My grandson has been struggling with a couple of lads bullying him and his friend. The police have been informed, but are powerless because the boys in question are below the age of accountability. Yet if my grandson responds with sufficient force to put the bullies off, he could be prosecuted, as he is a little older.
Standing up to bullies is never easy, for children or adults. And it certainly wasn’t easy for Abram, In Genesis chapter 15. He’d just taken the local prize bully by surprise, taken back the loot, and made him look a right fool. As the adrenalin of the moment wore off, Abram was probably beginning to realise that making a personal enemy of Kedorlaomer was not a comfortable place to be. On top of that, he’d shunned an alliance with the king of Sodom, probably the second most powerful person around. No wonder God opens with “Do not be afraid”! Abram had every reason to be very afraid.
God promises to be his shield – his protection. Abram must have been realising, that if he was ever to have possession of the land, he could not be put down by any of these tribal forces, however strong they appeared. This reassurance was every bit what Abram needed to hear.
Consider too, although he was not lacking in riches himself, he had passed up the opportunity to take all the wealth contained in the loot. And I’m sure in those days, when you had to employ your own army, wealth bought power, and power probably felt in very short supply just at that moment. Yet God promises him, “I am your great reward.” God himself was going to reward Abram for making right choices, the recompense for the loot he had chosen to give up. Shouldn’t that have been enough?
Well, yes it should have been enough. And all the many, many promises of God to us in the bible should be enough for us too. It is good to know that God is on our side, our shield and reward, especially if we have to face up to bullies or any other difficult situations.