June 26 1 Chronicles 19-20 and Proverbs 26
David is still fighting battles and confronting the enemies around him. When things still flare up in Israel today, I often think how LONG it has been happening for about 2,700 years! Battles and hatred from their surrounding enemies has actually been going on for a long time in Israel. It is actually “old news” to hear the continual fighting. In this battle, Joab led David’s army. He could see that the battle was against them this time. He encouraged his best men, “Be of good courage, and let us be strong for our people and for the cities of our God. And may the LORD do what is good in His sight.” (19:13) What encouraging words from the army captain. He did not encourage them to find strength in themselves or by their own might and power they could win, but to be STRONG for their people and the cities of God, and that God would do what was good in HIS SIGHT. When young Israeli men (like our 2 sons) and women are sworn into the Israeli army today, Joshua chapter 1 is read to them in Hebrew. I found these words to be very touching and encouraging to a young soldier. (By the way, ALL boys are required to serve 3 years after high school in the Israeli military and girls 2 years. So, they are not thinking about what college they are going to attend, but what division of the army they would like to go into. Girls are not required to do combat. Lots of a variety of tests are given to match them up to fitting tasks for them.) “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9 What hope and encouraging words for the army of Israel, back then and today. Like the schools, also their military is not anti-God or Bible. How awesome that a whole chapter of the Bible is read at every soldier’s swearing into the Israeli army. May they and we truly find our strength and courage in the God of Israel.
Another battle was against the Philistines at Gath. Goliath was also from Gath. It is an ancient ruin still visible today as you can see in the drone picture that our son took. David’s brother, Jonathan killed a 24 finger and toed giant from Gath! We do not see any giants there today!
It is interesting to note the allusion to David, one of many sling throwers, in Proverbs 26:8. “Like one who binds a stone in a sling is he who gives honor to a fool.” I understand this to mean that it is not fitting to praise a fool, like putting ammo in a gun except in this case it is a stone in a sling. In conclusion, of todays and this week’s devotionals I hope you have a greater LOVE for the God of Israel, His Messiah Jesus, and beautiful Land of the Bible. 😊
~ Stephanie Schlegel