I have been reading about the walls that were built around cities in Bible times. The people of the city depended on these strong walls to keep them safe from attackers.
Above the walls they built towers. The towers served as places of refuge should the enemy breach the walls. Provisions were stored in the towers, so that those who fled to them could hold out until help arrived. The walls were buttressed, and the more massive the buttresses, the higher the towers could be.
Isn’t there a good spiritual lesson here? God has a strong city with high towers. The towers of this city are men and women who tower far above the ordinary. They are loyal individuals who make the wall a strong defense against the attacks of evil.
Let’s take a brief look at some of these towering people.
The apostle Paul was one such tower. The hope of eternal life so strengthened him that no trial or misfortune could overwhelm him; no physical affliction could get him down; no conflict, however hazardous, could dismay him. His reaction to challenge was, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Phil. 4:13). Paul was too great a tower of strength to be slowed or stopped by anything. He was persuaded that “neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature,” should be able to separate him from the love of God (Rom. 8:38-39).
Peter and John proved themselves towers of strength when shortly after Pentecost they said to the council: “Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard” (Acts 4:19-20). They had preached about the resurrected Christ and also had healed a lame man in the temple. Now the Sadducees, displeased at their preaching of Christ, had arrested them. When brought to trial the following day, they had stated their position.
Joseph was already a tower of strength when as a youth he was sold into slavery by his jealous brothers. Later, when exposed to the temptation of the most demoralizing nature, he proved himself to be a young man of integrity and high moral stature by standing firmly for the right. He was loyal both to his master and to his God. He was one of those rare people who could handle prosperity as well as adversity. After languishing in prison for some years on charges that were entirely false, he was brought out of prison and raised to the second highest position in Egypt. Only the Pharaoh himself was above Joseph in rank. In this high position he behaved himself with the same humility as when he endured his unjust detention in prison.
Daniel and his three friends were among the towers of strength. Taken to Babylon when still probably only in their teens, they soon showed that they were able to stand up for their convictions, even in the presence of the king. Years later, when Darius the Mede forbade anyone to pray to any god but the king, Daniel prayed three times a day before his open window as he had always done before. He was not afraid. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were not afraid to disobey the order of the king of Babylon to worship the image. But they knew they could not be loyal to their God and worship a golden image of the king.
Moses was another outstanding tower of strength. No weakling could have challenged Pharaoh again and again to let God’s people go as he did. Only a man of exceptional strength could have led the children of Israel through the wilderness safely to the gateway of the Promised Land. The people just out of slavery were an undisciplined and unwieldly body of people. They were stubborn, rebellious and unappreciative, unmindful of their miraculous deliverance. Yet in forty years under his leadership Moses had forged them into a homogeneous body of people capable of self-government.
The eleventh chapter of Hebrews gives us a brief glimpse at several more towers of strength. There was Abel who by faith offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous.
Enoch walked with God for three hundred years, a most notable record, and was taken away to another world, and did not see death, because he pleased God. Soon he will receive immortality along with the rest of the faithful.
Noah, warned by God of the coming flood, built an ark by which he and his family were delivered.
Abraham and Sarah became towers because they were obedient to God and stand among those who will be heirs of the world to come.
In addition to those who are named in Hebrews 11, many more are alluded to in verses 33 through 38. The first two verses of chapter 12 sum up what is said in chapter 11 and point us to Jesus who was our greatest example and strongest tower.
Moving down through the ages to the last days we have the example of Brother Nichols who was certainly a strong tower for us, because he was near to us in time. None of us met him but I think nearly all of us knew someone who knew him and provided us a living link to him. He is important to us because if he had not worked tirelessly to bring to light the buried truth, we would be in total darkness like the rest of the world.
Our desire now is to earn the right to dwell in the house of the Lord forever. It is our duty now to be towers of strength to help one another as we strive to enter the strong tower of Proverbs 18:10, the strongest of all towers.
Some of us are stronger than others, but we all can use the strength we have to help another be stronger, so we may all share the wonder and glory of God’s eternal Kingdom on earth.
Your brother working to be a tower of spiritual strength, SK