And the Philistines took the ark of God , and brought it from Ebenezer unto Ashdod.
When the Philistines took the ark of God , they brought it into the house of Dagon and set it by Dagon. 1 Samuel 5: 1-2
There was a grim situation here ; one of astonishment , defeat and great reproach to the people of God and to God's holy Name! 1 Samuel 4: 1 - end.
Defeat and annihilation stared God's people in the face because Isreal had sinned ; the High Priest, Eli and his household were not worthy custodians of the ark of the Most High God . So Isreal was routed and in disarray and utter confusion before their enemies !
To compound their tragedies , the ark of the covenant of the Lord of hosts which dwelt between the cherubims was in the hands of the enemies of God !
This was seriously shameful!
"The glory is departed from Isreal!"
The consequences of such utter defeat are far-reaching because, usually , the enemy with the confidence of victory , would not stop at humiliating God's people ; they would always extend their "victory dance " to try to humiliate God himself.
Whenever I read this narration of the events after the unexpected defeat of the armies of Isreal by the uncircumcised Philistines at Eben-ezer; I marvel at the naivety and blindness of the heathen!How dare they compare their idol to the God of Heaven and Earth? Imagine putting my God , side by side with their own god; in the SAME room ?
What audacity !
The pill of utter defeat is very bitter to swallow. Especially when the bitterness is coupled with the noises of mockery and celebration from the enemy!
" They said they had an invincible God ! Where is their God now?"
"Have we not routed them , put them to flight and carried their God away ?!"
" See their God in a box! We have him under lock and key in our shrine!"
The celeberation in the camp of the enemy on that fateful day must have lasted all night long!
But! With the dawn of day ,even as the enemy's celebrations continued; the situation CHANGED!
"I Am That I Am " had arisen ; with GREAT victory and deliverance in his wings!
Our God shall come, and shall not keep silence : a fire shall devour before him , and it shall be very tempestous round about him. Psalm 50:3.
God, immediately, began to declare His Power and Authority ; declaring His Names , even in the midst of the gathering of the enemy.
May our God arise , immediately, in our situations and fight for us! Amen.
The Man of War started confounding the enemy by first of all manifesting His disgust at the presence of the abomination called "Dagon"!
I can imagine God looking at Dagon from head to toe and laughing with the hosts of heaven , at the ridiculous graven image beside Him!
The angels of war struck Dagon down and broke him to pieces! The rest is history.
This beautiful story gives me immense joy , any time I read it !
We see God declaring to the enemy ,clearly, the difference between Him and other gods.
God would not tolerate a situation where the heathen would defile His Name and equate Him with counterfeit gods!
Even when He has allowed loss and defeat to happen in the lives of His disobedient children.
In His judgement,the covenant-keeping God would always remember His mercy and He would always arise to take the glory in every situation of reproach to His Name.
God will ALWAYS make the heathen to testify of His awesomeness and His Supremacy above all other gods; whether they want to testify or not!
The enemies of God would have no choice but to bow before Him.
Like He did against Egypt before He delivered His people from slavery , God also declared his supremacy to the Philistines , on this occasion.
God will remember His covenant and His mercy and save us from every affliction, in the name of Jesus Christ . Amen.
"Look unto me and be ye saved , all the ends of the earth: for I am God , and there is none else .
I have sworn by myself , the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear".
Once again , as God has sworn, when the enemies of Jehovah saw the manifestation of His power , they were forced to offer appeasement, to bow in worship to God and to confess with their mouth that Jehovah is God indeed! 1 Samuel 6: 1-8.
Not only that , the Philistines asked for a sign ; for a confirmation that this was the one and only Jehovah ,the Holy One of Israel, dealing with them.1 Samuel 6:9.
They got the signs and wonders they asked for!
The cart carrying the ark of God on its return journey back to Isreal was pulled by two milk cows; while the Philistines watched its journey from a respectable distance .
To the astonishment of the lords of the Philistines who followed the cart to the border with Isreal; the cows , unaided by any human being knew the way and followed the correct route back home!
"And the kine took the straight way to the way of Beth-shemeth , and went along the highway , lowing as they went,and turned not aside to the right hand and to the left;
and the lords of the Philistines went after them unto the border of Beth-shemeth."
1 Samuel 6:12
What is that situation of shame and defeat in your life?
That dire situation which seems hopeless and insurmountable ?
I declare that the Lord God Jehovah , the Man of War ,I AM THAT I AM , Mighty in Battle; has arisen , right now, to your help with great victories , signs and wonders! Even in the presence of your enemies; in the name of Jesus Christ ! Amen!
I decree that the Egyptians and Philistines you saw , you will see them no more!
The Lord God of Hosts has performed it and you are blessed in Him . Amen.