February 18th

Faith and Bravery for Battle

6Then Jonathan said to the young man who bore his armor, "Come, let us go over to the garrison of these uncircumcised; it may be that the LORD will work for us. For nothing restrains the LORD from saving by many or by few." 7So his armorbearer said to him, "Do all that is in your heart. Go then; here I am with you, according to your heart." 8Then Jonathan said, "Very well, let us cross over to these men, and we will show ourselves to them. 9If they say thus to us, "Wait until we come to you,' then we will stand still in our place and not go up to them. 10But if they say thus, "Come up to us,' then we will go up. For the LORD has delivered them into our hand, and this will be a sign to us." 11So both of them showed themselves to the garrison of the Philistines. And the Philistines said, "Look, the Hebrews are coming out of the holes where they have hidden." 12Then the men of the garrison called to Jonathan and his armorbearer, and said, "Come up to us, and we will show you something." Jonathan said to his armorbearer, "Come up after me, for the LORD has delivered them into the hand of Israel." 13And Jonathan climbed up on his hands and knees with his armorbearer after him; and they fell before Jonathan. And as he came after him, his armorbearer killed them. 14That first slaughter which Jonathan and his armorbearer made was about twenty men within about half an acre of land. 15And there was trembling in the camp, in the field, and among all the people. The garrison and the raiders also trembled; and the earth quaked, so that it was a very great trembling. 19Now it happened, while Saul talked to the priest, that the noise which was in the camp of the Philistines continued to increase; so Saul said to the priest, "Withdraw your hand." 20Then Saul and all the people who were with him assembled, and they went to the battle; and indeed every man's sword was against his neighbor, and there was very great confusion. 23So the LORD saved Israel that day, and the battle shifted to Beth Aven. 1 Samuel 14:6-15,19-20,23 NKJV 

If you are looking for a story to pump up your faith, this is it!  There are many exciting aspects of this story.  Jonathan and his armorbearer provide a wonderful illustration of how faith can unleash the mighty power of God.  Note the words that Jonathan speaks.  They are zealous and “faith-filled” words that demonstrate his trust in God.  His armorbearer responds with equally faithful words, committing to go with Jonathan and support him.  After they had moved out into the ravine, God reinforced their decision by confirming he was with them through the Philistine’s invitation to come up and fight.  

The Philistines fell before Jonathan, suggesting that God struck them down.  As Jonathan moved out in faith, God fought for him in the battle.  Their victory over the twenty men sparked a much bigger and awesome display of God’s power.  The earth quaked, the Philistines fought against themselves and God gave the Israelites victory!  

We can apply this story’s faith principles to whatever we are facing.  God will respond to our steps of faith just as he did for Jonathan.  Here are five principles from the story that we can apply to breaking sex addiction:

1)      Be zealous for God and don’t tolerate the devil’s material in your life (ex. porn)

2)      Take the offensive against the enemy, standing in faith in God’s protection and strength for the battle

3)      Speak words that are faith-filled

4)      Invite a faith-filled friend to go with you into battle

5)      Watch and see how God will use you to help other people find victory over the enemy 

Questions for further thought:

Prayer:

“Heavenly Father, Thank you for the story of Jonathan and his armor bearer.  Thank you that I too can have awesome victories over the enemies I face because you are with me.  Please forgive me for tolerating my pet sins, when I should have been regarding them as enemies.  Please help me have a battle-mindset and instill in me the faith I need for freedom.  I will look for your confirmation and support as I step out in faith to fight the battles.  Please lead me in developing closer armor-bearer relationships with people who can help me.  Thank you, Father!  I praise you now and forever.  In your holy name I pray, Amen.”