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  • Writer's pictureWilson Lim

Resistance Is Futile


Imagine you are on a trip in the African savannah. You are enjoying the trip immensely and busy taking photos of some wild animals when suddenly you realise a runaway herd of elephants are bearing down on you. What would you do? Will you (a) continue to take photos (b) tell them to stop (c) run out of the way? We cannot resist this runway herd of elephants, or we will be turned into human pancake.


Have you ever realised that there are some things we cannot stop, we cannot resist? Yet how many try to resist God? Some try to ignore God, hoping perhaps that by rationalising God out of their daily lives, God will somehow disappear. Some try to manipulate God, thinking that God is like some parent that we can manoeuvre by our emotional tantrums. Some think we can reject God’s will, in order to pursue our own. And so on.


This is a crucial topic to seriously consider and come to terms with how we should respond to God. What will happen if we resist God?


Let us consider Exodus 10 and learn some key lessons from it. At this point of the story, Pharaoh had been resisting God for a season. And God sent plague after plague, yet Pharaoh continued to resist. In this 8th plague, God sent a plague of locust. A swarm so huge that the sky was darkened from horizon to horizon. Where the ground was covered with locusts. And every vegetation that was edible was eaten.


In this article, we will come to understand why resistance is futile. That resistance only leads to a number of consequences to those who resist God. We will examine 5 of these consequences.


RESISTANCE MISSES GOD'S PLANS


Exodus 10:3 (NIV) So Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and said to him, “This is what the Lord, the God of the Hebrews, says: ‘How long will you refuse to humble yourself before me? Let my people go, so that they may worship me.’ ”


God has His plans and purposes. Yet God gives to us individuals the choice whether we agree to be part of His plans or not. Pharaoh could have chosen to flow with God's plans for the Israelites. He could have amicably agreed to release the Israelites and go down history as the Pharaoh who had the foresight to give freedom to the slaves! Pharaoh could have done as God commanded, "Let my people go, so that they may worship me." Just as in South Africa in 1990, State President Frederick de Klerk dismantled apartheid and went down in history for doing the right thing!


When we resist God, God will use someone else instead who will trust Him.

But Pharaoh instead chose to resist God. As a result, he could not have a part in it. Instead of being known in history as the valiant king who did the right thing, he became known as the villain. When we resist God, we effectively walk away from God's plans and purposes. When we resist God, God will use someone else instead who will trust Him.


The story of the prophetess Deborah and Barak gives us an insight into this principle. Judges 4:6-9 (NIV) 6 She sent for Barak son of Abinoam from Kedesh in Naphtali and said to him, “The LORD, the God of Israel, commands you: ‘Go, take with you ten thousand men of Naphtali and Zebulun and lead the way to Mount Tabor. 7 I will lure Sisera, the commander of Jabin’s army, with his chariots and his troops to the Kishon River and give him into your hands.’” 8 Barak said to her, “If you go with me, I will go; but if you don’t go with me, I won’t go.” 9 “Very well,” Deborah said, “I will go with you. But because of the way you are going about this, the honor will not be yours, for the LORD will hand Sisera over to a woman.” So Deborah went with Barak to Kedesh,


God wanted Barak to lead the army and trust in God for victory. But because of Barak's lack of trust in God, God chose not to give Sisera over to Barak, but to a woman. Glory went to an unknown woman rather than Barak. Men, God has chosen you for a purpose to leadership. When men fail to rise up to their call, God may pass it to women.


God judged the priest Eli and his sons because they were unfaithful to God. In their place, God promised to raise another priest who will be faithful. 1 Sam 2:34-35 (NIV)34 “‘And what happens to your two sons, Hophni and Phinehas, will be a sign to you—they will both die on the same day. 35 I will raise up for myself a faithful priest, who will do according to what is in my heart and mind.


The more we resist God the more we wander away from God's purposes.

Each one of us has a choice before God. Do we choose to participate in God's purposes or do we choose to resist? The more we resist God the more we wander away from God's purposes. Resistance can be active, like Pharaoh. Or passive where we perhaps ignore God's call upon our lives. Where we simply fold our arms and refuse to budge.


If we have been resisting God, it is time to turn back and get into God's purposes. God is gracious and He can graft us back into His purposes. Although it always means we have lost time.


Pastor Clark Taylor, a former Methodist pastor, was used of God to establish the Christian Outreach Centre movement in Brisbane, after he experienced the power of God upon his life. The movement grew quickly and the church became the largest church in Brisbane. By 1984, COC was at its peak, his services were broadcast in TV, churches were being planted all over Australia and into the Pacific region. But in 1989, he fell into sin, committed adultery and resigned. For 10 years he was in the wilderness and struggled with his sin and other issues. Yet by 1999, God restored him and in late 2000 both he and his wife Anne got back together. God restored him and began to use him again to start a new church in Brisbane in 2001. God can graft us back again, even though we lose time. As Clark Taylor lost more than a decade and is now an old man.


