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4 Bible Characters Teach us Secrets to Safety in Times of Trouble

by Chris Sitter

This article is written for those who love the Word of God, and specifically – for individuals in the following categories:

  1. Those who desire that they and their families would be saved in their times of trouble.
  2. Those who wish to find mercy on Judgment Day.
  3. Those who fear God and who have no desire of incurring the wrath that comes upon His enemies, and from opposing His true representatives.

Ebed-Melech, Barzillai, The Shunamite Woman, Hananiah, Amaziah, Onesiphorus & Alexander the Coppersmith…What would God have us to learn from these 7 Old & New Testament stories?

The word count in this article will mostly come from the scripture selections that tell us these people’s stories.  The comments at the end of all these passages will be shorter than the full scripture passages, as I believe the scriptures themselves will help to make the primary points I am trying to make – very clear.

Let’s start with Old Testament Good Guy #1 – Ebed-Melech, in Jeremiah 38 – who risked his life to help Jeremiah

38 Then Shephatiah the son of Mattan, and Gedaliah the son of Pashur, and Jucal the son of Shelemiah, and Pashur the son of Malchiah, heard the words that Jeremiah had spoken unto all the people, saying,

Thus saith the Lord, He that remaineth in this city shall die by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence: but he that goeth forth to the Chaldeans shall live; for he shall have his life for a prey, and shall live.

Thus saith the Lord, This city shall surely be given into the hand of the king of Babylon’s army, which shall take it.

Therefore the princes said unto the king, We beseech thee, let this man be put to death: for thus he weakeneth the hands of the men of war that remain in this city, and the hands of all the people, in speaking such words unto them: for this man seeketh not the welfare of this people, but the hurt.

Then Zedekiah the king said, Behold, he is in your hand: for the king is not he that can do any thing against you.

Then took they Jeremiah, and cast him into the dungeon of Malchiah the son of Hammelech, that was in the court of the prison: and they let down Jeremiah with cords. And in the dungeon there was no water, but mire: so Jeremiah sunk in the mire.

Now when Ebedmelech the Ethiopian, one of the eunuchs which was in the king’s house, heard that they had put Jeremiah in the dungeon; the king then sitting in the gate of Benjamin;

Ebedmelech went forth out of the king’s house, and spake to the king saying,

My lord the king, these men have done evil in all that they have done to Jeremiah the prophet, whom they have cast into the dungeon; and he is like to die for hunger in the place where he is: for there is no more bread in the city.

10 Then the king commanded Ebedmelech the Ethiopian, saying, Take from hence thirty men with thee, and take up Jeremiah the prophet out of the dungeon, before he die.

11 So Ebedmelech took the men with him, and went into the house of the king under the treasury, and took thence old cast clouts and old rotten rags, and let them down by cords into the dungeon to Jeremiah.

12 And Ebedmelech the Ethiopian said unto Jeremiah, Put now these old cast clouts and rotten rags under thine armholes under the cords. And Jeremiah did so.

13 So they drew up Jeremiah with cords, and took him up out of the dungeon: and Jeremiah remained in the court of the prison.

Jeremiah 39:15-18  (God remembers Ebedmelech – when the Babylonians take the city)

15 Now the word of the Lord came unto Jeremiah, while he was shut up in the court of the prison, saying,

16 Go and speak to Ebedmelech the Ethiopian, saying, Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel; Behold, I will bring my words upon this city for evil, and not for good; and they shall be accomplished in that day before thee.

17 But I will deliver thee in that day, saith the Lord: and thou shalt not be given into the hand of the men of whom thou art afraid.

18 For I will surely deliver thee, and thou shalt not fall by the sword, but thy life shall be for a prey unto thee: because thou hast put thy trust in me, saith the Lord.

Barzillai – Old Testament Good Guy #2 

2 Samuel 17 – Wealthy Barzillai and some others give lots of Food and other needed items to David and his companions – when they were running for their lives from Absolom.

24 Then David came to Mahanaim. And Absalom passed over Jordan, he and all the men of Israel with him.

25 And Absalom made Amasa captain of the host instead of Joab: which Amasa was a man’s son, whose name was Ithra an Israelite, that went in to Abigail the daughter of Nahash, sister to Zeruiah Joab’s mother.

