The Lord Of Hosts

November 27, 2015

                                    The Lord Of Hosts

Some 261 times In the Bible God is called “The Lord of Hosts.”  The word “hosts” is a translation of the Hebrew word “sabaoth” which means armies.  It may have reference to the hosts of angels who do God’s bidding.

Some reject the God of the Bible since his name “The Lord Of Hosts” identifies him with war. They refuse to believe that a good God would order the annihilation of men, women and children in war.  Some unbelievers use that as an excuse for rejecting God.  There needs to be some clarification and explanation of God’s relationship with military conflicts.

There are two reasons that God had for wiping out the inhabitants of a country.  Deuteronomy 18:10-12 revels one of them.  “There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch,    or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer.    For all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD: and because of these abominations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee.”

God is merciful and patient, but there is a limit to his patience.  Genesis 6:3 says, “And the LORD said, my spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.” In Isaiah 43:7 God tells us what his reason was for making man.  “Every one that is called by my name: for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him.”  If God is our maker, doesn’t he have a right to do what he wants to with us?  In Matthew 20:15 Jesus asks the question “Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with mine own? Is thine eye evil, because I am good?”  God made us to give him glory.  If a group of people persist in living contrary to nature and are bringing shame and disgrace on their maker, he should have the right to destroy them.

When God ordered his people to go to war, he ordered them to slay men, women, and children.  I Samuel 15:3 says, “Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.”  His reason for that was that both men and women were guilty of the abominations that are named.  Rather than leave the children as orphans, with no one to care for them, they were also slain.  We have good reason to believe that children who die, before they reach the age of accountability, go directly to heaven.

Another reason why God destroyed in mass the inhabitants of a country was to provide a place for his people.  He wiped out the inhabitants of Canaan and gave the land to Israel.  Ezra 9:11 tells us something about the Canaanites.  “The land, unto which ye go to possess it, is an unclean land with the filthiness of the people of the lands, with their abominations, which have filled it from one end to another with their uncleanness.” History and archeology confirm the wickedness of their culture and religion.

No one wants war.  It is a terrible thing, but sometimes there is no other recourse.  The web page “” has an explanation about God and war. The following is taken from an article entitled “What does the Bible say about killing in war?”  “Throughout the Bible, warfare is presented as a grim reality in a cursed world.  There are forces of evil that must be stopped, and bloodshed is sometimes the result.  Whether a Christian should serve in the military is a matter of one’s own conscience, but killing an armed combatant in the context of warfare is not sinful in itself.  There is a time and season for everything, including war.” Ecclesiastes 3:8 says, “A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.”                                   [i]

Sometimes we are tempted to judge God.  If he suddenly takes the life of a young father and leaves his wife and children, we may ask why?  We might also ask, why does God permit wars?  We must recognize that there are things we have to leave with God.  God has a right to judge us, but we don’t have a right to judge him.  That might seem unfair to some, but if we accept God for who he is, we also accept what he does.

Ezequiel 18:4 tells us “Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die.”  God has a right to take our life at any time and in any way.  It is more alarming when it happens in a holocaust and thousands of lives are snuffed out at once.

All of us are going to die.  Only God knows when and under what circumstances.  That which should concern us is that we be ready.  Jesus died on the cross to make it possible for God to forgive us of our sins.  We need to ask God to forgive us and make us a child of his.  With that, we have the assurance of a place in heaven where there will be no more wars nor tears.  This wicked world will be left behind.  Make peace with God so you can be assured that you will be there.  John 1:12 says, “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.”

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[i]  The article   will come up if you type “war” into the search engine.


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