The word help is a common word to an average human being. Almost everybody mention that word every day, the need for help has become dominant in the heart of many, especially in this end time.
The word help, according to the Oxford Advanced Learner Dictionary, means “support given to somebody to make it easier for him to do something”. It also means “to improve a situation or to make it easier for something to happen”.
According to the Cambridge Advanced Learner Dictionary, it means “to make it possible or easier for someone to do something, by doing part of the work yourself or by providing necessary resources needed for it”. So, help is the support one receive that makes him quickly do what could have been difficult or impossible for him.
Although man is a free moral agent, there is this instinct in him that always tell him he needs help. There are times in man’s life when he is in need and could not help himself. The quest for help in man starts since childhood when the life of the child depends on who takes care of him.
The quest grows with him as there will always be something he cannot handle by himself. I have often seen people requesting for help, some pleaded for it, some demanded it, while some prayed for it. I have heard people using the word “please help me”, and I have also heard people uttering statement such as “why am I with him if he cannot help me?”
People often see it as something mandatory for others to help them even when they are not ready to help others, irrespective of what we believe, and there is this reality of life, which is: everyone needs help!
Throughout biblical histories, man has always enjoyed help either from God or fellow men. In Genesis 2:18, man was alone and needed help. God was aware of it, so he created a woman who is to be “help meet for him.”
That God created the woman is an exclusive help towards the loneliness of man, because, the man was truly lonely but never knew what to do about it. So God helped him by giving him someone who is to help him.
In Genesis 3, man fell, and he was aware of his nakedness, he tried to help himself about it, but the truth is that no one can help himself. So, God helped him by providing a cloth of skin for him (Genesis 3:21). The scripture is filled with men and women who enjoyed help, but the question is: who do we look up to for help, God or man?
Rebecca, in Genesis 27, try to help Jacob fulfil his destiny. Rebecca was aware of God’s promises towards Jacob when both children were in the womb. “And the Lord said to her, two nations are in thy womb, and two manners of people shall be separated from thy bowels: and the one people shall be stronger than the other people, and the elder shall serve the younger” Gen 25:23.
Rebecca was aware of this, and she wants it to come to pass. Historical narration of Isaac family shows that there was a division in the family; the children were divided between the parents. Isaac chooses Esau being the eldest, but Rebecca chooses Jacob because of the prophecy.
When the time to receive the fatherly blessing came, Isaac, because of tradition, called Esau to prepare for the blessing but Rebeca in her way, try to help in fulfilling God’s purpose for Jacob. Although Jacob received his father’s blessing, that was not how it was supposed to be. To Rebecca, it was simply a motherly help to her choice of son, but thanks to God for divine intervention in the life of Jacob.
Joseph was another man who really needed help while he was in prison, and he felt man could help him. Joseph had help in interpreting the dream for the chief baker and the chief butler. According to the interpretation of their dreams when they were together in prison, it was very glaring that the butler will be restored while the baker will be killed, Joseph, therefore, told the butler.
“But think of me when it shall be well with thee and show kindness, I pray thee, unto me and make mention of me unto Pharaoh and bring me out of this house” Gen 40:14.
Unfortunately, when the Butler left the prison, he forgot Joseph until there was divine intervention and God has to create a need for Joseph in the palace which shows that man has no ability to help without God’s approval.
The daughter of Jethro also enjoyed timely help from Moses. Whenever they come to fetch water, the Median shepherd always terrorizes them. But by Moses’ intervention on a fateful day, they were able to water their flock and went home earlier than expected. Exodus 2:15.
David was another man who enjoyed help both from God and man. Saul could have killed him if not for the help of his bosom friend, Jonathan, who was a son of Saul. David received so much help that he was able to build a troop of warriors which was filled with mighty men. The secrets of the greatness of David lies in the fact that he received daily help. (1 Chronicle 12:22)
Other prominent Bible characters became great and effective because someone helped them. Solomon couldn’t have become the king if not for the help of Nathan the Prophet and other loyalists.
Even Jesus’ ministry enjoyed the help of the people around him. Scripture made us understand that Jesus increases in wisdom, and stature and favour with God and man (Luke 2:52). When a man is favoured, he will receive help. Esther wouldn’t have become queen if not for the support she received.
Go through the scripture and other world-historical records, even with the present situation around us; it is an ugly truth that no man succeeds alone. Everybody needs help to fulfil his destiny.
The former Nigerian President: Olusegun Obasanjo was imprisoned, but he suddenly received help, and he came out to be the President of the Nation. No nation’s President or king is enthroned without the help of somebody. Help is seriously vital in destiny fulfilment but who do we look up to for help, God or man?
Dangers of looking up to man for help
The Lord, through prophet Jeremiah, placed a curse on those who put their trust in humanity (Jeremiah 17:5). This shows that there are great dangers ahead of those who looked up to men for help. Prophet Isaiah also emphasizes that there is a great danger for those who depend on strong men, who did not look up to God (Isaiah 31:1).
