Jan 23, 2022. II Samuel 23:8-39

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DAVID’S MIGHTY MEN. II Samuel 23:8-24. 01/23/2022. #55.

2 Samuel 23:8-24 [New King James Version]

8 These are the names of the mighty men whom David had: Josheb-Basshebeth the Tachmonite, chief among the captains. He was called Adino the Eznite, because he had killed eight hundred men at one time. 9 And after him was Eleazar the son of Dodo, the Ahohite, one of the three mighty men with David when they defied the Philistines who were gathered there for battle, and the men of Israel had retreated. 10 He arose and attacked the Philistines until his hand was weary, and his hand stuck to the sword. The Lord brought about a great victory that day; and the people returned after him only to plunder. 11 And after him was Shammah the son of Agee the Hararite. The Philistines had gathered together into a troop where there was a piece of ground full of lentils. So the people fled from the Philistines. 12 But he stationed himself in the middle of the field, defended it, and killed the Philistines. So the Lord brought about a great victory. 13 Then three of the thirty chief men went down at harvest time and came to David at the cave of Adullam. And the troop of Philistines encamped in the Valley of Rephaim. 14 David was then in the stronghold, and the garrison of the Philistines was then in Bethlehem. 15 And David said with longing, “Oh, that someone would give me a drink of the water from the well of Bethlehem, which is by the gate!” 16 So the three mighty men broke through the camp of the Philistines, drew water from the well of Bethlehem that was by the gate, and took it and brought it to David. Nevertheless he would not drink it, but poured it out to the Lord. 17 And he said, “Far be it from me, O Lord, that I should do this! Is this not the blood of the men who went in jeopardy of their lives?” Therefore he would not drink it. These things were done by the three mighty men. 18 Now Abishai the brother of Joab, the son of Zeruiah, was chief of another three. He lifted his spear against three hundred men, killed them, and won a name among these three. 19 Was he not the most honored of three? Therefore he became their captain. However, he did not attain to the first three. 20 Benaiah was the son of Jehoiada, the son of a valiant man from Kabzeel, who had done many deeds. He had killed two lion-like heroes of Moab. He also had gone down and killed a lion in the midst of a pit on a snowy day. 21 And he killed an Egyptian, a spectacular man. The Egyptian had a spear in his hand; so he went down to him with a staff, wrested the spear out of the Egyptian’s hand, and killed him with his own spear. 22 These things Benaiah the son of Jehoiada did, and won a name among three mighty men. 23 He was more honored than the thirty, but he did not attain to the first three. And David appointed him over his guard.

24 Asahel the brother of Joab was one of the thirty; Elhanan the son of Dodo of Bethlehem,

  1. David had help
    1. When God raised up David to be king, he also raised up many strong devoted men to help him
      1.  Divided into 3 chief men and 30 mighty men
      1.  Ironically, the last mighty man listed is Uriah –vs. 39
    1. Many of these men are credited with astounding feats:
      1.  Adino = killed 800 men at one time (Samson had killed 1,000 Philistines with a donkey’s jawbone)
      1.  Eleazer stood in battle when all had fled = he killed Phil. until his hand froze to his sword hilt
      1.  Shammah also stood alone in a field of lentils to hold back the Philistines and win a great victory
      1.  David whimsically mentioned that he would like
      1. a drink from the well of Bethlehem
        1.  His 3 mighty men broke through Philistines lines to fetch that drink
        1.  David refused to drink it in honor of the bravery of his men
        1.  Like Henry II’s frustrated outburst, costing Thomas Becket his life, David’s desire was fulfilled by loyal soldiers
      1.  Abishai (Joab’s brother) killed 300 men
      1.  Benaiah killed many mighty men of Moab and a large Egyptian with his own spear (1 Chr. 11:23 = 7 ½’ tall) and a lion in a pit on a snowy day
      1.  The feats of the 30 mighty men are not given us
    1. David’s fame depended very much on his support cast
      1.  This is true of all successful people
      1.  When Solomon speaks of “all the work of his hands”, he did not physically build anything
    1. God provides the means of success (Deuteronomy 8)
      1.  Dan. 4 Nebuchadnezzar found out the hard way that he was not the source of his success
      1.  I Corinthians 4:7 everything that has value is from the grace of God
  2. Grace and gratitude
    1. Had David acknowledged the grace of God by providing him with great brave soldiers, he might have realized how much they depended on him to do the right thing
      1.  David owed God and those under him
      1.  When David violated Uriah, he violated one of his mighty men
    1. There is never any circumstance where we can take full credit for anything that we have done well
    1. God credits David with following him fully, except for the Uriah scandal, but this is enough to taint his record
  3. Forgiveness
    1. God restored David and David’s followers stayed true to him
      1.  David brought trouble to his family
      1.  God did not abandon David
    1. The story of Israel’s heroes is a story of God’s blessing upon them by grace and not merit
    1. God is able to do marvelous feats through any who trust in him (Joseph, Daniel, Elijah, Paul, Gideon, Ruth, Esther…)
      1.  Biblical feats are the story of God at work
      1.  Superhuman deeds are God’s deeds