26 So Israel and Absalom pitched in the land of Gilead.

27 And it came to pass, when David was come to Mahanaim, that Shobi the son of Nahash of Rabbah of the children of Ammon, and Machir the son of Ammiel of Lodebar, and Barzillai the Gileadite of Rogelim,

28 Brought beds, and basons, and earthen vessels, and wheat, and barley, and flour, and parched corn, and beans, and lentiles, and parched pulse,

29 And honey, and butter, and sheep, and cheese of kine, for David, and for the people that were with him, to eat: for they said, The people is hungry, and weary, and thirsty, in the wilderness.

2 Samuel 19 – When King David was returning – after Absalom was dead – David Remembers Barzillai for his kindness

31 And Barzillai the Gileadite came down from Rogelim, and went over Jordan with the king, to conduct him over Jordan.

32 Now Barzillai was a very aged man, even fourscore years old: and he had provided the king of sustenance while he lay at Mahanaim; for he was a very great man.

33 And the king said unto Barzillai, Come thou over with me, and I will feed thee with me in Jerusalem.

34 And Barzillai said unto the king, How long have I to live, that I should go up with the king unto Jerusalem?

35 I am this day fourscore years old: and can I discern between good and evil? can thy servant taste what I eat or what I drink? can I hear any more the voice of singing men and singing women? wherefore then should thy servant be yet a burden unto my lord the king?

36 Thy servant will go a little way over Jordan with the king: and why should the king recompense it me with such a reward?

37 Let thy servant, I pray thee, turn back again, that I may die in mine own city, and be buried by the grave of my father and of my mother. But behold thy servant Chimham; let him go over with my lord the king; and do to him what shall seem good unto thee.

38 And the king answered, Chimham shall go over with me, and I will do to him that which shall seem good unto thee: and whatsoever thou shalt require of me, that will I do for thee.

Blessings for Barzillai:

  • He obtained Favor with King David – when David returned to his kingdom
    • Including David’s offer to have him come dine at his table and take care of all his needs – for the rest of his life!!!
    • Favor to have David treat Chimham his servant – very well, to the point that David said he would do for Chimham whatever “seems good to Barzillai”,
    • Favor to have David also say “whatsoever you shall require of me – THAT WILL I DO FOR YOU!
    • There are many parallels here, of helping God’s afflicted people (and perhaps even more of a direct parallel for this particular story – his persecuted and true leaders and preachers and prophets) now – before the King returns to planet earth at his Second Coming: ”And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be” Revelation 22:12

Old Testament Good Person # 3The Shunamite woman and her husband – who helped to meet the physical needs of Elisha

2 Kings 4:8 –37   Shunamite Woman & her husband feed Elisha (& probably also Gehazi) and even build an extra room for him when he passes through their area.

Shunamite Gets a Son when her husband is old & then – years later – has her son resurrected, after dying from sickness.

2 Kings 4:8 And it fell on a day, that Elisha passed to Shunem, where was a great woman; and she constrained him to eat bread. And so it was, that as oft as he passed by, he turned in thither to eat bread.

And she said unto her husband, Behold now, I perceive that this is an holy man of God, which passeth by us continually.

10 Let us make a little chamber, I pray thee, on the wall; and let us set for him there a bed, and a table, and a stool, and a candlestick: and it shall be, when he cometh to us, that he shall turn in thither.

11 And it fell on a day, that he came thither, and he turned into the chamber, and lay there.

12 And he said to Gehazi his servant, Call this Shunammite. And when he had called her, she stood before him.

13 And he said unto him, Say now unto her, Behold, thou hast been careful for us with all this care; what is to be done for thee? wouldest thou be spoken for to the king, or to the captain of the host? And she answered, I dwell among mine own people.

14 And he said, What then is to be done for her? And Gehazi answered, Verily she hath no child, and her husband is old.

15 And he said, Call her. And when he had called her, she stood in the door.

16 And he said, About this season, according to the time of life, thou shalt embrace a son. And she said, Nay, my lord, thou man of God, do not lie unto thine handmaid.

17 And the woman conceived, and bare a son at that season that Elisha had said unto her, according to the time of life.

18 And when the child was grown, it fell on a day, that he went out to his father to the reapers.

19 And he said unto his father, My head, my head. And he said to a lad, Carry him to his mother.

20 And when he had taken him, and brought him to his mother, he sat on her knees till noon, and then died.

21 And she went up, and laid him on the bed of the man of God, and shut the door upon him, and went out.

22 And she called unto her husband, and said, Send me, I pray thee, one of the young men, and one of the asses, that I may run to the man of God, and come again.

