K Neill Foster

Daily Doctrine

A daily devotional by Dr. K. Neill Foster

for July 11, 2019

Panic Sent from God

Text: "Then panic struck the whole army. . . . It was a panic sent by God." 1 Samuel 14:15

We find here an extraordinary text of the narrative of Jonathan's bold assault against the Philistines, the traditional enemy of Israel. Guided by the Lord, Jonathan and his armor bearer make a frontal assault up a cliff side to take on the whole enemy force.

"Then panic struck the whole army-- those in the camp and field, and those in the outposts and raiding parties-- and the ground shook." The panic was accompanied by an earthquake-- extraordinary bravery was vindicated by God. The final result of this encounter was that the Philistines were routed and "the Lord rescued Israel that day."

In the execution of human warfare, sometimes there are extraordinary events that take place-- surprising events that effect a certain outcome. In the end, one army wins and another loses.

For a number of years we lived in close proximity to Gettysburg where a pivotal battle of the American Civil War was fought. There was appalling loss of life on both sides, but in the end, the North prevailed, and the slaves were emancipated.

There was no earthquake. There was no panic beyond the ordinary kind. But a battle was fought--and a war was won.

Those who plan battles, plus the many millions more who trust in armaments and force, would do well to remember that one of God's names is "the Lord of hosts." There are some battles in which God's Name has become involved and God's will has been revealed. It is in those battles that earthquakes can and do take place and panics from the Lord do arrive.

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