2 Samuel 8:1-8

David’s Triumphs

Now it happened afterward that David [a]defeated the Philistines and subdued them; and David took [b]control of the chief city from the hand of the Philistines.

And He [c]defeated Moab, and measured them with the line, making them lie down on the ground; and he measured two lines to put to death, and a full line to keep alive. And the Moabites became servants to David, bringing tribute.

Then David [d]defeated Hadadezer, the son of Rehob king of Zobah, as he went to restore his [e]power at the Euphrates River. And David captured from him [f]1,700 horsemen and twenty thousand foot soldiers; and David hamstrung almost all the chariot horses, but left enough of them for a hundred chariots. When the Arameans of Damascus came to help Hadadezer, king of Zobah, David [g]killed twenty-two thousand men among the Arameans. Then David put garrisons among the Arameans of Damascus, and the Arameans became servants to David, bringing tribute. And the Lord helped David wherever he went. David took the shields of gold which were [h]carried by the servants of Hadadezer, and brought them to Jerusalem. And from [i]Betah and Berothai, cities of Hadadezer, King David took a very large amount of bronze.

One could hardly say that the Israelites had ever known peace since they left Egypt. The nations in the Promised Land, and those in surrounding it, were a constant thorn to them. Various leaders had come and won many battles, but the Israelites were still under constant threat from one direction or another.

But when David became king, he had one victory after another, subduing all the surrounding nations, to the point they put garrisons in “enemy territory”. It is quite a dramatic turn around, but this passage tells us how this was possible: “And the Lord helped David wherever he went.”

While there had been godly leaders in the past, too many of these wandered off the path. Some in dramatic fashion like Saul, others falling victim to the lure of various temptations like Gideon or Samson. David stayed true to God, even when he was king over the entire nation.

The result was a string of victories that would have seemed impossible for the lifetime of one man. When you follow God, and trust Him with your whole life, the impossible no longer exists. That doesn’t give you license to try flying off a building like a bird, but it gives you the confidence to do whatever task God puts before you. “Whatever you do, do it as unto the Lord, not unto men.”

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