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When God is on Your Side, 
Numbers Don't Matter

Posted on April 9, 2024

When it comes to war, numbers matter greatly. An army of 5,000 is going to have a hard time against an army of 10,000. We know this is true, but the Bible actually contradicts this truth many times. The reason why is because no number, no matter how huge, can stand against God. 

In II Kings 6, the king of Syria wanted to invade Israel, but his plans were thwarted by the prophet Elisha. After discovering his location, he sent a huge host to surround Elisha’s residence in Dothan. When Elisha’s servant saw the host, he became fearful. But Elisha responded, “Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them” (v. 16). 

The servant probably responded, “What are you talking about? It’s just you and me!” “And Elisha prayed, and said, LORD, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the LORD opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha” (v. 17). 


Seeing this vast heavenly host must have dissipated the servant’s fear. Indeed, they were not alone. Scripture tells us that the Syrian host was struck with blindness and Elisha led them to Samaria unharmed. 


It’s important that we believe that we are never alone. First of all, God’s presence is always with us (Psa. 139:7-10). But also, God’s angels are always watching over us. They are ministering spirits who serve God’s children (Heb. 1:14). And make no mistake, one angel is far more powerful than an entire trained army. 


Believe it or not, the Bible records an even more amazing account of God’s great power in the face of huge numbers. Under the leadership of Joshua, the Children of Israel finally entered Canaan so they could settle it as their new homeland. The Canaanites weren’t too happy about this. One man in particular, King Jabin of Hazor, sent word to all the Canaanite peoples in all the surrounding regions. “And they went out, they and all their hosts with them, much people, even as the sand that is upon the sea shore in multitude, with horses and chariots very many. And when all these kings were met together, they came and pitched together at the waters of Merom, to fight against Israel” (Josh. 11:4-5). 


How could the Israelites possibly fight against such a massive coalition? Actually, it wasn’t a problem at all. They could certainly gang up on Israel, but they could not gang up on God. “And the LORD said unto Joshua, Be not afraid because of them: for to morrow about this time will I deliver up all slain before Israel: thou shalt hough their horses, and burn their chariots with fire” (v. 6). 


And that’s exactly what happened. When Israel fought these Canaanites, God fought with them. These groups were completely wiped out by Joshua and the Israelites. Once the big battle was over, wars continued with these peoples (v. 18). But God continued to give victory to the Israelites, and when it was all said and done, the Bible records, “So Joshua took the whole land, according to all that the LORD said unto Moses; and Joshua gave it for an inheritance unto Israel according to their divisions by their tribes. And the land rested from war” (v. 23). 


When God is on your side, numbers don’t matter. The earth’s entire population could rise up to fight against God, and He would wipe them out in a nanosecond. It’s been said, “One plus God equals the majority.” So don’t be afraid to stand alone—because you’re not alone. And if God fights for you, no enemy can defeat you. 

More Than Conquerors (book render).png

This article is an excerpt from Paul's new book, "More Than Conquerors: Living at the Peak of the Christian Life." This book will be released in May. 

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