God’s Will and Our Willingness.
“Be courageous! Let us fight bravely to save our people and the cities of our God. May the LORD’s will be done.” – 2 Samuel 10:12 NLT
David was a king, and kings sometimes have to fight the enemy. It’s not all royal dinner parties and leisurely days spent relaxing in the palace. David’s reign was regularly threatened and his kingdom was always under attack by the enemies of Israel. Even though God was with him, David was still expected to do his part. God didn’t fight his battles for him. God gave him wisdom, direction, and even intervened in miraculous ways, but David still had to pick up his sword, lead his army, and take on the enemy in battle. Notice the words that Joab spoke to his brother Abishai: “Be courageous! Let us fight bravely to save our people and the cities of our God.” As one of David’s military commanders, Joab knew that they were going to have to take on the Ammonites and all the mercenary armies they had hired to fight against Israel. He was calling his brother and all those under his command to fight bravely, to do their part. But then he reminded Abishai that the results were up to God. They would do what they could do and trust God to do what was in His will to do.
Waiting for God’s will doesn’t mean we sit on our hands and do nothing. Remember, this whole situation in 2 Samuel 10 began with David attempting to show sympathy to the new king of the Ammonites over the death of his father, the former king. David wants to extend an olive branch in recognition of the late King Nahash and his former loyalty to David. But the king’s son listens to the advice of his counselors and rejects David’s kind offer. He embarrasses David’s emissaries and hires thousands of mercenaries to fight against David. David is forced to respond. So he gathers his troops and prepares for war. But he and his military leaders recognize that the results of this conflict are ultimately up to God. They will do what they have to do, but the outcome is up to God. The well-being of Israel and her inhabitants is being threatened by this upstart king, so David responds with action. It is his job to protect the people of Israel. He has a job to do. He is not being rash or hasty. He is only responding to the actions of the enemies of Israel. He is going to do his part and trust God to do His.
Isn’t that what we are all called to do? Yet oftentimes we are lulled into a sense of complacency and inaction, thinking that waiting on God’s will means doing nothing. David was simply doing his job as king. He was performing the task that God had given him to do. And you and I have responsibilities given to us by God. We are His ambassadors and representatives on this earth. We are to make disciples. We are to carry on the ministry of reconciliation. We are to stand against the enemy and to fight the good fight. We are to spread the gospel and live as salt and light in this world. We are to love others. We are to take up our crosses daily. We have work to do, and we must do it diligently, trusting that ultimately, God’s will will be done. We are to do our part and leave the results up to Him. Like Joab, we are to fight bravely in order to save our people. We are to fight for the body of Christ all around the world. We are to do all that we can do to care for the people of God who are under attack. That is our job. That is our responsibility. That is our duty. So we must do our part and leave the results up to God. We must be willing to do what we have been called to do, and trust that the will of God will be done.
Father, we ask that Your will be done here on earth. But don’t allow us to sit on our hands waiting for You to do it all. You have chosen us, empowered us, equipped us, and commissioned us to do great things here on earth. May we be busy doing what You have called us to do, and trusting in the reliability and accuracy of Your will to be done. May we see ourselves as partners with You as we live out our lives on this planet. Give us courage to do our part, because we know You are going to do Yours. Amen
Grow Pastor & Minister to Men