Summary: Don't let the clanging bother you.
The Anvil - God's Word
by Nicolaus Ludwig von Zinzendorf (1703-1791)
Last eve I passed beside a blacksmith's door,
And heart the anvil ring the vesper chime;
Then, looking in, I saw upon the floor
Old hammers, worn with beating years of time.
How many anvils have you had," said I,
"To wear and batter all these hammers so?"
"Just one," said he, and then, with twinkling eye,
"The anvil wears the hammers out, you know."
And so, thought I, the anvil of God's Word,
For ages skeptic blows have beat upon;
Yet, though the noise of falling blows was heard,
The anvil is unharmed--the hammers gone.
The Word of God, God and His people are under severe attack on many fronts by many groups of people. The hammers come in various sizes and the ones using them have varying strengths. Some are just hammering enough to be irritating and others are trying to deliver crushing blows in rapid succession. The flurry of hammer activity against the anvil is creating a loud cacophony and scaring many saints and confusing others.
As we see from Brother Zinzendorf’s poem, this type of thing has been going on for some time and yet the anvil stands. During the same time frame as this pastor poet there was a grand atheist named Voltaire (1694-1779) that declared there would be no more Bibles in a hundred years. A hundred years later they were printing bibles in the house where he had lived. So goes that hammer’s prediction and damage. Sadly, while the anvil incurred no damage one can only imagine the souls that hammer damned to Hell because people thought all the noise the hammer was making was actually accomplishing something when indeed it was just a fleeting flurry of fury.
In every century after the Fall there has been an all-out effort by the enemies of God to hammer Him, His Word and His people into a pile of pulverized metallic dust and yet the anvil stands as does the Creator of the anvil and His people both Jewish and Christian.
The Word of God is replete with descriptions of hammers busily clanging away. At times in the dust created by the hammer as it destroys itself the hammer thinks it is doing damage to the anvil until it finally breaks into pieces or the wielder of the hammer dies and is turned into dust. Some even acknowledged their error and wept over their doom as their life departed. These little hammers can irritate and the Saints, but never abrogate the anvil or its Creator.
Indeed, the Creator of the anvil has a perspective on the issue that the Saints need to understand and appropriate to bring peace to their souls in the midst of all the clamor and dust clouds.
1 Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing?
2 The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD, and against his anointed, saying,
3 Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us.
4 He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision.
5 Then shall he speak unto them in his wrath, and vex them in his sore displeasure.
6 Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion.
7 I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.
8 Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession.
9 Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter's vessel.
10 Be wise now therefore, O ye kings: be instructed, ye judges of the earth.
11 Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling.
12 Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that put their trust in him.
See any heathen rage about us? Even heathen wolves cloaked as Christians rage and sometimes confuse the saints that have forgotten about the warnings of wolves in sheep's clothing, demons and false prophets appearing as angels of lights as well as false brethren. We should not be surprised nor fearful of these little, but loud, hammers. They are no surprise to God and He does not fear them for they imagine a vain or useless thing. The King of Kings is naught but irritated by all these lower powers that think themselves grand pile drivers that will break off His bands.
God is laughing at them like you would if a four year old came up to you and wanted to fight. His little mouth might speak bold words or write checks his body can't cash, but you would just chuckle if not laugh out loud. He could come at you and as you put you hand on his head to hold him back he might swing furiously, but he cannot connect. Eventually, he will tire and leave spitting at you and maybe even cursing but it was all in vain leaving you guffawing at the sight of his angry departure.