November 5, 2017
Daybreak: 2 Samuel 23:1-39
“Although my house be not so with God; yet he hath made with me an everlasting covenant, ordered in all things, and sure: for this is all my salvation, and all my desire, although he make it not to grow.” (2 Samuel 23:5)
As my husband carried our luggage to the car, our hostess at the home where we had spent the night shared the early morning traffic report with us. She said that Highway 61 south of Interstate 94 was being rerouted, and we could expect a two-hour delay. Officials were reconstructing a serious accident that had taken place there earlier. The thought occurred to me that it seemed strange, almost ironic, that anyone would want to “reconstruct an accident.” Yet, there is a purpose behind such actions. Researchers are looking for any possible indications of error, mechanical failure, or cause of the problem. They want to learn what they can from the accident.
In today’s text, David was reconstructing, or reviewing, God’s promise to him. He said that God had made “an everlasting covenant, ordered in all things.” He was referencing the covenant made centuries earlier when God had promised that the Messiah would be born of Abraham’s lineage. David had been blessed in so many ways on his path to the throne and also as the King of Israel. In his mind he considered those blessings, reviewed his errors, and thought of the lessons he had learned from them.
Reconstructing our walk with the Lord, like David did, can be a reassuring experience — a way to reaffirm our faith in God and to thank Him again for helping us and for His mercy. Such review can also help us evaluate our current spiritual situation. As we consider times when God has corrected us, we can review the lessons we have learned in those situations. We can meditate upon the promises God has given us as we have walked with Him, and we can inventory whether we are still in as close communication with Him as we should be.
There is value in reconstruction, both of a traffic accident and also of our spiritual lives. Today would be a good time to challenge ourselves to do a little reviewing and considering.
Throughout his life, David wrote songs and poetry about God’s faithfulness and deliverance. With few exceptions, David’s life was one of thankfulness. No wonder, then, that soldiers and military leaders alike were happy to serve him as their “commander in chief.”
After David’s last words about God’s faithfulness, the deeds of many who served under him are listed. This was unusual, as the custom of the time was for the king to receive the honor and credit for any military victory. A text similar to this can also be found in 1 Chronicles 11:10-47.
The most elite among David’s warriors were referred to as “the three,” and then “the thirty” were noted. Since the total of the names was more than thirty, new warriors were probably appointed to that group when one died. Note that Uriah the Hittite was listed. Benaiah was in charge of David’s bodyguard (2 Samuel 20:23). Later, Solomon put Benaiah in charge of his army.
Verses 13-17 contain a wonderful example of David’s heartfelt love and appreciation for God and his faithful soldiers, and also an example of the devotion the soldiers felt for their godly and upright leader. Since this occurred “in the harvest time” there would not have been rain, and so the cistern used to store their water was no doubt dry. With no water in the cave, David was thirsty. He was not giving an order when he expressed his longing for water from Bethlehem’s well, but these three men cared enough to make it happen. They had to go about twelve miles and break through the enemy’s lines in order to obtain the water David craved. David was moved by their devotion. He felt that drinking the water would be like drinking the blood of those men, because they had risked their lives to get it for him, so he poured it out as an offering to God.
This roll of valiant warriors is a testimony to David’s leadership ability. These men began to follow him for various reasons, but he was able with God’s help, to mold them into a mighty group.
(Hannah’s Bible Outlines - Used by permission per WORDsearch)
D. The concluding words of David (23:1-7)
E. The roster of David’s mighty men (23:8-39)
A Closer Look
- What were the names of the first three of David’s mighty men?
- What are the characteristics of a good leader?
- This chapter speaks of mighty men. What things can we do today to be as supportive of our leadership as the mighty men were to David in his day?
David’s appreciation toward God and toward his warriors reminds us of what is important. We want to thank God and remember what He has done for us.