Does the Almighty promise to protect His people? Do those in the Body of Christ have the right to expect Him to do so? If so, what gives them that right? We have asked the question. Now let us hear God’s answer. In Psalm 91:7 we find Him promising His people that though a thousand fall at their left side and ten thousand at their right, the enemy will not touch them. In Deuteronomy 28:7, He promised them that their enemies would attack them from one direction, but would flee from them in seven directions. In Hebrews 13:5,6 the Apostle Paul quotes the Lord as recorded in Deuteronomy 31:6,8; Joshua 1:5 and Psalm 118:6: “‘I will never leave you nor forsake you.’ So we can boldly say, ‘The Lord is my Helper; I will not fear; What can man do to me?'” SO WHY DOES GOD ALLOW EVIL MEN TO KILL THE PEOPLE WHOM HE PROMISED TO PROTECT? In His Word the Lord warns all who would follow Him that Satan would attack them. See Persecution. We are told not to be surprised when this happens, but to count it all joy, knowing that God will bring us through our times of trial (1 Pet. 4:12; Jam. 1:2).
As is always the case when the Lord’s promises are involved, there are eternal, unalterable qualifications that must be met before He will fulfill those promises. I call this His “IF factor.” The reason people are confused when their loved ones are killed, homes are blown away, fire takes everything, etc. is that they do not recognize the existence of “IF factors.” Having been told for generations that all one needs to claim God’s promises is to believe in His Son, they are bewildered when those promises fail to materialize. At which point Satan convinces them that God has changed His mind, that though they have met His qualifications by believing in Him and His Son, He has for some unknown (and unjustified) reason reneged on His promised protection and allowed Satan to kill their loved ones, destroy their property, place a disease on them, etc. Let us recall what Jesus said to the man He had just healed: “SIN NO MORE, LEST A WORST THING COME UPON YOU” (Jn. 5:14). I have suffered much in my life in terms of my health, material possessions, missed opportunities, bad purchases, etc. (God chastens those whom He loves–Heb. 12:6). Without exception, I was able to trace every curse from God back to a sin I had committed. My faith, which was always great, was nullified by my sins, which rendered my faith dead (Jam. 2:20). And in that we live by our faith (Rom. 1:17), I was dead, even though I was in full-time ministry.
Let us not forget that devils have faith, AND THEY TREMBLE (Jam. 2:19) because they know God’s Word and know that It is true. God said He looks to (takes note of) the man who trembles at His Word (Isa. 66:2). My problem was that I was not trembling at His Word–I was not fearful of disobeying Him. Jesus feared that He would fail His Father during His final hours. Rest assured, He trembled while sweating great drops of blood (Lk. 22:44). Church people do not tremble before God, which is why God does not fulfill His promises. No matter how close we are to the Lord, this Law still applies. In 1 Peter 4:18 the Lord tells us that the Very Elect will just barely make it into His kingdom. The obedience=fulfilled promises Law applied to Jesus of Nazareth until the instant of His death. We must live as He lived (“walk as He walked”) during this lifetime in order to join Him in the Kingdom of God (1 Jn. 2:6). But Satan has convinced Catholics and Protestants that all they need to do is believe, that anything beyond faith (obedience) is legalism, which will cause them to “fall from grace.” This deadly lie (among many others) reigns supreme throughout professing Christendom. My job, which I love, is to do battle with Satan by exposing that lie, along with many others. L.J.