Memorize: But the people held their peace, and answered him not a word: for the king’s commandment was, saying, Answer him not” (2 Kings 18:36).
Devotional Reading: 2 Kings 18:17-37
Matters often escalate and get worse because many of the people concerned have not learnt the wisdom and power in silence. In the attempt to answer back, defend a stand, oppose or counter a claim, most people talk needlessly.
The end result is that such arguments, debates, counter claims and defensive speeches make matters worse by causing a great fire capable of burning down a whole house. Check it up: most of the wars the world has experienced, the homes and marriages that have broken and was destroyed, business organisations that have collapsed, can all trace their woes to the inability of the parties involved to control their speeches, especially in the face of verbal provocations.
The aim of Rabshakeh in our text of today, was to cause disaffection among the common people of Israel and so bring about mutiny, unrest and rebellion. His words were meant to weaken the faith and trust of the people in God and in the ability of their king to defend them. But instead of joining issues with him and trying to prove or argue otherwise, the king commanded them to be silent.
Thus, they were able to hide their fear, leaving the enemy confused like a fool. Instead of answering back the enemy, they decided to take their complaints to the king who reported the matter to God. How we need to learn the wisdom displayed here. It is not every time that we must respond to the enemy whose aim is to rubbish and weaken our faith. It is even sad to see some Christians engage in very bitter arguments and entered into strong conversations with those they claim are attacking the Church. This is often what leads to many of the religious riots and unrest that have claimed so many lives.
Winning human argument or debate most often does the faith no good. We don’t need to defend God through provocations, hot conversations and arguments with unbelievers. God is capable of handling those that try to defame Him. Our homes and other relationships will fare better if we learn the principle of silence in the face of provocation. It is not a mark of weakness or stupidity as some may think; rather, it is a sign of strength and the most effective weapon to defeat the enemy.
I pray for you today that God will help you find wisdom at all times when you need it in the name of Jesus.
Prayer point: My father and my God, please help me know when to speak and when to keep silent.
Key Dose: Silence when required is not a sign of weekness, rather, it is wisdom and sign of strength.
Pastor James Ademuyiwa
Senior Pastor (IHPCT)