This is a question lingering in the minds of most of the spiritually conscious people.For us to learn why, we shall consider experiences of some Non-Israelite people who had an encounter with this Israelite God.For Israelites many are the reasons they have to worship this God,we can’t forget Abraham getting a son at 100 years of age,David slaying Goliath in the name of this God,Red sea and River Jordan parting ways in the name of this God,Lazarus resurrecting in the name of this God,manna from this God,Walls of Jericho falling under the name of this God and many many more examples of manifestations of this God.But for us to have that universal view of this God lets learn from the Non-Israelites.
During the reign of King Jehoiakim,the israelites were exiled into Babylon(Daniel 1),It happened that King Nechadnezzar made a gold statue and required everyone to bow down and worship it at the sound of horn,flute and other instruments without fall and in contravention to that decree one would be thrown in a blazing furnace.At the sound of the instruments people of all the nations and languages bowed down and worshiped the idol,but Shadrach,Meshach and Abednego being Israelites and worshipers of the true God didn’t bow nor worship the idol,this was reported to Nebuchadnezzar,much to his chagrin,he was very furious with them and ordered them to be brought immediately.”So these men were brought before the king, and Nebuchadnezzar said to them, “Is it true, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, that you do not serve my gods or worship the image of gold I have set up? Now when you hear the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp, pipe and all kinds of music, if you are ready to fall down and worship the image I made, very good. But if you do not worship it, you will be thrown immediately into a blazing furnace. Then we shall see what god will be able to rescue you from my hand? Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego replied to him, “King Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and he will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand. But even if he does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up. This made Nebuchadnezzar more furious with Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, and his attitude toward them changed. He ordered the furnace heated seven times hotter than usual and commanded some of the strongest soldiers in his army to tie up Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego and throw them into the blazing furnace. So these men, wearing their robes, trousers, turbans and other clothes, were bound and thrown into the blazing furnace. The king’s command was so urgent and the furnace was so hot that the flames of the fire killed the soldiers who took up Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, and these three men, firmly tied, fell into the blazing furnace. Everyone present expected them to be consumed by the fire in a second but it didn’t. Then King Nebuchadnezzar leaped to his feet in amazement and asked his advisers, “Weren’t there three men that we tied up and threw into the fire?”They replied, “Certainly, Your Majesty.”He said, “Look! I see four men walking around in the fire, unbound and unharmed, and the fourth looks like a son of the gods.” Nebuchadnezzar then approached the opening of the blazing furnace and shouted, “Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, servants of the Most High God,(by saying this he acknowledges that there is a Most High God,a God above all the other gods) come out! Come here!”So Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego came out of the fire, and the satraps, prefects, governors and royal advisers crowded around them. They saw that the fire had not harmed their bodies, nor was a hair of their heads singed; their robes were not scorched, and there was no smell of fire on them.Then Nebuchadnezzar said, “Praise be to the God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, who has sent his angel and rescued his servants! They trusted in him and defied the king’s command and were willing to give up their lives rather than serve or worship any god except their own God. Therefore I decree that the people of any nation or language who say anything against the God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego be cut into pieces and their houses be turned into piles of rubble, for no other god can save in this way.”Then the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego in the province of Babylon. (trusting in this God not only saves you,but also promotes you( (makes you successful) ) in your endeavours) .King Nebuchadnezzar may not have converted to be a believer in this God of Israel but from this verse and his actions he fully acknowledges that this God is most powerful and no other god above him.(Daniel 3) .In Daniel 2 also we hear of a dream which none of the kings wise men could interpret but when Daniel with help of the true God interpreted it,look at what King Nebuchadnezzar says ” Surely your God is the God of gods and the Lord of kings and a revealer of mysteries, for you were able to reveal this mystery ” and for sure this God of Israel is the God of gods and the Lord of lords forever and ever. In Daniel 4 we hear of another dream by king Nebuchadnezzar in which his royal authority would be taken away from him and he would live with animals ,at first he writes to the nations informing them about the wonders and signs which the Most High God had done for him,then Daniel interprets the dream for him,its worthy noting what Daniel advises king Nebuchadnezzar at the end of the interpretation ” Seven times will pass by for you until you acknowledge that the Most High is sovereign over all kingdoms on earth and gives them to anyone he wishes.The command to leave the stump of the tree with its roots means that your kingdom will be restored to you when you acknowledge that Heaven rules. Therefore, Your Majesty, be pleased to accept my advice: Renounce your sins by doing what is right, and your wickedness by being kind to the oppressed. It may be that then your prosperity will continue.” Daniel 4:25-27.This clearly shows that all what would happen would be a lesson to King Nebuchadnezzar and us that it is God who rules and not men,he dispenses with them as he wishes.This clearly stamps the overall authority of this God of Israel.Eventually the dream was fulfilled and Nebuchadnezzar was driven away from his royal authority,and for Seven times he would live and fend with the animals.At the end of the appointed time,he praised God and his sanity was restored,its worthy noting the words he used “At the end of that time, I, Nebuchadnezzar, raised my eyes toward heaven, and my sanity was restored. Then I praised the Most High; I honored and glorified him who lives forever.
