God fights for you.
Is that news to you? Have you forgotten this following the heartbreaking events in San Bernardino? Has the threat of ISIS made God seem powerless? Do you wonder why God isn’t fixing the world?
During this Christmas season, you’ve almost certainly been reminded of Immanuel, which means God is with us. Maybe you’ve heard about the God who made you, watches you, directs you, knows you. But the God who fights for you? Who blazes the trail ahead of you? Who defends you? Who collapses walls and defeats kings?
Did you know that God is fighting for you? That “with us is the Lord our God, to help us and to fight our battles” (2 Chron. 32:8)? That “our God will fight for us” (Neh. 4:20)? That the Lord will “fight against those who fight against [you]” (Ps. 35:1)?
Did you catch that? Not only does God promise to be with us, but he promises to fight for us. For you.
God fights for you. Let those four words sink in for a moment.
God. The CEO, President, King, Supreme Ruler, Absolute Monarch, Czar, Emperor, and Raja of all history. He runs interference and provides cover. He is impeccably perfect, tirelessly strong, unquestionably capable. He is endlessly joyful, wise, and willing. And he ...
Fights. He deploys angels and commands weather. He stands down Goliaths and vacates cemeteries. He fights ...
For. For your health, family, faith, and safety. Are the odds against you? Does your boss have it out for you? Are there evils in the world we can’t begin to understand? It’s a difficult time, for sure. But God fights for ...
You. Yes, you! You with the sordid past. You with the target on your back. You with the child in danger. You with the bad back, credit, or job. He fights not just for the rich, pretty, or religious. He fights for the yous of the world. Are you a you?
The big news of the Bible is not that you fight for God but that God fights for you. And to know this—to know that your Father fights for you—is an unparalleled source of empowerment.
In late January 1956, Martin Luther King Jr. received a threatening phone call at his house. It was not the first foreboding message he had received. But on this night as his children and wife lay sleeping, the weight of the civil rights movement was too heavy. He decided that the risk was too great. He began to map out an exit strategy. At midnight he bowed over the kitchen table and began to pray, “I am afraid. The people are looking to me for leadership, and if I stand before them without strength and courage, they too will falter. I am at the end of my powers. I have nothing left. I’ve come to the point where I can’t face it alone.”
King described what happened next. “I experienced the presence of the Divine as I had never experienced Him before. It seemed as though I could hear the quiet assurance of an inner voice saying: ‘Stand up for righteousness, stand up for truth; and God will be at your side forever.’” When facing a daunting challenge, King shifted his focus and turned to God.
So did Paul and Silas. This New Testament missionary duo was thrown into a Roman jail in Philippi. The jailer locked them in the innermost prison. He fastened their feet in stocks. They had no recourse, no means of escape. But rather than look at their shackles and chains, they looked to God. “About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them” (Acts 16:25).
It was midnight. They were in the deepest hole of the jail. The doors were locked. The guards were on duty. Yet Paul and Silas were singing and praying. Like Joshua, they looked to God for help.
And they received it dramatically. “Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everyone’s chains came loose” (v. 26).
Help came after they lifted their eyes. Perhaps it is time for you to do the same. Lift up your eyes.
God is standing with you. And he is fighting for you.
When God became flesh, he fought for you. When Jesus faced the devil in the wilderness, he fought for you. When he stood up for the neglected, lonely, and hurting, was he not standing up for you? He knows our pain and sorrows. He’s walked lonely roads and suffered sleepless nights.
Yes, God is still with us. And, what’s more, he fights for us. He fights to comfort us and strengthen us, even in the shadow of pain and under the threat of evil. He fights to guide us and redeem us, even when we can’t see the light.
Like King, we need only turn to God to see him standing at our side, fighting for our victory.
Max Lucado is a San Antonio-based pastor whose latest book is Glory Days.