Shall we turn to I Chronicles, chapter seventeen.
Now it came to pass, as David sat in his house, David said to Nathan the prophet, I dwell in an house of cedar, but the ark of the covenant of the Lord is under curtains (17:1).
When David became king, he desired to center the nation again upon its worship of the Lord. During the reign of Saul there wasn’t too much attention paid to the ark of the covenant, with the exception that they tried to take it into battle against the Philistines, thinking that there would be some kind of magical power that would give them victory over the Philistines, but instead the Philistines captured the ark of the covenant. It became a curse unto them, and so they finally sent it back. But it was just sort of set aside, in the area of Kirjathjearim.
But now that David has been crowned king over all of Israel, coming to Jerusalem to establish there the throne, he, as one of the first priorities, wanted to bring the ark of the covenant back to Jerusalem, so that they could sort of center again, the minds and the hearts of the people upon the Lord.
During the wilderness wanderings, the ark of the covenant was always in the center of the camp of Israel. The various tribes would pitch around the ark, the tent, the tabernacle where the ark of the covenant was. Their tent doors were all of them faced, towards the center of the camp, so the first thing in the morning, when they came out the tent flaps, there in the center, they were facing the tabernacle, the ark of the covenant, and they were constantly reminded how that God was the center, and the heart of the nation. David wanted to bring them back to this consciousness, to bring the ark of the covenant to Jerusalem, to place it in a tent, where the people again, in coming to Jerusalem, and thinking of Jerusalem, would be reminded of the presence of God among His people.
That’s always what the ark of the covenant represented, the presence of God among His people. The priests would go in and stand before the ark of the covenant to meet God. They always looked upon it as the symbol of God’s presence among His people. David wanted to bring this consciousness to them again, thus he established, there in Jerusalem, the ark of the covenant.
In the meantime king Hiram had sent down certain skilled carpenters, and artisans, and they had built for David, a beautiful palace, out of cedars from Lebanon. Now David is sitting comfortably in his palace, talking to his friend Nathan, the prophet. He said, “You know here I am in this palace of cedars, and the ark of the covenant is still in a tent”.
And Nathan said unto David, Do all that it is in your heart; for God is with you (17:2).
Now here is the problem that we, all of us run into at sometime or the other, and that is, just looking at a concept, and saying, “Great idea!”. Without inquiring of the Lord . It sounds so right, surely God must be in it. Many times we get into trouble, because a thing sounds so good, that obviously, it seems, that surely that would be the plan of God. “David, yes! Do all that’s in your heart. God is with you!” But he was speaking extemporaneously, without praying, without first consulting the Lord.
We can often times get ourselves in a mess, just because we follow something that sounds good, but we haven’t really sought the guidance of God upon it. Like Joshua, when they came into the promised land, and were told not make any covenant with any people within the land, and the Gibeonites came with their moldy bread, and their worn out sandals, and their ragged clothes. They told of their long journey, and how the bread was hot in their hand, and the sandals were new on their feet, and through this long journey they came, and now they wanted to make a covenant with Joshua. He took stock of their victuals, and inquired not of the Lord, and, and signed this agreement with them. “Oh what needless pain we bear, only because we do not carry, everything to God in prayer.” So Nathan just said, “Hey great idea! God’s with you David. Go for it!”.
And it came to pass the same night, that the word of God came to Nathan, saying, Go and tell David my servant, Thus saith the Lord, You shall not build me a house to dwell in: For I have not dwelt in a house since the day that I brought up Israel unto this day; but have gone from tent to tent, and from one tent to another. Wheresoever I have walked with all Israel, have I ever spoken a word to any of the judges of Israel, whom I commanded to feed my people, saying, Why have you not built me a house of cedars (17:3-6)?