His dominion is an eternal dominion;
his kingdom endures from generation to generation.
All the peoples of the earth
are regarded as nothing.
He does as he pleases
with the powers of heaven
and the peoples of the earth.
No one can hold back his hand
or say to him: “What have you done?” (this clearly shows us the supreme authority of God)
At the same time that my sanity was restored, my honor and splendor were returned to me for the glory of my kingdom. My advisers and nobles sought me out, and I was restored to my throne and became even greater than before.(when we submit to God he lifts us higher than we were before) Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and exalt and glorify the King of heaven, because everything he does is right and all his ways are just. And those who walk in pride he is able to humble” Daniel 5:34-37,this finally shows us another trait of this God that he has a way of humbling all those who clad and swim in pride.
While still in exile during the reign of King Darius,Daniel was appointed as one of the administrators,he did exceptionally well, some Babylonian administrators became jealous of Daniel and came up with a way of destroying him look at what they say ” We will never find any basis for charges against this man Daniel unless it has something to do with the law of his God ” Daniel 6:5,So these administrators and satraps went as a group to the king and said: “May King Darius live forever! The royal administrators, prefects, satraps, advisers and governors have all agreed that the king should issue an edict and enforce the decree that anyone who prays to any god or human being during the next thirty days, except to you, Your Majesty, shall be thrown into the lions’ den. Now, Your Majesty, issue the decree and put it in writing so that it cannot be altered—in accordance with the law of the Medes and Persians, which cannot be repealed.” So King Darius put the decree in writing.
Now when Daniel learned that the decree had been published, he went home to his upstairs room where the windows opened toward Jerusalem. Three times a day he got down on his knees and prayed, giving thanks to his God, just as he had done before. Then these men went as a group and found Daniel praying and asking God for help.(he is a God who helps against all the traps set before us) So they went to the king and spoke to him about his royal decree: “Did you not publish a decree that during the next thirty days anyone who prays to any god or human being except to you, Your Majesty, would be thrown into the lions’ den?”
