Encouragement

Standing Alone with God

February 20, 2014

Most likely, in every believer’s life, there will come a time where they are standing alone with God. Standing alone with God can be heartbreaking (if focused on the people who’ve turned away from them), scary, and they’ll be tempted to take the easy road out and give up. But please realize that Christians are never truly alone. When standing alone with God, God will stand up for you. When the creator of the world, the all powerful God is standing with you, then you can rest that He won’t let you down. He has promised to never leave you or forsake you, and God keeps his promises.

David had a time where he was standing alone with God, and God blessed him.

And David said in his heart, I shall now perish one day by the hand of Saul: there is nothing better for me than that I should speedily escape into the land of the Philistines; and Saul shall despair of me, to seek me any more in any coast of Israel: so shall I escape out of his hand.
And David arose, and he passed over with the six hundred men that were with him unto Achish, the son of Maoch, king of Gath.
I Samuel 27:1-2

Saul spent much time trying to track down and kill David, so David decides to go the Philistines for a safe place away from Saul.

Saul had made the mistake of trying to offer the sacrifice instead of Samuel the priest, among other things, and consequently God was working out his plan to remove Saul as king, and to setup David instead. And God was bringing the Philistines together to fight with Israel, and to destroy Saul.

But David is sojourning with the Philistines at this time, and is instructed not to go with them to battle against Israel.

Now the Philistines gathered together all their armies to Aphek: and the Israelites pitched by a fountain which is in Jezreel.
And the lords of the Philistines passed on by hundreds, and by thousands: but David and his men passed on in the rereward with Achish.
Then said the princes of the Philistines, What do these Hebrews here? And Achish said unto the princes of the Philistines, Is not this David, the servant of Saul the king of Israel, which hath been with me these days, or these years, and I have found no fault in him since he fell unto me unto this day?
And the princes of the Philistines were wroth with him; and the princes of the Philistines said unto him, Make this fellow return, that he may go again to his place which thou hast appointed him, and let him not go down with us to battle, lest in the battle he be an adversary to us: for wherewith should he reconcile himself unto his master? should it not be with the heads of these men?
Is not this David, of whom they sang one to another in dances, saying, Saul slew his thousands, and David his ten thousands?
Then Achish called David, and said unto him, Surely, as the LORD liveth, thou hast been upright, and thy going out and thy coming in with me in the host is good in my sight: for I have not found evil in thee since the day of thy coming unto me unto this day: nevertheless the lords favour thee not.
Wherefore now return, and go in peace, that thou displease not the lords of the Philistines.
I Samuel 29:1-7

So David went back to his hiding place among the Philistines.

And it came to pass, when David and his men were come to Ziklag on the third day, that the Amalekites had invaded the south, and Ziklag, and smitten Ziklag, and burned it with fire;
And had taken the women captives, that were therein: they slew not any, either great or small, but carried them away, and went on their way.
So David and his men came to the city, and, behold, it was burned with fire; and their wives, and their sons, and their daughters, were taken captives.
Then David and the people that were with him lifted up their voice and wept, until they had no more power to weep.
And David’s two wives were taken captives, Ahinoam the Jezreelitess, and Abigail the wife of Nabal the Carmelite.
And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: but David encouraged himself in the LORD his God.
And David said to Abiathar the priest, Ahimelech’s son, I pray thee, bring me hither the ephod. And Abiathar brought thither the ephod to David.
And David enquired at the LORD, saying, Shall I pursue after this troop? shall I overtake them? And he answered him, Pursue: for thou shalt surely overtake them, and without fail recover all.
So David went, he and the six hundred men that were with him, and came to the brook Besor, where those that were left behind stayed.
But David pursued, he and four hundred men: for two hundred abode behind, which were so faint that they could not go over the brook Besor.
And they found an Egyptian in the field, and brought him to David, and gave him bread, and he did eat; and they made him drink water;
And they gave him a piece of a cake of figs, and two clusters of raisins: and when he had eaten, his spirit came again to him: for he had eaten no bread, nor drunk any water, three days and three nights.
And David said unto him, To whom belongest thou? and whence art thou? And he said, I am a young man of Egypt, servant to an Amalekite; and my master left me, because three days agone I fell sick.
We made an invasion upon the south of the Cherethites, and upon the coast which belongeth to Judah, and upon the south of Caleb; and we burned Ziklag with fire.
And David said to him, Canst thou bring me down to this company? And he said, Swear unto me by God, that thou wilt neither kill me, nor deliver me into the hands of my master, and I will bring thee down to this company.
And when he had brought him down, behold, they were spread abroad upon all the earth, eating and drinking, and dancing, because of all the great spoil that they had taken out of the land of the Philistines, and out of the land of Judah.
And David smote them from the twilight even unto the evening of the next day: and there escaped not a man of them, save four hundred young men, which rode upon camels, and fled.
And David recovered all that the Amalekites had carried away: and David rescued his two wives.
And there was nothing lacking to them, neither small nor great, neither sons nor daughters, neither spoil, nor any thing that they had taken to them: David recovered all.
I Samuel 30:1-19

So I want to first look at the position that David was in. Basically, everyone around him had turned their back on him.

