WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
OCTOBER 5, 2022
TOPIC: PROTECT YOUR LEADERS
BY T. O. BANSO
“And Ishbi-Benob, one of the descendants of Rapha, whose bronze spearhead weighed three hundred shekels and who was armed with a new [sword], said he would kill David. But Abishai son of Zeruiah came to David’s rescue; he struck the Philistine down and killed him. Then David’s men swore to him, saying, ‘Never again will you go out with us to battle, so that the lamp of Israel will not be extinguished’” (2 Samuel 21:16-17 New International Version).
David was a mighty man of valour(1 Samuel 16:18). He made multiple military exploits before and after he became the second king of Israel. He is mostly known for his heroic feat of killing the Philistine champion, Goliath, with just a sling and a stone (1 Samuel 17:49-51). David was just then a shepherd boy with no military training.
He was successful in all his military campaigns thereafter, even when he became a fugitive, running away from Saul who had wanted to kill him because he saw him as a threat to his throne. The chain of success in warfare continued when he ascended the throne.
David was a successful warrior. He was skilful in warfare. David said that God taught his hands to make war so that his arms could bend a bow of bronze (2 Samuel 22:35). In Psalm 144:1-2, he said, “Blessed be the LORD my Rock, Who trains my hands for war, and my fingers for battle — My lovingkindness and my fortress, My high tower and my deliverer, My shield and the One in whom I take refuge, who subdues my people under me” (New King James version).
However, no human being is invincible. There was a time David would have been killed in battle. 2 Samuel 21:16-17 says, “And Ishbi-Benob, one of the descendants of Rapha, whose bronze spearhead weighed three hundred shekels and who was armed with a new [sword], said he would kill David. But Abishai son of Zeruiah came to David’s rescue; he struck the Philistine down and killed him. Then David’s men swore to him, saying, ‘Never again will you go out with us to battle, so that the lamp of Israel will not be extinguished’” (New International Version).
In verse 15, the Bible says David became weak and exhausted when they were in the thick of the battle. This Philistine, a giant like Goliath, would have killed David, and that would have been sweet revenge. That would have been a disaster. Thank God for one of David’s men, Abishai, who was the eldest son of Zeruiah, David’s sister. He came to David’s rescue and killed the giant. David’s men, therefore, took a decision that he must not go out to war with them again.
The action of Abishai is commendable. He protected his leader. He could have been killed in the process. But he did what he needed to do and kill the Philistine giant just as David had earlier killed Goliath, the Philistine champion. It is the responsibility of those around a leader to protect him. Followers, including those whose job description is to protect leaders, should protect them. Protecting your leader could be physical or spiritual. Abishai protected David physically and saved his life. He was a loyal officer.
Because of this incident, David’s men also further protected him by deciding that he would not go out with them to battle to avert his death which would plunge the nation into darkness. He was a light to the nation and they knew the implication of his sudden death. Strike the Shepherd and the sheep will be scattered (Zechariah 13:7; Matthew 26:31; Mark 14:27).
In an earlier incident, David’s people prevented him from going to battle with them. This was after he had fled Jerusalem and sent those loyal to him to go and put down the rebellion of Absalom. He wanted to go out with them. “But the people answered, ‘You shall not go out! For if we flee away, they will not care about us; nor if half of us die, will they care about us. But you are worth ten thousand of us now. For you are now more help to us in the city’” (2 Samuel 18:3 New King James Version). David’s men valued his life more than theirs and didn’t want to expose him to any danger.
Unfortunately, in the Bible and contemporary history, some people who were supposed to protect their leaders have been responsible for their death. Kings, political leaders, business executives, and the like have been exposed to their enemies or even assassinated by those close to them who were supposed to protect them. Treachery!
For example, two brothers, Rechab and Baanah, the sons of Rimmon the Beerothite, who were captains of troops under King Ishbosheth, Saul’s son, assassinated him. They stabled him in the stomach, beheaded him, and escaped with his head (2 Samuel 4:5-6). They took his head to David thinking that he would reward them but he ordered that they should be killed.
Don’t be treacherous. Protect your leaders, including your family heads, pastors, employers, and bosses. Judas Iscariot betrayed his Master, Jesus Christ. He sold Him for thirty pieces of silver and led a band of armed men to arrest Him, knowing where He was (Matthew 26:15; Mark 14:43; Luke 22:47; John 18:3). Judas later committed suicide.
Don’t expose the person you’re supposed to protect. Protect your leaders. Protect your leaders by praying for them. “Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence” (1 Timothy 2:2 New King James Version). Protect your leaders by being loyal to them. Don’t join forces with those against your leaders. No one can serve two masters (Matthew 6:24; Luke 16:13). It is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful (1 Corinthians 4:2).
Protect your leaders by not exposing their weaknesses. Refrain from speaking ill of them; speak well of them. Don’t arm their enemies with privileged information you have from your relationship with them by your careless talk, gossip, or seeking favour from them.
Don’t lie against them or disparage them. Don’t be a Diotrephes; submit to their authority and cooperate with them. “I wrote to the church, but Diotrephes, who loves to be first, will have nothing to do with us. So if I come, I will call attention to what he is doing, gossiping maliciously about us. Not satisfied with that, he refuses to welcome the brothers. He also stops those who want to do so and puts them out of the church” (3 John 9-10 New International Version).
Remember that you will reap what you sow (Galatians 6:7). Protect your leaders.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and God raised Him on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like a palm tree and grow like a cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: Father, give me faithful and loyal subordinates and followers who will protect me, not those who will betray me. Deliver me from every Judas, Rechab, and Baanah. I pray that you will give protect all our church leaders and other leaders against all forms of treachery. Father, cause all the treacherous people around leaders or those following them to repent.
(For over 800 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President of Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
Phone No: +2348155744752, +2348033113523
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