“Behold, an Angel”

“Behold, I send an angel before you to guard you on the way and to bring you to the place that I have prepared. Pay careful attention to him and obey his voice; do not rebel against him, for he will not pardon your transgression, for my name is in him…

“When my angel goes before you and brings you to the Amorites and Hittites and Perizzites and Canaanites, the Hivites and Jebusites, and I blot them out,  you shall not bow down to their gods nor serve them, nor do as they do, but you shall utterly overthrow them and break their pillars in pieces. You shall serve the Lord your God, and he will bless your bread and your water… I will fulfill the number of your days. I will send my terror before you and will throw into confusion all the people against whom you shall come, and I will make all your enemies turn their backs to you.  And I will send hornets before you, which shall drive out the Hivites, Canaanites, and Hittites from before you.  I will not drive them out from before you in one year, lest the land become desolate and the wild beasts multiply against you. Little by little I will drive them out, until you have increased and possess the land. And I will set your border from the Red Sea to the Sea of the Philistines, and from the wilderness to the Euphrates, for I will give the inhabitants of the land into your hand, and you shall drive them out before you…  They shall not dwell in your land, lest they make you sin against me; for if you serve their gods, it will surely be a snare to you.” Exodus 23:20-21,23-31,33

When God Almighty foretold Israel’s conquest of Canaan, He promised His angel would go before to guard and lead. But He also set expectations: I send My angel, obey him and all shall be well, in time, and in My way. However, ensnare yourselves with their gods, entertain strange allegiances, and the deal is off.

How sweet is the Lord’s promise of direction and protection! As we embark on every day, we can watch for the angel of His presence- indications from His word and Spirit that lead us. He does not abandon us in query, nor fail to make our paths straight when we come un-ensnared to acknowledge and trust Him. He keeps on as Companion when the road is hard and pests ensue, to dispel the hornets and bring us through. His promised way is not guaranteed easy, but it is sure, not always understood by us, but known by Him and blessed with His peace. (Proverbs 3:5-6; John 16:33)

The Lord’s voice must not be one of many, but our sole Guide in the midst of worldly clamor. He is our wisdom, He our Captain. We can’t pick and choose from His word, nor embark on our own plans and expect His blessing. When foreign voices tease and taunt, we can hold high the knowledge of God. (2 Corinthians 10:3-5)

When faced with choices and conquests in work, spiritual life, or relationships, to whom do we pay most careful attention, and obey? What offerings of the world easily distract from focus and devotion to God? Before stepping out anew, would we pause to behold Him?

Lord, cause me to trust Your hand to guide me daily.

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