God unified Israel under David. And David has been making inroads at repairing all the damage done during the time of the judges and Saul. He's made his first very poor attempt at moving the Ark of God and now we'll learn more about those early days of David's unified kingship....continue reading "I Chronicles 14"
Unifying a Nation
Wow. Verse 1 reads that David consulted with the captains of the thousands and the hundreds and with every leader.
What a way to transfer power. They all had a chance to speak with him in person. And it says he consulted, not just spoke to. It wasn't meet and greet- it was listen. That explains how they were able to subdue their enemies and take back their nation. Only by the power of God, of course.
Then he points out that Saul did not bother to bring the Ark to the capital, since they couldn't take it to the abandoned tabernacle and it was just sitting with a priest. He also wanted to assemble all of the people for the move. It seems like he wanted them united in purpose for the military, but wanted the whole nation united under God, via the Ark.
All of the people agreed.
Good goal; but poor execution- as we know in hind sight.
Moving the Ark, Take One
See also, II Samuel, Chapter 6
So all of the people assembled and they went to Kiriath-jeariam, where it had been settle after it had been taken by the Philistines and brought back on a new cart. So David also used a new cart, even though that was the Philistine's example and not what was clearly written in the word of the Lord.
They celebrated. (If I remember the scene in II Samuel, David was busy celebrating too.)
Then the Ark almost fell because the cart tipped, which is why that isn't how it is to be transported. Uzza reached for it; and God's anger burned. Uzza was slain.
Then David became angry and then afraid. Then hopeless and confused. So he dropped the Ark off with a priest and went home.
David is a doer. He has good instincts and a good heart. "A man after God's own heart."
These are good things, except...when he relies on them solely. He met and listened to the leaders. He wanted the Ark with him to give God a respectful location. He wanted the people unified. All good goals. But, unlike many other times in his story, the scripture does not say that he took these goals to God for guidance.
We all rely on our strengths, and those strengths are what we often abuse. Smart people begin to think that everything they think is correct- much to their harm at times.
David learned to trust his instincts and his heart; but he should have confirmed his instincts with the Word. He had the Word. We know he had his own copy as king. And he had many advisors, who knew the Word. There are specific rules about how to transport the Ark; and just because the Philistines got away with doing it the wrong way (as part of God's own will), David shouldn't have assumed the same.
So, in conclusion, be in the Word. Know the Word. Refer to the Word. And consult God and the godly advisors he provides to you. Lean not on your own understanding.
It's unlikely that I'll be asked to supervise the transport of God's Holy Ark in my lifetime. Very, very unlikely. But I do have a situation coming up this weekend about which I feel conflicted. The world offers me a new cart to handle the situation. And I could easily rely on good intentions as my defense for choosing the way of the Philistines. But the Word is clear about how God feels about it. I've got a choice to make. And I don't want to end up like Uzza--a cocktail of good intentions and being struck down because I knew better and angered God.
David's Mighty Men
This section is a catalog of David's Mighty Men, Also listed at the end of II Samuel.
Again he lists the deeds of several of them and then ends with a long list.
Uriah is listed.
Joab is only listed as the brother of other mighty men.
Next he lists some men from the tribe of Benjamin (Saul's tribe) that fought for David in war. They were gifted in using both arms for weapons. Some were in the 30 Mighty Men and some were above that number.
Next he lists mighty men from Gad who joined David. Also complimenting their war skills and ways.
Then he describes a band of men from Benjamin and Judah who came to David's stronghold and he offered them a place, as long as they did not betray him. And then he told them, under those circumstances, that the Lord would decide between them.
The the Holy Spirit overcame one of the men and he said a pledge to David on their behalf.
David made them captains.
Then Ezra describes those from the tribe of Manasseh who defected to David against Saul.
Verse 22 summarizes this flow of men from Saul's Army to David's, "For day by day men came to David to help him, until there was a great army, like the Army of God.
Then he lists the number of men from various tribes who came to David at Hebron to make him king over all of Israel. Every tribe sent warriors.
Most of Benjamin's tribe stayed loyal to the house of Saul.
Zebulun and Dan are accounted for here, even though we don't get their genealogy earlier in the book.
In verse 38, he states that these men had a perfect heart in commitment to David, and "...all the rest of Israel were of one mind to make David king."
Ryrie estimates about 350,000 men listed from the tribes to make up David's unified army.
They spent three days eating and drinking to celebrate. Everyone brought food and goods for the feast and, "There was joy indeed in Israel."
I don't really have any strong conclusions from these chapters. To me, Ezra is trying to educate and unify the nation's remnant after the exile and he chose topics that would meet that goal. This seen, this unified army for the coronation of David is a great example for him to use. All the tribes happily supporting the king whom the Lord chose for them.
It makes a little sad how short-lived that unity was...but again, Ezra was trying to pump up the people with tales of the mighty men from every tribe. This was not the time for the grim counterpoints.
It shows what God can do. We're re-opening our church after the COVID-19 crisis and they are adding a second service and some other groups. On paper, it's hard to imagine where we'll get enough workers to cover it all. But if it is God's will, as David's accession was, the troops will arrive happily.
Ezra's recap of Israel's history has arrived at the accession of David, following the death of Saul....continue reading "I Chronicles 11: 1-9"
So far, the author, Ezra, has given us the general genealogies from Adam to David to the exile. Then the narrow genealogies of 10 of the 12 tribes. Then a detailed genealogy of Saul.
Now we begin with the death of Saul leading to the anointing of David....continue reading "I Chronicles 10"
Ezra began the Chronicles with a genealogy of the nation of Israel from Adam to David and David to captivity. Then he narrowed his focus to the genealogies of ten of the twelve tribes (double Manasseh and Ephraim make it add up to 12; but Dan and Zebulun are missing from Ezra's list.) Now he's going back a bit to narrow even further on the tribe of Benjamin as we will slow down and examine the stories of Saul and David next....continue reading "I Chronicles 8-9"
In this chapter, Ezra is giving select genealogies of the twelve tribes. I have covered the first eight in previous posts. I'm also cross-referencing what Jacob blessed or predicted for each of them before he passed. he completes this section of the book with the final tribes.
He has two entries for Manasseh, but only has twelve entries...one tribe must be missing?...continue reading "I Chronicles 7:13-40"
In this chapter, Ezra covers several tribes in small passages....continue reading "I Chronicle 7: 1-12"
Ezra is chronicling the genealogies of the twelve tribes and we are at #6, Levi....continue reading "I Chronicles 6"
Ezra is chronicling the genealogies of the twelve tribes. We're up to our fifth tribe, Manasseh....continue reading "I Chronicles 5:23-26"