A Strong Tower
1. Vs.10-12 deal with the subject of safety and security.
a. The name of the Lord is safety to the righteous.
b. A rich man’s wealth is his safety.
c. The proud man has no safety!
A. The Name of the Lord
1. Lord = Jehovah – the special name of God – the self-existent One.
a. Gen. 16:13 – Hagar “called the name of the LORD that spake unto her, Thou God seest me.” To her, the name Jehovah meant, “God, you are looking out for even me!” The name of the Lord was an explanation of WHO He is.
b. Gen.33:19 – to Moses God said, “And he said, I will make all my goodness pass before thee, and I will proclaim the name of the LORD before thee; and will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will shew mercy on whom I will shew mercy.” Proclaiming the NAME of the Lord was equal to proclaiming WHO He is!
c. Josh. 9:9 – the name of the Lord speaks of His FAME and reputation.
• And they said unto him, From a very far country thy servants are come because of the name of the LORD thy God: for we have heard the fame of him, and all that he did in Egypt.
• The queen of Sheba heard of the fame of Solomon concerning the name of the LORD
d. I Sam. 17:45 – to David the name of the Lord meant His POWER and ability to defeat all His foes.
• The Philistines trusted in their swords and spears and the size of their soldiers.
• David’s confidence was in the name of the Lord…
• David trusted Jehovah and His power to deliver.
e. Ps. 20:7-9 – Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the LORD our God. 8They are brought down and fallen: but we are risen, and stand upright. 9Save, LORD: let the king hear us when we call.
• Here the name of the Lord speaks of the One we TRUST… we rely upon… our trust is not in men or anything earthly, but in the NAME of the Lord.
• It speaks of God’s power to save and deliver in times of trouble.
• It is a name to REMEMBER in times of trouble.
f. Isa. 50:10 – Who is among you that feareth the LORD, that obeyeth the voice of his servant, that walketh in darkness, and hath no light? let him trust in the name of the LORD, and stay upon his God.
g. Psalm 124:8 – Our help is in the name of the LORD, who made heaven and earth.”
• Here the psalmist speaks of the NAME of the Lord as our Source of help… the One who is on our side (vs.1)
h. Joel 2:32 – And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered.”
• It is the name we CALL upon when in trouble… and He delivers…
i. Col. 3:17 – And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus.
• Whatever we DO as believers, we are to DO in the name of the Lord.
• His NAME (who He is) is to guide everything we do.
• His name, His character will keep us from doing some things… and will move us to do other things.
• KNOWING who He is should guide our decisions.
3. The NAME of the Lord ought to be significant to us.
a. It speaks of His character, His attributes, His fame and reputation, His holy Person, who He is.
b. This expression ought to conjure up in our minds One who is gracious, kind, holy, pure, omnipotent, omniscient… the One in whom we trust.
B. A Strong Tower
a. A watchtower, i.e., a tall narrow defensive building
b. Sometimes translated “castle”… a tower on a castle wall.
c. It was used as a watchtower
d. It was also used as a place of refuge and safety when the city was attacked.
e. This is also the term used of the tower of Babel that “reached unto heaven.”
• The pagans built towers in hopes of reaching heaven.
2. Judges 9:51 – But there was a strong tower within the city, and thither fled all the men and women, and all they of the city, and shut it to them, and gat them up to the top of the tower.
a. This tower was the place the city dwellers fled when the city was being attacked.
b. It was viewed as a place of safety and security.
c. It was a TALL tower, and thus elevated them above the enemy… and gave them a higher perspective of the battle.
d. This is the same term Solomon used to describe the NAME of the Lord.
3. Judges 9:49 – unfortunately, the towers built by men did not always provide safety…
a. Note how MANY people fled to these large towers!
b. They died.
4. But the NAME of the Lord is OUR strong tower.
a. Solomon saw a connection between the way men used strong towers in his day and the NAME of the Lord.
b. In the second part of the proverb he tells us what that connection is.
1. To the righteous (those justified by faith like Abraham), the name of the Lord is a strong tower.
2. The believer can RUN (dart quickly) to it… for safety.
a. This implies rushing quickly… hastily… as when one is being attacked.
b. In one sense, the believer is to DWELL in Christ day by day.
c. But this illustration speaks of another aspect of our walk with God. It speaks of what to do in time of danger.
• The citizens of a city under attack would RUSH for the safety of a tower (it was the bomb shelter in the 50’s).