The king answered, “The decree stands—in accordance with the law of the Medes and Persians, which cannot be repealed.” Then they said to the king, “Daniel, who is one of the exiles from Judah, pays no attention to you, Your Majesty, or to the decree you put in writing. He still prays three times a day.” When the king heard this, he was greatly distressed; he was determined to rescue Daniel and made every effort until sundown to save him. Then the men went as a group to King Darius and said to him, “Remember, Your Majesty, that according to the law of the Medes and Persians no decree or edict that the king issues can be changed.”So the king gave the order, and they brought Daniel and threw him into the lions’ den. The king said to Daniel, “May your God, whom you serve continually, rescue you!”(this show us that even though King Darius didn’t submit to this God of Daniel,in this moment of desperation he hoped that this God would save Daniel,what a splendid display of majesty and power of this God whom even non believers hope that he can change the tide of affairs at the most critical moment) A stone was brought and placed over the mouth of the den, and the king sealed it with his own signet ring and with the rings of his nobles, so that Daniel’s situation might not be changed. Then the king returned to his palace and spent the night without eating and without any entertainment being brought to him. And he could not sleep.At the first light of dawn, the king got up and hurried to the lions’ den. When he came near the den, he called to Daniel in an anguished voice, “Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to rescue you from the lions?” (what do we learn here? First King Darius knew that Daniel’s God was the living God(all other Gods are dead even though seem otherwise),Secondly Daniel was continually serving his God,isn’t it an honor when even your bosses know and acknowledge that you serve a truly powerful God,do you think they can dare you? of course they may but be assured they are scared of the outcome.) Daniel answered, “May the king live forever! My God sent his angel, and he shut the mouths of the lions. They have not hurt me, because I was found innocent in his sight. Nor have I ever done any wrong before you, Your Majesty.”(when we believe in this God,we learn how to honor Most High God and live well with fellow human beings) The king was overjoyed and gave orders to lift Daniel out of the den. And when Daniel was lifted from the den, no wound was found on him, because he had trusted in his God. At the king’s command, the men who had falsely accused Daniel were brought in and thrown into the lions’ den, along with their wives and children. And before they reached the floor of the den, the lions overpowered them and crushed all their bones. Then King Darius wrote to all the nations and peoples of every language in all the earth:
“May you prosper greatly! “I issue a decree that in every part of my kingdom people must fear and reverence the God of Daniel.
“For he is the living God
and he endures forever;
his kingdom will not be destroyed,
his dominion will never end.
He rescues and he saves;
he performs signs and wonders
in the heavens and on the earth.
He has rescued Daniel
from the power of the lions.” So Daniel prospered during the reign of Darius and the reign of Cyrus the Persian.Daniel 6:6-28.
Naaman was commander of the army of the king of Aram. He was a great man in the sight of his master and highly regarded, because through him the Lord had given victory to Aram. He was a valiant soldier, but he had leprosy. Now bands of raiders from Aram had gone out and had taken captive a young girl from Israel, and she served Naaman’s wife. She said to her mistress, “If only my master would see the prophet who is in Samaria! He would cure him of his leprosy.” Naaman went to his master and told him what the girl from Israel had said. “By all means, go,” the king of Aram replied. “I will send a letter to the king of Israel.(this shows us the God to be implored is the God of Israel)” So Naaman left, taking with him ten talents of silver, six thousand shekels of gold and ten sets of clothing. The letter that he took to the king of Israel read: “With this letter I am sending my servant Naaman to you so that you may cure him of his leprosy.” As soon as the king of Israel read the letter, he tore his robes and said, “Am I God?(this shows us that its only God who can accomplish some tasks,also teaches us that this God of Israel is the healer of both our physical and spiritual sicknesses,whose knowledge do doctors use?definitely we know He is the fountain of knowledge and wisdom,(Ecclesiasticus 1:5) ,not forgetting fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom) Can I kill and bring back to life? Why does this fellow send someone to me to be cured of his leprosy? See how he is trying to pick a quarrel with me!” When Elisha the man of God heard that the king of Israel had torn his robes, he sent him this message: “Why have you torn your robes? Have the man come to me and he will know that there is a prophet in Israel.” So Naaman went with his horses and chariots and stopped at the door of Elisha’s house. Elisha sent a messenger to say to him, “Go, wash yourself seven times in the Jordan, and your flesh will be restored and you will be cleansed.” But Naaman went away angry and said, “I thought that he would surely come out to me and stand and call on the name of the Lord his God,(this clearly shows Naaman correctly guessed that the act of healing him was beyond this man Elisha,definitely must come from his God,from their many idol gods he had learnt to believe in doings of gods but now this God was different from all the other gods he knew about, he is in for a sweet shock)(this is also a lesson to us we may not understand the ways of the Lord but He is and will forever be right) ,wave his hand over the spot and cure me of my leprosy. Are not Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? Couldn’t I wash in them and be cleansed?”(a lesson to us that the obvious things we experience are no longer obvious when God’s influence is on them) So he turned and went off in a rage. Naaman’s servants went to him and said, “My father, if the prophet had told you to do some great thing, would you not have done it? How much more, then, when he tells you, ‘Wash and be cleansed’!” So he went down and dipped himself in the Jordan seven times, as the man of God had told him, and his flesh was restored and became clean like that of a young boy.Then Naaman and all his attendants went back to the man of God. He stood before him and said, “Now I know that there is no God in all the world except in Israel. So please accept a gift from your servant.”The prophet answered, “As surely as the Lord lives, whom I serve, I will not accept a thing.” And even though Naaman urged him, he refused.“If you will not,” said Naaman, “please let me, your servant, be given as much earth as a pair of mules can carry, for your servant will never again make burnt offerings and sacrifices to any other god but the Lord. But may the Lord forgive your servant for this one thing: When my master enters the temple of Rimmon to bow down and he is leaning on my arm and I have to bow there also—when I bow down in the temple of Rimmon, may the Lord forgive your servant for this.” “Go in peace,” Elisha said.(2 Kings 5) (wow,this shows us by this one encounter Naaman had been transformed,forsook his old ways ,to an extent now visiting the idols temple alongside the king as it was part of his duties, was ignominious and detestable to him.Surely he is a God who heals and transforms.
