They Can’t Cancel Your Ebenezer
Posted on July 3, 2020 by Catey Stover in Freedom Fighters
“Then Samuel took a stone and set it up between Mizpah and Shen, and called its name Ebenezer, saying, “Thus far the LORD has helped us.” 1 Samuel 7:12 (NKJV)
I’ve got a collage hanging in the master bedroom of my house that is totally made up of pictures from my time at Americas Keswick’s Colony of Mercy. There’s pictures of my wife, kids and I during their visits with me, a few of what my room looked like (11B), a copy of the sheet music to (oh oh oh) “Victory in Jesus” (wooo), pictures of the night I graduated and there’s one that I call my “stone of remembrance”. It was taken at a local roller-skating rink, with fellow Freedom Fighter writer, Rob Russomano, just after I went through a panic attack. I’ll never forget what he said to me that brought out of it, “There’s just no easy instruction manual for this new creation stuff is there?”
Every time I look at this picture, I remember hearing what was being whispered into my ear, “You don’t belong with these people. You’re not like them and they’re never going to accept you. Why don’t you just walk out of here? Besides, you know there’s a liquor store nearby. Go ahead…you’ll be just fine.” Struggling to stay put I Had someone come up to me and say that Scripture was the only thing to snap me out of it. He said all we gotta do is open up our Bibles and God will lead us to the right verse. So, he opened his pocket New Testament and began to read, “Now this man purchased a field with the wages of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst open in the middle and all his entrails gushed out. (Acts 1:18) OH NO…YOU GO NOW!!
Scripture has those moments where it was mandatory that certain events be remembered. After the incident that occurred in my life, I shared it with Pastor Mike Woods who then told me to get that picture. Why? Because I crossed over the Jordan River in my life. He directed me to Joshua 4:1-7 and told me that God did something mighty in my life and I’m gonna need to have that reminder. He was right and when it gets tough, I stand in front of that and think to myself, “Look at what God has done thus far.”
There’s another moment where standing in front of something made folks rethink their situation. Looking at Numbers 21:4-9, Moses makes a bronze serpent. Why? Because people are complaining that they have been mislead and the times are getting tough. After lodging their complaints to Moses about being left to die in the wilderness, YHVH sends snakes to bite them and it doesn’t go so good. So, Moses intercedes on their behalf and YHVH tells Moses to make the bronze serpent, lift it high on pole, have the Nation of Israel look up to it and then they will be saved. That bronze serpent was saved as a sorta Ebenezer.
But we’re an idolatrous people, aren’t we? Over time the Nation of Israel would come to worship that brazen serpent and as Hezekiah began his reign as king…
“He removed the high places and broke the sacred pillars, cut down the wooden image and broke in pieces the bronze serpent that Moses had made; for until those days the children of Israel burned incense to it, and called it Nehushtan.” (2 Kings 18:4)
The Nation of Israel actually had the audacity to give it a proper name…unreal!! But this isn’t the end of the bronze serpent’s story.
A Pharisees named Nicodemus sneaks out at night to see Jesus and ask many questions. One of those answers is, “And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:14-15) In time we’ll all know what this means. Jesus would be crucified on a Roman Cross and lifted up so that all may see what it had cost Him to redeem us from our life of sin.
Secularland is appalled that their Ebenezer’s are being pulled down and some of us Christians are joining that chorus. Yes, the object that represents history is gone but it doesn’t change history. It is the same when we see the Cross of Christ with one exception…we need to look at it and realize that it should be us on that cross and not Jesus. I’m not called to be like a president, a general, or any other man-given position. I’ve been called to be a hearer, a follower, a doer who is trying to become more and more like Jesus Christ and so are you!! Amen?
Written by Chris Hughes: Chris, a graduate of The Colony of Mercy (11-2003) has been married for 25+ years (Kathy), has a married son (Kevin) and a daughter in college (Karen). He has been a Freedom Fighter contributor since 2008. You can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org
Think About This: “Danger approaches the Christian life from three directions: the world through which we journey, the god of this world and our unmortified flesh. That’s why we need a Rock, a Fortress, a Deliverer, a Buckler, a High Tower to run to.” — A.W. Tozer
This Week’s Verse to Memorize: Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. 10 Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another –Romans 12:9-10
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the doctrinal and theological views held by America’s Keswick.