The Lords Protection

(Acts 23:12-35)

There are many people who can and do bear testimony to the protection they have received from The Lord. I know His protection first hand and how The Lord protected both my wife, myself and my children from death. If you are interested in my testimony relating to this you can Protection

Protection

Anyway, we see the power and working of God’s protection in Paul’s life as he waited in prison in Jerusalem. The Lord has said that we would and will be protected and that was certainly true in this case.

So it is worth looking at the protection of The Lord and what the bible says about his protection, both in relation to Paul’s situation and ours also. It is a wonderful thing knowing that all the power of the creator of heaven and earth is there to protect us from all things that may come against us. Evil men, troubled times, difficult circumstances even demonic and satanic attack cannot stand against the protection of The Lord.

Paul’s Protection

First let us look at what happened in Paul’s case.

Paul was in prison awaiting whatever was to come, but knowing that The Lord had spoken to him telling him he would stand and testify in Rome just as he had in Jerusalem. But the leaders of the Jews were plotting and scheming against him.

Forty of the Jews had banded together and taken an oath not to eat or drink until they had killed Paul. They went to the leaders of the Jews telling them as much and sought them to ask the tribune to bring Paul down on the pretence of wishing to examine him further. However these forty were assassins intending to attack by surprise and kill Paul.

But we see that The Lord had His servant in the right place at the right time in the form of Paul’s nephew who overheard this plot. It is worth remembering that The Lord has said,

“…where I am, there will my servant be also.”

In this case Paul’s nephew was The Lord’s servant who was in the right place at the right time to overhear and thwart the evil plans of the forty assassins.

And The Lord provided the necessary protection to keep Paul safe. These forty assassins, even armed to the teeth would be no match for the escort provided by the tribune to keep Paul safe. The tribune was clearly concerned about Paul’s safety for he determined it was too dangerous to keep him where he was, and so he provided an armed escort of seventy horsemen, two hundred foot soldiers and two hundred spearmen to protect Paul. He also left in the third hour of the night, about 9:00 PM so that they could get away quickly and quietly before the assassins knew what was happening.

And what was Paul to the tribune anyway? Just another Jew, but one who happened to be a roman citizen by birth. All this,was under the control of the protective hand of God to ensure Paul ran his full course and eventually preached the gospel in Rome.

Our Protection

Like Paul, all who come to The Lord and seek a His ways have similar protections. These protections are manifold and displayed in many different ways.

First, we are afforded protection simply through repenting and coming to The Lord. Look at what Jesus said about some people who had died in Jerusalem as it concerns the protection of The Lord in Luke 13:1-5.

1 There were some present at that very time who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. 2 And he answered them, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way? 3 No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. 4 Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem? 5 No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”

He is clearly saying that those people who died had no protection for they were unrepentant. It was not because they were worse than any other sinners, but they just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. However when a person repents and comes to Jesus, then they are saved from similarly perishing in more ways than one.

Then there is the protection we receive when we receive the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit teaches, counsels, guides and also protects us by guiding our footsteps as we surrender to The Lord. As we see in Hebrews 1:14, it is the work of the Holy Spirit to serve those who are to inherit salvation, and that is us. And one of those points of service is protection.

Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation?

Look also at the types of protection Jesus said would be provided when we need them in Mark 16:18.

“…they will pick up serpents with their hands; and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.”

Then we see The Lord protect us in our daily life with respect to financial resources and the needs of the body in this life. He knows we need food and clothing and so he provides those things so we do not have to worry or be anxious about anything. Consider these next three scriptures and if you worry about anything, ask yourself why when The Lord has said here that He will provide and protect you.

28 And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. 29 Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. 30 But even the hairs of your head are all numbered. 31 Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows. (Matthew 10:28-31)

30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. (Matthew 6:30-33)

23 The steps of a man are established by the LORD, when he delights in his way; 24 though he fall, he shall not be cast headlong, for the LORD upholds his hand. 25 I have been young, and now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his children begging for bread. 26 He is ever lending generously, and his children become a blessing. (Psalm 37:23-26)

Finally we see the desire of God for our protection when He says how he would like to protect and gather all his children together to keep them safe. In Luke 13:34-35 as Jesus laments how the leaders of the Jews had mistreated the people he shows how God wants to protect those who are his.

34 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing! 35 Behold, your house is forsaken. And I tell you, you will not see me until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!'”

So we need not fear anything when we have the protection of The Lord. Besides, what is the worst that man can do to Gods people? Kill them? So what? If a godly person were killed then they are with The Lord and not having to suffer in this world anymore.

But while we are in this world we have the same protection from The Lord as Paul had in his time of need. It is my firm belief that no person, and certainly no Christian person, will die until the minute and hour set by the lord. Also we do not see the many times The Lord protects us from danger as we live in this world. We sometimes recognise that if we had not been delayed or had not travelled a certain route we may have been caught in an accident and so on. But there are possibly countless smaller events of which we are unaware that God intervenes on our behalf to save us from grief.

So take heart and know that He is with you. This does not mean we should take risks, but if events befall us that may be detrimental, we can take heart knowing God is there beside us to save us.

(Photo sourced from stock.xchng taken by Miguel Saavedra)

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