Just as God had told Abraham,his descendants, the Israelites were enslaved in Egypt for four hundred years,(Gen 15:13),here Israelites were greatly mistreated and groaned under heavy burdens placed onto them by the Egyptians.They cried to their God who heard them and commissioned Moses to go and lead them out of slavery,he was to go before Pharaoh and ask him to let the Israelites go and worship their God in the wilderness(Exodus 5:1),but as divine providence had it when Moses appeared before Pharaoh he arrogantly retorted saying “Who is the Lord, that I should obey him and let Israel go? I do not know the Lord and I will not let Israel go.” (Exodus 5:2) Consequently Pharaoh said that the Israelites were lazy hence had all time to keep on asking for this trip,hence he doubled their work by instructing ” You will not be given any straw, yet you must produce your full quota of bricks.” (Exodus 5:17). This greatly worsened the condition for the Israelites but look at what God tells Moses ” Then say to Pharaoh, ‘This is what the Lord says: Israel is my firstborn son, and I told you, “Let my son go, so he may worship me.” But you refused to let him go; so I will kill your firstborn son.’” (Exodus 4:22-22) Should Pharaoh had known that this God of Israel is a fiery protector,a loving father,who justly deals with His enemies and the enemies of His beloved, who fulfills each and every word which comes from his mouth(Isaiah 55:11),he would have thought twice,rescinded his obstinacy and probably stayed this disaster but as divine providence had it his heart was hardened until when God struck him with His outstretched hand,much to his tears and anguish. Despite all the plagues God struck Egypt with Pharaoh wouldn’t give in an inch and now God decided to unleash the last one ” I will bring one more plague on Pharaoh and on Egypt. After that, he will let you go from here, and when he does, he will drive you out completely ” Exodus 11:1,it would be so mighty that Pharaoh’s officials would come begging Moses to take away the Israelites ,” All these officials of yours will come to me, bowing down before me and saying, ‘Go, you and all the people who follow you!’ After that I will leave. ” Exodus 11:8. And after the due preparation as dictated by God(Exodus 12:3-11),He did strike the Egyptians with His outstretched arm. ” At midnight the Lord struck down all the firstborn in Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh, who sat on the throne, to the firstborn of the prisoner, who was in the dungeon, and the firstborn of all the livestock as well. Pharaoh and all his officials and all the Egyptians got up during the night, and there was loud wailing in Egypt, for there was not a house without someone dead.During the night Pharaoh summoned Moses and Aaron and said, “Up! Leave my people, you and the Israelites! Go, worship the Lord as you have requested. Take your flocks and herds, as you have said, and go. And also bless me.”The Egyptians urged the people to hurry and leave the country. “For otherwise,” they said, “we will all die! (Exodus 12:29-33) The very same Pharaoh who was arrogantly asking who is this God of yours? ( Exodus 5:2) is seen here very scared of this same God and desperately asking the Israelites to leave so as not to attract any more wrath from this God.For sure he is a God who rescues, states and fulfils each and every word from His mouth.