In other words, God said, “I’ve never asked that a house be built for me. I’ve been with Israel, I’ve dwelt amongst Israel, I’ve dwelt in tents, and I’ve never requested, or never required that they build a house for me”. I wonder what God must think about some of these extremely extravagant, ornamental, plush, kind of houses, that have supposedly been built for Him. He said He was content to stay in a tent. We’re not. That’s our problem! We like the comfort of a building. We’ll just leave it there. So this is what you’re to say to David.
Verse seven. And, notice the Lord twice says, “My servant”. He’s gonna have to give David some very disappointing news. I imagine David’s quite excited at this point. He mentions his desire to his friend Nathan, his spiritual counselor. Nathan says, “Oh great David, do all that’s in your heart! God is with you”. Now Nathan’s gonna have to come back to him the next morning with this disappointing news, and say, “David you can’t do it. God says no”. But twice as God gives the message to Nathan, to give to David, He says, “Tell my servant David”. David is a servant of God, a great servant of God, there’s just certain things that he’s not gonna be able, allowed to do.
Thus saith Jehovah of hosts, I took you from the sheepcote, even from following the sheep, that you should be the ruler over my people Israel: [So God first of all was reminding David of His extremely humble beginnings. “David I took you from the sheepcote.” The sheep pen. “From following after the sheep, that you might be the ruler over my people Israel”.] And I have been with you wherever you have walked, and I have cut off all your enemies from before you, and I have made your name like the name of the great men that are in the earth (17:7-8).
God is reminding David, all that He’s done for him. Sometimes I think when God stops us on an enterprise, that we sometimes get the feeling that He doesn’t love us. He’s not letting us do what we want to do. Ha. Isn’t it interesting that whenever someone stops us from doing what we want to do, we, we get the inclination, or idea, “Well they don’t love me”. What a false idea that is! More than not, it’s they not let you do what you want to do because they do love you!
I have several little granddaughters, who each of them have a finger that they’ve got me wrapped around. And, and they know how to work the old game with grandpa. I have to be extremely careful how I say, “No”, to anything they do, even naughty things. For if I’m not extremely careful in how I say no, then they go into a pout, and they said, “You said that meanly. You don’t love me.”. Somehow whenever anybody stops us from one of our ideas, plans, we somehow feel that they don’t love us.
God is assuring David, “Hey David, I do love you! Remember what I’ve done for you David.” David’s gonna receive some very disappointing news, but God breaks it to him in an easy way. It is interesting that God is pointing out to David, what God has done for Him, when David is at a point of thinking, “I want to do this for God”. What God has done for us, always is greater than anything that we could do for God. But we are always wanting to put the emphasis upon, “What I have done for God!”.
Unfortunately, many times in church, the emphasis from the pulpit is, “What you should be doing for God!!”. You sit there, and just feel totally condemned! Because, you know you’re not doing all that they tell you, you ought to be doing for God. “You ought to be doing this, you ought to be doing that. You’re failing to do this! You’re just a total miserable failure! You’re not doing enough for God!” But the bible puts very, very, very little emphasis upon what you should be doing for God. It places a great deal of emphasis upon what God has done for you.
“I want to build God a house!” God says, “Hey David, you were just a little shepherd, following after the sheep, and I made you the ruler over my people, and I was with you wherever you went. I subdued your enemies all around you, and I’ve made your name like the name of the great men upon the earth. Here’s what I’ve done for you, David.” But then God goes on to say…
And I will ordain a place for my people Israel, and I will plant them, and they shall dwell in their place, and shall be moved no more; neither shall the children of wickedness waste them any more, as at the beginning, And since the time that I commanded judges to be over my people Israel. Moreover I will subdue all your enemies. And furthermore I tell you that the Lord will build you a house (17:9-10).
“I want to build a house for God!” God says, “No David, I’m going to build a house for you!”. Again, God desires, and God has done so much for us. All He requires is that we love Him, and believe in Him. Now that love and that faith will spark activities. But activities are never a duty, nor should they ever be considered a duty. Nor should you ever serve the Lord, or give to the Lord, out of constraint, or pressure.