God can graft you back into His purposes, if you repent and do not resist.


RESISTANCE PROLONGS THE INEVITABLE


Exodus 10:3–4 (NIV) 3 So Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and said to him, “This is what the Lord, the God of the Hebrews, says: ‘How long will you refuse to humble yourself before me? Let my people go, so that they may worship me. 4 If you refuse to let them go, I will bring locusts into your country tomorrow.


What God wills, will come to pass. It is inevitable because God is sovereign.

Pharaoh sought to continually resist God, but it only prolonged the inevitable. It only stretches out the time but eventually God's purposes will come to pass. God will bring His people out of Egypt. God's purposes will come to pass. What God wills, will come to pass. It is inevitable because God is sovereign. Isa 55:11 (NIV) “so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.”


When anyone opposes God, it will not change the final outcomes. Job 23:13 (NIV) “But he stands alone, and who can oppose him? He does whatever he pleases.”


It only prolongs the inevitable. God has His own timetable where He has taken into account all our disobedience, our resistance, etc. Yet God's purposes will stand. Isa 46:10 (NIV) I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say: My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please.


Resistance cannot change God's purposes. God's purpose is like a tsunami. Nothing can stand in its way.

Resistance cannot change God's purposes. God's purpose is like a tsunami. Nothing can stand in its way. Instead of standing against the mega-tsunami, I rather surf it!


Can you remember what happened to a whole generation of stubborn Israelites who continued to resist God’s will? God prolonged the journey of the Israelites into the Promised Land by 40 years until the whole generation of disobedient Israelites had passed away (Num 32:13). God's purposes were upheld, but with a different group of people who entered the Promised Land.


We must hold 2 concepts in tension. God's plan and purpose will come to pass so nobody can hinder the purposes of God. Yet because God gives men choice, men can choose to resist God. Jer 32:33 (NIV) “They turned their backs to me and not their faces; though I taught them again and again, they would not listen or respond to discipline.”


Don't resist God, flow with His tsunami!

Man's resistance is that in the form of intent and action. But no intent, no action of anyone can hinder God's plans. Consider this. We can try all kinds of things to stop a tsunami, but we cannot hinder it! I have learnt to say yes to God, quickly! I rather flow with God's tsunami! Don't resist God, flow with His tsunami!


RESISTANCE DEEPENS THE PAIN


Exodus 10:5–7 (NIV) 5 They will cover the face of the ground so that it cannot be seen. They will devour what little you have left after the hail, including every tree that is growing in your fields. 6 They will fill your houses and those of all your officials and all the Egyptians—something neither your parents nor your ancestors have ever seen from the day they settled in this land till now.’ ” Then Moses turned and left Pharaoh. 7 Pharaoh’s officials said to him, “How long will this man be a snare to us? Let the people go, so that they may worship the Lord their God. Do you not yet realize that Egypt is ruined?”


Pharaoh's resistance only caused more pain to come upon the Egyptians. Already their land had been devastated by many plagues. Almost every crop had been devastated. Now God will absolutely decimate every plant in the land with the locust that will eat everything. It brought so much pain even pharaoh's officials began to question his judgment.


When the plague of blood came and the Egyptians suffered from lack of clean water, Pharaoh could have stopped the pain there. When the plague of frogs came and troubled everyone, it could have stopped there, but Pharaoh resisted. When the plague of gnats came and bit humans and animals, it could have stopped there, but Pharaoh continued to harden his heart. When the plague of flies came and food was ruined, it could have been stopped but Pharaoh refused. A plague of boils came upon men and animals. A plague came and killed the livestock and again it could have stopped there. Next came a plague of hail and destroyed their harvests. Yet Pharaoh resisted. When we resist God, it will only bring more pain.


More resistance against God leads to more pain for no gain.

When I was a child, and I resisted my parents it only brought more pain! As my parents disciplined me. So I understood what it means to resist God. Only the stubborn and dumb will continue to resist God and bear more pain when the outcome is inevitable. More resistance against God leads to more pain for no gain.


God does not enjoy inflicting pain, but He will bring it upon those who refuse to listen to persuasion.

God does not enjoy inflicting pain, but He will bring it upon those who refuse to listen to persuasion. For sometimes, pain is the only way to get people's attention. The story of the prodigal son illustrates this. Luke 15:14-17 (NIV) 14After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need. 15So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs. 16He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything.17“When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death!


Pain finally brought the prodigal son to reflect on the error of his ways. Don’t wait for pain. Don't resist God. Be smart and flow with Him.