23 And he said, Wherefore wilt thou go to him to day? it is neither new moon, nor sabbath. And she said, It shall be well.

24 Then she saddled an ass, and said to her servant, Drive, and go forward; slack not thy riding for me, except I bid thee.

25 So she went and came unto the man of God to mount Carmel. And it came to pass, when the man of God saw her afar off, that he said to Gehazi his servant, Behold, yonder is that Shunammite:

26 Run now, I pray thee, to meet her, and say unto her, Is it well with thee? is it well with thy husband? is it well with the child? And she answered, It is well:

27 And when she came to the man of God to the hill, she caught him by the feet: but Gehazi came near to thrust her away. And the man of God said, Let her alone; for her soul is vexed within her: and the Lord hath hid it from me, and hath not told me.

28 Then she said, Did I desire a son of my lord? did I not say, Do not deceive me?

29 Then he said to Gehazi, Gird up thy loins, and take my staff in thine hand, and go thy way: if thou meet any man, salute him not; and if any salute thee, answer him not again: and lay my staff upon the face of the child.

30 And the mother of the child said, As the Lord liveth, and as thy soul liveth, I will not leave thee. And he arose, and followed her.

31 And Gehazi passed on before them, and laid the staff upon the face of the child; but there was neither voice, nor hearing. Wherefore he went again to meet him, and told him, saying, The child is not awaked.

32 And when Elisha was come into the house, behold, the child was dead, and laid upon his bed.

33 He went in therefore, and shut the door upon them twain, and prayed unto the Lord.

34 And he went up, and lay upon the child, and put his mouth upon his mouth, and his eyes upon his eyes, and his hands upon his hands: and stretched himself upon the child; and the flesh of the child waxed warm.

35 Then he returned, and walked in the house to and fro; and went up, and stretched himself upon him: and the child sneezed seven times, and the child opened his eyes.

36 And he called Gehazi, and said, Call this Shunammite. So he called her. And when she was come in unto him, he said, Take up thy son.

37 Then she went in, and fell at his feet, and bowed herself to the ground, and took up her son, and went out.

Shunamite woman is blessed yet again – with a warning of the 7 year famine which is about to come. And after the famine – the King “just happens” be having the miracles of Elisha read to him – and hearing the story of her son raised from the dead – when she approaches the King.  Shunamite woman finds favor with the King and receives not only her land back, but also ALL THE FRUITS OF THE LAND. WOW!

2 Kings 8:1- 6

1Then spake Elisha unto the woman, whose son he had restored to life, saying, Arise, and go thou and thine household, and sojourn wheresoever thou canst sojourn: for the LORD hath called for a famine; and it shall also come upon the land seven years. 2And the woman arose, and did after the saying of the man of God: and she went with her household, and sojourned in the land of the Philistines seven years. 3And it came to pass at the seven years’ end, that the woman returned out of the land of the Philistines: and she went forth to cry unto the king for her house and for her land. 4And the king talked with Gehazi the servant of the man of God, saying, Tell me, I pray thee, all the great things that Elisha hath done. 5And it came to pass, as he was telling the king how he had restored a dead body to life, that, behold, the woman, whose son he had restored to life, cried to the king for her house and for her land. And Gehazi said, My lord, O king, this is the woman, and this is her son, whom Elisha restored to life. 6And when the king asked the woman, she told him. So the king appointed unto her a certain officer, saying, Restore all that was hers, and all the fruits of the field since the day that she left the land, even until now.

Shunamite blessings:

  • Good feelings in her heart about helping the true man of God – Elisha (and probably also Gehazi). “A good man is satisfied from himself” Proverbs 14:14
  • Birth of a son when husband probably too old to have kids or maybe even too old to have relations with his wife
  • Warning about the coming famine – with the result that her life and family were preserved for those 7 years
  • Favor with the King after 7 year famine – upon returning to her land, and The Lord orchestrating how the King was asking about Elisha miracles during the moment when she walked in, and The King restoring not only her land – but also all the fruits of the land over the past 7 years.
  • Think about this – NOBODY ELSE is listed as being warned about this coming famine…just the wife and husband who showed great hospitality and kindness to God’s true prophet and his helper (Elisha & Gehazi). What a major bummer – for the multitudes of Israelites who gave their time and money sacrificially and religiously to support the False Prophets & then – with no warning – tried to survive that entire 7 year famine.  Makes me want to REALLY study my Bible so I can know who is true & who to support, and who to show kindness.

