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Rainbow Divider
MCM Broadcast

TV Broadcast #1323

God Rules

February 11, 2018

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— Brother Phil Enlow: We can be in situations that are totally out of control, totally beyond anything we can imagine. But there’s a God in Heaven, there’s another army. We’re not alone with the circumstances. There is an army that fights for the people who put their trust in God.

And what happens is not what men determine, it’s what God determines. You see that over and over again in the scriptures. And so, you know, there’s this…the guy stands out there and tells the emissaries of Hezekiah…all this message and all this message of defiance, and then said, don’t speak in our native language so the people on the wall won’t hear it and won’t understand it. He said, we want everybody to hear this. We’re defying you! And so, Hezekiah and his men go back and they’re talking about it and praying about it.

Well, they did the right thing. They called for Isaiah, the prophet…said, here’s what’s going on! And so, let me see if I can go down into the story a little bit. In verse, chapter 37…verse 3 rather. “This is what Hezekiah says, This day is a day of distress and rebuke and disgrace, as when children come to the point of birth and there is no strength to deliver them. It may be that the LORD your God will hear the words of the field commander, whom his master, the king of the Assyria, has sent to ridicule the living God, and that he will rebuke him for the words the LORD your God has heard. Therefore pray for the remnant that still survives.” (NIV).

So now this is a message to…that basically they’re coming to the prophet, knowing that the prophet has the ear of God, and the prophet can hear from God. So, “When King Hezekiah’s officials came to Isaiah, Isaiah said to them, Tell your master, This is what the LORD says: Do not be afraid of what you have heard—those words with which the underlings of the king of Assyria have blasphemed me. Listen! I am going to put a spirit in him so that when he hears a certain report, he will return to his own country, and there I will have him cut down with a sword.” And that’s exactly what happened.

And later on, you have the same thing coming. The army is still there. And, Hezekiah is praying, down in verse 15…16. “O LORD Almighty, God of Israel, enthroned between the cherubim, you alone are God over all the kingdoms of the earth. You have made heaven and earth.”

Wasn’t that a good way to start a prayer when you’re in a situation? Let’s stop, let’s not be so buried in…as someone has said, the size of the mountain, and tell God how terrible our mountain is. Let’s tell the mountain how terrible our God is and how great He is!

So he begins his prayer, focusing on who God is. You’re the only God, you’re the only one who’s God! “Give ear, O LORD, and hear; open your eyes, O LORD, and see; listen to all the words Sennacherib has sent to insult the living God. It is true, O LORD, that the Assyrian kings have laid waste all these peoples and their lands. They have thrown their gods into the fire and destroyed them, for they were not gods but only wood and stone, fashioned by human hands.

“Now, O LORD…deliver us from his hand…” Why? “…So that all kingdoms on earth may know that you alone, O LORD, are God.” I mean, there’s someone who’s really got the picture. He understands that there is only one God. That all the rest of this is just nothing, not something we need to be afraid of. It’s a good thing to remember, isn’t it?

( congregational response ).

And so he goes to God, and said, God, you’re the one in charge. Whatever You say, goes…whatever You will say, it’s what goes. So we’re bringing our appeal to you.

And so then, Isaiah comes and says, “This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: Because you have prayed to me concerning Sennacherib king of Assyria, this is the word the LORD has spoken against him.” And then he goes on, I’m not gonna read all of this. But basically, he’s talking about how he’s been lifted up in pride. You think you’re so great. And you think you’ve done all this great stuff

 Verse 26, “Have you not heard?” Listen to what he says here. “Have you not heard?” Don’t you know this? Don’t you get this? “Long ago I ordained it.” You want to know why you have been able to be so successful? I’m the one that planned this! I’m the one that’s behind it! Do you think you’re something? You’re absolutely nothing! You wouldn’t be anything if I hadn’t given you the ability and put you in this place! I have a purpose in the things that you have done! You’ve been an instrument of judgment! Now I’m bringing you to a place where I’m going to show the world who’s really God! Praise God!

“Long ago I ordained it. In the days of old I planned it; now I have brought it to pass, that you have turned fortified cities into piles of stone.” God did this! “Their people, drained of power, are dismayed and put to shame. They are like plants in the field, like tender green shoots, like grass sprouting on the roof, scorched before it grows up.

“But I know where you stay and when you come and go and how you rage against me. Because you rage against me and because your insolence has reached my ears, I will put my hook in your nose and my bit in your mouth, and I will make you return by the way you came.”