• Or perhaps like rushing quickly to the city of refuge when pursued by the avenger of blood…
• There are times in our lives when we are under attack too… when we are oppressed by the enemy.
• During these periods of crises we are to RUN with great haste to the NAME of the Lord…
• That is OUR place of refuge and safety in time of trouble.
• When the Jews were under attack, they literally RAN to a literal tower for safety.
3. For the believer, this is FIGURATIVE language.
a. We don’t actually RUN anywhere. It is by FAITH that His name is our safety.
b. Ps. 61:2-4 – From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I. 3For thou hast been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy. 4I will abide in thy tabernacle for ever: I will trust in the covert of thy wings.”
c. This teaches us that we should make HASTE in a time of crisis… by faith…
• Make HASTE to remember the name of the Lord
• Make haste to call on the name of the Lord
• Make haste to rely on the name of the Lord
• Make haste to remember what He has done in the past… how safely He has kept us… and upheld us
4. Our true safety is found in His NAME.
a. In other words, our safety is found in God’s character!
b. He is merciful; gracious; loving; just; fair.
c. His way is perfect; He makes no mistakes.
d. He honors those who honor Him.
e. He is a Good Shepherd and restores our souls.
f. He is omniscient – He is aware of those who seek to harm us.
g. He is omnipotent – He is ABLE to deliver us.
h. He is faithful – He keeps His promises to us.
i. He is a rock; a mighty fortress; a light to our path.
j. In other words – His name-character means SAFETY to us when our hearts are right with Him.
k. God wants us to BELIEVE and TRUST in His name.
l. We can either run to the strong tower and shudder in fear (through unbelief) OR we can run to the tower and rest… and enjoy the safety provided!
m. When we RELY upon His character… trusting in that character… (mercy; power) His name IS a strong tower.
5. Thus, when the believer is attacked… we can be SAFE if:
a. We make haste to fill our minds with who God is.
b. We make haste to see to it that our confidence is in Him… and His word… His character…
c. We make haste to see that our hearts are resting in Him.
d. We make haste to see to it that our actions and responses to the emergency are in harmony with the name of the Lord…
e. When our minds, hearts, and deeds are RESTING in God and His character… we are safe. We have a rock solid foundation underneath us.
f. Nothing can harm us.
g. Deut. 33:27 – “The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms.”
h. When we come to Him we are indeed safe!
i. Isa. 41:10 – Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.”
6. This language also implies some inherent DANGER involved when first attacked.
a. There is a tendency in our fallen nature to rely on SELF when an emergency strikes… when calamity comes our way.
b. There is a tendency to rely on men… on chariots… on the ways of the world…
c. There is a tendency to run AWAY from God and His word in times of great need.
• When a marriage is on the brinks, some run to the psychologist… the “experts” and seek ungodly counsel.
• When the doctor gives us some awful news, some put their confidence in men… in doctors… in unsaved family members… and run anywhere BUT the Lord!
• Others turn to pills and alcohol when trials and trouble strike.
• Some men run to their wealth for safety… in hopes of buying their way out of trouble. (vs.11)
• The strong towers men build sometimes offer a sense of safety and security…
• But sometimes, they prove to be no protection at all.
d. But for the RIGHTEOUS… those who do things RIGHT before God… they run to the name of the Lord.
• That is their strong tower.
• This tower always provides safety and security.
• Nothing can harm us when we cast ourselves upon the Lord…
• Nothing can harm us when we are dwelling with Christ and our lives are hidden away with Him in heaven…
• Nothing can get to us unless it is God’s will for our good and our spiritual growth.
7. When tragedy strikes in YOUR life… or in YOUR family… run to the name of the Lord—FIRST!
a. Or when you are weary and worn… run to the strong tower!
b. When the enemy surrounds you like a flood… run!
c. When trials overwhelm you like waves of the sea… run!
d. What peace that passes understanding when we rely upon Him!
e. What security and protection is ours in the castle of the Lord.
f. We have a SAFE place to run and hide and seek shelter throughout all the storms of life!
g. What REST we can experience in our hearts—regardless of the hostility occurring outside that strong tower.
h. And as those strong towers were built HIGH above the city, and gave those in the tower a bird’s eye view, so too we can run to the strong tower of the Lord and are thus able to see our trials and tragedies from HEAVEN’S vantage point… a heavenly perspective of earthly troubles brings REST to the soul.
i. We can dwell ABOVE the earthly battles and struggles by faith… perfectly safe… like dwelling under the shadow of His wings… upheld by the right hand of His righteousness…
j. If God be for us, who can be against us?