WHICH COUNTRY DO YOU LIVE IN?
“Lo, thou trustest in the staff of this broken reed, on Egypt;
whereon if a man lean, it will go into his hand, and pierce it:
so is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all that trust in him”
When famine came to the land of Canaan where Isaac was sojourning, he thought it would be advisable to go down to Egypt where there was food and prosperity for his family, servants, and flocks. Surely this was the best decision.
However, God came to him and said: “Go not down into Egypt . . . Sojourn in this land, and I will be with thee, and will bless thee” (Genesis 26:2, 3). What was “this land”? It was God’s land. The land was not yet conquered for God’s people, but it had already been promised to them. God had already chosen this land for His people--“ALL the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession” (Genesis 17:8).
But Egypt looked more inviting. It would be much easier to live there. Here in “this land” he faced famine. He had to trust God instead of man. All he had were the promises of God, given to him and his father (Genesis 15:1-21; 17:1-8; 26:2-5).
God speaks the same word to us today. He does not want us to live in Egypt which speaks of trusting in man’s provision, man’s ways, man’s intellect, and man’s ideas. He wants us to live by faith in His land, learning to know Him and trust Him more each day.
Let’s see what God thinks of Egypt. Isaiah 30:1-3 says: “Woe to the rebellious children, saith the LORD, that take counsel, but not of me . . . That walk to go down into Egypt; and have not asked at my mouth; to strengthen themselves in the strength of Pharaoh, and to trust in the shadow of Egypt!”
He speaks again in the next chapter. Isaiah 31:1-3: “Woe to them that go down to Egypt for help; and stay on horses, and trust in chariots, because they are many; and in horsemen, because they are very strong; but they look not unto the Holy One of Israel, neither seek the Lord! . . . Now the Egyptians are men, and not God; and their hoses flesh, and not spirit.”
Now here is a question for you. What does Isaac’s name mean? Yes, you remember--laughter! God wanted Isaac to experience the laugh of faith! He also wants you to live in His land, trusting in the promises of God with the laugh of faith. This is the description of the courageous woman in Proverbs 31:25 (ESV): “Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the time to come.”
The word “laugh” is “sachaq” and means “to laugh with pleasure, but also to laugh with scorn, to deride, to mock.” God laughs with scorn at the heathen. Psalm 2:4 says: “He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision.”
Psalm 37:12, 13: “The wicked plotteth against the just . . . The Lord shall laugh at him: for he seeth that his day is coming.”
Psalm 59:1, 8: “Deliver me from mine enemies, O my God: defend me from them that rise up against me. . . . But thou, O LORD shalt laugh at them; thou shalt have all the heathen in derision.”
Instead of succumbing to the deceptions of Egypt and being assimilated by the infiltration of humanism all around us, let’s laugh with scorn at the futility of Egypt. Let’s mock the deceptions of humanism, feminism, progressivism and all the isms. Let’s laugh at our fears, for we do not trust in man, but in the living God who is bigger than any situation we will ever face! Isaiah 2:22 says: “Cease ye from man, whose breath is in his nostrils: for wherein is he to be accounted of?”
Blessings from Nancy Campbell
“Dear Father, I thank You that You have chosen Your land for me. It is a land of faith and yet a land of blessing. Please enable me to sojourn in Your land, trusting wholly in You and in Your promises. Save me from ever drifting to the land of Egypt. Amen.”
My heart has no desire to stay
Where doubts arise and fears dismay;
Though some may dwell where those abound,
My prayer, my aim, is higher ground.
~ Johnson Oatman, Jr.
P.S. Next week we’ll find out more of how Isaac lived in God’s land.