Category: 1st and 2nd Chronicles-BibleTrekToday

Trek through 1st and 2nd Chronicles

Transition of Leadership

Scripture reading for April 21: 1st Chronicles 22-27

As I have attended and worked in different church families, one of the things that is often done poorly is the transition of leadership.  Often the pastor resigns or sometimes is forced to leave because of some problem.  No preparation or thinking has been done by the deacons or core leadership of the church and a crisis is at hand.  People have different ideas and pastors are invited to come share their ministry and it becomes a popularity contest.  It sometimes divides the church and there is great turmoil.  Many people forget that God is a God of order and He has a plan of succession and a plan for success!  We see such a plan in action in today’s reading!

David was old and “full of years”. (1st Chronicles 23:1)  He made Solomon king over Israel.    David’s son Adonijah had tried to make himself king and Bathsheba and Nathan worked together to redirect the situation according to the will of the Lord.  (1st Kings 1:1-5)   There was a power struggle here as well.  People often want to be in charge and often seek to take power or to control the one who is in power.  It is one of the strategies of Satan to bring division and confusion in a family, church, or nation.  After installing Solomon, David wisely tried to help his son succeed in the tasks that he knew were important.  One of these was the building of the temple for the Lord.

First David encouraged Solomon that it was God’s will that he build the Lord’s house.  David had heard from the Lord!  He knew the will of God and passed this on to Solomon.  He was positive and encouraging and prayed for God’s wisdom and discretion that his son might keep the Law of God and have success!  A father’s blessing and God’s blessing go a long way toward success! (1st Chronicles 22:11-13)

Next, David assembled materials for the Temple.  He generously provided from his own treasury for God’s house!  He set a good example for his son and the nation of generosity and focus on what was important.  When God’s house was cared for, God would bless and the people would be focused on what should be central. (1st Chronicles 22:14-16)

The last thing David did was to gather the key leaders of Israel together and encourage them to support Solomon.  David cited the Lord’s victories and how God had given the people rest.  He encouraged the leaders to seek the Lord with all their heart and soul and to begin building.  This transition would continue the vision of the Lord through David and insure the accomplishment of God’s will and purposes.  (1st Chronicles 22:17-19)

I believe God wants thoughtful and peaceful transition of leadership.  Pray for your family, church family and nation for the leaders and those in authority that they would be thoughtful and purposeful in this area.  God’s purposes are eternal!  We should keep them in focus!

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The wiles of the Devil

Scripture reading for April 20: 1st Chronicles 17-21

We have an enemy who is known to be crafty and who uses schemes and strategy to gain access to God’s people.  His motive is to steal from them, kill them, and ultimately destroy their souls in Hell.  (John 10:10)   Satan is said to be like a roaring lion prowling around looking for someone to devour. (1st Peter 5:8-9)  Several passages of scripture admonish God’s people to flee temptation and resist the devil.  (Matthew 6:13)  We are in a cosmic battle with evil forces of darkness and are in need of God’s help.

David was a man after God’s heart but he was also prone to temptation and did not always resist.  We all remember the time he stayed back in Jerusalem when his army went to war.  (1st Chronicles 20:1)  It is interesting to note that the incident with Bathsheba is not mentioned in this account.  But another incident is mentioned that I had not noticed before.  David came and took the crown off the head of the king of the Ammonites who Joab and the army had defeated.  This crown weighed around 75 pounds and was full of precious stones.  David placed that crown on his own head.  (1st Chronicles 20:2)

Right after this, David returned again to Jerusalem and Satan rose up against Israel and incited David to take a census!  (1st Chronicles 21:1)  This was evil in God’s sight because it was motivated by pride and not by God’s direction.  (1st Chronicles 21:7)  It appears that  Satan gained an inroad in David’s life.  We know David was not fighting the Lord’s enemies but stayed home to engage in sexual sin.  He had Uriah, Bathsheba’s husband, killed. He took this massive crown belonging to a pagan king and placed it on his own head.  After this Satan was able to incite him to sin that cost the lives of 70,000 Israelites!  Sin always leads to death and Satan’s desire is fulfilled!

However, out of this sin, David did repent.  He ended up buying the threshing floor of Arunah as a place of sacrifice to the Lord to stop the plague.  This site became the site of the temple!  Pride brings destruction, but humility brings repentance and forgiveness.  The temple is where God’s presence dwelled and where anyone who had sinned could bring a sacrifice with humility and find forgiveness and restoration!  David’s latter Son, Jesus Christ, would offer Himself in this temple to be the final sacrifice for the sins of the world!  What grace from a loving God!  What a victory over our enemy, Satan, and his schemes of death!  Praise the Lord!

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Sunday rest and reflection: Psalm of Thanks

As we reflect back on this week’s reading and thank the Lord for His wonderful Grace, I am drawn to the psalm of thanks written by King David in 1st Chronicles 16:8-36.  This is quoted again in part in three other psalms in the Book of Psalms; 105, 96, 106.  This psalm of thanks was composed when the Ark of the Covenant was brought back to Jerusalem after being away in captivity and then at the house of Obed-Edom.  This is the time that David took off his kingly robes and danced before the Lord with all his might.  (2nd Samuel 6:12-16)  He was overjoyed to have the presence and blessing of God in Jerusalem, the city of David.

