But they were silent and answered him not a word, for the king’s command was, "Do not answer him." ~~ Isaiah 36:21, ESV
Have you ever wanted to give someone your piece of mind?
Oh, I shall confess. Absolutely! I've experienced times I wanted to share my point of view regardless if the other person would get it or not. I just wanted my voice to be heard.
Well sometimes God tells us it is better to remain silent. In Isaiah 36-37, the King of Assyria through his field commander taunts King Hezekiah and the people of Judah. He says things like (my paraphrase):
- What is your strategy?
- Are you really depending on the Lord God?
- Listen to me and I'll make you a deal.
- Can King Hezekiah and the Lord really save you?
If someone mouths off to me, I must restrain myself from saying what comes to my mind. I remember my oldest son used to come home distraught because someone made fun of me. He wanted to defend me. It hurts when someone talks mean about our mother, no matter how old we become.
Years ago, I worked in an office full of men who didn't particularly care for my husband. I listened to them talk badly about him in front of me. That was a painful period of time.
But is silence enough? King Hezekiah sought the Lord. We can follow his example and pray about situations that bother us. The Lord will give us an answer on how to deal with our particular situation. A prophet may not come in and give us a direct commandment from the Lord as Isaiah did for King Hezekiah. But we can seek God in His word and if we listen to Him, He may speak to us through other people or worship music. No matter which way the answer comes, God will give us an answer when we seek Him.
Then we follow God's instructions and trust Him to deliver us from the situation as King Hezekiah did. In this situation, God took care of everything. All King Hezekiah had to do was to seek the Lord.
With my son, he and I prayed for those who spoke badly of me. I instructed him not to talk to them about it, but to ignore them. In my work, I continued to pray for those men until the Lord allowed me to resign from that position.
In most confrontational circumstances, it may be best to remain silent and seek the Lord. God can deliver us from the evil. Remember, we do not wrestle with flesh and blood, but the spiritual forces of evil. Therefore, we will never win on our own strength. It's better to remain silent and pray.