RESISTANCE INVITES GOD'S JUDGEMENT


Exodus 10:11-15 (NIV) 11 No! Have only the men go and worship the Lord, since that’s what you have been asking for.” Then Moses and Aaron were driven out of Pharaoh’s presence. 12 And the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand over Egypt so that locusts swarm over the land and devour everything growing in the fields, everything left by the hail.” 13 So Moses stretched out his staff over Egypt, and the Lord made an east wind blow across the land all that day and all that night. By morning the wind had brought the locusts; 14 they invaded all Egypt and settled down in every area of the country in great numbers. Never before had there been such a plague of locusts, nor will there ever be again. 15 They covered all the ground until it was black. They devoured all that was left after the hail—everything growing in the fields and the fruit on the trees. Nothing green remained on tree or plant in all the land of Egypt.


As we are God's people, discipline is intended to bring us to our senses and to turn to God.

Pharaoh kicked Moses out. Pharaoh's continual resistance brought the 8th plague upon the country. When we continually resist God, it may eventually bring about God's judgment upon our lives. As we are God's people, discipline is intended to bring us to our senses and to turn to God. Heb 12:10 (NIV) Our fathers disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness.


Or those who do know God, it is intended to make them wake up to God! You either face God now, or you will face God on Judgment Day. By that time, it is too late. There is no mercy left on that day. So consider now where you stand before a Holy God!


Sometimes, because some continually resist God, God's judgment will come upon a whole city or nation.

Sometimes, because some continually resist God, God's judgment will come upon a whole city or nation. The prophet Isaiah prophesied against the Israelites in Isa 3:9 (NIV) The look on their faces testifies against them; they parade their sin like Sodom; they do not hide it. Woe to them! They have brought disaster upon themselves.


So when our cities continue to sin and flaunt its sin before God, one day judgment will come. Don't be surprised!


“In Aug 2005, hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans and there was incredible devastation. Almost 2000 people died and estimate $81 billion in damage. New Orleans is known as a hotpot of occultic, sexual deviation practices. "Southern decadence" which promoted homosexual celebration, with some 125,000 revelers attending in 2005. It also its own annual Mardi Gras.


About five years ago, in a debate before the National Association of Black Journalists, I stated that if whites were to just leave the United States and let blacks run the country, they would turn America into a ghetto within 10 years. The audience, shall we say, disagreed with me strongly. Now I have to disagree with me. I gave blacks too much credit. It took a mere three days for blacks to turn the Superdome and the convention center into ghettos, rampant with theft, rape and murder.” Rev Jesse Lee Peterson, a black pastor, WorldNet Daily 21/9/05.


Those who stay on in a sin city and do not actively fight against it or pay heed to God will also eventually pay the price of God's judgment. Just as Lot and his family suffered for living in a sinful city. God does not enjoy bringing judgment. Jonah was sent to preach to the city of Nineveh about God's judgment that was coming. When the Ninevites repented, Jonah was not happy yet God’s response showed His heart in Jon 4:11 (NIV) “But Nineveh has more than a hundred and twenty thousand people who cannot tell their right hand from their left, and many cattle as well. Should I not be concerned about that great city?”


But when resistance continues too long and there is stubborn refusal to repent, God's long-suffering patience will reach its end.

This shows God's desire to be compassionate. But when resistance continues too long and there is stubborn refusal to repent, God's long-suffering patience will reach its end and He will act in judgment. In fact, God gave a prophetic word through Kim Clements in Houston about his coming judgment on New Orleans in July 22 2005.


RESISTANCE LEADS TO HUMILIATION


Exodus 10:16-17 (NIV) 16 Pharaoh quickly summoned Moses and Aaron and said, “I have sinned against the Lord your God and against you. 17 Now forgive my sin once more and pray to the Lord your God to take this deadly plague away from me.”


Pharaoh had to face the humiliation of admitting that he sinned against God. He resisted God and came out second best again. We can never succeed in resisting God. We will eventually be proved wrong and God right. God is always right. Isa 2:11 (NIV) The eyes of the arrogant man will be humbled and the pride of men brought low; the LORD alone will be exalted in that day.


I don't know about you, but I don't like to be humiliated. So don't resist God. For we will reap what we sow.


CONCLUSION


Resistance against God is futile. We are kicking against a mountain. What are you resisting today? Are you resisting God's call upon your life? Are you resisting God's challenge to you to repent? Are you resisting the conviction of God about certain matters in your life? Stop resisting and flow with God! Don't resist the tsunami of God, surf it, flow with God!

 

Copyright©️2023 by Wilson Lim. All rights reserved. Materials are free to be distributed in whole or part as long as proper acknowledgement is given to the author and not sold for profit.



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