2 Chronicles 6 … Consider the Reach of His Mighty Hand and Outstretched Arm

He said, “Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, who spoke with His mouth to my father David and has fulfilled it with His hands… indeed You have spoken with Your mouth and have fulfilled it with Your hand, as it is this day,” (6:4, 15).

“Also concerning the foreigner who is not from Your people Israel, when he comes from a far country for Your great name’s sake and Your mighty hand and Your outstretched arm…” (6:32).

I was continually drawn to His Mighty Hand and His Outstretched Arm. Were these expressions interchangeable, articulating the same thought?

When Scripture refers to the Hand or the Arm of the Lord, both are symbolic expressions of His strength and power; His Mighty Hand and Outstretched Arm refer to His ability to accomplish that which He alone can.

From Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance:

Hand: “3027. יָד yāḏ,  יַד אַבְשָׁלוֹם yaḏ ʾaḇšālôm: A feminine noun meaning hand, strength… Literally, it implies the hand of a human being … Metaphorically, it signifies strength or power (Deut. 32:36; Isa. 37:27); authority or right of possession (Gen. 16:9; 2 Chr. 13:16).”

Arm: “2220. זְרוֹעַ zerôaʿ,  זְרֹעַ zerōaʿ: A common noun referring to arm, power, strength, might. It indicates the arm of a person… It is used figuratively often of the Lord’s arm… Its most significant theological use is to depict the Lord’s arm, His strength and power… His strength and power as His instruments of deliverance or even judgment …”

Consider the Reach of His Mighty Hand and Outstretched Arm

And yes, it is by His power and His authority, by His Mighty Hand and Outstretched Arm over the course of history that fulfills all His plans and purposes, to deliver or judge.

And as we view His Hand and His Arm in this light, we see the depiction of Almighty God, Who only has to speak and it is so; a Sovereign Ruler, Who reigns in all the affairs of men to accomplish His Will; High and lifted up in His Holiness and so far removed from the likes of humanity. And this God becomes more than intimidating. And rightly so.

But Solomon’s prayer of dedication also fixes on another aspect of His character. While Solomon had already declared that God’s Word was fulfilled by His Hand, he then asks God to let His Word be confirmed.

Now therefore, O Lord, the God of Israel, let Your word be confirmed which You have spoken to Your servant David, (6:17).

So, why would he ask that? Was Solomon asking God to prove His Word after he had so boldly proclaimed that it had indeed been fulfilled by His Mighty Hand? “…indeed You have spoken with Your mouth and have fulfilled it with Your hand, as it is this day,” (6:15).

So, I needed to do some digging.

Confirm “539. אָמַן ʾāman: A verb meaning to be firm, to build up, to support, to nurture, or to establish. The primary meaning is that of providing stability and confidence, like a baby would find in the arms of a parent,” Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance.

Solomon wasn’t asking God to prove Himself, He was asking the Lord to build up, to support, nurture and establish His children in solid confidence in the future He had prepared for them.

And another picture is unveiled, a glorious portrait of God, Holy God, reaching down from His Holy Heaven to touch His children; of Him extending His Arms to support those in need.

And I am undone by this portrayal of Him, so high and lifted up, and yet so personally involved as to reach out His Hand in order to accomplish His Word; to extend His Arms to answer the one who calls; and with His Outstretched Arms, draw His children into His safety, stability and assurance.

And the image of a loving Father immediately came to mind. A Parent Who is Powerful in His Reach to fulfill His Word; a Parent Whose Reach is Strong to accomplish His Will; a loving Parent intimately concerned and disposed to Reach out to nurture and encourage the one He loves; a Parent able to Reach out to touch the very heavens and yet willing to Reach down to touch His child.

His strength, sovereignly directed to accomplish His Word, can almost seem incompatible with the tender and compassionate embrace He extends as His Hand and Arm Reach out; and the range of His Reach, of His Mighty Hand and Outstretched Arm, to His children encompasses His incomparable strength to accomplish His will and His compassionate support to meet every need.

And sometimes, we try to separate and categorize the Reach of His Mighty Hand and Outstretched Arm, as though He is either revealed in the Fierceness of the Mighty Warrior, Majestic in Power to destroy the enemy, or in the Gracious Love of the Father with Outstretched Arms Who tenderly draws His children into His nurturing support.