All that I do for God, should be done in response to what God has done for me, loving response. So I never feel a heavy burden, a heavy obligation, a heavy pressure to get out and do something for God. I am wrong if I put people under that sense of heavy pressure. Yes God wants you to do things for Him, but He wants you to do it out of a heart that is responding to His grace. So, “David this is what I’ve done for you, and this is what I’m going to do for you. I’m gonna subdue all of your enemies, and I’m gonna build you a house”.
And it shall come to pass, [“That even after your death. After your days,”] when your days are expired, and you go to be with your fathers, that I will raise up your seed after you, which shall be of your sons, and I will establish his kingdom (17:11).
Now this is a reference to Solomon, one of David’s sons, that was to be raised up to sit upon the throne, after David.
He shall build me a house,[Solomon will be the instrument that God will allow to build the house, to build the temple.] and I will establish his throne for ever (17:12).
Now the prophecy goes beyond Solomon, and the prophecy goes to David’s seed. Even to Jesus Christ.
For I will be his father, he shall be my son: I will not take my mercy away from him, as I took it from him that was before thee. But I will settle him in my house and in my kingdom for ever: and his throne shall be established for evermore (17:13).
Obviously not referring to Solomon, but obviously now referring to Jesus Christ. That descendant of David, that God will sit upon the throne forever. David understood God to mean this, all of the old testament prophets understood God to mean this. The new testament writers understood God to mean this. They each one, understood that God was promising to David, that from his seed, there would rise the Messiah, who would reign for ever. “This is what I’m gonna do for you David, build you a house.”
He who will arise from thee, I’ll settle his kingdom: and his throne will be established for ever. According to all these words, and according to all this vision, so did Nathan speak to David (17:14-15).
So this is what God told Nathan in the night. Nathan came to David the next morning, and told David all of these things. David hearing these things, of course no doubt had mixed emotions. It was on his heart to build the temple for God, it’s disappointing to hear that he can’t do that. But God has so softened the blow, cushioned it, that David is overwhelmed when he stops to think of, “What God has done for me”. He asks so little in return.
So David the king came and sat before the Lord, and said, Who am I, O Lord God, and what is my house, that you have brought me hitherto (17:16)?
David was looking now at his position. “Here I am the king, here I am reigning over these people. Here I have a powerful kingdom! Who am I that I should have all this?” In his heart he was still a shepherd boy. In his heart, he was just still the same plain little boy that used to follow the sheep across the hillsides. Oh how wonderful it is, when God blesses a person, and that person remains the same, he doesn’t change. He doesn’t take on an air of superiority, or pomp, or whatever, because God has blessed him, and God has used him. But, he remains just a very plain, simple person. Doesn’t become elevated in his attitudes, and his feelings towards himself.
I think that, that’s probably the thing that impresses me about Billy Graham, more than anything else is, the man’s genuine humility, in spite of the fact that God has used him in such fantastic ways. This man remains very real, very genuine, and almost as though he’s totally unaware of what God has done through his life. Beautiful characteristic! I’ve met other people who haven’t done one, one thousandth of what Billy Graham has done, and they’re so stuck up, and proud that they scarcely will give you the time of day. You’re sort of you know, a fly. If you come up, you’re an irritant. You know. “Get out of here”, kind of thing, you know.
Here was David, still aware of his roots, still aware of, “Hey, I know I’m nothing Lord. What you’ve done for me is just overwhelming. Who am I that you should bring me to this place of power, this place of making my name great. This place of reigning over your people?
And yet Lord if this was a small thing in your eyes, O God (17:17);
David’s saying, “This is really very small in comparison with what you say you’re going to do. What you’ve promised for the future! What you’ve done is just really a small thing, in comparison to that which you’ve said you’re going to do. As David realized that God had promised, that from his descendants, the Messiah would arise, and this was just totally, totally overwhelming!
