The Road To Disaster

What the wicked fears will come upon him.
–Proverbs 10:24

There is a strong relationship between disbelief, disobedience, and despair. When we come to the conclusion that God cannot take care of our problem, and instead we disobey God and go a place He never called us to go, we will be overwhelmed by despair. Think about it: nothing produces fear in us any more than thinking we are all alone and we have to take care of ourselves. If we really think we are just the victims of random people or random circumstances, then we find ourselves fearful of anything and everything.

That is what happened to Abraham in Genesis 12. To escape a famine, he came into the land of Egypt, where God never commanded him to go. And he knew the culture well enough to know that these Egyptians loved beautiful, foreign women. Even though his wife, Sarah, was sixty-five, she was beautiful. And Abraham was so fearful of what the Egyptians might do to him in order to get to Sarah that he concocted this scheme. He said to Sarah, “You are a beautiful woman; and when the Egyptians see you, they will say, ‘This is his wife’; and they will kill me, but they will let you live. Please say that you are my sister so that it may go well with me because of you, and that I may live on account of you” (vv. 11-13). He was saying, “If the Egyptians do not think I am your husband, then they have no reason to kill me.”

This plan was purely self-centered on Abraham’s part. This is where Abraham lost the “husband of the year” contest. If Abraham was killed, Sarah went to Pharaoh. If Pharaoh bought the lie and Abraham lived, Sarah still went to Pharaoh. Either way, Sarah lost in this deal. Abraham did not care; he was only thinking about himself. He was acting out of fear, and it led him to disaster–though Abraham’s life was spared, his wife was taken away by Pharaoh. Proverbs 10:24 says, “What the wicked fears will come upon him.”

Here is what Abraham did not realize: he was fearful for no reason. Later on, when Abraham’s ruse was found out, Pharaoh asked him, “Why did you not tell me that she was your wife?” (v. 18). Abraham did not trust God to take care of him, so he became fearful. His disobedience led him to despair, and the same thing happens to us. When we do not trust God to take care of us and instead we assume that responsibility for ourselves, we fall into worry, fear, and despair. And that despair leads us down the road to disaster. That is why the book of Proverbs counsels us, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight” (3:5-6).

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Today’s devotion is excerpted from “When The Godly Go South” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2009.

Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org

 

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