And so, then there’s a promise to Hezekiah. It’s gonna be all right. I’m gonna take care of it. I’m gonna take care of you. “The zeal of the LORD Almighty will accomplish this. Therefore this is what the LORD says concerning the king of Assyria: He will not enter this city or shoot an arrow here. He will not come before it with shield or build a siege ramp against it. By the way that he came he will return; he will not enter this city, declares the LORD.” Is there a force anywhere in the universe that can countermand when God says something? Praise God!

( congregational amens ).

You know, that same God commands things concerning our lives! He does what it takes, folks, to bring us into the center of His will. Thank God! He says, “I will defend this city and save it, for my sake and for the sake of David my servant!”

Then one simple little account of what happened. “Then the angel of the LORD went out and put to death a hundred and eighty-five thousand men in the Assyrian camp.” Good Lord. Do you think we’ve got somebody that’s pretty powerful? I mean, that must have looked pretty imposing to the city. There they are, there’s 185,000 soldiers out there! And they’ve beaten everybody they’ve ever gone up against and now they’re coming and defying us! What do we do? There’s another army he doesn’t know about.

( congregational response ).

There’s a God he doesn’t acknowledge. He doesn’t know about this God. He doesn’t know about His power! One angel goes out…185,000 people. “When the people got up the next morning—there were all the dead bodies!” So what does Sennacherib do? Well, what can he do? “So Sennacherib king of Assyria broke camp and withdrew. He returned to Nineveh and stayed there.” And not only that, he winds up getting assassinated himself and somebody else takes over the throne. I’ll tell you what, there’s a God who can take care of business.

( congregational amens ).

And there are so many implications to this. But we see throughout the scriptures, particularly in the Old Testament, we see time and time again, that there’s this principle. There is another army. Where God’s people are concerned, there is an army that fights. And where God’s people humble themselves and walk with Him and look to Him and acknowledge Him, I’ll tell you, we got Somebody who’s with us that’s greater than he that’s in the world. That’s what the scripture says.

I know some of you will think about Elisha. You know that period of time when he was telling the king of Israel what his enemy was saying in his secret chamber and revealing all his plans. And finally the heathen king says, who’s the spy? How’s this guy getting all this information? They tell him the prophet’s telling you…telling the king there what you’re talking about in your bedchamber! He’s revealing all your secrets.

And you think that alone would have caused him to say, wait a minute, I’m up against something that’s a little…I’m getting in over my head here. If they’ve got a prophet who’s got that kind of inside track, maybe I better back off here.

But what he did was to send out a force and say, you better go get him. Let’s find out where he’s at. Let’s surround the city. And so, you remember how they surrounded the city and by night they get up and Elisha’s servant looks out and says, alas, what are we gonna do? Ever been in that position when something happens that you weren’t expecting? What am I gonna do? Well, that’s not the best reaction. It’s kind of natural. But you know, we need to see beyond that.

( congregational amens ).

And Elisha was able to see beyond that. And he said, there are more with us than with them. And all of a sudden, he opened his eyes—the Lord opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and the mountains were full of, “…horses and chariots of fire.”

And suddenly, they saw, instead of them being surrounded, the enemy was the one that was surrounded and in trouble. The Lord gave a victory. Over and over again you see God’s people in situations that were humanly impossible, but there was another army.

Do you remember how, when Joshua was about to lead the people into the land…they’re getting ready for their first battle. And he goes out and all of a sudden, he sees this mysterious figure with a sword in his hand. And he says, “Are you for us or for our enemies?” It’s evident, from the way he describes it, that he realized this was a supernatural figure! I’d better find out who he’s fighting for!

Well, the interesting thing is, he said…his answer was, I’m not for either of you. I’m sent by the Lord! I’m the commander of the Lord’s forces! There’s another army here! There’s an army that is carrying out God’s purpose. Your place is not to go out and fight for yourself. Your place is to come under the commander of the Lord. Do what he says, and you’re gonna have an army with you that is invincible.

And every time the people of God occupied that place of seeking God, looking to Him, obeying what He said, carrying out His instructions…every time they did that, they were successful! The enemy had no chance because they weren’t just up against men…you know, men. They were up against a heavenly army. I mean, they didn’t have to come up with a way to bring the walls of Jericho down, did they? God took care of that! And I’ll tell you, this God can take care of the things in our lives, too.

