Valiant Men

Shortly after Saul was killed on Mount Gilboa, David was made king and immediately began to establish his kingdom (1 Chronicles 11:1-8).  The Chronicler then records, “David became greater and greater, for the LORD of hosts was with him” (11:9).  The first immediate evidence given to demonstrate how God blessed and supported David is the mass of trained, committed, fierce, masculine men who fought for him.  Here is how these warriors are described:

  • They “gave him strong support in his kingdom” (11:10).
  • Jashobeam “wielded his spear against 300 whom he killed at one time” (11:11).
  • Eleazar “took his stand in the midst of the plot and defended it and killed the Philistines” (11:14).
  • They served him with their “lifeblood” and “at the risk of their lives” (11:19).
  • Abishai “wielded his speer against 300 men and killed them and won a name” and became “renowned” (11:21).
  • Benaiah was “a valiant man” and “a doer of great deeds” who “struck down two heroes of Moab” and “went down and struck down a lion in a pit on a day when snow had fallen.”  He also “struck down an Egyptian, a man of great stature, five cubits tall [7.5 feet].”  He “won a name” and became “renowned” (11:23-25).
  • They were “mighty men” (12:1).
  • They “helped him in war” (12:1).
  • “They were bowmen who could shoot arrows and sling stones with either the right or the left hand” (12:2).
  • They were “mighty and experienced warriors” (12:8).
  • They were “expert with shield and spear” (12:8).
  • Their “faces were like the faces of lions” (12:8).
  • They were “swift as gazelles upon the mountains” (12:8).
  • They were “officers of the army” (12:14).
  • “The least was a match for a hundred men and the greatest for a thousand” (12:14).
  • They “crossed the Jordan… when it was overflowing all its banks” (12:15).
  • They “put to flight all those in the valleys” (12:15).
  • They were “chiefs of thousands” (12:20).
  • “They were all mighty men of valor” (12:21).
  • They were “commanders in the army” (12:21).
  • They were “a great army, like an army of God” (12:22).
  • They came “bearing shield and spear” as “armed troops” (12:24).
  • They were “mighty men of valor for war” (12:25, 30).
  • Zadok was “a young man mighty in valor” (12:28).
  • They were “famous men in their fathers’ houses” (12:30).
  • They were “men who had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do” (12:32).
  • They were “seasoned troops” (12:33).
  • They were “equipped for battle with all the weapons of war” (12:33).
  • They were committed “to help David with singleness of purpose” (12:33).
  • They were “armed with shield and spear” (12:34).
  • They were “equipped for battle” (12:35).
  • They were “seasoned troops ready for battle” (12:36).
  • They were “men armed with all the weapons of war” (12:37).
  • They came as “men of war, arrayed in battle order” (12:38).
  • They had “full intent” to help David (12:38).

This is a stunning and inspiring picture for any man who desires to march in God’s army and fight for His mission.  As men, we serve a greater King than David, who has a fuller mission than David, and who deserves fiercer allegiance than David.  Yet few would dare describe the church’s men in these ways today.  Not because we are not a physical army, but because we simply are not like these men.

Men, arise, and may our generation become men like these men, for the health of our families, for the strength of the church, for the advance of the gospel, and for the good of the world — and all for the mission of Jesus.


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