Ben-hadad's changed battle plans (to fight in the plains instead of the hills) following his first defeat is instructive on the persistence of the devil to get us one way or the other. Note that immediately following this victory the word of the Lord to Ahab was, "Go strengthen yourself," verse 22. This is not typical for us, because usually after a victory we often tend to let our hair (defences) down, relax a bit and celebrate. But not while the enemy is at large, is God's advice. We must therefore resist the tendency to pat ourselves on the back following a significant victory; premature celebration will likely open to the arch-enemy other points of attack upon our souls. Depending on how comprehensive our armoury really is, we run a serious risk of being defeated almost as immediately as we win a victory. Friends, let's never forget that we're in hostile enemy territory; we're not safe until we're Home, or until we die in the Lord. Hence we're told, "Wherefore, let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he falls." 1 Cor 10: 12
But here's an amazing twist! It's the same thing with God as well: His stubborn love just will not let us walk away without Him putting up a fight to win us back to Himself. So even while Satan, through Ben-hadad, employs multiple battle strategies, so God keeps trying in multiple ways to woo Ahab to Himself.
How sad a commentary on Ahab, and on humanity in general, that he seemed more determinedly defenced against God's multiple nets of Grace - set to pull him in the great draw of Salvation. He seemed more disposed to getting into the snares of the devil. How is it with us? May God have mercy on us.
Lord, please help me to put up the defence against the devil, and not You. In the end it is hoped that the devil will depart from us, and not You. Amen.
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