2 Samuel 19:31-20:26; Psalm 7; 2 Samuel 21:1-22; 1 Chronicles 20:4-8
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In Second Samuel chapter 20 today we read about the revolt of Sheba from the tribe of Benjamin. Zondervan's commentary today points out that an important thing to keep in mind here is that tribal jealousy still was brewing over the transfer of the kingship from Benjamin (Saul's tribe) to Judah (David's tribe). Sheba appeals to the Israelite suspicion that David favored his own tribe over the other tribes. As this chapter progresses Joab again shows his true colors by murdering Amasa. I'm beginning to wonder about Joab... he's ruthless. I suppose as being the commander of the army for so long, this was his "job" to be ruthless? Let me know your thoughts on Joab in the Comments section below. Ramona, thanks for the comment in yesterday's readings saying "Joab operated out of Justice with no Love." Great point! In Amasa's case, Amasa was part of the rebellion against David led by Absalom, so again here Joab is acting out "Justice"... (and certainly no Love...) I wonder if we ever fall into this trap in our lives today as well? Operate in an unbalanced way showing nothing but Justice, and yet no Love? Or, on the other hand do we sometimes operate with just Love, and no Justice? Should we be operating with a balance of Love and Justice? Or should one (Love or Justice) outweigh the other in our life? Below is a stained glass window showing Joab killing Amasa while pretending to greet him:
Well... Sheba's grand rebellion against David doesn't last very long! And Sheba's own clan doesn't treat him well at all... Below are 2 images from today's readings. First image is from a 13th Century Maciejowski Bible showing Joab and his men besieging the city of Abel. Next image is of Sheba's head being thrown over the wall to Joab. Rebellion over.
Second Samuel chapter 21 begins 4 chapters that are thought to essentially be an "appendix" to First and Second Samuel. These 4 chapters contain additional information about David's reign, without regard to chronology of events. The first event we read about in today's readings about David handing over 7 of Saul's relatives to the Gibeonites is believed to have taken place after David extended his kindness initially to Mephibosheth in chapter 9 and before Absalom's rebellion. The triumphs over 4 Philistine giants is at unknown times / chronology, although verse 15 seems to indicate to me that these took place perhaps later in David's life when he was older: "And when David and his men were in the thick of battle, David became weak and exhausted." Somehow I can't imagine a young David becoming weak and exhausted in battle... These 4 episodes are thought to have been included to show the heroics of David's men. Below is an image of David and his "Mighty Men" at a victory over their enemies:
Bible.org's commentary on today's Second Samuel readings titled "Promise Breakers and Promise Keepers" is at this link.
Psalms - Today in Psalm 7 verse 10 we read: "God is my shield, saving those whose hearts are true and right." What stood out to me here is that it does not say that God saves those who "do" what is true and right. It says that God saves those whose "hearts are" true and right. This is getting toward our interior motives and thoughts and hearts - the important thing is not what we do on the "exterior", but who we are on the "interior". And then certainly if our hearts are true and right, a natural outflow of this is doing good things on the exterior. But, it's the interior - our hearts - that matter most. How is your heart these days? Is it true and right? And do you believe that God is indeed your shield?
Worship God: Our readings today in 2nd Samuel reminded me of MercyMe's song "Move:"
Are you moving with God? Click here and move!
Please join us in memorizing and meditating on a verse of Scripture today: "My shield is God Most High, who saves the upright in heart." Psalm 7:10 NIV
Prayer Point: Pray that you are upright in heart. Pray in thanksgiving if God is your shield, through a saving faith in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior.
Comments from You: What verses or insights stand out to you in today's readings? Please post up by clicking on the "Comments" link below!