But Scripture reveals He is both.

“Your right hand, O Lord, is majestic in power,
Your right hand, O Lord, shatters the enemy.
“And in the greatness of Your excellence You overthrow those who rise up against You;
You send forth Your burning anger, and it consumes them as chaff.
(Exodus 15:6-7).

“The eternal God is a dwelling place,
And underneath are the everlasting arms;
And He drove out the enemy from before you,
(Deuteronomy 33:27).

The Reach of His Mighty Hand and Outstretched Arm was demonstrated perfectly when He Stretched out His Arms and allowed them to nail His Mighty Hands to the cross. And by His Mighty Hand, He destroyed the works of the enemy. And with His Outstretched Arms, He gathered those in desperate need of the security found through faith in Him.

… The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil, (1 John 3:8).

“No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up on the last day,” (1 John 6:44).

And the Reach of His Mighty Hand and Outstretched Arm is beautifully united in Jesus Christ, our Good Shepherd.

Behold, the Lord God will come with might,
With His arm ruling for Him.
Behold, His reward is with Him
And His recompense before Him.
11 Like a shepherd He will tend His flock,
In His arm He will gather the lambs
And carry them in His bosom;
He will gently lead the nursing ewes,
(Isaiah 40:10-11).

“I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep… 27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; 28 and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are one.” (1 John 6:44).

How do we respond to the Reach of His Mighty Hand and Outstretched Arm?

When we have placed our trust in Jesus Christ, the Living Word, for our salvation, we are rescued from sin and death and set free to serve and follow our Good Shepherd.

And  though we believe and trust our Good Shepherd, sometimes life threatens to cloud over the confidence we have in His promises to Reach into our lives with His Powerful rod to defeat our enemy and His Loving staff to rescue us in the midst of our trials. We too need to ask God, like Solomon, to let the Words which He has spoken to us be confirmed

Let us seek Him in His Word, that we would grow to pray boldly, like Solomon, asking God to confirm to us through His Word, the Reach of His Mighty Hand and Outstretched Arm.

Reach:

    1. ability to reach
    2. extent or range
    3. continuous stretch or expanse
  • 1) Lord, let the Word You have spoken be confirmed; that it is only in Your ability, by the Reach of Your Mighty Hand and Outstretched Arm, that we are saved. And because it is not up to us to attain, may we grow in our confidence in Your Mighty Hand of Grace and Outstretched Arm of Mercy to keep us secure for all eternity.
    • For by their own sword they did not possess the land,
      And their own arm did not save them,
      But Your right hand and Your arm and the light of Your presence,
      For You favored them,
      (Psalm 44:3).
    • But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared,He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life, (Titus 3:4-7).
  • 2) Lord, let the Word You have spoken be confirmed; that that no one is ever beyond the Reach of Your Mighty Hand to save and Your Outstretched Arm to draw the lost in to be reconciled by Your shed blood on the cross. Grow us in our ability to see the extent to which You love the lost, and use us Oh Lord, to share the message of Your Grace and Love to those in need.
    • Behold, the Lord’s hand is not so short
      That it cannot save;
      Nor is His ear so dull
      That it cannot hear,”
      (Isaiah 59:1).
    • and He died for all, so that they who live might no longer live for themselves, but for Him who died and rose again on their behalf… 18 Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, 19 namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation, (2 Corinthians 5:15, 18-19).
  • 3) Lord, let the Word You have spoken be confirmed; that the Reach of Your Mighty Hand and Outstretched Arm expresses Your everlasting love; and whatever the extent of our troubles, Your Reach continuously extends to faithfully draw us into Your nurturing support to build us up in Your truth. Oh, Lord, please grow us in our assurance that through the Reach of Your Mighty Hand and Outstretched Arm, You are faithful to accomplish all that concerns us.
    • The Lord appeared to him from afar, saying,
      “I have loved you with an everlasting love;
      Therefore I have drawn you with lovingkindness,
      (Jeremiah 31:3).
    • Though I walk in the midst of trouble, You will revive me;
      You will stretch forth Your hand against the wrath of my enemies,
      And Your right hand will save me.
      The Lord will accomplish what concerns me;
      Your lovingkindness, O Lord, is everlasting;
      Do not forsake the works of Your hands,
      (Psalm 138:7-8).

Let’s Grow Together!

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