Thursday, August 13, 2015

Calling for Mighty Men

In 2Samuel 23 there is a record of King David's mightiest warriors. Their exploits are similar to how the Vikings are portrayed on the History Channel mini-series of the same name.  If anyone makes a mini-series on the life of David, then I hope they will include the scenes described here. One warrior kills 800 enemy soldiers. Another stands back to back with David as they fight off an overwhelming number of the enemy.

Imagine the warrior - body covered with blood, surrounded by the dead bodies of his enemy - no longer able to lift his sword or axe, but it's okay, because no enemy is left, not one. They are dead or have run away.

Don't you want to be that man? What battles are we facing today? It seems that my biggest foe is sin. Hebrews 12:4 says "After all, you have not yet given your lives in your struggle against sin."  Both James and Paul tell us to resist the Devil. He is an awesome warrior and we are not his equal.  Where do I find the strength to say to sin and Satan "You will NOT pass by here while I am alive!"? Who will stand back to back to me in this struggle? I need a band of brothers, some mighty men to fight alongside me. I'm not a great warrior, but I don't want to be listed as "the rest" who ran away in the face of the enemy. I don't have a great history of resisting sin and Satan, but it's time to take up my battle axe.

Lord of the Armies of Heaven,

Teach my arms to wage war. Give me a steadfast brave heart. Provide me with some brave men to stand side by side with me in this battle.  Amen.

2Samuel 23:8-17

8These are the names of David’s mightiest warriors. The first was Jashobeam the Hacmonite, who was leader of the Three—the three mightiest warriors among David’s men. He once used his spear to kill 800 enemy warriors in a single battle.

9Next in rank among the Three was Eleazar son of Dodai, a descendant of Ahoah. Once Eleazar and David stood together against the Philistines when the entire Israelite army had fled. 10He killed Philistines until his hand was too tired to lift his sword, and the lord gave him a great victory that day. The rest of the army did not return until it was time to collect the plunder!

11Next in rank was Shammah son of Agee from Harar. One time the Philistines gathered at Lehi and attacked the Israelites in a field full of lentils. The Israelite army fled, 12but Shammah held his ground in the middle of the field and beat back the Philistines. So the lord brought about a great victory.13Once during the harvest, when David was at the cave of Adullam, the Philistine army was camped in the valley of Rephaim. The Three (who were among the Thirty—an elite group among David’s fighting men) went down to meet him there. 14David was staying in the stronghold at the time, and a Philistine detachment had occupied the town of Bethlehem.

15David remarked longingly to his men, “Oh, how I would love some of that good water from the well by the gate in Bethlehem.” 16So the Three broke through the Philistine lines, drew some water from the well by the gate in Bethlehem, and brought it back to David. But he refused to drink it. Instead, he poured it out as an offering to the lord. 17“The lord forbid that I should drink this!” he exclaimed. “This water is as precious as the blood of these men who risked their lives to bring it to me.” So David did not drink it. These are examples of the exploits of the Three.