1 Chronicles 10-13

The Shepherd Leader

In our reading today we move in to the Kingdom Age of Israel. King Saul was the first King. Israel went through a difficult period where the people did what was right in their own eyes. It turns out the people had different ideas as to what was right and as a result the nation suffered greatly. This was the period of the Judges. By the time this period was over the nation was a real mess. The Tabernacle was destroyed and the Ark, which was to remain in the Most Holy Place of the Tabernacle, had been captured and returned. Since there was no Tabernacle it was placed in the care of Abinadab of Kiriath-Jearim where it remained throughout the reign of King Saul.

The people of Israel realized that things were not working and wanted a King like the other nations around them. The reality was that the problem was with the people and their request really illustrates the problem that results when people trust in their own thinking rather than obey God.

This is an age old problem. We chart our own course in life and suffer the consequences of our decisions. But rather than take responsibility for our actions we look for someone or something to blame. Once we find someone or something to blame we take action. We change friends or spouse. We change jobs, move to a new location, and so on. The problem is that we don’t make any changes in our core beliefs. Whatever change we make, we find the same problems because we remained unchanged. With this thinking we become our own enemy!

God gave Israel a King just like the other nations had in King Saul. Saul was like many today. He was from a nation that called themselves the people of God but they did not know God nor trust in Him. He was a harsh leader who ruled by His own agenda as the other kings did.

After King Saul was killed in battle we read that David was made King. David was a man after God’s heart. It is still a difficult time for Israel spiritually. The nation knows of God, but by and large they are not walking with God. They need a leader to lead them back to God. God has just the man. He is going to send a shepherd boy who will lead God’s sheep. Jesus said that for those who want to be great in God’s Kingdom they must not rule over others like the world does. They are to be servants like a shepherd.  Matthew 20:26

God took David through intense training in 1 Samuel. As David progressed in his training, God sent people who were distressed, in debt, and discontented to him. These men will become the mighty men we read about today. As David is being prepared to be King, God is also preparing Him to be a great leader who brings out the best that is hidden inside the people God gave him.

We have a Shepherd King as well. His name is Jesus. If we want true change in our life and situation we must come to Him and allow Him to change us on the inside first. Our attempts to change everything on the outside while ignoring what is going on in our core beliefs  is just treating the symptoms resulting from a core that is out of order. Nothing is going to change in our situation until we face the truth about ourselves. Once we realize the truth we need to surrender to Jesus and let Him lead. Only He can put our lives in order and bring out the best.

Pastor Dave