Old Testament Bad Guy #1 – Amaziah – False Prophet who Directly Opposed the Prophet Amos & The Word that The Lord had for His people at that time.

See what happens to him…

Amos 7 : Amaziah – Enemy of God’s messenger and his message

And the Lord said unto me, Amos, what seest thou? And I said, A plumbline. Then said the Lord, Behold, I will set a plumbline in the midst of my people Israel: I will not again pass by them any more:

And the high places of Isaac shall be desolate, and the sanctuaries of Israel shall be laid waste; and I will rise against the house of Jeroboam with the sword.

10 Then Amaziah the priest of Bethel sent to Jeroboam king of Israel, saying, Amos hath conspired against thee in the midst of the house of Israel: the land is not able to bear all his words.

11 For thus Amos saith, Jeroboam shall die by the sword, and Israel shall surely be led away captive out of their own land.

12 Also Amaziah said unto Amos, O thou seer, go, flee thee away into the land of Judah, and there eat bread, and prophesy there:

13 But prophesy not again any more at Bethel: for it is the king’s chapel, and it is the king’s court.

14 Then answered Amos, and said to Amaziah, I was no prophet, neither was I a prophet’s son; but I was an herdman, and a gatherer of sycomore fruit:

15 And the Lord took me as I followed the flock, and the Lord said unto me, Go, prophesy unto my people Israel.

16 Now therefore hear thou the word of the Lord: Thou sayest, Prophesy not against Israel, and drop not thy word against the house of Isaac.

17 Therefore thus saith the Lord; Thy wife shall be an harlot in the city, and thy sons and thy daughters shall fall by the sword, and thy land shall be divided by line; and thou shalt die in a polluted land: and Israel shall surely go into captivity forth of his land.

Old Testament Bad Guy #2 Hananiah – False Prophet who Directly Opposed the Prophet Jeremiah & The Word that The Lord had for His people at that time.

See what happens to him…

Jeremiah 27:1 – 28:17      

In the beginning of the reign of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah came this word unto Jeremiah from the LORD, saying,

2  Thus saith the LORD to me; Make thee bonds and yokes, and put them upon thy neck,

3  And send them to the king of Edom, and to the king of Moab, and to the king of the Ammonites, and to the king of Tyrus, and to the king of Zidon, by the hand of the messengers which come to Jerusalem unto Zedekiah king of Judah;

4  And command them to say unto their masters, Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Thus shall ye say unto your masters;

5  I have made the earth, the man and the beast that are upon the ground, by my great power and by my outstretched arm, and have given it unto whom it seemed meet unto me.

6  And now have I given all these lands into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, my servant; and the beasts of the field have I given him also to serve him.

7  And all nations shall serve him, and his son, and his son’s son, until the very time of his land come: and then many nations and great kings shall serve themselves of him.

8  And it shall come to pass, that the nation and kingdom which will not serve the same Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, and that will not put their neck under the yoke of the king of Babylon, that nation will I punish, saith the LORD, with the sword, and with the famine, and with the pestilence, until I have consumed them by his hand.

9  Therefore hearken not ye to your prophets, nor to your diviners, nor to your dreamers, nor to your enchanters, nor to your sorcerers, which speak unto you, saying, Ye shall not serve the king of Babylon:

10  For they prophesy a lie unto you, to remove you far from your land; and that I should drive you out, and ye should perish.

11  But the nations that bring their neck under the yoke of the king of Babylon, and serve him, those will I let remain still in their own land, saith the LORD; and they shall till it, and dwell therein.

12 ¶  I spake also to Zedekiah king of Judah according to all these words, saying, Bring your necks under the yoke of the king of Babylon, and serve him and his people, and live.

13  Why will ye die, thou and thy people, by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence, as the LORD hath spoken against the nation that will not serve the king of Babylon?

14  Therefore hearken not unto the words of the prophets that speak unto you, saying, Ye shall not serve the king of Babylon: for they prophesy a lie unto you.

