Wednesday, May 21, 2008

What Makes a Man Valuable?

There are lots of lists in the bible, especially in the old testament. My first inclination is to just skip over all those hard to pronounce names of people and places and move on to the "good" part. This morning I'm glad I stuck it out. I'm in 1 Chronicles when David becomes king. Actually this is my second time through the story, since it is told the first time in 2nd Samuel. I'm reading through the list of all David's Mighty Men: there are the Three, then the Thirty, then a BUNCH of warriors. In the warrior list, the numbers are huge: 4,600; 7,100; 18,000; 37,000; 120,000. And they are all "armed for battle" and "with every type of weapon."

Then, in the midst of these vast armies of men armed to the teeth (check the entry titled 'The Whole Nine Molars') where was I?...right...vast armies with weapons, there was this small group of men mentioned in 1 Chronicles 12:32. Just 200 of them out of over 340,500. That's less than 6/100 of a percent. And what was their claim to fame? They understood the times and knew what their nation should do. It doesn't say anything about their fighting skills or weaponry. It just says they were chiefs and brought their families with them.

I wonder why they were included in the list. All the others were listed for what they brought to the effort: shields, spears, other weapons. Nothing like that is listed for these men from Issachar: just their understanding and family leadership. I think God thinks those things are important. Why should we think otherwise?

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