( congregational amens ).

You know, you can go on and on with occasions in the scriptures where God has revealed the reality of His Kingdom. But I’ll tell you, you need to realize…and of course, it’s not only the one kingdom, it’s both kingdoms. This world is not just what you see. But the central thing is this, God from eternity to eternity, He has a plan. He has a book written. Somehow He has been able to take into consideration every person that will ever live, every choice they make, and God is bringing all of that to pass to bring together an eternal Kingdom.

( congregational amens ).

Now some people, when they face trial and difficulty and adversity that God sends, it makes them bitter. It makes them rage at God. It’s like God says, don’t do that or you’ll be hurt. And they do it and they get hurt, and they get mad at God because they got hurt. I mean, that’s the logic that’s really going on there. “The wages of sin is death.” It doesn’t pay.

As Sennacherib found out, it doesn’t pay to oppose God! It doesn’t pay to defy Him and to say, I’m gonna do what I want to do! So I’ll tell you, that ought to be a lesson to the people of the world and to anybody that can hear!

( congregational amens ).

God is a God of love and mercy, and what He tells us, He tells us, not out of a heart of a tyrant. It’s not out of the heart of someone who longs to abuse us and make pets out of us and just for His own ego. My God, He is a God of mercy and love! All you have to do is look at the cross, as we’ve said several times, and you begin to see the price that He’s willing to pay in order to reach out to lost men. You see the fact that He’s putting up with what’s going on in the world should tell us…not that He’s powerless to stop it, but that He is long-suffering!

( congregational amens ).

He’s extremely patient!

( congregational amens ).

But there will come a day when that patience will have run its course, when men will have made their choice. And I’ll tell you, I want to be one that humbles myself under the mighty hand of God. Because I know what He’s got planned…He’s revealed it. It’s not something you can know naturally. It’s not just picking out words in a book. There’s a God who will reveal it to a heart that says, oh God, You are God. Lord, open my eyes, open my heart so that I can see. Oh God, You’re still on Your throne. Praise God!

( congregational amens ).

So I’ll tell you, there’s a message to people. God is on His throne, but He will hold us accountable for our choices. It behooves us to humble ourselves and to recognize His hand. But I’ll tell you what, there’s a…for God’s people, as I say, many times it’s easy to look at the things of this world.

We were talking about this the other night watching the news. Of course, if you’re watching the news, and trying to derive some kind of comfort from it…good luck! Everything is just…of course, the age of communication is such that something can happen anywhere in the world and we hear about it almost instantly. And there’s plenty of bad stuff going on.

But folks, if you’re looking at the world, and it seems like it’s out of control…it’s not. There is a God who is allowing things to take place. I started to mention about Job. And I thought about the one thing… how many of you remember when he first…when all this calamity first came upon him? You know, a house fell on some, a whirlwind…I guess the whirlwind caused the house to fall. But there were several disasters that suddenly happened.

And we know from the scripture, that it was Satan that did it. But it was God who gave the command! So folks, there is power that is loose in our world that we do not see. And God is allowing Satan to be loosed. His purpose is not just to punish. It’s to awaken those who could possibly be awakened!

( congregational amens ).

Thank God! We’re going to see terrible things before it’s over! But I pray that God will enable me at every point to see God is in charge. God’s book is being carried out step by step! God will never forget His children! He will never lose one of His children! Everything He does is for a redemptive purpose to reach every heart that can be reached! Praise God!

You know, if you’ve got a little child who doesn’t know any better, and you tell him not to play with snakes, and they start playing with one someday, are you a meany for going and grabbing them and trying to talk to them? No! Your purpose is to help…is to save them from destruction. It’s to save them from harm.

And I’ll tell you, the things that God is allowing in this world are designed to turn men from a course that is taking them over a cliff to certain destruction! There is no question. We know how the world is going to end! We don’t have to guess! God has already opened the book of truth to us! It will end by fire!

It will end unexpectedly for the people of the world. They will not be prepared because they have hardened their hearts against this God who rules! Every time He has reached, they have gone like this, and said, no, we’re going to do our own thing!

Oh my God, I pray there’s nobody listening to this, here or elsewhere, that would dare to be so foolish as to take such a stance. This God rules. He made the world. He made it for a reason. His reason is awesome! His reason is one founded in love and mercy and grace, leading to the highest happiness of all who participate. I just want to put my hands up and say, Lord, You are God.

