Your Service To God Makes a Huge Difference

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is 1 Chronicles 26:1-32.  Let’s go!

1 Chronicles 26:1 (NIV) 
1  The divisions of the gatekeepers: From the Korahites: Meshelemiah son of Kore, one of the sons of Asaph. 

On verses 1-3:  Here the Chronicler begins to list the men who served as gatekeepers at the temple.  Their role was to welcome those who entered the temple and also prevent dangerous or unclean things from entering.  They were part greeter team, part usher, part security, and 100% the first impression people received when people came to worship at the temple.  The fact that the Chronicler lists in detail who served as gatekeepers shows how important the gatekeeper ministry was, and continues to be today.  If you are part of a greeter team, ushering team or security team at the church, thank you!  Your role is a crucial one.  You are the front door of the church and the first impression people receive when they come.  In fact, for people who have never been to church before, you are their first impression of your church and of Jesus.  So never underestimate your role as a greeter, usher, or security person.  When you serve as a greeter, usher or security, know that your attitude, your demeanor and how proactive, observant and loving you are make a huge difference in people’s experience at church. 

The Ministry of Prophesying

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is 1 Chronicles 25:1-31.  Let’s go!

1 Chronicles 25:1 (NIV) 
1  David, together with the commanders of the army, set apart some of the sons of Asaph, Heman and Jeduthun for the ministry of prophesying, accompanied by harps, lyres and cymbals. Here is the list of the men who performed this service:

On verse 1:  What is the ministry of prophesying?  People often think of prophesying as telling the future.  But prophesying in the Bible has a broader meaning and purpose.  Prophesying is the ability to sense when the Holy Spirit is giving a message to strengthen, encourage and comfort other people and to communicate that message effectively.  Sometimes that message may speak about future events.  Sometimes that message may speak about how God sees a person or situation in the present.  The fact that the Chronicler gives attention to the ministry of prophesying shows that prophesying had an important place in the Israelites’ worship of the Lord.

2 Underrated Traits of Effective Leaders

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is 1 Chronicles 24:1-31.  Let’s go!

1 Chronicles 24:3 (NIV) 
3  With the help of Zadok a descendant of Eleazar and Ahimelech a descendant of Ithamar, David separated them into divisions for their appointed order of ministering.

1 Chronicles 24:19 (NIV) 
19  This was their appointed order of ministering when they entered the temple of the LORD, according to the regulations prescribed for them by their forefather Aaron, as the LORD, the God of Israel, had commanded him.

On verses 1-19:  Here we are given a list of the names of the priests and their families who led the Israelites in worship.  The priests were divided into 24 teams and each team was to serve two weeks per year.  During the remainder of the year the members of that team would be serving the community and teaching God’s Word. 

The Role of a Lifetime

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is 1 Chronicles 23:1-32.  Let’s go!  The Role of a Lifetime (Plus, 4 Characteristics of Great Servants of God)

1 Chronicles 23:1-5 (NIV) 
1  When David was old and full of years, he made his son Solomon king over Israel. 
2  He also gathered together all the leaders of Israel, as well as the priests and Levites. 
3  The Levites thirty years old or more were counted, and the total number of men was thirty-eight thousand. 
4  David said, “Of these, twenty-four thousand are to supervise the work of the temple of the LORD and six thousand are to be officials and judges. 
5  Four thousand are to be gatekeepers and four thousand are to praise the LORD with the musical instruments I have provided for that purpose.”
 
On verses 1-24:  David was known for many things and wore many hats during his lifetime: he was a shepherd, a soldier, a military commander, and a king.  But at his core, David was a worshiper who loved to worship God.  While his other roles would come and go, it is this role as a worshiper that David would carry with him throughout his lifetime.  When David was younger, his passion to worship God was evident in all the worship songs he wrote.  

The Kind of People Jesus Uses to Build His Church

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is 1 Chronicles 22:2-19.  Let’s go!

1 Chronicles 22:2-4 (NIV) 
2  So David gave orders to assemble the aliens living in Israel, and from among them he appointed stonecutters to prepare dressed stone for building the house of God. 
3  He provided a large amount of iron to make nails for the doors of the gateways and for the fittings, and more bronze than could be weighed. 
4  He also provided more cedar logs than could be counted, for the Sidonians and Tyrians had brought large numbers of them to David.

On verses 2-4:  Here we see King David making preparations for the building of the temple.  As part of this, King David appoints some of the aliens (i.e. foreigners) living in Israel to be stonecutters and to prepare dressed stones for building the temple. 

Likewise, in the same chapter where Peter calls us royal priests and stones that God is using to build His house, we are also called “aliens and strangers in the world” (1 Peter 2:11). The kind of people Jesus uses to build His church are “the aliens” among us – i.e. those of us who don’t live as if earth is our final home, but who realize that our real home is in heaven and that we are but strangers in this world, living for a kingdom that is not of this world.  When you have the mindset that heaven is our home, you won’t get too attached to the material things of this world, and as such you can more easily be used by the Lord to build His church.

The One Who Goes Before You

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is 1 Chronicles 21:18-22:1.  Let’s go!

1 Chronicles 21:18-19 (NIV) 
18  Then the angel of the LORD ordered Gad to tell David to go up and build an altar to the LORD on the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite.
19  So David went up in obedience to the word that Gad had spoken in the name of the LORD.

