The Mighty Weapon of Faith

Yael Eckstein  |  June 11, 2023

Masada 1910-1920
(Photo: GPO)

Some trust in chariots and some in horses,
    but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.
They are brought to their knees and fall,
    but we rise up and stand firm.
—Psalm 20:7-8

We start out every week with an inspirational lesson from the beloved Psalms. For centuries, these ancient poems of King David and others have been the foundation for Jewish and Christian worship. Enjoy!

Several weeks ago, I visited Masada with a group of Christian friends visiting Israel. Masada is a mountain in the Judean desert overlooking the Dead Sea. Over 2000 years ago, Herod built himself a fortress on this mountain to escape to in case of rebellion. But what Masada is most famous for is the final holdout in the Jewish revolt against the Romans after the destruction of the Second Temple.

Standing atop Masada, you can still clearly see the stone boundaries of the Roman army camps that surrounded the mountain. As we looked out at these 2000-year-old army camps, one of my Christian friends remarked, “This doesn’t make any sense.” I looked at her. “What doesn’t make sense?” I asked.

“The Romans were the most powerful empire on earth for centuries. They are gone without a trace and the tiny people of Judea, the Jews, are thriving like never before. It just doesn’t make sense.”

The Mighty Weapon of Faith

As we stood there, I imagined the God-fearing Jewish rebels who died on Masada. After hearing what my friend just said, I thought back to the stirring words of Psalm 20: “Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God. They are brought to their knees and fall, but we rise up and stand firm.”

Jewish history is filled with stories of great and powerful empires that rose up to persecute and even attempt to exterminate the Jewish people. On paper, based on military might and sheer numbers, as my friend observed standing atop Masada, Jewish history makes no sense.

And that’s the way it’s supposed to be.

You see, if the Jewish people were a large and powerful nation, there would be no miracle, no revelation of God, in our survival against all odds. It’s only because we are, as Moses put it, “the fewest of all peoples” (Deuteronomy 7:7) that God’s hand is so apparent in our victories and survival.

The story of the Jewish people gives hope to all people of faith. Through us, God has shown that neither military technology nor economic might are ultimately victorious. Rather, it is because of the mighty weapon of faith and trusting in the name of the Lord that we rise again and again.

Your Turn:

We live in tense times. Remember that how things look “on paper” does not determine the outcome of history. Trust in God and know that His plan will prevail.