You don’t have to look very far in the Bible to notice warnings against wealth and power. The Bible does not say that wealth and influence are sins, but the fog that they can produce around our hearts is what we are to be on guard against. Sometimes great worldly power can fool our hearts into thinking that all our needs can be met apart from the power and mercy of God. This fog can only be navigated by the guiding light of God’s Word, made visible through His Spirit. Perhaps this is why God inspired 2 Samuel 23-24, to remind us of our need of Him, regardless of our bank balance or position on the corporate ladder.
David was not lacking in military strength. In the second section of 2 Samuel 23 we are introduced to David’s Mighty Men. This is a group of 30 plus men who are utterly devoted to protecting and obeying their King. Three of them in particular are especially powerful and intimidating. These three are so devoted to the Lord’s anointed that they were willing (and able by the way) to break into the Philistine camp and bring David a cool cup of water from the well of Bethlehem. The rest of the mighty men were no slouches either. They were responsible for some of the most courageous and heroic acts in the history of Israel! Anyone who became an enemy of the mighty men would have been shaking in their boots.
How does David respond to such power? He takes a census. He counts the people in his army. Why? Doesn’t he know how God has caused the victory in the past, whether by many or by few? Has he forgotten about the young boy who killed a skilled warrior-giant with a stone and sling shot? David’s mind was foggy and the fog was caused by power. We don’t know exactly how David sinned by taking the census, through motive or pride, but we do know that God was greatly offended. So offended that he causes a pestilence to destroy 70,000 men! This fog can also blind us from the consequences of our sin.
Let me ask you; How devoted are you to your King? What are you willing to risk for His pleasure? Are you experiencing fog in your life? Have to tried to convince yourself that you could get rid of things (which have control over you) in your life without a problem? Why have you not rid yourself of them up to this point? How do you respond when you are clearly convicted of sin? We see at the end of the book of 2 Samuel the Lord was moved by prayer to end the plague in Israel. How are your prayers…foggy? Join us this week as we consider these last two chapters of 2 Samuel, asking God to give us clean hands and pure hearts that we not lift our soul to another besides Him!