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Where Are the Blacksmiths?

Daily Reading: 1 Samuel 13

Scripture Focus: Now there was no blacksmith to be found throughout all the land of Israel... So on the day of the battle there was neither sword nor spear found in the hand of any of the people. (1 Samuel 13.19, 22)

Devotional Thought: When Saul began his reign as king, the Philistines were in a position of strength over the Israelites. The Philistines subjugated Israel by preventing them from having spears and swords. How did they do that? By stopping the work of blacksmiths. The Philistines knew that if they controlled the blacksmiths, they controlled the weapons. And, if they controlled the weapons, they controlled the battle.

I believe that Satan has the same strategy today.

The sword represents the Word of God. It is designed for close-in battle. The Word is powerful. The Word penetrates into the minds of people. The Word lays bare the secrets of the heart. The spear represents prayer. It is designed for longer-range use. Prayer is the tip of the spear in our fight against evil. With it we hold our enemy at bay. The spear also represented the authority of the commander. Without prayer, we operate on our own authority. That's a recipe for disaster!

So, how do you think Satan uses the strategy of the Philistines? He knows if he controls the blacksmiths, he controls the weapons. If he controls the weapons, he controls the battle.

The people of God need more blacksmiths, those who are capable of forging the weapons of battle. It seems that it is getting more and more difficult to find blacksmiths in the church. People want to "be fed," but not feed others. They covet the prayers of others, but do not stand in the gap themselves. We need more people to teach the Word of God, and help people - especially young Christians - apply it. We need more people to teach the way of prayer, and to lead in the work of prayer.

Will you be a blacksmith?

Prayer: Lord, the Bible talks about how the Word of God can be rare, how there can be a famine of the Word of God. Is that famine due to the fact that we lack blacksmiths? Here I am. Send me. The Bible speaks of no one to intercede. Here I am. Send me. I will be a blacksmith. Amen.

Psalm of the Day: Psalm 78.40-49

40 How often they rebelled against him in the wilderness

and grieved him in the desert!

41 They tested God again and again

and provoked the Holy One of Israel.

42 They did not remember his power

or the day when he redeemed them from the foe,

43 when he performed his signs in Egypt

and his marvels in the fields of Zoan.

44 He turned their rivers to blood,

so that they could not drink of their streams.

45 He sent among them swarms of flies, which devoured them,

and frogs, which destroyed them.

46 He gave their crops to the destroying locust

and the fruit of their labor to the locust.

47 He destroyed their vines with hail

and their sycamores with frost.

48 He gave over their cattle to the hail

and their flocks to thunderbolts.

49 He let loose on them his burning anger,

wrath, indignation, and distress,

a company of destroying angels.

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