September 15, 2015.
Daily Reading: I Chronicles 10-14.
Background: I Chronicles 5-9.
Concepts and Connections.
The death of Saul and his sons: The narrative of the Chronicles begins in this chapter with the death of Saul and his sons at the hand of the Philistines, to set up the story of David and his royal line. The majority of this chapter can be found verbatim in I Samuel 31 (see this summery for details). There are a few extra verses at the end of this story here, however, that give us some insight as to the reason behind Saul’s death and why the kingdom was handed over to David. The reasons that are cited here are: Saul’s breach of faith in offering an unlawful sacrifice (see I Samuel 13:8-15), in not utterly destroying the Amalekites (see I Samuel 15) and in seeking advice from the medium and not the Lord (see I Samuel 28).
The rise of David: (See II Samuel 5:1-10, 23:8-39) After the death of Saul, the children of Israel came to David looking for him to be their king according to the word of the Lord through Samuel (see I Samuel 16:1-13). David is first made king in Hebron, then he goes to Jerusalem to take the city where the Jebusites were. Joab becomes the chief and commander of Daivd’s army by being the first one to go up and take the Jebusites, and Jerusalem was rebuilt and fortified, becoming the city of David. It is important to note that David was not alone in his rise to power, as here we have listed the names (and some interesting insights to) his mighty men. Of the mighty men, there where three who were chief, standing out compared to the other thirty, but all the men together provided the protection that David needed when he was fleeing from Saul and in his anointing as king over all of Israel, as was the will of the Lord. These men were important enough to David that their names have been recorded and preserved throughout history. See II Samuel 23:8-39 for more details.
Mighty men join David: This chapter has a spirit of unity and rejoicing throughout it, as we see the people of Israel coming to David with one heart and mind to make him king after the death of Saul. Before all Israel is recorded to have come to David in Hebron, the story of when those of his mighty men who were already with him had come to David. First were those who came to David at Ziklag when he was running from Saul (see I Samuel 27:1-6). These were mighty men of war from the tribe of Benjamin, a tribe known for their skilled warriors and their left-handedness (see Judges 3:15 and Judges 20). It is interesting that these men of Benjamin join David here, as Saul is one of their own, and thus it is almost a statement against their own tribe. After the Benjaminites join David, the Gadites who joined David at the stronghold in the wilderness, who were experienced and experts in war, are listed. An account of some more men of Benjamin and Judah that came to the stronghold of David is recorded, when Amasai, chief of the thirty, spoke through the Spirit to David confirming their allegiance to him, and he accepted them made them officers of his troops. Then men of Manasseh came to David when he was in the land of the Philistines when they went to battle against Saul (see I Samuel 29:1-9), who helped David with the raids of the Amalekites, taking his wives captive (see I Samuel 30). Finally, all the armed men from each tribe who came to David in Hebron to turn the kingdom over to David from Saul as the Lord had said (see I Samuel 16:1-13) are enumerated and listed. The chapter ends in a spirit of revival in Israel, as all Israel comes to David with one heart to make him king, with much rejoicing and celebration. It is said that there was joy in Israel.
Transporting the Ark: As the congregation of Israel comes to David to make him king as we have seen in the previous chapters, David calls the congregation together and suggests that they send word throughout all the land of Israel that they might gather the remaining Israelites together to be united with them, bringing back the ark from Kiriath-jearim where they had left it in the days of Saul (see I Samuel 7:1-2). The rest of the chapter records the story of Uzzah and the ark, the details of which can be found in the summery of II Samuel 6:1-11. David becomes both angry and afraid because of what had happened with the ark, and it is left with the household of Obed-edom for three months.
David’s family and the defeat of the Philistines: The majority of this chapter is also found in II Samuel 5:11-25 (see this section for more details). It is noteworthy to point out that David defeats the Philistines here, the very foe that had been the demise of King Saul in chapter 10 and those who he had once had a decent relationship with (see I Samuel 27). It is also important to see here that the Lord was with David, and he inquired of the Lord before he made major battle decisions, doing as God commanded him. As David grew in strength and military prowess, his fame went throughout the lands and the Lord brought the fear of David upon them.
Tomorrow’s Reading: Psalm 99-101.
Stand strong in the Lord.