Focus verses: I Chronicles 5:23-26
The infidelities of the children of Israel have exceeded the Lord's forbearance. So the Assyrians swept down and carried off the descendants of Reuben, the first born of Jacob and Leah; the descendants of Gad, the first born of Jacob and Zilpah; and the descendants of Manasseh, the first born of Joseph and Asenath.
It is interesting that these are all the "first born" of their mother. Even more interesting is a look at the meaning of their names. Reuben means "look, a son." Gad can mean either "a troop" (like an army) or "good fortune." Manasseh means "to forget."
I find it fascinating that the Assyrians carried off the first born and good fortune because the children of Israel had forgotten the Lord.
You would think that the remaining tribes would fall on their knees, pleading with God for restoration. But the king of Israel allied with the king of Syria (Aram) and marched against the king of Judah instead.
Why do we not turn to God when the world goes against us? We seem to want to take on the world on its terms - on its turf - without the benefit of our Father's knowledge and power. We seem to think our battles are on a physical plane, when they are most often spiritual in nature.
Help us to see Your permissive hand in our adversities. Use them to draw us closer, more dependent upon You in every way. Grant us victory in Your Holy Spirit.
In Jesus' most precious name.