Monday, July 21st, 2014
Valiant! Like David (Part 24)
The garrison of the Philistines was then in Bethlehem. And David said with longing, 'Oh, that someone would give me a drink of the water from the well of Bethlehem, which is by the gate!' So the three mighty men broke through the camp of the Philistines, drew water from the well of Bethlehem that was by the gate, and took it and brought it to David. Nevertheless he would not drink it, but poured it out to the Lord. And he said, 'Far be it from me, O Lord, that I should do this! Is this not the blood of the men who went in jeopardy of their lives?' Therefore he would not drink it.
2 Samuel 23:14-17 (NKJV)
At one of the lowest points in his life, David was hiding from King Saul with a band of broken followers. God's lonely hero longed for the comforts of home--specifically a drink from the well of Bethlehem. But Bethlehem was under enemy control. Even so, three of David's men broke through the Philistine line to bring their leader a sip of refreshment.
David refused it. 'It had become too precious to be used to satisfy his longing. It would be base self-indulgence to drink what had been won by such self-forgetting devotion. God only had the right to receive what men had risked their lives to obtain, and therefore he 'poured it out unto the Lord' ' (MacLaren's Expositions).
David was a man of sacrifice. Throughout his life, he sacrificed his personal desires to serve God, king, nation and people. To sacrifice is to surrender 'something valued for the sake of something having a higher or more pressing claim' (Random House Dictionary).
To sacrifice is to 'Die daily' (1 Corinthians 15:31)--to decrease, because 'He must increase' (John 3:30). 'Then Jesus said to His disciples, 'If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me' ' (Matthew 16:24).
Actors, models and talent for Christ: deny selfishness to affirm godliness. Deny headlining to affirm supporting. Deny personal glory to affirm His brilliance. Deny a comfortable life to affirm a missionary's duty. Deny settling down to affirm standing up. Sacrifice, because God sacrificed more.
Love nothing more than God. Remain ready, willing and grateful to give it all. If you do, you'll receive returns of the highest order. By God's supernatural laws of multiplication, you'll receive more than you ever dreamed possible.
'And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or fields for My sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life' (Matthew 19:29).
To Be Continued...
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Valiant! Like David series.