Out of the pot and into the fire. That is how I felt as I was scrolling through my Word document that contains all of the warrior verses that I have copied there. The verses get crossed off as I write about them and now more and more of my time is spent scrolling down to find the text for my next thought, and for my next enlightenment. 1 Chronicles was taking forever! That was my feeling. I learned a lot and was forced to think a lot. The posts were fun to write, but they were getting repetitive. With genealogies and the talk of David’s mighty men repeated again and again I was looking forward to what the next book would bring. What new and exciting picture, attributes, and lessons could we learn from our next set of warriors?
I knew I was close, I was pretty sure I was done with Chronicles. As I scrolled I saw the crossed out text end and a new book of the Bible appear. Job. A book that had always confused me more than inspired me. The feeling that God allows, permits, and even has a hand in the terrible things that happen to us, that is just not a feeling that is fun to wrestle with. The idea that bad things happen to us, and then God redeems them is a prettier picture.
Job brings us back to the image of our God as a warrior. An image that I do enjoy much better than the old, bearded guy sitting in the clouds. Where are the paintings of our warrior God brandishing a sword and wearing armor? Where are the pictures of Jesus sitting atop a war horse ready to take on the legions of demons lined up for battle? Job at least reminds us that God is powerful and is to be feared,
My hope for you, my fellow spiritual warriors, is that there are divisions among you. Yes, you heard me right. I hope that there are certain things that divide you from each other, that you are separated. Excuse me now, as I elaborate in a semi-geeky fashion.
Might. Spears. Bloodshed. Massacres. Battles. Defenses. Attacks. Victory. Strongholds. Blood. Exploits. Valiant Fighters. Fame. Honor.
These are the lives and stories of David’s mighty men. Earlier this month we saw David’s mighty men show up in 2 Samuel 23. Now we see their stories again in 1 Chronicles 11. Some are the same, some are a little different. A different angle and some embellishments. These are such impressive men, that we’ll see their stories twice.
“10 These were the chiefs of David’s mighty warriors—they, together with all Israel, gave his kingship strong support to extend it over the whole land, as the Lord had promised— 11 this is the list of David’s mighty warriors:
“Next! . . . Hello sir, please have a seat. I will be your scribe for today. What is your name and whose descendant are you?”
“I am Eshek a descendant of Benjamin.”
“Eshek . . .Benjamin. Good, now who are your sons. In order of importance if you would please.”
“Ulam is my firstborn, then Jeush, and lastly and least Eliphelet.”
“Thank you. And is there any legacy you wish to be noted?”
“Yes!! Of course. All of Ulam’s sons are warriors, very brave warriors. They are all skilled with the bow!”
“Alright that should be all. Next!”
“You got the warrior part down right? Ulam’s sons. All of them!!”
“Yes, yes. You are done. Next! . . . Get a job as a scribe they said. Do work for the genealogies they said. It will be fun they said. No one said anything about everyone wanting their family to be written down as warriors. . . . I said NEXT!”
I am not a scientist. I am not a studied theologian. I am not even good at debating. So why am I opening this can of worms with the question in the title, well, because people who do not believe it ask us, and it is hard to answer.
The only answer I have to give is that we are the answer.