15  For I have not sent them, saith the LORD, yet they prophesy a lie in my name; that I might drive you out, and that ye might perish, ye, and the prophets that prophesy unto you.

16  Also I spake to the priests and to all this people, saying, Thus saith the LORD; Hearken not to the words of your prophets that prophesy unto you, saying, Behold, the vessels of the LORD’S house shall now shortly be brought again from Babylon: for they prophesy a lie unto you.

17  Hearken not unto them; serve the king of Babylon, and live: wherefore should this city be laid waste?

18  But if they be prophets, and if the word of the LORD be with them, let them now make intercession to the LORD of hosts, that the vessels which are left in the house of the LORD, and in the house of the king of Judah, and at Jerusalem, go not to Babylon.

19  For thus saith the LORD of hosts concerning the pillars, and concerning the sea, and concerning the bases, and concerning the residue of the vessels that remain in this city,

20  Which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon took not, when he carried away captive Jeconiah the son of Jehoiakim king of Judah from Jerusalem to Babylon, and all the nobles of Judah and Jerusalem;

21  Yea, thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, concerning the vessels that remain in the house of the LORD, and in the house of the king of Judah and of Jerusalem;

22  They shall be carried to Babylon, and there shall they be until the day that I visit them, saith the LORD; then will I bring them up, and restore them to this place.

1 ¶  And it came to pass the same year, in the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah king of Judah, in the fourth year, and in the fifth month, that Hananiah the son of Azur the prophet, which was of Gibeon, spake unto me in the house of the LORD, in the presence of the priests and of all the people, saying,

2  Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, saying, I have broken the yoke of the king of Babylon.

3  Within two full years will I bring again into this place all the vessels of the LORD’S house, that Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon took away from this place, and carried them to Babylon:

4  And I will bring again to this place Jeconiah the son of Jehoiakim king of Judah, with all the captives of Judah, that went into Babylon, saith the LORD: for I will break the yoke of the king of Babylon.

5  Then the prophet Jeremiah said unto the prophet Hananiah in the presence of the priests, and in the presence of all the people that stood in the house of the LORD,

6  Even the prophet Jeremiah said, Amen: the LORD do so: the LORD perform thy words which thou hast prophesied, to bring again the vessels of the LORD’S house, and all that is carried away captive, from Babylon into this place.

7  Nevertheless hear thou now this word that I speak in thine ears, and in the ears of all the people;

8  The prophets that have been before me and before thee of old prophesied both against many countries, and against great kingdoms, of war, and of evil, and of pestilence.

9  The prophet which prophesieth of peace, when the word of the prophet shall come to pass, then shall the prophet be known, that the LORD hath truly sent him.

10 ¶  Then Hananiah the prophet took the yoke from off the prophet Jeremiah’s neck, and brake it.

11  And Hananiah spake in the presence of all the people, saying, Thus saith the LORD; Even so will I break the yoke of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon from the neck of all nations within the space of two full years. And the prophet Jeremiah went his way.

12  Then the word of the LORD came unto Jeremiah the prophet, after that Hananiah the prophet had broken the yoke from off the neck of the prophet Jeremiah, saying,

13  Go and tell Hananiah, saying, Thus saith the LORD; Thou hast broken the yokes of wood; but thou shalt make for them yokes of iron.

14  For thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; I have put a yoke of iron upon the neck of all these nations, that they may serve Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon; and they shall serve him: and I have given him the beasts of the field also.

15  Then said the prophet Jeremiah unto Hananiah the prophet, Hear now, Hananiah; The LORD hath not sent thee; but thou makest this people to trust in a lie.

16  Therefore thus saith the LORD; Behold, I will cast thee from off the face of the earth: this year thou shalt die, because thou hast taught rebellion against the LORD.

17  So Hananiah the prophet died the same year in the seventh month.

New Testament Stories – One Good Guy & One Bad Guy

New Testament Good Guy : Onesiphorus

 2 Timothy 1:16-18

16 The Lord give mercy unto the house of Onesiphorus; for he oft refreshed me, and was not ashamed of my chain:

17 But, when he was in Rome, he sought me out very diligently, and found me.

18 The Lord grant unto him that he may find mercy of the Lord in that day: and in how many things he ministered unto me at Ephesus, thou knowest very well.