When I think of what God has done, so much! He has sent His only begotten Son, to take our sins, to die in our place. He has washed us, and cleansed us from our sins. He’s lifted us out of the horrible pit, out of the miry clay. He’s established our goings. He has delivered us from the power of darkness, and brought us into the kingdom of His dear Son. He’s delivered us from the bondage of death, and given to us, eternal life.
But that’s just a small thing in comparison with what God said He wants to do, and plans to do for you. As God begins to lay out the future plans that He has for His children, the glory that shall be revealed! Paul the apostle, in talking of these things said, “Oh the present sufferings that we go through now, are not worthy to be compared with the glory that’s gonna be revealed in us”. And, Paul said, “These light afflictions that we have are only for a moment, but they are working an eternal weight of glory”. The bible speaks of God’s plans of our being with Him, in the beauty, the glory, of His eternal kingdom! That we might live and reign with Him, forever, and ever!
Now what God has done for me already, is just mind boggling! I can’t fully comprehend it! I’m totally overwhelmed that God should love me, and should choose me, and should call me to be His disciple, to follow Him! That God should bless me with His love, and with His goodness. But, when I think of what God has promised for the future! It’s just beyond! You know the mind just can’t pull it all in! You just can’t fully fathom, or comprehend it all.
Our astronomers seem to be having a lot of fun, the past month or so, looking at these quasars, way out there in space. First part of the month, they were announcing that these quasars that they had discovered, were so far over on the red band that they had to be thirteen billion light years, from the earth. The furthest thing that we’d found up to this point, was twelve billion light years away. Now they have found these quasars that are thirteen billion light years away, and they say that they’re traveling away from us at tremendous speeds. They must be tremendous speeds, because last week, I read that they are now seventeen billion light years away! That’s four billion light years in three weeks. That’s really moving! But what are they moving into? How far out does space extend? Is there an end of space out there someplace? If they continue moving out as rapidly as they are, will they finally get to a place where a sign says, “This is the end. Stop. Space ends here”? What are they moving into?
You try to comprehend these things, and you start talking about billions of light years, and you know the fuses begin to glow a bit, and then they pop! The Hebrew word for that is, “the vanishing point”. It’s where your mind can’t go beyond. It just hits the vanishing point. You just, you can’t conceive of something beyond that. Trying to think of space, going out forever, ever, ever, ever. The mind can’t comprehend it, it can go out so far, and then the mind just frizzles. You fry a circuit, and that’s all she wrote!
When I try to comprehend the glory that God has promised, the eternal glory that God has promised, and I try to understand some of these scriptures, where God speaks of that future that we have with Him, I hit that vanishing point. My mind just can’t, you know, it just, it can’t go beyond a certain point. It just sort of fizzles out. David said, “You’ve spoken of a long time to come”. Of course the Lord did. He said, “He’s gonna reign for ever”. That’s a long time to come.
And David said, You’ve regarded me according to the estate of a man of high degree, O Lord God (17:17).
“You’ve looked upon me as though I were somebody Lord. You’ve honored me as though I were a man of high degree. Lord, I’m just a shepherd, I’m really just a nobody, and yet you’ve honored me, as though I were a man of high degree.”
What can David speak more to thee for the honour that you have bestowed upon your servant. [“What can I say Lord, for this honor that I should be the progenitor of the Messiah?”] O Lord, for thy servant’s sake, [David said, “For thou knowest thy servant”. In other words, “Lord, what can I say? You know me. God just, you know what’s in my heart. You know my feelings, you know my emotions, you know beyond that vanishing point. O Lord, for thy servant’s sake,”] and according to your own heart, you have done all this greatness, making known to me these great things (17:18-19).
“Lord, it was for my sake, you knew I was gonna be disappointed, hearing that I couldn’t build. You did it for my sake didn’t you Lord?” Oh that’s so neat! He even saw you know the grace of God, and the goodness of God, in, in the refusal of God allowing him to build the temple! Knowing that he would be so disappointed, “Lord, for your servant’s sake, you said this. You told me these glorious things for my sake, and for according to your own heart. God loves me, and He’s done all of these great things, because of His love, His great heart. In making known all of these great things.”
