1 Chronicles 11:1-12:18; Acts 28:1-31;
Psalm 9:1-12; Proverbs 19:1-3
"...for your God is the one who helps you."
~1 Chronicles 12:18
~1 Chronicles 12:18
We have discussed that 1 Chronicles is God's perspective on Israel's history during the times of the kings. Here, we see that apparently God thought that the first king, Saul, only deserved one puny chapter of this book. Today, God gives us His perspective on King David. The rest of this book will focus on God's favored king, David. He begins by elevating the men who fought with David during his time of rejection by the nation of Israel. Remember that David is a type/shadow of Christ. Once God has anointed David as the next king of Israel, there is a period of time where he is persecuted by Saul and rejected by ten of the tribes of Israel. This is a picture of Jesus, who will be anointed as King of Kings and Lord of Lords by God, but the nation of Israel, for the most part, is rejecting their King at this time. One day, every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, but for now, Jesus is like David. He is persecuted, mocked, and reviled by many on earth.
Today's reading is the story of the mighty men who stood with David during this time of rejection. We see that when David is installed as the king over all of the tribes of Israel, the men who fought for David are elevated and honored. The first men mentioned are The Three, Jashobeam, Eleazar, and Shammah. These men stood toe to toe with David and risked their lives for him in battle. The most highlighted story is when these three risked there lives to get David a drink of water from the well in Bethlehem. Breaking through Philistine lines and risking their own lives, the Three bring David a drink of water from the well in order to quench his thirst. David in humility at this sacrificial act, pours the water out as an offering to God. Jesus says in Mark 9:41,
"I tell you the truth, anyone who gives you a cup of water in my name because you belong to the Messiah, I tell you the truth, that person will surely be rewarded."God has rewarded these three men. In addition to an eternal reward, God makes sure that you and I and all of posterity knows the names of these men who are an example of the love of God manifested in men.
God also recounts the exploits and victories of The Thirty. These are David's top warriors who defend him and protect his life so that he can be installed as king, one day. God does not forget the valiant acts of His warriors.
So what does this story mean to you and me? If David is a type of Christ, then The Three and The Thirty are a type of The Church. As these men fought for David, you and I, as members of Christ's Church, are the warriors on the ground for our rejected King Jesus. We are Christian soldiers marching as to war. Each day as we pray, read, teach the Bible, help others in the name of Christ, and give a cup of water to those who thirst and love the Lord, we are fighting the battles of our rejected King. One day, Jesus will be recognized as the King of Kings and Lord of Lords by everyone on earth. In that day, our names will be recorded as The Mighty Men and Women of God.
Do you see yourself as a warrior for God? Have you targeted people who belong to Christ to help in some way? Even prayer for others is a means of fighting in God's war. How can you be a mighty person in God's story? Did you know that caring for your own children and bringing them to a saving faith in God is an act of heroism in God's kingdom?
If there was ever a Mighty Man of God it is the Apostle Paul. Today, we see that Paul has landed on the island of Malta. As he warms himself by the fire, he is bitten by a poisonous snake. The islanders take this as a sign that Paul is a murderer. When he does not swell up and die, they turn their superstitious thoughts to thinking that he is a god.
As a mighty man of God, Paul goes to the house of a chief official on the island and heals the official's father in law. After this, all of the sick people on the island come to Paul and he heals them. Do you see how Paul is fighting for Jesus on earth? His good works are acts of war against Satan.
At an appointed time, Paul has every Jew, who is willing, come over to the house where he is staying and he so that he can teach the Jews about Jesus using the five books of Moses and the books of the prophets. Some people believe and some don't. Paul, after arguing and discussing the Scripture and the truth of Christ with the Jews, quotes Isaiah 6:9-10, which speaks of the Jews having their hearts hardened to not believe the message of Christ. Paul then tells them that this message is also available to the Gentiles and they will believe the message. Remember the principle of the first shall be last and the last shall be first (Romans 11). God is intent on all people groups coming to Himself. The initial rejection by the majority of the Jews is part of God's plan as a means of grafting in the Gentiles.
Paul spends the next two years teaching anyone who will listen. They come to his rented house to hear the truth of the gospel. Paul battles day in and day out for the souls of God's children on earth. Paul is a mighty man of God, perhaps the greatest warrior God ever made.
How have you fought for God?
This psalm says, "He will judge the world with justice and rule the nations with fairness." Will you be one of the mighty men or women recognized by God as having fought for Christ when Jesus is on His throne ruling the nations? If you fight for Him now, you will be.
I like this, "People ruin their own lives with their foolishness and then are angry at the Lord."
What did you notice today?