Onesiphorus’ blessings:

  • Apostle Paul praying that The Lord will give him one of the GREATEST blessings you could get – that The Lord will have mercy on him – on Judgment Day.
  • Honor amongst the believers – and throughout the future of Christiandom – in Paul making note of his kind acts towards the Apostle Paul while he was in Ephesus.

New Testament Bad Guy – Alexander the Coppersmith

2 Timothy 4:14-15

14 Alexander the coppersmith did me much evil: the Lord reward him according to his works:

15 Of whom be thou ware also; for he hath greatly withstood our words.

Study God’s Word Diligently – So YOU can confidently identify who is preaching the Truth, and who is not!

As I briefly mentioned earlier, these stories make me want to obey 2 Timothy 2:15:    “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”

God’s Word is a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path.  If we get to know it well enough – we will know which preachers and prophets are true, and which are false.

Please do not take this exhortation to know God’s Word lightly.  Ponder for a moment – the ratio of false prophets and preachers – throughout history – to those who are true.  Think about Micaiah – in 1 Kings 22, when he stood before Ahab, Jehoshaphat and FOUR HUNDRED false prophets – who ALL told those 2 kings that they would have victory in the battle before them.  That ratio was 400 to 1.  And think about this…really think about this…all the people – the religious people – in ISRAEL – who supported those 400 FALSE prophets.   Then, there is Elijah and the Prophets of Baal – and the story when they all tried to call down fire from heaven.  How many false prophets in that story (1 Kings 18) – and how many true prophets in that story? Wasn’t it 450 false prophets (IN ISRAEL – which is supposed to contain God’s people) and ONE true prophet.  So, we have two examples that provide a ratio of around 400 to 1.    But those who were listening closely to the Scriptures they had in those days – would have known that those 400 + prophets were false.  So, today – we need to make it a HUGE PRIORITY to REALLY KNOW God’s Word, because (like then) MOST of the preachers today are also telling God’s people lies.  Today – like these stories from 2,000 plus years ago, millions of Bible carrying church goers today are supporting False Teachers.  And not only are they MISSING OUT on God’s special blessings for those who would support the rare and true messengers of God – they are ALSO bringing judgement upon themselves (2 John 1:11 “For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.”) for supporting another gospel and supporting those who are lying to God’s people.  Jesus Christ loves those people who are being lied to so much – that He Died on a cruel cross to save them.  He gives them life and breath every day – with hopes that they will somehow hear one of God’s true messengers and then turn from those lies and believe His Word, and then be filled with His spirit and worship Him in Spirit and in Truth.

The bottom line is this:  Make it a priority to identify God’s true messengers and do something considerable to help them or bless them.   Pull your support away from those who are speaking lies and ask God to forgive you for having supported false teachers – in the past.  And while part of you will just want to selflessly support these true preachers and other workers – just because you truly want to please The Lord, another part of you can also know – that SUPPORTING THE TRUE MESSENGERS OF GOD OFTEN HAS THE BIBLICALLY BASED RESULT OF YOU AND YOUR FAMILY BEING SAVED – IN THE TIMES OF TROUBLE THAT YOU & YOUR FAMILY MAY ENCOUNTER IN YOUR FUTURE!   So, I would agree with one old preacher I heard years ago – who called meeting the conditions of promises like this: “Enlightened self-interest”.  Do it for the true preachers & also…Do it for the good of yourself and your family. J

And since we are on the topic of Being Saved in Times of Trouble (war, famine, pestilence, etc.), I must take an extra moment to share one of the most incredible scriptures and LIST of precious promises – for those would study God’s Word and allow Him to “Correct” you.  I am not sure that I have EVER seen such an incredible list of blessings – for meeting just ONE CONDITION.  Many people spend thousands of dollars trying to be “prepared” for the possible emergencies and troubles that could happen to them and their family.  The Proverbs do certainly tell us – twice: that “the prudent man foreseeth the evil and hideth himself” (Proverbs 22:3 & 27:12), but as you put aside some extra flashlight batteries, canned food and other items for those kinds of “rainy days”…you really need to also consider the above stories – and the amazing promises in the following passage from Job chapter 5 – if you want your family to be safe – in the time of trouble.  Check out the following amazing passage.  And when I say “check it out”, I want you to print this verse, and highlight every blessing you get – for meeting this one single condition.  In one of my Bibles, I think I actually numbered them.  I think I counted 8 blessings – just for allowing God to “Correct” me.  How many do you find?