Oh Lord, there is no one like you, there is no God beside thee, [Tell that would you To all of these little gods, or would be gods, that are going around today! “There are no Gods beside thee.” I cannot quite fathom the tremendous ego that a person must have to think that he is God. Or to think that he could be God! I mean, that has to be stretching an awful long way. You can be thankful that I’m not God, I’m not in control of the universe, or the things that are transpiring, even in my own life, things happen that I don’t want to happen. Things happen in ways that I would rather they happen some other way. If I were in control, and could control the circumstances, things would be a lot different than what they are. I’m not God, and I’m glad! Because, if I were God, I’d always be worried whether or not I made a mistake. He never worries about that. “There is no God beside thee,”] and according to all that we have heard with our ears. And what nation in all the earth is like your people Israel, whom God went to redeem to be his own people, and to make thee a name of greatness and awesomeness, by driving out the nations from before thy people, whom you have redeemed out of Egypt (17:20-21)?
Of course coming over to the new testament, “Jesus came to redeem His church. What people are like the church of Jesus Christ, who have been redeemed by God, redeemed through the blood of Jesus, that we might be His people?” He’s bought us, He’s purchased us, that we might be His.
For your people Israel did you make your own people for ever; and you, Lord, became their God. Therefore now, Lord, let the thing that you have spoken concerning your servant and concerning his house be established for ever (17:22-23).
“Just go ahead and do what you said!” Ha, ha! In other words, “You do your work Lord”.
And let it even be established that your name may be magnified for ever, [Remember in one of the Psalms David said, “Let all those that love the Lord say continually, ‘The Lord be magnified’, let your name be magnified for ever!”] saying, the Lord of hosts is the God of Israel, even a God to Israel: and let the house of David thy servant be established before thee. For thou, O my God, hast told thy servant that you will build him a house: therefore your servant has found it in his heart to pray before thee. And no, Lord, you are God, and you’ve promised this goodness unto your servant: Now therefore let it please thee to bless the house of your servant, that it may be before thee for ever: for you have blessest, O Lord, and it shall be blessed for ever (17:24-27).
So, David says, “Okay God. Just go ahead and do it. You build me a house.” I have found one of the difficult things of my Christian experience is to accept the grace of God, gracefully. God is so good, He blesses so much, and so I’m always fumbling. I have a hard time receiving a gift. “Oh you shouldn’t have done that!” I really, when my kids, or my little granddaughter the other day, had five dollars, and she wanted to buy me something. I was so clumsy, you can’t believe it! I mean, how could I let her spend her money? Because she couldn’t buy me something, she wanted to buy her mommy something. I have a deal with my grandkids, if I pull their teeth, I give em’ five bucks. So, whenever they get a loose tooth, they come running to me to pull it.
The other day, when she wanted to get something for her mommy, and it cost more than the five dollars she had, she said, “Let’s go to grandpa, maybe my tooth is loose enough, he can pull it out, and then I’ll have enough money to get mommy that present!”. But, you know, those kind of gifts are hard to receive. Because you want to give so much more back to them. You don’t want them spending their money on you. You’re able to take care of yourself, and you want to see them have things.
When God gives to me, I often times have a hard time to just accept. I say, “Oh Lord, that’s great! Now, I’m gonna show you that I’m deserving of that. I’m gonna go out and prove to you…”, instead of just receiving, and saying, “Ah thanks Lord!” That’s too much to take. I’m, I’m working on that one. Trying to accept grace, gracefully. David did it. He said, “Okay God, just go ahead. You build a house, and thanks”.
