEXT THAT HEZEKIAH WAS SICK. NO ONE KNOWS WHERE THE SICKNESS CAME FROM, BUT IT WAS CERTAINLY NOT FROM GOD. THE IMPORTANT THING IS THAT HE DID NOT ACCEPT THE PRONOUNCEMENT OF DEATH BUT RATHER PRAYED AGAINST IT. GOD HEARD HIS PRAYERS AND ADDED 15 MORE YEARS TO HIS DAYS.
IF HEZEKIAH’S PRAYERS WERE HEARD, THEN GOD WILL HEAR OUR PRAYERS ON THIS TOPIC .LET’S BE SERIOUS AND PRAY AGAINST ANY PREMATURE DEATH IN THE FAMILY, CHURCH AND NATION .
PRAYER FOR LONG LIFE.
FATHER, ACCORDING TO YOUR WORD, PLEASE SATISFY ME WITH LONG LIFE.
I PRAY THAT YOU WILL LENGHTEN MY DAYS.
I PRAY THAT I WILL NOT DIE YOUNG BUT WILL GO TO THE GRAVE AT A RIPE OLD AGE.
LET THE LENGTH OF MY DAYS BE WITH HONOUR, PEACE AND GLORY.
LET ME SEE THE GOODNESS OF THE LORD IN THE LAND OF THE LIVING.
I CANCEL AND DESTROY ANY ATTEMPT OF THE DEVIL TO BRING PREMATURE DEATH MY WAY. IT IS NOT MY PORTION.
I DECLARE IN THE NAME OF THE LORD THAT I WILL FULFILL ALL MY DAYS.
I CONFESS LONG LIFE, FILLED WITH GOODNESS AND MERCIES IN THE NAME OF THE RISEN SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST OF NAZERETH.
SOMEBODY SHOUT HALLELUJAH.
JESUS IS LORD.