Saul hated David, so David fled to the Philistines to avoid being killed.

The Philistines didn’t trust David, and sent him away from being a part of their army in the upcoming battle.

Then, the Amalekites had secretly come in while David was away with his men, and took his family hostage, so he didn’t even have a wife to share the burden and to offer sweet words of encouragement to him while he was down (verse 3).

And if that wasn’t bad enough, the 600 hundred men that were with him were so angry and distressed with the loss of their families, that they were about to stone him (verse 6).

So if there ever was a time where a guy would feel totally alone, I think this was it. And yet, David’s faith was so great, that he sought encouragement from the Lord directly (verse 6).

Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him: but I will maintain mine own ways before him.
Job 13:15

In my distress I called upon the LORD, and cried unto my God: he heard my voice out of his temple, and my cry came before him, even into his ears.
Psalm 18:6

The name of the LORD is a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe.
Proverbs 18:10

For thou hast been a strength to the poor, a strength to the needy in his distress, a refuge from the storm, a shadow from the heat, when the blast of the terrible ones is as a storm against the wall.
Isaiah 25:4

For we would not, brethren, have you ignorant of our trouble which came to us in Asia, that we were pressed out of measure, above strength, insomuch that we despaired even of life:
But we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God which raiseth the dead:
Who delivered us from so great a death, and doth deliver: in whom we trust that he will yet deliver us;
2 Corinthians 1:8-10

Let’s go back to our story, because it doesn’t end with David encouraging himself in Lord. David takes some action. We see in verse 8 that he “enquired” at the Lord, in other words he prays. He didn’t take any rash action, he spoke to the Lord about it, after he had encouraged himself in the Lord.

For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.
Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
Hebrews 4:15-16

You see, God truly knows what believers are going through, and he tells them to come boldly to him, and get the help they need from him.

Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7

And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear.
Isaiah 65:24

So David talked to the Lord, and asked the Lord if he should go after them which stole his family, and the families of his men that were with him. And God said yes, and promised him victory (verse 8). But that isn’t the end of the story. You see, although God promises Christians victory, if they do not stand up and take the victory he has offered, they will be defeated.

Just think about David, if he refused to go after the Amalekites after God promised victory, would he have recovered his family?

No, of course not.

But often God’s people refuse to take the victory that God has already promised. Take a look at Israel, when they first came to the promised land, after they were set free from Egypt.

But the men that went up with him said, We be not able to go up against the people; for they are stronger than we.
And they brought up an evil report of the land which they had searched unto the children of Israel, saying, The land, through which we have gone to search it, is a land that eateth up the inhabitants thereof; and all the people that we saw in it are men of a great stature.
And there we saw the giants, the sons of Anak, which come of the giants: and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight.
Numbers 13:31-33

They refused to go in and take the land that God had promised to give them. The victory had already been given by God, but they failed to take the victory they were promised. Likewise God makes many promises to Christians, and some of them depend on believers accepting and acting on them.

Here are three promises God gives to the believer.

The promise of victory over the flesh:

This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.
For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.
But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law.
Galatians 5:16-18

Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh.
For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.
For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
Romans 8:12-14

The promise of victory over Satan:

Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
James 4:7

Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.
Ephesians 6:11

The promise of victory over the World:

For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.
Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?
I John 5:4-5

These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
John 16:33

But you see, in all the cases, there is a requirement on believers in order to have that victory, just like with David. David trusted in the Lord, he believed God when he said he would deliver him, so he went down to the Amalekites, and recovered everything that was stolen from him and his men.

So if you are a believer, I want to encourage you, when the hard times come, when it seems that everyone has turned their back on you, to seek encouragement from the Lord, and to pray and ask counsel of the Lord, and when he confirms in your heart what to do, to have courage and faith in him and his Word, and get the victory.

If you’ve never put your faith and trust into Jesus Christ, and asked him to be your Savior, then you’ll never understand the peace that comes with trusting him. There’s no reason to try and stand by yourself anymore because when you trust in God, you’re never standing alone.

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