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Saturday, March 20, 2010

Jesus, Our Right Hand Man

"An estimated 260 million people around the globe live left-handed lives in a right-handed world, Leonardo da Vinci and Alexander the Great were lefthanded, and so were Babe Ruth, Michelangelo and Charlemagne. The left hand rules Charlie Chaplin, Robert S. McNamara, Sandy Koufax, Kim Novak and Ringo Starr. They are known as southpaws, gallock-handers, chickie paws and scrammies—and on down a whole list of slangy synonyms whose very length testifies to the fact that for centuries left-handers have been looked upon with suspicion, if not with actual mistrust."

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The Bible even favors the right hand. In speaking about the messianic King, Asaph writes, "But let your hand be the man of your right hand, the son of man whom you have made strong for yourself" (Psalm 80:17). 

Viewing the right hand as the favored, strong hand, Moses and the people of Israel sang, "Who is like you, O Lord, among the gods? . . . You stretched out your right hand; the earth swallowed them." 

Jesus referred to himself as "the son of man" (John 5:21-25) and thus as God's right hand. David speaks of him in this manner: "The Lord says to my Lord: "Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool" (Psalm 110:1). 

The right hand man was always the most trusted advisor. This may also be related to the fact that soldiers usually carried their swords with their right hand and their shield with their left. So in a line of battle one's weak and undefended side was the right. Therefore the right hand man became critical. The most experienced soldiers would be at the right hand side of the battle formation, since they would have no right hand man to protect them. Ultimately this would be the highest and most trusted place of honor. 

The image of battle is frequent in Biblical literature. The Apostle Paul urges, "Take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm" (Ephesians 6:13). 

In such times of battle, how comforting to know that Jesus is our right hand Man!