Never to lean on our own strength

1 Chronicles 19 is a chapter that teaches us that those who return evil for good will always pay a high price for doing so! David sought to do good to king Nahash’s son when the king died, but being led by the wrong advice of his contemporaries, Hanun responded wrongly!

This led to a war that David and his men won, not only against the Ammonite king Hanun, but also against those who joined hands with him to fight against David, 6-19!

It is noteworthy to see Joab’s attitude in vs 13, wherein he said, “Be strong! Let’s fight bravely for the sake of our people and the cities of our God! The LORD will do what He decides is best!” This shows us that unless we do what we can, and with the right motivation, we cannot expect the Lord to back us up and do for us what we cannot! On following in David’s footsteps, his mighty men killed some Philistine giant too, 1 Chronicles 20:4-8!

Similarly, as we follow the Lord’s calling faithfully, others who watch us will be encouraged to do the same, and this will bring glory to the Lord’s Name, and the strengthening of His kingdom as well! David was provoked by an evil influence to number the Israelite warriors, 1 Chronicles 21:1.

This eventually led to the death of 70,000 people of Israel, vs 14! Thus, we see that leaning on the arm of the flesh or glorying in one’s own strength, instead of acknowledging God for fruitfulness and growth, will eventually end in loss and disaster.

Only a sacrificial offering, that was offered in repentance was able to stop God’s hand from completely destroying God’s people and Nation, vs 15-28! Let us, therefore, determine to be part of the circumcision, that worships God in the spirit, and rejoices in Christ Jesus, while having no confidence in the flesh, Philippians 3;3!

Ironically, that was the very place (the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite) that David chose as the sight for the building of the temple, 1 Chronicles 22:1! It was also the place that God chose for Abraham to offer up his son Issac, Genesis 22:2, 2 Chronicles 3:1!

David desired a permanent place for the ark of God to reside and made detailed plans and gave magnanimously for the same too, vs 2-4;14-16.

Although Solomon was chosen by God to take the work forward, it was David who backed it up 100%, in terms of encouraging his son and the people of God to give their wholehearted support to see that the plan came to fruition, 11-13,17-19. He even made sure to organise the Levites to help out in the work in a systematic and God-ordained manner, 1 Chronicles 23:1-32. And most importantly, he led by example and wholehearted dedication too!

Thus, as we seek to live godly in Christ Jesus in all our dealings with all people who come across our path God will back us up and help us to be overcomers even when people misinterpret our good works for evil! We will become good examples for others to follow, and eventually be an important and active part of the Church that the Lord is building in our midst!
However, let us make sure to always remember never to lean on our own strength during this process, but always endeavour not to be complacent about the work of God, but do God’s work in His way and for His glory alone. Amen.

Rowena Thomas
Mumbai, India.