1 Samuel 14:25 – And all they of the land came to a wood; and there was honey upon the ground.
1 Samuel 14:26 – And when the people were come into the wood, behold, the honey dropped; but no man put his hand to his mouth: for the people feared the oath.
1 Samuel 14:27 – But Jonathan heard not when his father charged the people with the oath: wherefore he put forth the end of the rod that was in his hand, and dipped it in an honeycomb, and put his hand to his mouth; and his eyes were enlightened.
Ephesians 1:18 – The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,
Hello readers, new blog, and short blog today. There was a battle between the Philistines and Israel. God had wrought a great victory, God saved Israel through the simple faith (and action! because true faith produces works!) of Jonathan and his armourbearer. And the battle went on, and Jonathan and the soldiers of Israel came to a wood. They had been fighting, and they were hungry! And God provided honey for them! And the honey dropped, it was on the ground, right there for all to take… but noone but Jonathan took of the honey… and Jonathan’s eyes were enlightened. He was the only one to get the blessing, to get his eyes enlightened, to get sustained! There’s a lot of simple truths in this story for us today.
First of all, we are in a battle. If you are saved you are a soldier of Christ, and life can be tough and get messy and get out of hand. Our faith will be tried, and the sheep will be sorted from the goats. What are you really made… is Christ in you or not? If he isn’t, if you’re not born again of the Spirit of God, you will fall away, you’ll fail the test of life. You may even get through life relatively unscathed, avoid all the major bullets… but at judgement, you won’t put anything past God. It’ll be a shame to end up in hell when all is said and done. Eternity is a long time to think… was it worth it? That’s why there will be weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth… regret is horrible, it is painful.
We are at war with ourselves, our sinful flesh, our deceitful heart, our lusts, our pride, with the devil, with the world. And we need honey in the battle. In fact, all of us need honey, unsaved and saved alike. Saved people need to take of the honey of the Lord Jesus Christ… the sweet news of the gospel of their salvation, forgiveness, reconciliation to God… they need but take it. And as the honey dropped and was on the ground, so readily available, free!!! provided for by God… so the honey of the gospel is there for all to take today. We need but take it… you are invited to taste and see that the Lord is good. Forgiveness and eternal life is a gift from God to you. A free gift!
We all need our eyes enlightened, we need to be enlighted by the Holy Ghost of God, he only can make us see, he only can make us who were dead in trespasses and sins, enemies of God, totally alienated from God, dead, dry, barren, unfruitful… he only can make us alive. We need enlightenment from above, he only can do it, we need the light to shine in our hearts. 2 Corinthians 4:6 – For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. He can revive us. He wills to, he wants to! But life for a saved person can be a battle, we are often in the woods a lot aren’t we. And we need restoration, rescuing, help from heaven. Help, Lord!
We need enlightenment, spiritual enlightenment, we need to be sustained. We need enlightened eyes. You can tell a lot about a person by their eyes. Is the light there. Is the light of Christ radiating from your eyes? Are you alive in your eyes, or dead in your eyes?
We need food in the battle, it’s tough to live… let alone fight on nothing… no wonder we don’t stand a chance! And that food is God’s word. Are you a starving, famished Christian today? Have you gone off the deep end? Are you in the woods? Life’s got you cornered, life’s walled you in. And your eyes may even be out… just as Samson’s were… he once had his eyes… but he spent them lusting after women… and then his eyes were put out… and he started serving the enemy! You may be a Christian, but instead you live a life serving Satan. Just as Samson did… and he was a mighty man of faith.
