Thursday, July 8, 2010

When Risk Management Is Not Necessary

for the LORD your God is he who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies, to give you the victory.
Deuteronomy 20:4

I find an interesting thing going on with this verse. It was meant to encourage Israel in the imminent task of taking control of the Promised Land. They were going up against cities and people who were stronger, settled, and more experienced in battle. But God was assuring them victory. He does so with a string of promises. One promise is directed toward their foes. Three promises are directed toward Israel.

The negative promise is toward the enemies of Israel. God had set Himself against them. This was not arbitrary. In this context it is clear that an enemy was any group of people who refused to make peace with Israel (Deuteronomy 20:10-12). Only when a city had set itself against terms of peace could Israel attack. At that point God was against that city as well.

The three positive promises directed toward Israel were meant to show the power of God to them. First, God fought WITH them. He was alongside them and aware of the battle dangers for He was right there with them in the battle, not watching from the distance. Second, God was fighting FOR them. Almighty God was battling their cause. That is sort of an ultimate weapon! The final promise is summed up with the promise "to give you the victory". God had a purpose in the battle that He would work: to give His people the victory. Clearly the battle and its success would belong to God, even though He also asked the people to fight. This is good risk management, if ever there has been!

- Posted with my iPad. The Apple Kool-Aide tastes fine.

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