On verses 18-19:  After having allowed David and all of Israel to suffer a great plague because of David’s sin, here the Lord sends Gad the prophet with a message for David.  Gad tells David to build an altar at the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite, the very place where God would command the plague to stop (see verses 15 and 27).  The fact that God would take the initiative to tell David to build an altar suggests to me an important lesson:  God is just as intentional about restoring a sinner as He is about disciplining them. This is a good lesson for parents.  When our kids go astray, it is important to discipline them, but after the discipline remember to reassure them of your love and to reaffirm the relationship. 

1 Chronicles 21:20-21 (NIV) 
20  While Araunah was threshing wheat, he turned and saw the angel; his four sons who were with him hid themselves.
21  Then David approached, and when Araunah looked and saw him, he left the threshing floor and bowed down before David with his face to the ground.

Put Your Hope in God, Not in People

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is 1 Chronicles 21:1-17.  Let’s go!

1 Chronicles 21:1-6 (NIV) 
1  Satan rose up against Israel and incited David to take a census of Israel. 
2  So David said to Joab and the commanders of the troops, “Go and count the Israelites from Beersheba to Dan. Then report back to me so that I may know how many there are.” 
3  But Joab replied, “May the LORD multiply his troops a hundred times over. My lord the king, are they not all my lord’s subjects? Why does my lord want to do this? Why should he bring guilt on Israel?” 
4  The king’s word, however, overruled Joab; so Joab left and went throughout Israel and then came back to Jerusalem. 
5  Joab reported the number of the fighting men to David: In all Israel there were one million one hundred thousand men who could handle a sword, including four hundred and seventy thousand in Judah. 
6  But Joab did not include Levi and Benjamin in the numbering, because the king’s command was repulsive to him.

On verses 1-6:  King David decides to count the number of fighting soldiers in his army, and God is not pleased with this.  You might ask, “What’s the big deal about counting soldiers?”  There is nothing wrong with counting numbers per se.  But where David sinned was in why he wanted to count numbers.   David’s sin was that he was placing his hope more in the number of people fighting for him than in the Lord who was fighting for him. 

Slaying the Giants in Your Life

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is 1 Chronicles 20:1-8.  Let’s go!

1 Chronicles 20:1-3 (NIV) 
1  In the spring, at the time when kings go off to war, Joab led out the armed forces. He laid waste the land of the Ammonites and went to Rabbah and besieged it, but David remained in Jerusalem. Joab attacked Rabbah and left it in ruins. 
2  David took the crown from the head of their king–its weight was found to be a talent of gold, and it was set with precious stones–and it was placed on David’s head. He took a great quantity of plunder from the city 
3  and brought out the people who were there, consigning them to labor with saws and with iron picks and axes. David did this to all the Ammonite towns. Then David and his entire army returned to Jerusalem.

On verse 1-3:  Here we see a longtime enemy of Israel, the Ammonites, fighting against King David and his army.  Under the leadership of David’s commander in chief Joab, the armies of Israel defeat the Ammonites soundly and consign them to labor.   In a similar way, the Bible says that for a long time we were enemies of God’s kingdom (Colossians 1:21), constantly fighting against its king – Jesus Christ — until the day we surrendered to Him and allowed Him to take over our lives.  When the kingdom of God took over our lives, we went from being his enemies to becoming his servants.

Better to Have Christ as a Friend than an Enemy

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is 1 Chronicles 19:1-19.  Let’s go!

1 Chronicles 19:6-7 (NIV) 
6  When the Ammonites realized that they had become a stench in David’s nostrils, Hanun and the Ammonites sent a thousand talents of silver to hire chariots and charioteers from Aram Naharaim, Aram Maacah and Zobah. 
7  They hired thirty-two thousand chariots and charioteers, as well as the king of Maacah with his troops, who came and camped near Medeba, while the Ammonites were mustered from their towns and moved out for battle.

On verses 1-8, 16-19:  David tries to show kindness and sympathy to Hanun king of the Ammonites after hearing about the death of Hanun’s father Nahash.  But Hanun, influenced by his commanders, is suspicious of David’s act of kindness.  He repays David’s kindness with great disrespect, humiliating the messengers David sent (v4-5).  Knowing he has angered David, Hanun forms an alliance with other kingdoms like Aram, Zobah and Maakah (v6-7).  David sends out his army in full force and scores a decisive victory over Hanun and this newly formed alliance soundly (v8-19). 

Experiencing Victory with Every Challenge You Face

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is 1 Chronicles 18:1-17.  Let’s go!

1 Chronicles 18:6 (NIV) 
6  He put garrisons in the Aramean kingdom of Damascus, and the Arameans became subject to him and brought tribute. The LORD gave David victory everywhere he went.
 
On verses 1-17:  In these verses we see David facing many different enemies (Philistines in verse 1, Moabites in verse 2, Hadadezer of Zobah in verses 3-4, Arameans in verse 5-6, Amalekites in verse 11, Edomites in verses 12-13).  But in each case David overcomes with God’s help.  As verses 6 and 13 say, “The Lord gave David victory wherever he went”.  It’s a reminder that in this world you may face all kinds of trouble, but with the Lord’s help, you can overcome each of them.   For in Christ you are more than a conqueror (Romans 8:37).  Blessed are those who internalize David’s words in Psalm 18:29: “With your help I can advance against a troop; with my God I can scale a wall”, which is another way of saying, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:13)