Daily Devotional – I’m Normal.™ I AM Ministries
“To promote Godly living in a culture committed to destroying it”
Wednesday, April 27, 2016
Chase the Dog
A colleague of mine tells a story about a World War II veteran who escaped from a Nazi prison camp. The man had fled the confines of the camp without detection, but faced a gauntlet of German shepherd dogs that patrolled the perimeter. The dogs were attached to steel wires stretched between the trees. The fleeing prisoner had no way to evade or avoid them. The barking dogs alerted Nazi guards to prisoner’s escape and were approaching him from a distance, intent on recapturing or, more likely, killing him.
The situation was desperate. Outrunning the dogs was impossible; taking on the soldiers with his bare hands was a death sentence. In a moment of inspiration, he ran directly toward the closest enemy canine. He chased the dog as if he were their predator. To his astonishment, the dog ran away instead of attacking, fleeing this unlikely aggressor. The man escaped with his life because he engaged the enemy and turned the tables it for his own purpose.
Engaging the enemy face-to-face to save one’s life can also be found in the Bible. Rahab the prostitute found herself in a desperate situation and used a “chase the dog” technique to save her life (Joshua 2:1-24). Surrounded in her own home by the enemy spies of the Israelites, she knew her life was hanging by a thread. Joshua was gathering his armies to invade the land where she lived.
Her king feared for the kingdom and requested Rahab to assist him in their capture. The king recognized Joshua’s men as spies – they were dogs in his eyes (Joshua 2:2-3). Both Rahab and the king knew it was only a matter of time before the Army of God arrived and all inhabitants of Jericho would be killed. In a God-inspired moment, Rahab made a bold move and “chased the dog”, in this case Israelite spies, in order to save her life.
Her first task was to navigate carefully to avoid the guards of the king who were questioning her. Her ploy was telling them the spies had left the city. Having dispatched these officers, she approached the Israelite “dogs”, whom she had hidden on the roof. No doubt their hearts were pounding and their blood was racing with nervousness, for they had anticipated being betrayed by a servant into the hands of her king. To their amazement, she secured them on the condition they would secure her.
Amazed at her cleverness, the spies learned something even more astounding – Rahab was chasing something even bigger than spies, guards, or her own life. She had heard of the miraculous deliverance of the Israelites that enabled them to come this far – parting the Red Sea so God’s chosen people could cross. This legend had survived for forty years and was still being retold with awe in Jericho. She was also keenly aware the Israelites uncanny success in battle – defeating two Amorite kings east of the Jordan River. Because of these things, Joshua and his fellows were men of wonder (Zechariah 3:8). Generations of pagans would retell the story of Moses parting of the Red Sea.
God makes His mighty works to be remembered (Psalm 111:4). This characteristic of Him leads men to speak of the might of His awesome acts. (Psalm 145:6). Being the proprietor of a public house, she would have the opportunity to hear repeatedly from multiple groups of travelers from all kingdoms of His mighty works. Rahab knew Joshua and his men were under divine direction and protection, and she was chasing the God of Israel so she could be saved.
She told the spies what an impression the tales of their successes had upon her people, melting their hearts and swelling their courage. How her words must have emboldened the Israelite spies, to hear their enemies were dispirited. This news would bring cheer to those waiting back with Joshua, some of which must still have been nervous about attacking people thought to be so formidable (Numbers 13:27-29). Once again God shows how He can make our most powerful enemies fear Him.
Rahab had not been part of the Exodus group that witnessed God’s miracles. Nevertheless, her faith in Israel’s God rivaled that of anyone found in Israel (John 20:29). She believed God’s promise to His people Israel, telling them, “I know the LORD has given you the land.” (Joshua 2:9). Rahab decided to chase the God of Israel, in contrast to her king who resolved to fight Him to the death.
It is normal to chase the God of Israel. He is the only One who can turn certain defeat into victory. Jesus never chased after people or insisted they follow Him. Instead, He led, and those who recognized Him as LORD chased after Him. Jesus never forced a person to go into the Temple. Many people today are chasing after false religions and faiths, with their fate being eternal death. Don’t make the same mistake.
The WW II prisoner escaped the Nazis by reversing the usual tactic – instead running from the dog, he chased it. Reverse the word “dog”, and you get “God”. Any significance? Only He knows. Many people today consider the I AM God an enemy to their independence and happiness, so they consider chasing Him ridiculous or foolish. It’s not ridiculous, it’s inspiration from the Holy Spirit. It’s also normal because He is the only Way to eternal life (John 14:6, Acts 4:12, 1 Timothy 2:5). Be normal. Chase the Living God and the only God who can save you now and forever.
In His love and service,
A servant of Jesus Christ
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