Now after this it came to pass, that David smote the Philistines, subdued them, took Gath and her towns out of the hand of the Philistines. [Gath was the most important, and the largest city of the Philistines, right in the middle of the Philistine country.] David smote Moab; and the Moabites became David’s servants, and they paid tribute. David smote Hadarezer the king of Zobah all the way to Hamath, as he went to establish his dominion by the river Euphrates. David took from him a thousand chariots, seven thousand horsemen, twenty thousand infantrymen: David also houghed all of the chariot horses, with the exception of a hundred. And when the Syrians of Damascus came to help Hadarezer the king of Zobah, David slew of the Syrians twenty two thousand. David put garrisons in Syria-Damascus; the Syrians became David’s servants, and they also paid tribute. Thus the Lord preserved David whithersoever he went (18:1-6).
God said, “I have subdued your enemies”. God is continuing His work with David.
David took the shields of gold that were on the servants of Hadarezer, and he brought them to Jerusalem. And likewise from Tibhath, and from Chun, and the cities of Hadarezer, David brought very much brass, wherewith Solomon made that big brazen swimming pool, [That the priests used for bathing.] and he also made the pillars of the temple (18:7-8).
Now notice what David is doing. God said, “You can’t build me a house David, I’m gonna build you a house”. But God didn’t say, “You can’t gather the materials for the house”. Ha, ha, ha! So David is going about to gather all of the gold, and all of the brass, and all of the silver, that’s to be used in building the house of the Lord. Can’t build the house itself, “But hey, I can sure gather all of the materials for the building of the house”. This is what David started to do at this point.
Now when kin Toi, the king of Hamath heard how David had smitten all of the host of Hadarezer the king of Zobah; He sent Hadoram his son to king David, to inquire of David’s welfare, and to congratulate him, (because there was this constant battle between Toi, and Hadarezer), he brought to David all manner of vessels of gold and silver and brass. [Which David all tucked away to be used in the building of the temple.] Them also king David dedicated unto the Lord, with the silver and the gold that he brought from all these nations; from Edom, Moab, and the children of Ammon, and from the Philistines, and from Amalek. Moreover Abishai the son of Zeruiah slew of the Edomites in the valley of salt eighteen thousand. And they put troops in Edom; and all the Edomites became David’s servants. Thus the Lord preserved David wherever he went. [Twice we’re told that.] So David reigned over all of Israel, executed judgment and justice among all his people. And Joab the son of Zeruiah was over the host; [He was the general of the armies of David.] Jehosophat was the one who kept the records. And Zadok was one of the priests; and Shavsha was the scribe; [The secretary of state.] Benaiah was over the body guards (18:9-17).
Now it came to pass after this, that Nahash the king of the child of Ammon died, and his son began to reign in his place (19:1).
David was a friend of Nahash, Nahash had shown kindness to David.
And so David said, I will show kindness unto Hanun the son of Nahash, because his father showed kindness to me. And so David sent messengers to comfort him concerning the death of his father. [It’s sort of like today, when a chief of state dies, they send the secretary of state, or some, you know, the vice president, or someone will go to attend the funeral, and they are there to represent our government. To express the sympathy, and the condolences of our government for the death of some important personage of another nation. So David was doing that unto this fellow Hanun, the son of Nahash, who had been a friend to David.] So the servants of David came into the land of the children of Ammon to Hanun to comfort him. But the princes of the children of Ammon said to Hanun, Do you think that David is honoring your father, and has sent these comforters to you? these fellows have come to search out the land, and they are spies. David’s just sent them to spy the place out, in order that he might attack us. Therefore Hanun took David’s servants, and shaved half of their beards off, and cut off their garments, in the midst, and he sent them away (19:1-4).
Cut their shirts short, their shirts, their skirts short. Alright! I’ll get it, I told you, it’s now one o’clock!
