During World War II, a US marine was separated from his unit on a Pacific island. The fighting had been intense, and in the smoke and the crossfire he had lost touch with his comrades.
Alone in the jungle, he could hear enemy soldiers coming in his direction. Scrambling for cover, he found his way up a high ridge to several small caves in the rock. Quickly he crawled inside one of the caves. Although safe for the moment, he realized that once the enemy soldiers looking for him swept up the ridge, they would quickly search all the caves and he would be killed.
As he waited, he prayed, “Lord, if it be your will, please protect me. Whatever your will though, I love you and trust you. Amen.”
After praying, he lay quietly listening to the enemy begin to draw close. He thought, “Well, I guess the Lord isn’t going to help me out of this one.” Then he saw a spider begin to build a web over the front of his cave. As he watched, listening to the enemy searching for him all the while, the spider frantically layered strand after strand of web across the opening of the cave. “Hah, he thought. “What I need is a brick wall and what the Lord has sent me is a spider web. God does have a sense of humor.”
As the enemy drew closer he watched from the darkness of his hideout and could see them searching one cave after another. As they came to his, he got ready to make his last stand. To his amazement, however, after glancing in the direction of his cave, they moved on. Suddenly, he realized that with the spider web over the entrance, his cave looked as if no one had entered for quite a while. “Lord, forgive me,” prayed the young man. “I had forgotten that in you a spider’s web is stronger than a brick wall.” (Sermoncentral.com)
Sometimes our Deliverer responds in ways we would not expect. That’s a good thing to know as we all face trials and uncertainty of our own. We cry out, “Lord, save me!,” and when it doesn’t happen in the way we thought it would, we forget that God’s ways are not necessarily our ways. Sometimes when we expect a mighty wall to separate us from danger, a spider’s web works even better.
When the Israelites sought a deliverer Messiah, they were looking for a seasoned warrior on a mighty stallion dressed in battle array. What they got was a humble Servant riding on a donkey wearing the clothes of the common man.
In Romans 11:26, Paul reminded His readers of a passage from Isaiah 59, The Deliverer will come from Zion, He will banish ungodliness from Jacob’; ‘and this will be my covenant with them when I take away their sins.” He was telling them that God promised to deliver them from a much greater foe then the Romans. It wasn’t oppression Christ came to battle but the more urgent problems of sin and death. What He brought was not vengeance, but mercy. This required Him to be a servant, not a mighty king in battle array.
When the people didn’t understand, they cried out, “Crucify Him!” They were expecting a wall that would hide them from the Romans but God gave them something much more effective. Our deliverance had nothing to do with hate and anger, but it had everything to do with love. Jesus was not sent to settle a temporary problem but an eternal one.
Psalm 18:2 tells us, “The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my Rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.” When the warrior king David looked for refuge, he didn’t count on himself, he found his refuge in God. That’s because he knew in his heart where the real power was to be found. He relied not on God’s anger but in God’s love.
Today, many are still looking for a deliverer, maybe you find yourself among them. Unfortunately for many, they still seek one carved in the image of their own imagination. They are looking for someone to deliver them from all of their temporary problems, but they fail to trust in the one who rules over this life and the next.
Trust in God to be your deliverer and be faithful enough to allow Him to do that in His way. Oswald Chambers once wrote, “Faith for my deliverance is not faith in God. Faith means, whether I am visibly delivered or not, I will stick to my belief that God is love. There are some things only learned in a fiery furnace.”
Trust that God is good to His promise to deliver you from the things that affect you most. In giving us His Son, He has delivered us from our greatest threats. Even so, he continues to promise you protection from your struggles today. Trust in Him, even if He chooses to send a spider instead of a wall. Please pray with me:
Heavenly Father, thank you for watching over us and help us to trust in you for all things. Forgive us for trusting only in ourselves at times and instill in us a true Faith. Amen.