(1 Samuel 5)
“After the Philistines had captured the ark of God, they took it from Ebenezer to Ashdod. Then they carried the ark into Dagon’s temple and set it beside Dagon. When the people of Ashdod rose early the next day, there was Dagon, fallen on his face on the ground before the ark of the Lord! (i perceive this was a warning to the Philistines for He is a just God who warns before punishing,He hoped they would understand and lift the sacrilege before it was too late) They took Dagon and put him back in his place.(how many times do we miss warning signs of an impending disaster) But the following morning when they rose, there was Dagon, fallen on his face on the ground before the ark of the Lord! His head and hands had been broken off and were lying on the threshold; only his body remained.( i perceive this was a subtle way of showing the Phillistines the destruction which would before them if they kept holding the ark of the covenant) That is why to this day neither the priests of Dagon nor any others who enter Dagon’s temple at Ashdod step on the threshold. The Lord’s hand was heavy on the people of Ashdod and its vicinity; he brought devastation on them and afflicted them with tumors.When the people of Ashdod saw what was happening, they said, “The ark of the god of Israel must not stay here with us, because his hand is heavy on us and on Dagon our god.” So they called together all the rulers of the Philistines and asked them, “What shall we do with the ark of the god of Israel?”They answered, “Have the ark of the god of Israel moved to Gath.” So they moved the ark of the God of Israel.But after they had moved it, the Lord’s hand was against that city, throwing it into a great panic. He afflicted the people of the city, both young and old, with an outbreak of tumors.So they sent the ark of God to Ekron.As the ark of God was entering Ekron, the people of Ekron cried out, “They have brought the ark of the god of Israel around to us to kill us and our people.” So they called together all the rulers of the Philistines and said, “Send the ark of the god of Israel away; let it go back to its own place, or it will kill us and our people.” For death had filled the city with panic; God’s hand was very heavy on it. Those who did not die were afflicted with tumors, and the outcry of the city went up to heaven.” From this verse we learn that He is a God that fights for Himself,no one can capture His belongings and no other god can stand beside or in front of Him because He is the God of gods and the Lord of lords,Alpha and Omega,none before Him,none after Him,this the Phillistines can correctly attest to.
He was a great roman soldier,a centurion in the Italian Regiment,unlike the other romans he knew,accepted and served this God of Israel and one day unlike all the roman gods who could neither hear nor speak this God of Israel spoke to Cornellius saying ” Your prayers and gifts to the poor have come up as a memorial offering before God. Now send men to Joppa to bring back a man named Simon who is called Peter. He is staying with Simon the tanner, whose house is by the sea ” Acts 10:4-6,And indeed Peter did visit Cornellius as ordered by God and truly the Holy Spirit visited Cornellius and those of his household (Acts 10:44-48) Truly He is a God who is a respecter of no human boundaries and nothing can limit His power or will.He wills and does. Cornellius can correctly attest to this.
This was a Persian King who never knew about this God of Israel but nonetheless God appointed him to restore the Israelites back to Jerusalem from their captivity in Babylon(2 Chronicles 36:22-23) ,Prophet Isaiah precisely captures it in Isaiah 44: 28( who says of Cyrus, ‘He is my shepherd
and will accomplish all that I please;
he will say of Jerusalem, “Let it be rebuilt,”
and of the temple, “Let its foundations be laid.” ) , Isaiah 45″
This is what the Lord says to his anointed,
to Cyrus, whose right hand I take hold of
to subdue nations before him
and to strip kings of their armor,
to open doors before him
so that gates will not be shut:
I will go before you
and will level the mountains;
I will break down gates of bronze
and cut through bars of iron.
I will give you hidden treasures,
riches stored in secret places,
so that you may know that I am the Lord,
the God of Israel, who summons you by name.
For the sake of Jacob my servant,
of Israel my chosen,
I summon you by name
and bestow on you a title of honor,
though you do not acknowledge me.
I am the Lord, and there is no other;
apart from me there is no God.
I will strengthen you,
though you have not acknowledged me,
so that from the rising of the sun
to the place of its setting
people may know there is none besides me.
I am the Lord, and there is no other.
