Read 1 Samuel 14:1-23
Nothing Restrains the Lord
In sharp contrast to the foolish self-exaltation of his father Saul, Jonathan shines as an example of trust in God’s faithfulness and power. Notice what he says to his armorbearer in 1 Samuel 14:6: “Come, let us go over to the garrison of these uncircumcised; it may be that the LORD will work for us. For nothing restrains the LORD from saving by many or by few.”
Many examples of this very truth are found within the Scriptures. One may consider the conquest of Canaan accomplished by the Lord through the leadership of Joshua, or God’s subduing of the Midianites through Gideon’s judgeship. Here Jonathan and the young man who bore his armor went up against the Philistines, a foolish adventure in the mind of man, but “nothing restrains the LORD from saving by many or by few.” Jonathan put his full trust in the true God of heaven.
There is a stark contrast between Jonathan’s faith in this instance and his father Saul’s rash behavior. While the king began to inquire of the Lord by calling for the ark of God, he was too impatient to wait for God’s answer. Impatience often leads one to make mistakes. Saul’s decision to enter the battle without God’s instruction led to “very great confusion” (1 Samuel 14:20). Still, Jonathan’s faith was proven in the end as “the LORD saved Israel that day, and the battle shifted to Beth Aven” (1 Samuel 14:23).
We must have faith in what God has revealed to us today. He will not give us any revelation other than what has been preserved in our Bible (Galatians 1:6-9). Do not fall for the shysters and the conmen who proclaim to be prophets in this 21st century; they are not speaking “the whole counsel of God” (Acts 20:27). Many modern-day “pastors” (which are not pastors in the Biblical sense) will tell half-truths but stop short of God’s truth.
Let us have the wisdom of Jonathan, who trusted in God despite the odds against him. Let us shun the foolishness of Saul, who simply could not stand to wait for God’s instructions and had to do things his own way. Friends, our way will not save anyone. Only God’s way—that which was revealed through the inspired penmen of the Bible—will lead to eternal life. Whose way are you following?