Then there went certain, and told David how the men were served. [The indignanty that was shown to these servants of David. They came back and told David what they had done to these fellows. Absolutely embarrassing.] So when the children of Ammon saw that they had made themselves odious to David, Hanun and the children of Ammon sent a thousand talents of silver to hire mercenaries, chariots and horsemen out of Mesopotamia, and out of Syria-maachah, and out of Zobah. They hired thirty tow thousand chariots, the king of Maachah and his people; who came and pitched before Medeba. And the children of Ammon gathered themselves together from their cities, and came to battle. And when David heard of it, he sent Joab, and all the host of mighty men. And the children of Ammon came out, and put the battle in array before the gate of the city: and the kings that were come by themselves in the field. SO when Joab saw that the battle was set against him before and behind, he chose out all of the choice men of Israel, that they might go with him, and battle against the Syrians. And the rest of the people he gave to his brother Abishai, and set themselves against the children of Ammon. And he said, If the Syrians are too strong for me, then come over and help me: if the children of Ammon are too strong for you, then I will help you (19:5-12).
They found that they came in, and they were sort of surrounded. The Syrians on this side, those from Ammon on this side, so they divided their troops. Then he said, and I love this!
He said, Be of good courage, let’s behave ourselves valiantly for our people, and for the cities of our God: and let the Lord do that which is good in his sight (19:13).
“Now you be courageous, you be valiant, and then just commit it to the Lord.” Always a good rule to follow is, just to do your best, and commit the rest. You know you can’t do any more than your best, a lot of times, we are disappointed, “Oh I should’ve done more, I could’ve done better” or, “I should have done better”. But if it’s your best, don’t beat yourself! Commit it! “Lord I did my best!” Go into the battle with courage, be valiant, and let the Lord of hosts do what He pleases. Leave it up to God. I do what I can, and this is, you know, we’re not to just lie down. We’re not to just kick back, and say, “Well the Lord can do what He wants to do”. You know, it’s, it’s not a passive kind of a thing. We, as Christians, aren’t, are not to be pacifists in these things. That is just to passively wait for God to work, and say, “Well, just you know, God can do what He wants to do”. So let Him do it! But, God expects us to get in there and do our best. “Be courageous fellows, be valiant, then we’ll let the rest up to the Lord.” But, you do your part. You do your part, God does His part. I guarantee you’re not that passive as far as your eating. You don’t just lie in bed and say, “Well if God wants me to eat today, He can just put it in my mouth, I’ll just lie here”. You get up and you scramble the eggs, you set the table, you pour the milk. We’re not to be passive, and just expect God to do everything. There is that part that God expects from us. So, here it is, “Be of good courage. Get in there and behave yourselves valiantly, and we’ll leave it up to the Lord. Let the Lord do that which is good in His sight.”
So Joab and the people that were with him drew nigh before the Syrians into battle; and the Syrians fled from before him. And when the children of Ammon saw that the Syrians were fleeing, they likewise fled from before Abishai his brother, and they entered into their city. Then Joab and the troops returned back to Jerusalem. And when the Syrians saw that they were put to the worse before Israel, they sent messengers, and drew forth the Syrians that were beyond the river: and from Shophach the captain of the host of Hadarezer went before them (19:14-16).
And Shophach, this captain of the host. So they, they regrouped. Called for more troops, and came back again.
And so it was told David; and so he gathered all of Israel, [It was first just the mighty men, he gathered now the full army.] and he passed over Jordan, and he came upon them, and he set the battle in array against them. So when David had put the battle in array against the Syrians, they fought with him. But the Syrians fled before Israel; and David slew the Syrians seven thousand men with their chariots, and forty thousand of the infantrymen, and he killed the captain of the host [This fellow,] Shophach. And when the servants of Hadarezer saw that they were put to the worse before Israel, they made peace with David, became his servants: and neither would the Syrians help the children of Ammon any more (19:17-19).
So, we come now to chapter twenty, and continue the ventures of David, as king over Israel.
May the Lord, this week, reveal unto you the exceeding riches of His love, and grace in Christ Jesus. May He help you to receive His grace, gracefully. As you go out and commit yourself, and your ways unto the Lord, may He guide you in your activities, and may you be strong, may you be courageous, may you be valiant for Him. May the Lord work His plan, His purpose, in your life. In Jesus’ name.
Edited & Highlighted from “The Word For Today” Transcription, Pastor Chuck Smith, Tape #7127