Your eyes may have been put out by a life of sowing to your flesh, living carnally, living in rebellion to God. Abandoning his word, forsaking the old paths, and there is waste and ruin and wreckage to show for it. You thought you knew a better way, a way that pleased your lust, a way that was “Christian” but also fun, a way that includes bits of everything, bits of Christianity that are alright, but a healthy dose of world in there as well… a way that catered to “what I want to do”, “what I think is right” … but it’s produced sin, waste, vanity, pain, death. You mocked at the Bible, you scorned truth, God’s so irrelevant, his ways are foolish. But your light is out. Has your light been put out? Jesus said to let our light shine, but it’s hard for the light to shine if it’s not there… if HE is not in you. After all Jesus is the light, the true Light, without Jesus in you, you have no real light both in yourself and to give others. If you are saved… has your light been put out? You need honey… you need God’s word. Psalms 19:8 – The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes. God’s word is SWEETER than honey! Psalms 19:10 – More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb.
We need to taste the honey. But many are scared to. Many are fearful to. Many are prevented from taking the honey. Doesn’t matter what or who is doing it… the fact is, they didn’t take the honey. They missed out. Because Saul had commanded that noone should eat… how stupid is that! We need food to live and to fight and to fight well… but instead as Satan knows, he separates you from your spiritual food, and you will faint, you’ll fall, and you’ll sin.. because these starving people started disobeying God’s word because they were so hungry. It’s VERY serious to cause other Christians to stumble and to offend. We all need to make sure we are not causing Christians to stumble. We need to make sure we are not preventing someone from tasting the honey, from getting the honey that God has for them in life. Mark 9:42 – And whosoever shall offend one of these little ones that believe in me, it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea.
Only Jonathan got the blessing, the rest of the army missed out. And just like today… many people miss out… few are saved even though Jesus died for the sins of the world… and many Christians miss out. Many Christians in fact fall away, fade away. Don’t let anything prevent you… whoever or whatever it is. Take hold on God. Wrestle with God, just like Jacob did at Peniel. Don’t let him go until he’s blessed you. Hey, you might be really struggling in life, just like Jacob was, in tough spots, cornered by your own deception and sin… but you need to set yourself, and seek God, and find him, search for him with all your heart… he’s not far away. He’s very near… and he hears the humble cry. God be merciful to me a sinner.
We can be so spiritually blind… before we are saved… we are in fact spiritually dead. Completely stone blind. You may be religious, you may go to church, you may be and do anything… but if you have not been truly born again you are stone dead and stone cold and a stone wall spiritually. Doesn’t have to be so, but it is, people reject the gospel… Jesus is crucified in vain for them. If you are unsaved you need to repent and believe on the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Saviour.
But we can need revival, even as Christians. We need to confess sin, humble ourselves, stop backsliding… we need to get in the Bible. Is the Christian life alive to you? It should be, because Christ is in you or he is not at all. The Bible says in Romans 8:9 – But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. You’re either all of his… or NONE of his. You either have him all… or don’t have him at all. It’s scary. We need his life in us, we need him to revive us. There is a hymn called “Revive Us Again” whose chorus goes “Hallelujah! Thine the glory. Hallelujah! Amen. Hallelujah! Thine the glory. Revive us again.” Is it that hard to just pray to God for help? Out of a sincere heart?
We come to the woods of life, in fact life itself can be a wood… we come to woods in the battle, and there was another battle in the woods later on in the Bible, David’s army against Absalom’s army, and we read in 2 Samuel 18:8 – For the battle was there scattered over the face of all the country: and the wood devoured more people that day than the sword devoured. Isn’t that so true of us? The woods get us, the sword doesn’t even… a lot of us don’t even get to the real battle. We get entangled, caught up in the woods, and we are lost in the woods. Hopelessly lost and entangled in our own stuff ups and messes… our walk never gets going, we never grow up in the faith. Wilderness believers, who really have an evil heart of unbelief as the Bible says… who never make it across the Jordan and into the promised land… but instead who die out in the wilderness… who provoke God as they did, who God is angry with and rejects, who murmur as they did, who commit idolatry as they did, who fornicate as they did, who rebel as they did, who harden their hearts as they did. And they’re an example to us, yet we, typical humans do the same thing. None of us are above it, we are just like them. It’s so sad, they looked at the promised land, but they never went in.
