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« Alternate Endings.  | Main | Hills and Valleys »

A Place of Broad Rivers

“But there the majestic LORD will be for us a place of broad rivers… in which no galley with oars will sail.” Isaiah 33:21. 

Things are not always what they seem to be.  Ancient Babylon seemed to be an impregnable city.  The Roman Empire seemed to be incapable of defeat.  The Titanic seemed to be an unsinkable ship.  It has seemed to generations past that electricity could not be harnessed; that the speed of horseback could not be surpassed; that air could not support a flying machine.  In each case, the suppositions were wrong.  In the economy of God, seemingly impossible situations provide the arena for God to display his supernatural power.  He delights in taking the very things man calls impossible and turning them into monuments to his excellency.  

Most great cities were founded upon a broad river.  Babylon on the Euphrates, Nineveh on the Tigris, Thebes on the Nile, Rome on the Tiber, Paris on the Seine, and London on the Thames.  Yet Jerusalem had no great river.  The Jordan River was a mere stream that connected Galilee with the Dead Sea, and it was still fifteen miles from the city. Without a natural river, Jerusalem had no natural supply route for commerce.  Without a natural river, it had no means of nourishment for the land.  Without a natural river, it had no natural means of defense. 

The secret:  Jerusalem had no natural advantages because Israel was to focus on the supernatural advantage they possessed—the Lord God Jehovah!  The less you rely on the natural resources, the more you will rely on the supernatural resources.  “The glorious Lord will be unto us a place of broad rivers!”  

Jerusalem is a type of the church.  The church has been criticized some because it lacks all the things that other great religions of the world have.  Who founded our organization?  What is our history?  What great contribution have we made to the world?  Are we listed in the Who’s Who?  How many adherents do we have?  What great colleges, universities or hospitals do we run?  Church members sometimes get paranoid that they lack all the advantages that others in the world have.   But, those who rely on the ways of this world share the fate of the world. 

Cultivate your relationship with God instead of continually looking for everything you need someplace else.  He will supply your need for commerce or livelihood.  “I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread.”  Psalm 37:25 He will supply your need for nourishment as He did for Elijah in 1 Kings 17.  God will supply your need for protection.  

Here’s the kicker: Galleys with oars and gallant vessels were invading ships. They navigated broad rivers to carry out their attacks.  If you choose the broad rivers, you will also choose the means by which you will be overthrown!  Satan may sail in on the very river you thought was so important for your life.  Learn this important principle: trust in your Lord alone—not in geography, pedigree, education, money, connections—nothing but Jesus!  He will be your broad river! 

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Reader Comments (1)

Oh, Bishop! This most beautiful! Thank you!

December 3, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterFran Sal__

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