Supporters Gathered at Hebron
23 Now these are the numbers of the [i]divisions equipped for war, who came to David at Hebron, to turn the kingdom of Saul to him, according to the [j]word of the Lord. 24 The sons of Judah who bore shield and spear were 6,800, equipped for war. 25 Of the sons of Simeon, mighty men of valor for war, 7,100. 26 Of the sons of Levi 4,600. 27 Now Jehoiada was the leader of the house of Aaron, and with him were 3,700, 28 also Zadok, a young man mighty of valor, and of his father’s house twenty-two captains. 29 Of the sons of Benjamin, Saul’s kinsmen, 3,000; for until now the greatest part of them had kept their allegiance to the house of Saul. 30 Of the sons of Ephraim 20,800, mighty men of valor, famous men in their fathers’ households. 31 Of the half-tribe of Manasseh 18,000, who were designated by name to come and make David king. 32 Of the sons of Issachar, men who understood the times, with knowledge of what Israel should do, their chiefs were two hundred; and all their kinsmen were at their command. 33 Of Zebulun, there were 50,000 who went out in the army, who could draw up in battle formation with all kinds of weapons of war and helped David [k]with an undivided heart. 34 Of Naphtali there were 1,000 captains, and with them 37,000 with shield and spear. 35 Of the Danites who could draw up in battle formation, there were 28,600. 36 Of Asher there were 40,000 who went out in the army to draw up in battle formation. 37 From the other side of the Jordan, of the Reubenites and the Gadites and of the half-tribe of Manasseh, there were 120,000 with all kinds of weapons of war for the battle.
38 All these, being men of war who could draw up in battle formation, came to Hebron with a perfect heart to make David king over all Israel; and all the rest also of Israel were of one mind to make David king. 39 They were there with David three days, eating and drinking, for their kinsmen had prepared for them. 40 Moreover those who were near to them, even as far as Issachar and Zebulun and Naphtali, brought food on donkeys, camels, mules and on oxen, great quantities of flour cakes, fig cakes and bunches of raisins, wine, oil, oxen and sheep. There was joy indeed in Israel.
Two things really stand out to me, the first is in verse 32, that these were “men who understood the times, with knowledge of what Israel should do…” And how did they know that? Because God had shown them what was needed, and what He had planned. They were not just following a man, but rather the God that appointed David to be king many years before.
This is also seen in verse 40, when it is noted, “There was joy indeed in Israel.” Joy is no passing thing like happiness, but it also doesn’t come natural to us. It is from God and His goodness that we get joy, and so it was with Israel. They were following God’s plan (whether they knew it or not), and in that they found great joy.
We can find joy in our lives, not only when it’s obvious that God is doing something good, but when times are hard also. Because even in those times, if we are following God and walking in His way, then He is still doing something good in our lives. Find joy in Him, walk daily with Him, and revel in God’s goodness.