I form the light and create darkness,
I bring prosperity and create disaster;
I, the Lord, do all these things.
“You heavens above, rain down my righteousness;
let the clouds shower it down.
Let the earth open wide,
let salvation spring up,
let righteousness flourish with it;
I, the Lord, have created it.
“Woe to those who quarrel with their Maker,
those who are nothing but potsherds
among the potsherds on the ground.
Does the clay say to the potter,
‘What are you making?’
Does your work say,
‘The potter has no hands’?
Woe to the one who says to a father,
‘What have you begotten?’
or to a mother,
‘What have you brought to birth?’
“This is what the Lord says—
the Holy One of Israel, and its Maker:
Concerning things to come,
do you question me about my children,
or give me orders about the work of my hands?
It is I who made the earth
and created mankind on it.
My own hands stretched out the heavens;
I marshaled their starry hosts. I will raise up Cyrus in my righteousness:
I will make all his ways straight.
He will rebuild my city
and set my exiles free,
but not for a price or reward,
says the Lord Almighty.”
This is what the Lord says:
“The products of Egypt and the merchandise of Cush,
and those tall Sabeans—
they will come over to you
and will be yours;
they will trudge behind you,
coming over to you in chains.
They will bow down before you
and plead with you, saying,
‘Surely God is with you, and there is no other;
there is no other god.’”
Truly you are a God who has been hiding himself,
the God and Savior of Israel.
All the makers of idols will be put to shame and disgraced;
they will go off into disgrace together.
But Israel will be saved by the Lord
with an everlasting salvation;
you will never be put to shame or disgraced,
to ages everlasting.
For this is what the Lord says—
he who created the heavens,
he is God;
he who fashioned and made the earth,
he founded it;
he did not create it to be empty,
but formed it to be inhabited—
“I am the Lord,
and there is no other.
I have not spoken in secret,
from somewhere in a land of darkness;
I have not said to Jacob’s descendants,
‘Seek me in vain.’
I, the Lord, speak the truth;
I declare what is right.
“Gather together and come;
assemble, you fugitives from the nations.
Ignorant are those who carry about idols of wood,
who pray to gods that cannot save.
Declare what is to be, present it—
let them take counsel together.
Who foretold this long ago,
who declared it from the distant past?
Was it not I, the Lord?
And there is no God apart from me,
a righteous God and a Savior;
there is none but me.
“Turn to me and be saved,
all you ends of the earth;
for I am God, and there is no other.
By myself I have sworn,
my mouth has uttered in all integrity
a word that will not be revoked:
Before me every knee will bow;
by me every tongue will swear.
They will say of me, ‘In the Lord alone
are deliverance and strength.’”
All who have raged against him
will come to him and be put to shame.
But all the descendants of Israel
will find deliverance in the Lord
and will make their boast in him.”
From this verse we learn of the Sovereign authority of God,we are like clay in His hands and He can do with us whatever pleases Him.All of the inhabitants of earth none is excused from worshiping this God because He is the true God and above him there is no other God.Through out this article we have been trying to answer the question ,why worship this God of Israel,we sampled experiences of various non-Israelites whom from their encounter with this God they were never the same again,lets recap their words:
1.Nebuchadnezzar. “Therefore I decree that the people of any nation or language who say anything against the God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego be cut into pieces and their houses be turned into piles of rubble, for no other god can save in this way. “
2.Nebuchadnezzar.” Surely your God is the God of gods and the Lord of kings and a revealer of mysteries, for you were able to reveal this mystery “
3.King Darius.” I issue a decree that in every part of my kingdom people must fear and reverence the God of Daniel. “
4.Naaman. ” Now I know that there is no God in all the world except in Israel “
5.Phillistines.” Send the ark of the god of Israel away; let it go back to its own place, or it will kill us and our people “
6.Cornellius.” Your prayers and gifts to the poor have come up as a memorial offering before God. Now send men to Joppa to bring back a man named Simon who is called Peter “
7.Cyrus.” He is my shepherd
and will accomplish all that I please; “
And Just like these people of the old any encounter with this God of Israel will never leave us the same again,for He is the one and only true God,who deserves all our faith and honor.