Sometimes we are challenged by increase of wickedness and oppression. We get caught up in situations that are awful and seemingly insurmountable; many people despair for life and mourn at such times. These situations come in various forms and I am not going to single out some of them here. At such times the wicked and oppressors feel on top of the world, brandishing venom, hatred and are eager to show how much evil influence they can wield. It is not new.
The scripture says in Daniel 3:19-27 “Then Nebuchadnezzar was full of fury, and the expression on his face changed toward Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego. He spoke and commanded that they heat the furnace seven times more than it was usually heated. And he commanded certain mighty men of valor who were in his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, and cast them into the burning fiery furnace. Then these men were bound in their coats, their trousers, their turbans, and their other garments, and were cast into the midst of the burning fiery furnace. Therefore, because the king’s command was urgent, and the furnace exceedingly hot, the flame of the fire killed those men who took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego. And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace. Then King Nebuchadnezzar was astonished; and he rose in haste and spoke, saying to his counselors, “Did we not cast three men bound into the midst of the fire?” They answered and said to the king, “True, O king.” “Look!” he answered, “I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire; and they are not hurt, and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.” Then Nebuchadnezzar went near the mouth of the burning fiery furnace and spoke, saying, “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, servants of the Most High God, come out, and come here.” Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego came from the midst of the fire. And the satraps, administrators, governors, and the king’s counselors gathered together, and they saw these men on whose bodies the fire had no power; the hair of their head was not singed nor were their garments affected, and the smell of fire was not on them.”
King Nebuchadnezzar was very angry at the thought of the defiance of his order about removing freedom of worship. He commanded increase of punishment to the three Hebrew children. The king deployed his mighty men of valour to deal with harmless and unarmed men; while the public watched with excitement at the humiliation that these men would soon be put into. The atmosphere must have been tensed and charged with dreadful fright. It was a time no person wished to be an Israelite. It had been escalated to a fight of the gods against men, king against the commoners and king Nebuchadnezzar against God.
The scripture says in I Sam. 17:42-47, “And when the Philistine looked about and saw David, he disdained him; for he was only a youth, ruddy and good-looking. So the Philistine said to David, “Am I a dog, that you come to me with sticks?” And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. And the Philistine said to David, “Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air and the beasts of the field!” Then David said to the Philistine, “You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you. And this day I will give the carcasses of the camp of the Philistines to the birds of the air and the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. Then all this assembly shall know that the Lord does not save with sword and spear; for the battle is the Lord’s, and He will give you into our hands.”
The above scripture was another occasion that wickedness and oppression increased against the army of Israel, who were ill-equipped to fight the Philistines and their champion, Goliath of Gath. It was a spectacle watching an untrained boy going against the odds. Neither his people nor the enemy gave him a chance. The only thing he had was his sling and the only person he counted on for support was God. Once again it was the battle of the God of Israel against the gods of the Philistines. It was like David embarked on a suicide mission. You can only imagine the vexation of Goliath and he was determine to deal with this insult and afterwards deal with those who sent him.
Evils don’t last for ever, no matter how long it takes. All over the world wickedness is being multiplied and ruthlessness is just the heading of the next News bulletin, on radio and television. The Newspapers are painted all over with pictures of violence and crime.
When evil and wickedness increases their end is at hand.
Instead of the three Hebrew children suffering agonising shame and humiliation, King Nebuchadnezzar did. Instead of David reeling in pain and blood, Goliath of Gath did. Instead of you suffering humiliating, defeat and shame, your enemies will. This pattern cannot fail for those who put their trust in God.
The scripture says in Isaiah 59:18-19 “According to their deeds, accordingly he will repay, fury to his adversaries, recompence to his enemies; to the islands he will repay recompence. So shall they fear the name of the Lord from the west, and his glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord shall lift up a standard against him”
Whatever you might be going through, it might seem as if the odds are against you; your faith in God might be under fire and the power of those that hate you might be overwhelming and it might look like you have no chance or support of any kind; the Lord God Almighty is there for you. Those who trust him are never put to shame. It is human to feel agitated and bothered but keep believing, the wicked shall not rule over you; wickedness will surely be overthrown. The mighty men of Nebuchadnezzar were destroyed in his fire and the Philistines lost their champion in his plot; this pattern will not fail also.
Jesus faced the greatest vile the devil could muster, he faced the greatest humiliation the devil had at the cross; the enemy did not know the “game plan”, the blood for redemption was to be released in that fashion to account for everyone who will believe. When it was all over, the prince of wickedness found out the truth. He lost. He is still working wickedness but it won’t change the victory Jesus won. You have that victory available to you if you believe and keep believing.
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