“Next to him was Eleazar son of Dodai the Ahohite. As one of the three mighty warriors, he was with David when they taunted the Philistines gathered at Pas Dammim for battle. Then the Israelites retreated, but Eleazar 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. The troops returned to Eleazar, but only to strip the dead” (2Sam 23:9, 10)
David was known as the greatest king of Israel. He was a worshipper, a warrior and a godly leader. He trained a group of men who become ‘The men of Valor’. Generally, men are attracted by fame and wealth. They are ready to worship and follow successful leaders. But these men joined David when he was at his lowest. They came to him in the desert when he was a fugitive. By the grace of God David became their mentor and leader. It is to his credit that he could change ‘ordinary’ men into true champions who by their exploits, they still inspire millions today. This is a picture of the grace of God who alone changes sinners into saints!
Eleazar was one of them. He led the Israelite army against the Philistines. His name means “God is my Helper”.
Initially the people of God ‘taunted’ the enemy. This was the reverse of the battle when Golaith was the leader. This was a war of words, a pre- battle game. Suddenly, the Philistines attacked them. They panicked and all of them ran away. They liked the entertainment of battle, but not the battle itself.
Eleazer was left alone in a barley field (1Chr 11:12). He decided to stand alone and fight to finish. He held his sword until his hand became tired, but still he did not stop fighting. His hand ‘froze’ on the sword. The word means to cleave, to join in marriage. ‘What God joined together, let no man put asunder’. Eleazer kill them all. God won a great victory that day. Later, the Israelites came back to rejoice at the deliverance and to partake in the spoil. Oh, men never change…
Lessons: A true man (woman) of God will be ‘strong and courageous’ even when all human helpers run away. He will trust God alone. He will protect the space and ministry that has God entrusted to him, even if it is a humble ‘barely field’.
Do not follow the cowards! Do not follow the crowd, for most of the time they are wrong! Stand your ground and fight as a champion. “One with God is majority” said Mary Slessor, a missionary sister to Calabar, Nigeria.
In these last days, many church leaders have betrayed their calling. They preach another Jesus and another Gospel. For them, entertainment is more interesting that evangelism; humor is more attractive than the honor of God.
The sword represents the Word of God preached in the power of the Holy Spirit. Like Eleazer held his sword to the end, you be faithful and preach the true Gospel of Christ Crucified and Resurrected! Do not be afraid! Do not be discouraged! The Lord shall be with you wherever you go!! Be strong and courageous! God shall help you! God shall reward you
In Christ I declare:
“My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever” (Ps 73:26)
In Jesus name