He’s in the Midst
Today, as I begin writing, I’m reminded of a song that is blessing my heart. Some of the lyrics go like this…He’s in the midst of our storms, He’s in the valley we walk through, where two or three are gathered, in HIS name, He’ll be there too, when you feel so all alone, He is standing next to you, He’s with us now, our LORD is in the midst. Thank You LORD!
Handout: He’s in the Midst
The book of Job chapter 14 verse 1 tells us that man that is born of woman is of few days that are full of trouble. Yet in Philippians 4 it tells us that the peace of God which passes all understanding will keep our hearts and minds through Christ when trust and pray to our Father. Are you going through a storm? Life is not easy, the life of a Christian is very hard sometimes, yet, there is a peace in those hard times that we are unable to fully describe with words. The reason is because of what Jesus said in Matthew 28 and in Hebrews 13. Jesus promises that He will be with us always. That He will never leave us or forsake us. He’s in the Midst. His promises are ALWAYS true.
1. He’s in the Midst of the Fire!
Matthew 18:20 “For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”
Daniel chapter 3 tells us of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. They were three Hebrew men who had been taken captive along with Daniel and many others from their home to Babylon. Now the King had made an image of gold and made a decree that when the music played everyone must bow down and worship this idol. However, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego refused. They served the one true God of Israel and they were determined in their hearts that they would obey God’s commandment and law and have no other gods. They knew that they were risking their lives and if they did not bow down they would be throne into fiery furnace to be burned alive. Still they knew that their lives were given by God and HE was able to deliver them from the fire but even if He chose not to, they were still not going to bow down! Let’s read to see what happened.
Daniel 3:6-27 “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter. 17If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king.18But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.
19Then was Nebuchadnezzar full of fury, and the form of his visage was changed against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego: therefore he spake, and commanded that they should heat the furnace one seven times more than it was wont to be heated. 20And he commanded the most mighty men that were in his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and to cast them into the burning fiery furnace.
21Then these men were bound in their coats, their hosen, and their hats, and their other garments, and were cast into the midst of the burning fiery furnace. 22Therefore because the king's commandment was urgent, and the furnace exceeding hot, the flames of the fire slew those men that took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. 23And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace.
24Then Nebuchadnezzar the king was astonished, and rose up in haste, and spake, and said unto his counsellors, Did not we cast three men bound into the midst of the fire? They answered and said unto the king, True, O king. 25He answered and said, Lo, I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and they have no hurt; and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.
26Then Nebuchadnezzar came near to the mouth of the burning fiery furnace, and spake, and said, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, ye servants of the most high God, come forth, and come hither. Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, came forth of the midst of the fire.27And the princes, governors, and captains, and the king's counsellors, being gathered together, saw these men, upon whose bodies the fire had no power, nor was an hair of their head singed, neither were their coats changed, nor the smell of fire had passed on them.
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego had come together with one mind, making the decision to serve God alone, even if it cost them their very lives and the LORD honored His promise. He was in the midst of them. Know today dear one, that if you are going through a fiery trial? The book of Ephesians chapter 6 tells us to put on the whole armour of God so that we can withstand the fiery darts of the evil one.
Ephesians 6:13-18 “Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;”
The devil will try to drag you down in to the fires of hell but when you stand firm on the promise of God and trust Him and serve Him alone, He will not fail you, He will be in the midst of the fire with you, and not even the smell of smoke will be on you. Just like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, you are not alone!
Matthew 18:20 “For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”
2. He’s in the Midst of the Roaring Lions!
Daniel chapter 6 tells us about a friend of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego named Daniel. He was a servant of the LORD as well and he refused to stop praying to God. As a result he was thrown into a den of lions.
Daniel 6:16-22 “Then the king commanded, and they brought Daniel, and cast him into the den of lions. Now the king spake and said unto Daniel, Thy God whom thou servest continually, he will deliver thee. 17And a stone was brought, and laid upon the mouth of the den; and the king sealed it with his own signet, and with the signet of his lords; that the purpose might not be changed concerning Daniel. 18Then the king went to his palace, and passed the night fasting: neither were instruments of musick brought before him: and his sleep went from him.
19Then the king arose very early in the morning, and went in haste unto the den of lions.
20And when he came to the den, he cried with a lamentable voice unto Daniel: and the king spake and said to Daniel, O Daniel, servant of the living God, is thy God, whom thou servest continually, able to deliver thee from the lions? 21Then said Daniel unto the king, O king, live for ever.
22My God hath sent his angel, and hath shut the lions' mouths, that they have not hurt me: forasmuch as before him innocency was found in me; and also before thee, O king, have I done no hurt.
