“The LORD will fight for you while you [only need to] keep silent and remain calm.”Exodus 14:14 AMP
This is a verse many of us know and refer to when we are going through challenges.
God will fight for us, while all we need to do is remain calm.
Different Bible versions emphasise different aspects of what it means to be calm:
- … you need only to be still. (NIV)
- … you have only to be silent. (ESV)
- … while you keep silent. (NASB)
- … and you shall hold your peace. (NKJV)
- … you must be quiet. (HCSB)
- And you? You keep your mouths shut! (MSG – endearing, isn’t it?)
- Just stay calm. (NLT)
I particularly enjoy the Message version of this verse. Sometimes we do need a firm reminder to keep our mouths shut. Life and death is in the power of the tongue (Proverbs 18:21), and I have certainly noticed that when I speak negatively of my worries and fixate on them, they become so much bigger and I become so much more discouraged.
The Amplified Bible normally is my go-to version, however, in this instance I find great resonance with the NKJV version – The LORD will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace.
You shall hold your peace.
To me, this is a reminder to remember who I am and whose I am. It says to hold on to the peace He has given me and to not let my heart be troubled by what I see, and even what I feel, because my God is with me and He fights for me.
“Peace I leave with you; My [perfect] peace I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be afraid. [Let My perfect peace calm you in every circumstance and give you courage and strength for every challenge.]”John 14:27 AMP
There is another dimension to this that I believe is also quite important. The directive to “hold your peace” may also be interpreted as a command to stay. Stay where you are; I will do this.
I don’t perceive this command or situation coming about because we cannot fight a battle, but because God is not asking us to.
There will be times when we need to fight, but there will also be times when He tells us to hold our peace and remain calm. Either way, the battle belongs to Him.
David knew this when he went to face Goliath, proclaiming, “This day the LORD will hand you over to me, and I will strike you down and cut off your head. And I will give the corpses of the army of the Philistines this day to the birds of the sky and the wild beasts of the earth, so that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel, and that this entire assembly may know that the LORD does not save with the sword or with the spear; for the battle is the LORD’s and He will hand you over to us.“ (1 Samuel 17:46-47 AMP, emphasis mine).
This sentiment was also spoken through Jahaziel when Jehoshaphat was preparing to fight against an impending attack on Judah: “… Listen carefully, all [you people of] Judah, and you inhabitants of Jerusalem, and King Jehoshaphat. The LORD says this to you: ‘Be not afraid or dismayed at this great multitude, for the battle is not yours, but God’s.“ (2 Chronicles 20:15 AMP, emphasis mine).
The battle belongs to the LORD, whatever the battle looks like. It may require us to take action and fight, or it may require us to simply remain and let God do what He wants to. Whatever He asks us to do, our responsibility is to remain calm and hold our peace while He fights for us.