Although it is more comfortable and tempting for us to look to men for help because they are close to us and we can easily see them, some of them we know their values, some we think we know their values, but we don’t know. We assume they have the ability; some have, but some don’t have.
God indeed commanded the Israelites to help their neighbours when necessary (Deuteronomy 22:4), which shows that we have to offer help to our fellow men when the need arises. Yet, God expects that we should see him as the only one who can help us. The sick man at the pool of Bethesda was there for thirty-eight years because he was waiting for the help of man. (John 5:1-8).
David understood this when he prayed to God for help in the book of Psalms, “Give us help from trouble: for vain is the help of man” Psalm 60:11.
David was a man who will always pray to God for help, especially during his trying times. He understood this as he said: “God is our refuge and strength: a present help in trouble” Psalm 46:1
He further says in Psalm 121:1-2 that:
“I will lift up mine eyes unto the hill from whence cometh my help? My help cometh from the Lord, who made heaven and the earth.”
The first danger of looking up to man for help is that it makes people share the glory of God with Him. God will not like to share His glory with anyone (Isaiah 42:8). He wants men to come to him for help when the need arises.
This does not mean that God can’t raise men for our help or when men offer to help, we should reject it, but we should be sure that the Lord inspires help. He asked men to call upon him in the days of trouble, then He will deliver them, and they will glorify him. Psalm 50:15
Another danger of looking up to man for help is that the help can be a bait to lure us out of the will of God. Sometimes the help of man can be dangerous to your destiny; some help can tie you down and will not allow you to fulfil God’s purpose for your life.
Some help can lure you into sin and destruction. Some bits of help can send you into eternal slavery. God is the only one that can raise help for destiny fulfilment. Jeremiah, by divine inspiration, said:
“The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately sick: who can understand it” Jeremiah 17:9.
There will always be a motif behind the help of a man which shows who the helper is in the real sense.
One other thing we need to understand is that looking up to man for help shows that our faith is not in God. When a man is in trouble and needs help, he turns to whoever he believes can save him for help. So, whoever we approach show in whom our faith is.
Solomon, in the book of Proverbs, says: “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart: and lean not on thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy path”. Proverb 3:5-6
God wants us to trust in him absolutely, to depend on him totally for whatsoever issue we have in life. David, in Psalm, says: “They that trust in the Lord shall be as mount Zion, which cannot be removed but abideth forever.” Psalm 125:1. God is committed to people who solely depend on him to help them in times of trouble.
Furthermore, we need to understand that man is limited in capacity. So, another looming danger of looking up to man for help is that man can disappoint. This might not be deliberate (although there are people who disappoint intentionally for reasons best known to them), but because of the insufficiency in the capacity of men.
There are limits to what man can do. I have seen people coming to complain about the failure of people promising them, but my candid response is, there is only one person who does not fail promises, and that person is God. Man can only offer help within his capacity; no one can do what is beyond his power.
Sometimes God allows people to disappoint us because he wants us to focus on Him. God will also enable people to disappoint us because the help we expect from them might not be the help we need. But when we look up to Him for help, He knows us, he knows what we need, and he will supply our needs according to his riches in glory.
Connecting the help of God
Believe God for your help
Jesus said in Mark 11:24 that whatever you desire when you pray, believe that you have received them and you will have them. The first step to receive help from God is to believe that whenever we ask for help in his name, he will help us. Faith in God is crucial when help is needed.
Ask for help in his name
Jesus was so emphatic when he was teaching us how to pray that he said we should ask. In Matthew 7:7-8, he lay emphasis that those who ask will receive. In john 15:16 he said whatever we ask in his name shall be granted unto us. The name of Jesus is our access to the father.
The name is so effective that it opens and close spiritual doors anytime, anywhere. Proverb 18:10 tells us there is safety in that name. Psalm 124:8 says our help is in that name. Philippians 2:10 says, in his name every knee must bow. One major key that open doors of help is the name of Jesus. So we should ask in his name.
There is this spiritual law, according to Galatians 6:7. “Be not deceived, God cannot be mocked, what a man sow, he shall also reap”. Which means if you want to reap help, you must sow help. Helping others open the door of help to you too.
David on his ways to recover his lost fortune, met a fainting man, he gave him food and took care of him and through the man he was able to get to the place he was going to, and recovered his lost fortune – 1 Samuel 30:10-19. Those who help others will not lack help when needed.
God is still in the business of helping people. He wants you to believe in him solely, and to put your trust in him. He will not share his glory with anyone that is why he wants you to call him when you need help.
He may raise men for your help, and when he does, they don’t have options because there is a mandate upon them that must be carried out. All you need to do is to trust in him, and your help will surely come. Your help is already in his name, connect the name and receive your help.