Praise the LORD, Daniel stood firm on the promises of God with trust in Him and He was not alone! God was in the midst of Daniel and the lions and therefore they could not harm him! Thank You Lord.
1 Peter 5:8 “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:
The devil as a roaring lion desires to harm you, but God can handle lions, and He can handle the devil! Keep staying firm and just like with Daniel, in the midst of the lions God is with you and will deliver you! Praise You LORD!
3. He’s in the Midst of Your Prison
The book of Acts in God’s word tell us of Paul and Silas, men of God who were preaching the good news of the gospel. The devil had evil men lying in wait and because they were serving the Master, he had wicked men to beat them and throw them in prison, however, that is not the end of the story! God was in the midst and delivered His faithful servants!
Acts 16:19-34 “And when her masters saw that the hope of their gains was gone, they caught Paul and Silas, and drew them into the marketplace unto the rulers, 20And brought them to the magistrates, saying, These men, being Jews, do exceedingly trouble our city,21And teach customs, which are not lawful for us to receive, neither to observe, being Romans.
22And the multitude rose up together against them: and the magistrates rent off their clothes, and commanded to beat them. 23And when they had laid many stripes upon them, they cast them into prison, charging the jailor to keep them safely: 24Who, having received such a charge, thrust them into the inner prison, and made their feet fast in the stocks.
25And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them. 26And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and every one's bands were loosed. 27And the keeper of the prison awaking out of his sleep, and seeing the prison doors open, he drew out his sword, and would have killed himself, supposing that the prisoners had been fled.
28But Paul cried with a loud voice, saying, Do thyself no harm: for we are all here. 29Then he called for a light, and sprang in, and came trembling, and fell down before Paul and Silas,30And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? 31And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. 32And they spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house. 33And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, straightway. 34And when he had brought them into his house, he set meat before them, and rejoiced, believing in God with all his house.
Just like Paul and Silas, when you stand on the Word of God, the devil will be right there trying to do anything he can and use anything he can to imprison you, to oppress you. This can be disguised in many forms. Know that whatever prison you are bound in, if you will call out to the God of Israel, praising Him with thanksgiving and trusting Him, He will be in the midst! He will deliver you and turn a bad situation into something wonderful and good. He’s in the midst.
4. He’s in the Midst of our Storms
Mark 4:35-41 “And the same day, when the even was come, he saith unto them, Let us pass over unto the other side. 36And when they had sent away the multitude, they took him even as he was in the ship. And there were also with him other little ships. 37And there arose a great storm of wind, and the waves beat into the ship, so that it was now full.
38And he was in the hinder part of the ship, asleep on a pillow: and they awake him, and say unto him, Master, carest thou not that we perish? 39And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. 40And he said unto them, Why are ye so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith? 41And they feared exceedingly, and said one to another, What manner of man is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?
Jesus and His disciples were out on this ship and the great storm came and waves were rolling, and the wind was blowing and the rain was beating down I imagine. Perhaps thunder and lightening and they were scared to death! They did not have to fear because The Master was in the Midst! He was calm and asleep in the ship. They woke Him up as if He was strange for sleeping and said hey do you not care we are about to die here! I can see Jesus in my mind’s eye get up, calmly walk over to the ship’s edge and say it…Peace, Be Still. Then I think with a twinkle in His eyes and a smile on His face He said, Why are you so scared, Don’t you guys have any faith and I imagine He lay back down and went back to sleep.
In life the storms are going to come, the wind is going to blow, the rain is going to fall and our “ships” are going to be tossed to and fro, but do not be afraid! We serve the maker of the storm and He is in the midst! When we call upon Him, when we believe, when the time is right, He will stretch out His hand over our storms and say it yet again, Peace, Be Still and it will just be a memory. Praise the LORD stay with the ship, don’t jump over, it may feel like God is asleep but trust and know that He is watching and He knows how much you can withstand and you are not alone, He is in the midst and He will calm the storm and He will deliver you. Trust, Obey, and Believe Him!
Dear Righteous, Heavenly Father…
Thank You so much for being in the middle of everything we are going through. Thank You that anywhere You lead us, we can look down and see Your footsteps because You have been there before marking the path for our feet. Your Word is a lamp unto our feet and a light unto the path. I think of this song and know that it is true and my heart rejoices. You’ve been there in the prison, You’ve been there in the flame, in the lion’s den with Daniel, with Noah in the rain. In the wilderness with Moses, in the belly of a whale, no matter where the path may lead, Jesus blazed the trail. Thank You LORD, there will NEVER be a step that You lead me to that will not have Your footprint there! Thank You today and always for being in the Midst. I love You, I worship and adore You and I love You. Thank You for all Your many many blessings. In the Lovely, Holy name of Your Son Jesus I pray today. Amen!
May 28, 2017