In 1 Chronicles 11, we find David hunkered down in his battlefield headquarters. David has recently succeeded Saul as king of Israel and he is now fighting to protect the land God had given them. During this time, David had two key assets: God was with him and he had a brave and loyal army. David's Mighty Men were courageous on the battlefield and committed to him. Our story centers on a an interaction with David and three of his best men.
1 Chronicles 11:15-19
Three of the thirty chiefs came down to David to the rock at the cave of Adullam, while a band of Philistines was encamped in the Valley of Rephaim. At that time David was in the stronghold, and the Philistine garrison was at Bethlehem. David longed for water and said, “Oh, that someone would get me a drink of water from the well near the gate of Bethlehem!” So the Three broke through the Philistine lines, drew water from the well near the gate of Bethlehem and carried it back to David. But he refused to drink it; instead, he poured it out to the Lord. “God forbid that I should do this!” he said. “Should I drink the blood of these men who went at the risk of their lives?” Because they risked their lives to bring it back, David would not drink it. Such were the exploits of the three mighty warriors.
Things to think about:
- In the midst of the heat of battle, David was thirsty and had a desire for the water from his home town of Bethlehem.
- What are some of the sights, smells, sounds, tastes you remember from where you grew up? Do you remember the smell of your grandparent's house?
- David had the unquestioned loyalty of his men
- When he said he wanted some water, there was no hesitation, but a reflexive response to satisfy his request
- When have you been on the receiving end of that kind of courage or generosity or love?
- How did it make you feel then? How has it changed you?
- Now we get to the really interesting part of the story. The men come back with the water, a selfless gift that came at great personal risk.
- But David refused to drink it! Instead he poured it out before the Lord.
- Why do you think he would do such a thing?
- David was deeply humbled by their courage
- Should I drink the blood of these men that risked their lives? Because they risked their lives, David would not drink it.
- He did not elevate his appetite above their sacrifice.
- David knew that it wasn't himself who was worthy of such devotion but only God.
- How does this run counter to our culture of celebrity idolization?
- Jesus knew what it was like to be thirsty too
- In John 4 we have the story of the Samaritan woman at the well. Jesus told her that everyone who drinks from man's wells will thirst again but he who drinks the water He gives will never thirst again
- "Indeed the water I give them will become a spring of water welling up to eternal life"
- The reality is we have a Savior who didn't just risk His blood but actually spilled it before God for our benefit
- And this sacrifice wasn't to meet a temporal want but for our eternal need
- Regularly I am too focused on my immediate wants and don't count the cost of my blessings. Can you relate?
- How can we refuse to indulge our wants and embrace Him with true worship?