Sunday, 4th March 2018
Pastor Bruce McDonald
There is so much to be done in 2018, there are so many dreams God put in our hearts but so many times we did not see them happening. That’s why we need to write our dreams down, to make records of the dreams God put in our hearts. God will meet us at the point of the dreams and together we can make them come true.
“During harvest time, three of the thirty chief warriors came down to David at the cave of Adullam, while a band of Philistines was encamped in the Valley of Rephaim. At that time David was in the stronghold, and the Philistine garrison was at Bethlehem. 15 David longed for water and said, “Oh, that someone would get me a drink of water from the well near the gate of Bethlehem!” So the three mighty warriors broke through the Philistine lines, drew water from the well near the gate of Bethlehem and carried it back to David. But he refused to drink it; instead, he poured it out before the Lord. “Far be it from me, Lord, to do this!” he said. “Is it not the blood of men who went at the risk of their lives?” And David would not drink it. Such were the exploits of the three mighty warriors.“ (2 Samuel 23:13-17)
The whole chapter of 2 Samuel is about one particular area. A story of leadership and followers who learn how to hear the heart of the leader. The three men overheard David’s dream about getting the drink from Bethlehem, which is David’s hometown. What David wanted was important to the 3 men, these are the mighty men of David, the best of the best.
First Man, Adino: Stood Up & Overcome Overwhelming Odds
“These are the names of David’s mighty warriors: Josheb-Basshebeth, a Tahkemonite, was chief of the Three; he raised his spear against eight hundred men, whom he killed in one encounter.“ (2 Samuel 23:8)
Jpsheb-Basshebeth was also called Adino, which means spears. He was courageous that he stood up and killed eight hundred men at one time. He overcame in the midst of overwhelming odds. He was considered the chief of the three warriors.
Second Man, Eleazar: Kept Fighting & Wouldn’t Give Up
“Next to him was Eleazar son of Dodai the Ahohite. As one of the three mighty warriors, he was with David when they taunted the Philistines gathered at Pas Dammim for battle. Then the Israelites retreated, but Eleazar stood his ground and struck down the Philistines till his hand grew tired and froze to the sword. The Lord brought about a great victory that day. The troops returned to Eleazar, but only to strip the dead.” (2 Samuel 23:9-10)
The name of Eleazar means ‘God is my helper’. He was the man, who didn’t stop fighting even when he was so tired. He overcame in the phase of overwhelming tiredness. He was so tired but he just wouldn’t give up. All of us get tired and weary, but we need to learn to overcome tiredness. We just need to keep going, because it’s what’s make great great.
Third Man, Shammah: Being Faithful & Didn’t Run Away
“Next to him was Shammah son of Agee the Hararite. When the Philistines banded together at a place where there was a field full of lentils, Israel’s troops fled from them. But Shammah took his stand in the middle of the field. He defended it and struck the Philistines down, and the Lord brought about a great victory.” (2 Samuel 23:11-12)
The third man, Shammah, who names means ‘to be there’. He just learnt to be faithful. When everyone else ran away, he just stayed there, he was faithful every single day. When one day he’s given an assignment to protect the field of vegetable, it sounds like an ordinary assignment. But when the enemies came, he didn’t think that ‘I’m not going to be killed to protect the vegetable.’ Instead of running away, Shammah said, ‘I’ve been given a job, this is my assignment’, so he stayed and won the victory.
“And the name of the city from that time on will be: the Lord is there.” (Ezekiel 48:35)
For Adino, it doesn’t matter how hard the job us; for Eleazar, it doesn’t matter how tired we get; for Shammah, it doesn’t matter how ordinary the job is; we do what God has asked us to do, what our leader has asked us to do, and that’s what make us the best of the best.
They learnt the walk of courage. They won’t always like that, they were not born like that. We weren’t born courageous, we become courageous; we weren’t born brave, we choose to be brave.
“David left Gath and escaped to the cave of Adullam. When his brothers and his father’s household heard about it, they went down to him there. All those who were in distress or in debt or discontented gathered around him, and he became their commander. About four hundred men were with him.” (I Samuel 22:1-2)
When the men joined David, they were in distress, in debt and discontented. Nobody is born great, we learn greatness, and when these men started following David, they began to change. They saw God’s greatness, they prayers are answered, they got out of debt, and they became great.
As leaders we must ask this question: ‘what would happened to my followers?’ Something must change to the people that follow us, change for the better. By the choices and association, greatness will come. God puts us under earthly leaders to follow, and if greatness is going to come in our life, we must be like the might men of David. It doesn’t matter how hard the job is, how weary we are, how ordinary the task is, we’ll do it.
Our challenge today is this: have we got an ear to listen? To walk the heart of our leader? To say, ‘we can do it’? This is a choice that everyone of us need to make.