1 Samuel 4:3 (NKJV)
“And when the people had come into the camp, the elders of Israel said, ‘Why has the Lord defeated us today before the Philistines? Let us bring the ark of the covenant of the Lord from Shiloh to us, that when it comes among us it may save us from the hand of our enemies.’”
There are times when God moves through emblems and symbols – to bring victory and deliverance to His people. But these must not be seen as the default patterns that bring us victory. People have turned to emblems for confidence, even when their lives were totally bankrupt of truth and righteousness. If God has turned His back on you, no emblem or symbol will bring victory. What God looks for is not the external show of compliance but the inward heart condition of man. When a man or nation is living in disobedience to divine orders, and they disregard heavenly patterns for life, it is only a matter of time before God moves away and leaves the scene completely.
The elders of Israel thought that bringing the Ark of the Covenant would ensure their victory – but alas, it did not help them. Our enemies will not submit to godly emblems if God Himself is not behind the emblem. It is God who gives victory. We need to ensure that we are living correctly and pleasing the Lord of glory. In this case, the priests who carried the ark were themselves defiled and an abomination to God. If God had already rejected the priests who should have been their intermediaries, what hope was there for the nation of Israel?
And the same thing is happening to us today. If the leaders of God’s people are living corrupted and abusive lives, what hope can there be for the Church? Many are still pursuing several religious emblems without realizing that such is not the secret of victory. The secret of victory is in living a God-approved life that attracts God into our daily affairs.