The psalm has a joyful tone and is boastful of the Lord and his great miracles and mercies!  It exhorts singing, praying, rejoicing, remembering, giving, declaring, trembling, crying out, and thanksgiving  from all peoples! The desire of God to spread His fame to the nations of the earth is a recurring theme! (1st Chronicles 16:8,24,28,31,35) God wants the nations aware of his wonders, miracles, and judgments.  He wants nations to know His Glory too. He exhorts the nations to ascribe to the Lord the glory due His Name.  He desires the nations to understand that the Lord who made the heavens and earth reigns supreme!

The last verses of this psalm encourage God’s people to cry out to the Lord to save them from the nations!  Although God desires the nations to be saved, He desires His people to come out from the nations and join the kingdom of God.  God is the only one who can save and deliver!  God is the only one worthy of all praise and thanksgiving!  He reigns from everlasting to everlasting!  (1nd Chronicles 16:35-36)  Let all God’s people say “Amen”.

What a great reflection on this seventh day of rest!  God has not changed!  He is desirous of all nations knowing Him and coming under His eternal rule!  We are to share His marvelous works and deeds with all nations and every person!  We are to worship, sing, remember, give, thank, seek, rejoice, cry out, declare, and praise this God who reigns from everlasting to everlasting!  Have a great day of rest and joy!  Jesus Christ is Lord!

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“The Mighty Men”

Scripture reading for April 18: 1st Chronicles 10-16

In today’s culture, men of God are often portrayed as not too bright, weaklings, or slightly effeminate.  Many men have lost their sense of identity when it comes to serving the Lord.  They tend to take a back seat to women and often fail to be the spiritual leaders of the home or the church.  The “mighty men” of king David would certainly not fit the current portrayal of men who serve the Lord.

The mighty men of David’s bodyguard knew how to fight and had courage!  Jashobeam, the chief of the officers, raised his spear against three hundred men, whom he killed in one encounter! (2nd Chronicles 11:11)  Benaiah, son of Jehoiada, was a valiant fighter who went down into a pit and killed a lion on a snowy day!  This man then struck down an Egyptian who was seven and a half feet tall using only a club.  He killed the Egyptian with the man’s own spear!  Three of the mighty men risked their lives just to get David a drink from the well near the gate of Bethlehem.  David was so humbled that he poured the water out before the Lord. (2nd Chronicles 11:17-19)

To be a mighty man today, we have to be just as tough as King David’s men!  We are in the army of God!  We are wrestling with principalities, powers, and rulers and authorities in the spiritual battle that is before us.  (Ephesians 6:10-18)  We need to have the full armor of God and wield the Sword of the Spirit, the Word of God, with skill and courage.  God has called men to lead in the home and the Church.  Men are to be men of prayer. (1st Timothy 2:8)  We are to be loyal and honor authority!  When we do, we honor God and He can honor us!

God is looking for “mighty men” who will serve Him loyally and whole-heartedly!  If you are a man, offer yourself to be one of God’s “mighty men”!  If you have a husband or son who needs to make this kind of commitment, pray for him today in faith, believing that God is able to bring them into this place of honor!  One day we will hear our King say: “Well done, good and faithful servant!  You have been faithful in a few things, I will put you in charge of many things!  Come and share your master’s happiness!” (Matthew 25:21)

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Individuals are important!

Scripture reading for April 17th: 1st Chronicles 1-9

The first nine chapters of 1st Chronicles offers a challenge as to what we might learn from pronouncing hundreds of names, many that are unfamiliar to us.  Chronicles is written from the view of the priesthood and some think that Ezra helped compile this record.  One thing that we might note is that Chronicles begins with Adam and gives a record of descendants right up to the exile in 586 BC.  This record is basically repeated again with additions right up to the time of Christ in Luke’s Gospel.  (Luke 3:23-37)  God seems to be reminding us of our genealogy.  We can trace it back to Adam and Eve!

Another thing to note is that God considers individuals important.  He knows our name and lists all these people by name.  He also recorded some comments about certain individuals who were noteworthy.  Of the sons of Judah, Er, the first-born, is noted as being wicked and the Lord put him to death. (2Chronicles 2:3)  Another man, Hezron, married at 60 years of age and had a son, Segub.  (2nd Chronicles 2:21)  Evidently it was unusual to marry so late!  In 2nd Chronicles 4:9-10, Jabez cried out to the Lord for his blessing and an enlarged territory.  Jabez asked to have God’s hand with him and to be free from pain.  God answered his prayer!  That’s a good thing to note and an encouragement to us.

In the last section of this genealogy, there is a record of the sons of Levi.  The Levite families had assigned jobs to do in the temple and for the ministry to the Lord.  The house of Merari, for instance, was assigned to be musicians ministering before the tabernacle from the time of David.  (2nd Chronicles 6:31-32)  Aaron and his descendants offered the sacrifices in the most holy place.  (2nd Chronicles 6:49)  A later record in 2nd Chronicles 9:17-27 describes Levites who returned from captivity in Babylon to be gatekeepers in Jerusalem and the house of the Lord.  A single man, Mattithiah, was a Levite who was put in charge of baking bread for the tabernacle.  That was his primary job.

What do we learn from all this detail?  God is a God of order.  He assigns jobs to His people according to their abilities and His needs.  He knows each by name and makes note of those who do well as well as those who mess up.  Each person is important and the job they are assigned is significant.  Take time today to thank God for the gifts He has given you.  Ask Him to show you the significance of your work and offer your gifts to Him to use for His glory!  God is keeping a record for Heaven!

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