( congregational amens ).

You rule. Lord, I know the purposes and the plans that You have for me. They are plans to prosper me, not to harm me. Lord, I want to have that kind of confidence. When I look out I don’t want to be afraid. I don’t want to be like the people of the world whose hearts are failing them for fear of the things that are coming on the world. I want to be one that when I see this stuff going on, I can lift up my head because I know my redemption is drawing nigh! And I know You rule!

( congregational amens ).

And even if I’m caught up in a disaster and I die. Praise God, I win! That doesn’t hurt God’s purpose at all. God has a…I mean, there’s a day that He’s got for me to leave this planet. I rest in His plan! I don’t have to worry about that! I serve a God…I serve a loving, merciful God who is in charge!

( congregational response ).

And I want to live with that! I want to be able to look at the world and see it through His eyes in a greater measure. Oh, Praise God! All my days, all my days are written in a book before one of them comes to be as well…all yours! Praise the Lord!

There are so many things you could…I mean, so many ways, different directions you could go with this. But I think that’s perhaps enough for today. You know, I’ve wrestled with some of this because it’s…it does go…you could go on and on and on with the subject. But the fact is that every one of us needs to have a settled truth in our minds that God does rule.

( congregational amens ).

And be willing to trust Him that He does what is right, because it would be easy to look at the rise of somebody like Hitler and say, what’s the matter with You, God? You’re not doing right. But I’ll tell you, when you see it through His eyes and the things that He accomplished in spite of all of that, all that stuff…you see how He was with Corrie ten Boom, for example, in the prisons, and all the other stories that have come out of people He’s reached that He would never…would never have come to Him under any other circumstances. We’re gonna see through very different eyes, that God has done what is right.

Oh, and that needs…we need to see the God that Nebuchadnezzar came to know and came to understand. And I’ll tell you, it’s gonna give God’s people rest. It’s going to give us confidence…not just on the large scale…oh, what’s going to happen to our country? But, what about my life? What about the things that come against me? Have I got to rush out and fight?

You know, the scripture that kind of started me down this track a little bit…I was reading in another verse in Isaiah. I’m not even gonna try to find it right now. But it was one of those times when the Lord was talking about Israel, or Judah, one…and how they were in trouble, they were facing some kind of enemy. And so, they were running off to Egypt trying to make an alliance to get help. And He said, why are you doing that? The Egyptians are flesh, not spirit. Their horses are flesh, not spirit! You’re going for the wrong army!

You know, suddenly your mind seems to go after that…all the pictures of this other army. God has an army, folks. None of us is alone. There are more with us…there are more with you! If you’re with the Lord, if you’re in harmony with His heart and His purpose, there are more with you than this entire planet put together.

And God wants His people to have a confidence in the God that we serve and a rest in our hearts, and to be set free from all the stuff that would cause us to rise up in ourselves and try to make things happen…but to trust in our living God!

I mean, this dovetails back into what we heard Wednesday night. There’s a God who is in charge. He has the power to decree whatever. And even though there is a time element in the decree happening, that’s exactly right, the principle we heard…there’s a God, when He speaks, stuff happens that no devil in hell can interfere with.

But I believe God wants to bring us into a greater harmony with His purpose, and a greater rest in our hearts. So, I just pray the Lord will make some sense out of this today. But…thank God! I’ll comment on this, that song…praise God, what did we just sing in the choir?

( congregational response ).

“God Is Still on His Throne.” Yeah. I remember…the Lord gave that me years ago. But there was a true story behind that. I really did hear a man say, will the Lord be with us? Look at what’s happening in the world. This was like 45 years ago. And immediately, that thing rose up in me and said, yes, He’s on His throne! He will never forget His own. So, I mean there’s a real story behind that song. But it’s the truth!

( congregational amens ).

It’s the truth! God is still on His throne! And there’s no reason for any of us to be discouraged or made fearful by what we see in this world. God wants us, at every point, to lift up our hands and say, Lord, You are on the throne and I am resting in Your hands. If you allow me to go through something, I’m still in Your hands.

I mean, does this not dovetail into for “…we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.” You see that sense of a plan that’s being carried out. God is taking all the tangled things that go on in this world and He’s working them together to make us something…something out of us that can live with Him forever! I want to be part of that, don’t you? Praise God! God rules! Praise the Lord!