Acts 23:12 – And when it was day, certain of the Jews banded together, and bound themselves under a curse, saying that they would neither eat nor drink till they had killed Paul.
I will be as clear as I possibly can concerning covenant protection from the Lord for the believer. Is it real? Yes! Does it come without any qualifying elements? No! Anything that has to do with covenant has qualifying elements. They may be different for different elements of covenant, but that fact that qualifying elements exist is universal. Allow me to offer you two examples of qualifying elements that can be applied to anything we ask of the Lord. They are both found in the book of James, one in chapter one and one in chapter four.
- James 1 – when we ask God for something, we must ask in faith, nothing wavering. The wavering man is a double-minded man, and that man should not think that he will receive anything from the Lord. That is a qualifying element.
- James 4 – we are told that if we ask “amiss,” that means with the wrong motivation, a motivation that lends itself to our lusts, we will not receive from the Father that which we have asked. That is a qualifying element.
One additional example I would like to share is from Isaiah 54:17. There it is declared that “no weapon formed against you (the believer) shall prosper.” I am convinced that this is one of the greatest elements preventing believers from enjoying far great prosperity in their lives. They rob themselves by being used as a weapon against other believers. Even if you are a believer, if you use your words or actions as weapons against fellow believers, you cut off your ability to prosper. Wake up, saints; use your words and actions to bless, not curse.
Paul was awake, not using his words to curse, but to bless, to speak truth, to edify. Therefore, he walked in the blessing of Isaiah 54:17. No weapon formed against him would prosper. And that is precisely what happened to the group that covenanted together that they would not eat or drink until they had killed Paul. The outcome here was obviously one of three things: they were killed in their endeavors, or they died of starvation, or they lied and broke their oath.
What about you, my friend. Do you walk in covenant with the Lord? Do you keep your tongue in check, allowing it to speak no corrupt communication, especially against another believer? Do you keep you heart and mind in single focus, holding fast to the integrity of God’s Word about whatever it is on which you have set your faith? Are you motives pure? Are you asking God for things with the right motive, with the desire to use your blessings in a manner to be a blessing? Don’t negate the promises. Be true to the Word.
Manna for Today – Acts 23:12-22; Deuteronomy 28:1-14; Joshua 1:6-8; Isaiah 54:17; James 1:2-8; James 4:3