There are stories throughout the Word of God that point to His Son; He is, after all, the Word Himself. I invite you to join me in seeing the victory of the resurrection unfolding in different areas of Scripture this week as we prepare to celebrate our risen Savior.
Victory on the Third Day
In the book of Judges we find a civil war type battle within the tribes of Israel. There had been a horrible crime committed in the tribe of Benjamin, and the other eleven tribes gathered together to take care of business. When we look at how the numbers were stacked, we see that it should have been an easy win for Israel - 400,000 vs 26,700. However, victory began by bearing the appearance of defeat.
On the first day of battle, the Lord told Israel for Judah to go first. (Praise precedes victory.) However, the Benjamites took out 22,000 men of Israel that day. The second day of battle afforded more of the same - 18,000 more were killed. Each time the people of Israel had gone before the Lord to inquire about fighting Benjamin, and He had given them the green light. So why were they being defeated so badly?
They went before the Lord after this in fasting and weeping, offering burnt offerings and peace offerings. They inquired once more if they should go again into battle or cease. The Lord replied, "Go up, for tomorrow I will deliver them into your hand." So they changed up the battle strategy a bit with men set for ambush and went up against them again...on the third day. This time victory was overwhelming.
Have you ever been in a situation that you feel very strongly that you are walking in obedience to all that the Lord has commanded, yet you still feel like you are seeing defeat at every turn? I want you to think of the Lord Jesus as He submitted Himself to being betrayed, arrested, brutally beaten, and finally killed. We rightfully praise the victory of His resurrection, but don't forget that those first couple of days bore the appearance of defeat to firsthand witnesses.
I challenge you to celebrate the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus by walking in obedience through your own first and second day battle moments...remembering that the third day revealed true victory that still stands to this day.
Father, thank You that You are faithful on the first and second day, even when it looks like You have left us hanging. Thank You for the victory of the third day. In Jesus' Name. Amen.