Summary: The Hand of the Lord: 1. is mighty. 2. is dangerous and deadly against His enemies. 3. empowers His servants. 4. can be heavy to discipline His people. 5. will help His people. 6. will always be with His people today.
The Hand of the Lord in Scripture
Exodus 9:1 - 1 Peter 5:7
Bible Study by Rick Crandall
*This study grew out of a desire to better understand the hand of the Lord after I preached a message on Acts 11:21. There God's Word says, "the hand of the Lord was with them, and a great number believed and turned to the Lord."
*The Bible often talks about the Hand of the Lord. In the KJV, the phrase "hand of the Lord" is found 39 times, with 36 times in the Old Testament, and 3 in the New Testament. The phrase "Hand of God" is found 16 times in the Bible, 7 times in the Old Testament and 9 times in the New Testament. (All of these Scripture passages with some context are listed at the bottom of this study.)
*Naturally, there are other references to God's Hand that don't include these exact phrases.
*For example, 1 Chronicles 4:9-10 says:
9. Now Jabez was more honorable than his brothers, and his mother called his name Jabez, saying, "Because I bore him in pain.''
10. And Jabez called on the God of Israel saying, "Oh, that You would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that YOUR HAND would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain!'' So God granted him what he requested.
*What can we say about the Hand of the Lord? -- Here are some of the truths that stand out to me.
1. First: The Hand of the Lord is mighty.
*This truth may seem too obvious to mention, but the Lord wants everyone to know that His Hand is mighty. God made this clear when Joshua was leading the Children of Israel, and the Lord miraculously dried up the Jordan River for His people to cross over into the Promised Land.
*Then, Joshua 4:20-24 says:
20. And those twelve stones, which they took out of Jordan, did Joshua pitch in Gilgal.
21. And he spake unto the children of Israel, saying, When your children shall ask their fathers in time to come, saying, What mean these stones?
22. Then ye shall let your children know, saying, Israel came over this Jordan on dry land.
23. For the Lord your God dried up the waters of Jordan from before you, until ye were passed over, as the Lord your God did to the Red sea, which he dried up from before us, until we were gone over:
24. That all the people of the earth might know THE HAND OF THE LORD, that it is MIGHTY: that ye might fear the Lord your God for ever.
*The Hand of the Lord is mighty! The Book of Job stresses that God's Hand was mighty enough for creation. In Job 12:7-10, that godly sufferer urged one of his friends to:
7. . . ask now the beasts, and they shall teach thee; and the fowls of the air, and they shall tell thee:
8. Or speak to the earth, and it shall teach thee: and the fishes of the sea shall declare unto thee.
9. Who knoweth not in all these that THE HAND OF THE LORD hath wrought this?
10. In whose hand is the soul of every living thing, and the breath of all mankind.
*The Hand of the Lord is mighty! Proverbs 21:1 tells us that "The king's heart is in THE HAND OF THE LORD, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will."
*In the New Testament, the phrase "Hand of God" is a sure sign of God's might. This phrase is found 9 times in the New Testament. Eight of those times, God's Word is talking about Jesus being exalted to the right hand of God.
*Then 1 Peter 5:6-7 urges us to:
6. Humble yourselves therefore under THE MIGHTY HAND OF GOD, that he may exalt you in due time:
7. Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.
2. The Hand of the Lord is mighty. And the Hand of the Lord is dangerous and deadly against His enemies.
*The very first time we see this "Hand of the Lord" phrase in God's Word, it's in connection with the judgment God was going to pour out on Egypt. Exodus 9:1-4 says:
1. Then the Lord said unto Moses, Go in unto Pharaoh, and tell him, Thus saith the Lord God of the Hebrews, Let my people go, that they may serve me.
2. For if thou refuse to let them go, and wilt hold them still,
3. Behold, THE HAND OF THE LORD is upon thy cattle which is in the field, upon the horses, upon the asses, upon the camels, upon the oxen, and upon the sheep: there shall be a very grievous Murrain.