We need God to turn the light on. We need him to light us, to enlighten our eyes. To revive us. To make us alive. Psalm 18:28 – For thou wilt light my candle: the LORD my God will enlighten my darkness. But instead we try doing it… we trying working it up… making it happen… we try kindling our own fire… we try lighting ourselves. But we have no light in and of ourselves. Kindling your own fire, lighting your own candle is vain, it’s futile… we try to feel, we try our best, but even then most of us are actually busying ourselves in and even enjoying the darkness. But life will get us, life will corner us, and we will end up completely enslaved, and imprisoned by our sin, and reaping what we sow. We need the light to shine in the dungeon we have gotten ourselves into. Jesus is the light, the life. He is the sweetness…he is the provision of God to us and for us. The Son of God, just as the honey dropped… he came from above… God in the flesh, God with us… his name Jesus… for he shall save his people from their sins. Are you saved?
Jonathan put his rod in to get the honey. And sometimes we need the rod first. We need God to take the rod to us. It’s the best thing that will happen to you, when God breaks you and humbles you and ploughs you up. God as a faithful Father chastises his children… for our betterment, if you haven’t been chastised as a Christian you are not truly saved, you are a spiritual bastard (ie. not a true son, not truly born again). The rod is needed for unsaved and saved people alike. God breaks us, humbles us… because before the sweetness… there needs to be pain first. There is no sweetness, without first being godly repentance and sorrow over our sin, wickedness, evil… coming to the cross and seeing what Jesus did, what he needed to do, because only his blood could take away our sin. The first blessings Jesus said were blessed are the poor in spirit, blessed are those that mourn… for they shall be comforted. The Holy Spirit is the comforter, but you won’t get him without first becoming poor in spirit, mourning… being broken and humble and repentant of your sin and wickedness. And the Bible says the righteous are scarcely saved… we are fallen so far short of God’s glory… we all deserve hell, we have all gone out the way, we have all gone astray, there is none that doeth good, there is no fear before our eyes, there is none that seeketh God. If you are saved, it’s because God found you, the shepherd sought you out.
The Bible says of Jesus Christ in Isaiah 7:15 – Butter and honey shall he eat, that he may know to refuse the evil, and choose the good. We need the honey. God is not anti life, anti enjoyment… his yoke is easy and his burden is light. He gives life and abundant life. That sounds ok? Jesus gives forgiveness, life, joy, rest, hope, peace… God is not anti pleasure… Psalm 16:11 – Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore. The world does offer fun and enjoyment… but it’s fleeting, temporary, and forgotten. A bit like in Egypt… those years of plenty that were DEVOURED by the years of famine, a famine so grievous that the years of plenty were FORGOTTEN. Don’t set yourself up on a life of vain experiences, achievements and memories, they will desert you, and they are meaningless, and worthless to you the moment they are over… and they will be forgotten. But what God does and gives lasts forever. He gives good, permanent, lasting, eternal gifts.
So we all need enlightenment… we all are in the battle of our life, we all come to the woods of life… and God is faithful. He has provided for you, you need but take his provision. He provides honey, right in the toughest spots of our lives. When we NEED it. And we need it. If you are unsaved, you need to get saved. Rescued from hell, forgiven, eternal life, heaven… sounds like a pretty sweet gift. Job 33:30 – To bring back his soul from the pit, to be enlightened with the light of the living. The Lord Jesus Christ is the Light and the Life. He’ll make all the difference. Revive us again.
We need to wake up, we need to get the honey. The sweet news of salvation… the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ… him crucified in our place, him taking our curse in himself… his blood shed for us that cleanses us and washes away our sin. The water and the blood that flowed from his pierced side. Isaiah 60:1 – Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon thee. Your day is here, you can get saved, you can get right with God… why not take it? And for us, it is time to wake up. Ephesians 5:14 – Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light. You may be in a battle, you may be in the woods, but don’t miss out on the honey. Get the honey, get Jesus Christ, receive him into your heart today. He that HATH the Son HATH life, and he that HATH NOT the Son of God HATH NOT life.