One year later the Syrians regrouped and launched another attack against the Northern Kingdom. This time they changed their strategy. They reasoned in v23, “The Israeli God is a god of the hills; that is why they won. But we can beat them easily on the plains.” So that is where the Syrians attacked; in the valley.
Israel was greatly out-numbered against the vast Syrian forces that literally filled the countryside. Ben-Hadad thought he had them this time for sure. What this Syrian king did not know, but was soon to find out, is that the God is Israel is the God of the hills and the valleys (v28). Once again, God rescued Israel and gave them a tremendous victory over the Syrians.
The message of this story is one we need to hear again, for life consists of hills and valleys. Life is a composition of good times and bad times, success and failures, highs and lows. What I need to know, what we all need to know, is this - Is the Lord a God of the hills only?
Was Ben-Hadad right? Are God’s promises good only on certain occasions and in certain locations? Is He trustworthy only when life is free of trouble? Is He loving and faithful at all times or just in the good times? Is He there during the mountaintop experiences of life, only to disappear in the valleys?
Is God there when you are walking through the valley of conflict? What about the valley of fear? Is He there when you struggle through the dark valley of sorrow and loneliness? Does God go AWOL when we face the valley of the shadow of death? What did David say to these questions? “Yea, though I walk through the valley…” Any valley! “…I will fear no evil; for You are with me.”
When you find yourself walking through a valley-like experience, don’t listen to the enemy of your soul who seeks to trouble you saying, “Your God is a God of the hills, but not of the valleys. You are on your own now!” God’s word to you is this, “Fear not, for I am with you” (Isaiah 41:10). Rest assured that no matter where you find yourself, be it a hill or a valley, God is there.
Pastor Todd Weston