Today’s reading: 1 Chron 11:1–47, 1 Tim 6:3–10, Ps 80:1–19
Today’s theme: Be content
There are so many great lessons today, one of the most important ones is that we must learn to be content and set our desires on God rather than the riches of this world. We can place all our trust in God because what He has decreed, He always brings to pass.
1 Chronicles 11:1–47
God’s decreed will
So all the elders of Israel came to the king at Hebron, and David made a covenant with them at Hebron before the LORD. And they anointed David king over Israel, according to the word of the LORD by Samuel.1 Chronicles 11:3 (ESV)
God’s word is not like the words of man, God actively brings His word to pass. When God decrees a thing, it WILL come to pass and nothing can stop it.
God spoke prophetically through Samuel and once the prophecy was decreed, God would actively work to fulfil the word He had declared.
This should give us confidence with every firm prophecy and promise of God’s word. God does not lie, if He decreed it as the king of the universe, He will bring it to pass. 2 Corinthians 1:20
It is worth remembering that when we read about God’s will in the bible, there are two types; one is His decreed will (sovereign will), which should be thought of as decrees from His throne, which always come to pass.
The other is; God’s commanded will (desire). This is found in the Ten Commandments and all of God’s laws and desires expressed in scripture, but not enforced by royal decree. This can be thought of as the law of the kingdom, which when disobeyed ,will incur punishment on the offender.
David said, “Whoever strikes the Jebusites first shall be chief and commander.” And Joab the son of Zeruiah went up first, so he became chief. 1 Chronicles 11:6 (ESV)
Joab is a frustrating character, sometimes his stand and faith is impressive and at other times he makes some awful decisions. In this case, he made a name and position for himself by boldly standing up and going first, like Peter.
We can learn from this bold attitude for God and His work. Joab was not someone who suffered from procrastination or cowardice, he was zealous, bold and would strike first. We should be like this too. At the same time we should learn from his life, that these qualities also need to be balanced with obedience, humility and stillness before God. See Matthew 11:12
Give strong support
Now these are the chiefs of David’s mighty men, who gave him strong support in his kingdom, together with all Israel, to make him king, according to the word of the LORD concerning Israel. 1 Chronicles 11:10 (ESV)
We should give God our strong support and one of the ways we can do this practically, is to give strong support to God’s ministers and leaders in our lives. We should give strong support to our Pastors as they lead us forward in God’s great kingdom, and the war on the kingdom of darkness.
In Hebrews 13:17, we are reminded to “Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you.”
As Pastor Dennis preached in 2012, we should have the Heart of the King. The DVD of this message is available from the Church bookstore and a video from the first Heart of the King, Men’s Gathering in 2013, can be watched here https://www.wwmf.org/2013/01/05/media/video/the-heart-of-the-king-dvd/
Take your stand
But he took his stand in the midst of the plot and defended it and killed the Philistines. And the LORD saved them by a great victory. 1 Chronicles 11:14 (ESV)
Take your stand today, do not give a foothold to the enemy, do not give him any ground. Be bold and stand your ground! Fight! God is with you! Ephesians 6:13 encourages us “Therefore take up the whole armour of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.”
Ephesians 4:27 reminds us “and give no opportunity to the devil.”
Pour your life out
and said, “Far be it from me before my God that I should do this. Shall I drink the lifeblood of these men? For at the risk of their lives they brought it.” Therefore he would not drink it. These things did the three mighty men. 1 Chronicles 11:19 (ESV)
When we pour out our lives for the ministry, our work and risk is not wasted, God does not take our service lightly. Our faith and work pleases God and God graciously and abundantly rewards us. See Galatians 6:9 and Matthew 25:23
Benaiah, an example to us all
And Benaiah the son of Jehoiada was a valiant man of Kabzeel, a doer of great deeds. He struck down two heroes of Moab. He also went down and struck down a lion in a pit on a day when snow had fallen. And he struck down an Egyptian, a man of great stature, five cubits tall. The Egyptian had in his hand a spear like a weaver’s beam, but Benaiah went down to him with a staff and snatched the spear out of the Egyptian’s hand and killed him with his own spear. 1 Chronicles 11:22–23 (ESV)
Pastor Dennis preached a powerful message from this passage, focusing on the Character of Benaiah. Some of the key points highlighted were that the heroes of Moab spoke of killing sin and the flesh.
The Egyptian speaks of the world and we need to take the world’s weapon of media and technology (the spear), and use it against the ways of the world.
The Lion in the pit is the Devil who comes like a roaring lion, the pit and the snow makes the circumstance hard, but Beniah had the heart of the king, the heart of a true servant of God and so slew the Lion. Pastor highlighted the point that Beniah chased the Lion down.
We can learn so much from Beniah’s life and exploits, for our walk of faith. The DVD is available from the church bookstore and here is a message reflection, from the website https://www.wwmf.org/2012/08/04/resources/benaiah-the-heart-of-the-king/
Benaiah proves to be loyal
He was renowned among the thirty, but he did not attain to the three. And David set him over his bodyguard. 1 Chronicles 11:25 (ESV)
Beniah became the chief bodyguard and proved loyal all the way through to Solomon’s reign, unlike Joab.
Uriah the Hittite
Uriah the Hittite, Zabad the son of Ahlai, 1 Chronicles 11:41 (ESV)
It is worth noting that Uriah, the man that David had killed to cover his adultery with his wife (Bathsheba), was one of David’s elite soldiers, one of the thirty. This makes the betrayal even worse.
1 Timothy 6:3–10
But godliness with contentment is great gain, 1 Timothy 6:6 (ESV)
As God’s people we are called to be content. It seems that the false doctrine being taught in Paul’s day, was similar to the prosperity gospel of today, with its focus on material wealth.
When we live a goodly life and are content in our hearts with God’s provision for us, we have more than the man who may have more money but is never satisfied and is constantly driven by the compulsion for more.
False teachers are prideful when they speak, they love controversy, always claiming false revelations and causing friction amongst people. We must hold fast to the true faith passed down to us (it is not new or novel).
Desire God, not riches
But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. 1 Timothy 6:9 (ESV)
Despite western ideals, we should not desire to be rich, we should desire God and chase God, not money. Our appetite should be for God and not for more money.
If we have a job we should work well, and be good stewards of what God has given us but we should not desire to be rich. Think about this today, have you been infected with the spirit of the age, to ‘keep up with the Jones’?
We should live our lives in service and mission to our King, like Beniah, seeking His good and the good of the kingdom, not seeking to build our own kingdom.
Love God, not money
For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs. 1 Timothy 6:10 (ESV)
The love of money is the root of all sorts of evil and a focus on money can draw us away from trusting in Christ.
Pray for Jews to be saved
Turn again, O God of hosts! Look down from heaven, and see; have regard for this vine, Psalm 80:14 (ESV)
As we read this, let us remember to pray for the salvation of the Jewish people today.
Most of the above post is a copy of the original notes from the same date in 2014.
Desiring God on 1 Timothy 6