The wicked are not submitted to God and do not seek His will. Because of this they cannot have the peace of God.
I create the fruit of the lips; Peace, peace to him that is far off, and to him that is near, saith the LORD; and I will heal him.But the wicked are like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest, whose waters cast up mire and dirt.There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked. (Isaiah 57:19-21)
Despite lacking God’s peace, the wicked continue moving forward in the “imagination” of their own heart.
They are buttressed by false counsel and encouragement. They say still unto them that despise me, The LORD hath said, Ye shall have peace; and they say unto every one that walketh after the imagination of his own heart, No evil shall come upon you. (Jeremiah 23:17)
The children of Israel were the people who were “near” to God. God’s intention was to be with them all their days and in all their ways. His presence with them was to provide them with peace.
And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto Aaron and unto his sons, saying, On this wise ye shall bless the children of Israel, saying unto them, The LORD bless thee, and keep thee: The LORD make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: The LORD lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace. (Numbers 6:22-26)
When the prospect arose that the Lord would not personally be with His people as they went forward, Moses did not want to move. God assured Moses that He would go with them and give them rest.
And he said, My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest.And he said unto him, If thy presence go not with me, carry us not up hence. (Exodus 33:13,14)
God helped Moses overcome his insecurity and sense of inadequacy, not through self-confidence, but through assuring him that He would be with his mouth.
And Moses said unto the LORD, O my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither heretofore, nor since thou hast spoken unto thy servant: but I am slow of speech, and of a slow tongue. And the LORD said unto him, Who hath made man’s mouth? or who maketh the dumb, or deaf, or the seeing, or the blind? have not I the LORD? Now therefore go, and I will be with thy mouth, and teach thee what thou shalt say. (Exodus 4:10-12)
Jeremiah had similar fears concerning the mission before him. God likewise assured him that He would be with him.
Then the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations. Then said I, Ah, Lord GOD! behold, I cannot speak: for I am a child. But the LORD said unto me, Say not, I am a child: for thou shalt go to all that I shall send thee, and whatsoever I command thee thou shalt speak.Be not afraid of their faces: for I am with thee to deliver thee, saith the LORD.Then the LORD put forth his hand, and touched my mouth. And the LORD said unto me, Behold, I have put my words in thy mouth. (Jeremiah 1:4-9)
The Lord lamented through Jeremiah His absence from His people’s lives. He recalled when He was with them wherever they went.
Moreover the word of the LORD came to me, saying,Go and cry in the ears of Jerusalem, saying, Thus saith the LORD; I remember thee, the kindness of thy youth, the love of thine espousals, when thou wentest after me in the wilderness, in a land that was not sown. Israel was holiness unto the LORD, and the firstfruits of his increase: all that devour him shall offend; evil shall come upon them, saith the LORD. Hear ye the word of the LORD, O house of Jacob, and all the families of the house of Israel: Thus saith the LORD, What iniquity have your fathers found in me, that they are gone far from me, and have walked after vanity, and are become vain? Neither said they, Where is the LORD that brought us up out of the land of Egypt, that led us through the wilderness, through a land of deserts and of pits, through a land of drought, and of the shadow of death, through a land that no man passed through, and where no man dwelt? And I brought you into a plentiful country, to eat the fruit thereof and the goodness thereof; but when ye entered, ye defiled my land, and made mine heritage an abomination. The priests said not, Where is the LORD? and they that handle the law knew me not: the pastors also transgressed against me, and the prophets prophesied by Baal, and walked after things that do not profit. (Jeremiah 2:1-8)
The questions we should ask ourselves in all we do and say is:
- “Where is the Lord in this?”
- “Are you with me in doing this, Lord?”
- “Are you with me in saying this, Lord?”
The anointing upon us is the very presence of God with us. We are not anointed when God is not with us in what we are doing and saying.
How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him. (Acts 10:38)
A people who “do their own thing” will never fulfill the great commission. We cannot teach others to do what we are not doing.
And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen. (Matthew 28:18-20)
How often do we “take off” without the Lord? How often do we GO and ask the Lord to be with us, instead of asking where He is going, what He is doing, or what is He speaking?
Fruitful lives that are successful in God’s sight and effective ministry that will be rewarded depends on our getting God’s counsel and moving forward carefully with Him.
I have not sent these prophets, yet they ran: I have not spoken to them, yet they prophesied.But if they had stood in my counsel, and had caused my people to hear my words, then they should have turned them from their evil way, and from the evil of their doings. (Jeremiah 23:21,22)
If God is going to be with us in what we do and say we must:
1. Want to please Him.
Jesus was never alone in what He did or said. The Father was always with Him because it was His one desire to always please His Father.
Then said Jesus unto them, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things. And he that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him. (John 8:28,29)
2. Submit ourselves to Him.
We cannot remove ourselves from His yoke and move independently of Him in our own might and mind.
Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts. (Zecharaiah 4:6)
3. Seek Him.
Faith believes that those who seek God find Him. Those who want His direction will be given it. They diligently seek until they find and have an assurance that God goes with them.
But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him. (Hebrews 11:6)