2 Samuel 10:7-19 Divine strength arise from the spirit of love and mutual support
2 Samuel 10:7-19 Divine strength arises from the spirit of love and mutual support
When David heard about this, he sent Joab and all his warriors to fight them. 8 The Ammonite troops came out and drew up their battle lines at the entrance of the city gate, while the Arameans from Zobah and Rehob and the men from Tob and Maacah positioned themselves to fight in the open fields. 9 Now when Joab saw that the battle was set against him in front and in the rear, he selected from all the choice men of Israel, and arrayed them against the Arameans. 10 But the remainder of the people he placed in the hand of Abishai his brother, and he arrayed them against the sons of Ammon. 11 He said, “If the Arameans are too strong for me, then you shall help me, but if the sons of Ammon are too strong for you, then I will come to help you. 12 Be strong, and let us show ourselves courageous for the sake of our people and for the cities of our God; and may the Lord do what is good in His sight.” 13 So Joab and the people who were with him drew near to the battle against the Arameans, and they fled before him. 14 When the sons of Ammon saw that the Arameans fled, they also fled before Abishai and entered the city. Then Joab returned from fighting against the sons of Ammon and came to Jerusalem.
15 When the Arameans saw that they had been defeated by Israel, they gathered themselves together. 16 And Hadadezer sent and brought out the Arameans who were beyond the River, and they came to Helam; and Shobach the commander of the army of Hadadezer led them. 17 Now when it was told David, he gathered all Israel together and crossed the Jordan, and came to Helam. And the Arameans arrayed themselves to meet David and fought against him. 18 But the Arameans fled before Israel, and David killed 700 charioteers of the Arameans and 40,000 horsemen and struck down Shobach the commander of their army, and he died there. 19 When all the kings, servants of Hadadezer, saw that they were defeated by Israel, they made peace with Israel and served them. So the Arameans feared to help the sons of Ammon anymore.
Determined to overwhelm Israel with a blast of chariots and foot soldiers, Hanun acquired numerous Aramean armies in addition to his own. Little did he expect that the Arameans that he consorted with would flee at the very sight of the Israelites. His Ammonite army is no better, they flee the moment they see the Arameans drop their weapons. The Israelites on the other hand rally together and fight with one spirit; they are ready to die for their families and for their homeland. Today’s passage teaches us the importance of staying united in the family, community and as one nation. Unity brings the favor of God to overcome whatever problems life may throw at us. As long as God is with us, we need not fear the onslaught of economic or political uncertainties. What we need to fear is the uncontrollable social decay of selfishness, injustice and fleshly desires. True strength and divine favor is found not in numbers or resources, but in the spirit of mutual love and support.
The Ammonite troops came out and drew up their battle lines at the entrance of the city gate
Hanun, anticipating a strike from David, acquired a sizeable army of mercenaries from four Aramean states. The Ammonites align themselves at the entrance of the city while the Arameans is positioned to attack Israel from the rear. Joab, now faced with the necessity of fighting the battle on two fronts decided that the Arameans are more formidable. Hence, he selected from all the choice men of Israel and arrayed them against the Arameans. But the remainder of the people he placed in the hand of Abishai his brother, and he arrayed them against the sons of Ammon.
Be strong, and let us show ourselves courageous for the sake of our people and for the cities of our God
While it appears that the Israelites are out maneuvered and out numbered, the spirit of camaraderie and piety emerges. Joab calls all Israel to be courageous and fight for their families and for their land; he rallies the people on both fronts to come to one another’s aid should the enemies prove too strong for them. When Joab’s army draws near to the battlefront, the Arameans panic and flee before the Israelites. The Ammonites, having witnessed the fleeing Arameans, they too flee before Abishai and return to their city.
When all the kings, servants of Hadadezer, saw that they were defeated by Israel, they made peace with Israel and served them
When the Arameans see that they are defeated by the Israelites in this Ammonite led war, Hadadezer summons vassal states beyond the River to assist in their campaign against Israel. The armies congregate at Helam under Shobach the commander of the army of Hadadezer. When David leads all Israel and come up against them at Helam, the Arameans fled before Israel, and David killed 700 charioteers of the Arameans and 40,000 horsemen and struck down Shobach the commander of their army, and he died there. The vassal states that pay tribute to Hadadezer, now in their state of defeat transfer their allegiance to David and serve Israel.
A loyal and courageous spirit cannot be bought; it must arise out of a worthy course.
Hanun acquires mercenaries from Aramean states with money hoping to buy their courage and loyalty in confronting the Israelites. However, as we know it, the Arameans are the first to flee followed by the Ammonites. The Israelites on the other hand are courageous in fighting to the end. They carry the passion of defending their families and their homeland; they see that as a worthy course to die for. Whereas the Arameans are there for the money, as for the Ammonites, they could not find a worthy reason. Similarly, many believers could not find within themselves to give their lives for the course of God’s kingdom; they find no passion for the things of God because they have no stake in His kingdom. The government of Singapore in her founding years knew that in order to give Singaporeans a reason to defend their homeland, they must have a house to call their own. Christians, who place their treasures in heaven, will naturally be passionate about the things of God. In the same vein, those who value the things of this world will be passionate about earthly things.
God favors a people who stand together.
Nothing is more formidable than a people united in love under one true God. Even though the sum of the combined resources may not be substantial, but the element of God in their midst is the key that will give them the victory. Although Israel has to fight the battle on two fronts, Joab says, “If the Arameans are too strong for me, then you shall help me, but if the sons of Ammon are too strong for you, then I will come to help you.” Joab’s words pretty much sums up their camaraderie and resolve to cover one another’s backs. And what transpires in that battle attests to the fact that true strength is found not in numbers but in the individual’s spirit. Therefore, before God could come to exalt a family or a church out of their problems, they must first acquire the spirit of mutual love and selfless support for one another. God cannot dwell within a people divided by strife, selfish ambitions and fleshly desires.
Are you courageous and passionate in establishing God’s kingdom even to the extent of giving up the comfort of life to do His work? Perhaps, its time to review where your treasure is, that will also be the place where your passion lies.
Is your community (family, church or company) united or fragmented? The attitude of the community will determine God’s favor in each individual. Consider putting more effort in rallying a spirit of love and mutual support amongst the members of your community.
Dear Lord, I may be torn by the cares and the anxieties of life. Enlighten my eyes so that I may see the glory that awaits me in your Kingdom that far surpasses the temporal glamour of this world. Put in me a compassion for the underprivileged and use me as an instrument to lift them to a place of dignity. Give me the anointing to lead and to rally the community together in mutual support and love; and here is where you will command a blessing forever. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.