“And Jonathan said to the young man that bare his armor, Come, and let us go over unto the garrison of these uncircumcised: it may be that the LORD will work for us: for there is no restraint to the LORD to save by many or by few” (I Samuel 14:6).
Israel had been raided and humiliated by the Philistines. God’s people even had to pay the enemy to have farm tools sharpened. Only Jonathan and his father, Saul, had swords and spears (cf. 13:17–22).
Believing apparently that “one man of you shall chase a thousand” (cf. Joshua 23:10), Jonathan “climbed . . . upon his hands and . . . feet” (I Samuel 14:13) and together with his armor-bearer killed about twenty Philistines.
The New Testament speaks of those who “through faith subdued kingdoms . . . obtained promises . . . escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, waxed valiant in fight, turned to flight the armies of the aliens,” wanting to encourage future faith in God’s people (Hebrews 11:33,34; 12:1–3).
Christians today are enjoined not to use “carnal” weapons (II Corinthians 10:3–5), but spiritual ones (Ephesians 6:11–18). Christians look to “Jesus the author and finisher of our faith” (Hebrews 12:2).
Saul was not initially aware that his son had been on a mission, but years later the heavenly Father directly commissioned His Son. He “spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all” (Romans 8:32). Jesus “endured the cross, despising the shame” (Hebrews 12:2). We should “consider Him that endured such contradiction of sinners against Himself,” lest we become wearied and lose heart (v.3).
The victory that still overcomes is a faith that trusts God to use feeble means, “for there is no restraint to the Lord to save by many or by few.” PGH