This is a word of joy and great blessing! It is in complete contrast to the condition the Ephesians had been in before they heard about and received Jesus. Paul describes them as having been “without God in the world” (Ephesians 2:12).
How decidedly different a life looks when God is part of it. With God, wonderful experiences are possible, and whoever has experienced this will triumphantly exclaim with David: “Our God is the God of salvation; and to God the Lord belong escapes from death” (Psalm 68:20). I am convinced that many of our readers will attest to this statement: “Yes, I have personally experienced this!”
Now, if it is true that we have a God who helps and even saves from death, why do we trust Him so little? Why do we put so little trust in Him? Why do we no longer count on His power and help? Why do we try to do everything in our own power? Why are we so often fearful, worried, and discouraged? Do we really live and act as if we have a God who can be experienced and whose help is there in a practical way on an ongoing basis?
You may have heard this story from the life of Luther, the reformer: Mindful of the grave dangers that threatened, and tormented by anxious questions concerning the conditions of his time, he had fallen into a deep depression. One morning, he saw his wife wearing black, and, astonished, he asked: “Who has died?” She replied, “Don’t you know? God is dead!” – “Don’t talk such nonsense,” he returned. “God is spirit and lives on for all eternity. How can you doubt that? As certain as God is in heaven, it is also certain that He cannot die.” – “And yet,” she said, “though you do not doubt that God lives, how have you have become hopeless and despondent?” – And with that, his depression was lifted.
We have all probably experienced this kind of depression at some point and given the impression that we had no God.
Sometimes we have burdens and trials that are difficult to bear. David often experienced trials and tried to find an easy way out. David once took refuge with Achish, the king of the Philistines. He learned that he was in great danger and uncertainty there as well.
The help which we want to find ourselves or through other people often brings us even greater hardship. We would not get out of these hardships at all if we did not have a God who helps!
We see the great darkness in the world, the dangers of our time, the fears of people; we sense the approach of a disaster and the approach of judgment. We know about the unrest on all continents and the anxiety of mankind. Is this not a cause for concern and fear? What is more important and valuable than the certainty when one can say, “We have a God who helps!” And should we lose everything and have nothing in our hands, we are still well-equipped if we can say, “We have a God who helps!” His ear hears the cry of His child; His hand has not grown too short that it cannot help. Nothing passes His eyes unheeded, and His power is great enough for our safety and security! He, who governs the whole universe and keeps all invisible worlds in their courses, is also mindful of the sparrow. Jesus says: “Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows” (Luke 12:7).
In Psalm 46:2-3, the psalmist says with certainty: “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, even though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea!” He does not speak of armies and fortifications, nor considers human power and force to be his security and strength, but finds his strength in God!
Loved ones, we need more than human power and security; we need a God who helps and a Lord who can save not only from physical, but also from eternal death!
A child in hours of distress wants nothing more than to be in his father’s arms or on his mother’s lap, and, “As a father pities his children, so the Lord pities those who fear Him” (Psalm 103:13).
God wants to be a merciful Father to everyone, including you, through Jesus Christ! Accept Jesus into your heart and life, place yourself in His will, and then you too can say: “I have a God who helps me, a Lord who has saved me from death, and a God who is my confidence and strength for time and eternity.” May the Lord allow you to claim this right by grace!