Job 5:17-23

17Behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty: 18For he maketh sore, and bindeth up: he woundeth, and his hands make whole. 19He shall deliver thee in six troubles: yea, in seven there shall no evil touch thee. 20In famine he shall redeem thee from death: and in war from the power of the sword. 21Thou shalt be hid from the scourge of the tongue: neither shalt thou be afraid of destruction when it cometh. 22At destruction and famine thou shalt laugh: neither shalt thou be afraid of the beasts of the earth. 23For thou shalt be in league with the stones of the field: and the beasts of the field shall be at peace with thee.

Exposing Satan’s Scheme to STEAL from both God’s sheep, and from His true messengers. 

After seeing how plainly God has made it – that there is such a great blessing in identifying and heartily assisting God’s true messengers, I am CONVINCED that this is a HUGE PRIORITY in Satan’s kingdom – to do everything he can to:

  1. Keep people from studying God’s Word diligently enough to clearly identify who God’s True messengers even are.
  2. Thru that ignorance (and through Covetousness – for those who actually DO KNOW who God’s true messengers are) Satan wants to ROB people from the blessings of heartily supporting God’s true messengers.
  3. Satan wants to STOP God’s true messengers from doing their work, to hinder that work through lack of funds or having to do other jobs to make ends meet, and to discourage God’s true messengers – thru the frustration of consistent LACK! Satan wants to starve out these true Oxen – so much – that they just want to lay down and QUIT!  Sometimes God’s true messengers actually get so frustrated that they just want God to take them home!

God Help us all – who call ourselves Christians – to not let this happen to these dear and True messengers, in Jesus name – for we shall all give account – on the day of Judgment.  And May we also embrace the opportunities that The Lord gives us – to heartily assist His true messengers – knowing that The Lord has some VERY Special blessings in store – both in this life, and in the world to come (1 Timothy 4:8) – for those who follow in the footsteps of Ebed-Melech, Barzillai and the Shunamite woman (and her husband). J


In conclusion, God has graciously spelled out 2 activities that help us to procure safety in the time of trouble, and even eternal favor.  Those 2 activities are A) Make it a point to heartily do nice things for God’s True Messengers, and B) Study God’s Word and let it “CORRECT” you.

Something Else Very Important – that I did not see – until AFTER writing this article

(It was not until I reread these passages – yet another time, that I noticed something else very significant.  Ebed-Melech, Barzillai and the Shunamite – did not just toss these true men of God a few leftovers.  One made a whole extra room on their house & kept it available for whenever they happened to pass by. One risked their life speaking to the King for Jeremiah’s sake, and one gave literally tons of food and stuff – to King David and his men and their families – while on the run from Absalom.  None of these 3 just tossed out a couple shekels of silver, or a few loaves of bread.  Most of God’s true messengers will be thankful for anyone that decides to help them with any amount or in any way – as they push towards accomplishing the work God has given them to do, and God surely keeps very good accounting – with whatever we do or do not sacrifice – to assist these oxen, who are treading out the heavenly corn for God’s sheep. But do keep in mind the level of sacrifice exhibited by our 3 good examples – as you ponder the true message of what God is trying to teach us – from the above 3 Old Testament stories & New Testament Onesiphorus.  The more I think about these good examples, the more I am wanting to consider them Helping Heroes – to God’s true messengers.

I also think of this final verse (in Isaiah 32) sometimes – when I think of this subject.  Just make sure you know enough of God’s Word, that you can truly identify who God’s true “Oxen” are.

Isaiah 32:20

20 Blessed are ye that sow beside all waters, that send forth thither the feet of the ox and the ass.

Closing Prayer

Father in Heaven, Thank you so much for these beautiful truths in your precious Word.  We rejoice in them as one who finds GREAT SPOIL!  Please help us to discern who your true messengers are, and please guide as to which of them we help – and how we help them.   Please also help us to be teachable and to allow your Word to correct us, that the words of our mouths, the meditations of our hearts, and the actions of our lives – may more fully please you. Also, please call many of those who are either preaching lies or supporting false teachers – to repentance and true salvation, and help them to redirect their paths – that they (and we) might all hear you say on That Day…Well Done, thou good and faithful servant.  In Jesus name.  Any Amens?

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“Make to Yourselves Friends of the Mammon of Unrighteousness”

Riches and Treasures [podcast]

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