Everyone wants to be a part of a winning team and make a significant contribution to the win. King David had three amazing men whose achievements exceeded all the other men in his army.
There will always be someone whose achievements we can never match, but we can all do something mighty at our own level. Today we will learn three characteristics of David's mighty men. By putting these characteristics into play in our own lives, we too can become God's mighty ones.
Pastor Miles opened the message this week by introducing Elijah, an 8-year-old boy who began preaching the word, offering prayer, and giving altar calls to the children at his school. Even as a child, Elijah is already one of God's mighty men simply by listening to God and putting his gifts to work for the kingdom.
1. David mighty men were known for individual actions that inspired corporate achievement. 2 Samuel 23:10-12
Each of David's mighty men achieved things all by himself that could inspire a whole group of people.
Verses 10-12 tell us that David's mighty men were incredible fighters, and they used their skill under dire circumstances without giving up. In the same way, we can inspire others simply by using our gifts and talents to our best ability.
Don't try to do everything and please everybody. Simply do what you do best and do it well.
How have your selfless, faith-based actions inspired others to step up their game?
2. David's Mighty Men made their bodies their slaves.2 Samuel 23:9-10
Then the men of Israel retreated, but he stood his ground and struck down the Philistines till his hand grew tired and froze to the sword. The LORD brought about a great victory that day. (v. 9b-11)
Eleazar stayed when others fled, standing his ground and working through his exhaustion and pain.
Does your body control you or do you control your body?
Does your body control you or do you control your body? Think about the last twenty-four hours. How many times did you listen, watch, think, or do something you know you shouldn't have done? Maybe you even felt it was wrong as it was happening, but you did it anyway. That is an example of your body or other things controlling you. Romans 12:1 tells us to present our bodies as a living sacrifice to God. Our passions, hormones, hunger, and pride try to tell us what to do, but we need to take control and need to tell the body, "No, you are my slave!"
Paul says in 1 Corinthians 9:27, No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.
Can you name one consistent act of self-denial that empowers you to do great things?
3. David's Mighty Men placed themselves in the middle of the action. 2 Samuel 23:12-17
We are in the midst of a spiritual battle every day, but we already know the final outcome - in the end, God wins. Don't you want to be one of his "go-to" players? David's mighty men put themselves in the middle of the action when everyone else ran away.
Israel's troops fled from them. But Shammah took his stand in the middle of the field. (v. 11b-12a)
God doesn't want you to be a benchwarmer. He needs you in the game. Did you notice anyone around you this week who was frustrated, hurting, in trouble? You can always pray one-on-one and have a positive impact on that person. Look around you and notice where and with whom God can use you. Risk your time. Risk being embarrassed.
How often do you put yourself and your possessions at risk for the sake of the kingdom of God?
DO Something! Identify one character flaw that you need to conquer to become one of God's Mighty Ones. Ask a friend for advice on how to deal with it.