September 7, 2023

Use the platform God has given you to bless others.

2 Samuel 5

Shoni Tucker
Thursday's Devo

September 7, 2023

Thursday's Devo

September 7, 2023

Big Idea

No one is immune to sin.

Key Verse | 2 Samuel 5:10, 12

And David became greater and greater, for the LORD, the God of hosts, was with him. And David knew that the LORD had established him king over Israel, and that he had exalted his kingdom for the sake of his people Israel.

2 Samuel 5

David Anointed King of Israel

Then all the tribes of Israel came to David at Hebron and said, “Behold, we are your bone and flesh. In times past, when Saul was king over us, it was you who led out and brought in Israel. And the LORD said to you, ‘You shall be shepherd of my people Israel, and you shall be prince 1 5:2 Or leader over Israel.’” So all the elders of Israel came to the king at Hebron, and King David made a covenant with them at Hebron before the LORD, and they anointed David king over Israel. David was thirty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned forty years. At Hebron he reigned over Judah seven years and six months, and at Jerusalem he reigned over all Israel and Judah thirty-three years. 2 5:5 Dead Sea Scroll lacks verses 45

And the king and his men went to Jerusalem against the Jebusites, the inhabitants of the land, who said to David, “You will not come in here, but the blind and the lame will ward you off”—thinking, “David cannot come in here.” Nevertheless, David took the stronghold of Zion, that is, the city of David. And David said on that day, “Whoever would strike the Jebusites, let him get up the water shaft to attack ‘the lame and the blind,’ who are hated by David's soul.” Therefore it is said, “The blind and the lame shall not come into the house.” And David lived in the stronghold and called it the city of David. And David built the city all around from the Millo inward. 10 And David became greater and greater, for the LORD, the God of hosts, was with him.

11 And Hiram king of Tyre sent messengers to David, and cedar trees, also carpenters and masons who built David a house. 12 And David knew that the LORD had established him king over Israel, and that he had exalted his kingdom for the sake of his people Israel.

13 And David took more concubines and wives from Jerusalem, after he came from Hebron, and more sons and daughters were born to David. 14 And these are the names of those who were born to him in Jerusalem: Shammua, Shobab, Nathan, Solomon, 15 Ibhar, Elishua, Nepheg, Japhia, 16 Elishama, Eliada, and Eliphelet.

David Defeats the Philistines

17 When the Philistines heard that David had been anointed king over Israel, all the Philistines went up to search for David. But David heard of it and went down to the stronghold. 18 Now the Philistines had come and spread out in the Valley of Rephaim. 19 And David inquired of the LORD, “Shall I go up against the Philistines? Will you give them into my hand?” And the LORD said to David, “Go up, for I will certainly give the Philistines into your hand.” 20 And David came to Baal-perazim, and David defeated them there. And he said, “The LORD has broken through my enemies before me like a breaking flood.” Therefore the name of that place is called Baal-perazim. 3 5:20 Baal-perazim means Lord of breaking through 21 And the Philistines left their idols there, and David and his men carried them away.

22 And the Philistines came up yet again and spread out in the Valley of Rephaim. 23 And when David inquired of the LORD, he said, “You shall not go up; go around to their rear, and come against them opposite the balsam trees. 24 And when you hear the sound of marching in the tops of the balsam trees, then rouse yourself, for then the LORD has gone out before you to strike down the army of the Philistines.” 25 And David did as the LORD commanded him, and struck down the Philistines from Geba to Gezer.


[1] 5:2 Or leader
[2] 5:5 Dead Sea Scroll lacks verses 4–5
[3] 5:20 Baal-perazim means Lord of breaking through

2 Samuel 5:24 - "The Lord striking down the Philistine army"

Listen Now

Dive Deeper | 2 Samuel 5

After fighting some serious battles, including becoming king (15 years after being anointed), capturing Jerusalem for his capital, and conquering the Philistines, David is an example of how to find victory and use his position to unite God's kingdom for His glory. David humbly relies on the Lord, who is "with him," for his own greatness through prayer, worship, and obedience. God is sovereign in the waiting and is the One who provides for David. This truth gives me hope as I face battles against my sin, negative thoughts, and troubles in this life.

Following a difficult season of several traumatic events, I was in a place of discouragement and fear. It was a constant battle of fear versus faith, and I was not able to believe God's promises. I believed the lie that God could not use me for His kingdom. David became great because the Lord was with him, and David's greatness wasn't dependent on himself. I had to learn to be still and slow down. My victory over fear was not dependent on me (as I had been trying hard at spiritual disciplines) but on my complete surrender to trusting God's ability to work in me.

David asked the Lord for direction (2 Samuel 5:19). His prayer was not telling the Lord what to do but asking Him what to do. I, too, need to seek His will and not my own, even in the good things. Inviting God into the pain and uncertainty is powerful when things seem impossible. David worshiped and named the place of victory Baal-perazim, meaning "the Lord of breakthroughs" (2 Samuel 5:20). Yes! Gratitude and acknowledging God's character move me out of my struggle and into focusing on His ways. David obeyed the Lord (2 Samuel 5:25) and took the next right step by doing what He commanded.

These daily practices allow me to rest in the Lord to fight my battles (Exodus 14:14) and to let go of self-sufficiency, giving me peace that surpasses all understanding. Therefore, I'm able to help others with more compassion, grace, and God's truth in their struggles.

This month's memory verse

16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.

– Matthew 5:16

Discussion Questions

1. What areas of your life have you not surrendered to God, or what things do you think you have control over versus depending on God?

2. Is there something you're praying about that you need to focus on God's direction and character instead of your own desires and will?

3. Are you spending time worshiping God even in the mist of pain, suffering, or uncertainty? Can you consider making a gratitude list daily?

4. What small next step do you need to take to obey the Lord and follow His ways?

Respond to Today's Passage

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Hugh Stephenson

Good morning Shoni! Love this, “God is sovereign in the waiting and is the One who provides for David.” I also love your citation of Exodus 14:14 and the truth of letting go of self-sufficiency as the key to the shalom God promises in Philippians 4:6-7. A life verse for me. Reprising this piece on shalom- “The webbing together of God, humans, and all creation in justice, fulfillment, and delight is what the Hebrew prophets call shalom. We call it peace, but it means far more than mere peace of mind or a cease-fire between enemies. In the Bible, shalom means universal flourishing, wholeness, and delight—a rich state of affairs in which natural needs are satisfied and natural gifts fruitfully employed, a state of affairs that inspires joyful wonder as its Creator and Savior opens doors and welcomes the creatures in whom he delights. Shalom, in other words, is the way things ought to be.” - Neil Plantinga Source: ----- BTW, here’s a map I found very helpful in tracking all the place names. Keep clicking or searching and you’ll find a lot of other choices. Q1. One of the biggest challenges for me is busyness. I think I need to “be productive”. There’s a laziness in this struggle that conveys not wanting to say no to anything - or to say yes to almost everything that looks interesting. No thought calls. Curiosity and a desire to learn is fine but I take it too far and get drawn off mission. David’s consistent “inquiring of the LORD” is a great model and reminder. Q2. My desire is for my two unsaved children to be saved. I have to guard pressing them about faith issues. I “know” that I save no one. And I know the basic of my role as parent/shepherd. It’s still tough to stay “inside-the-lines”. Q3. 13 years of Prodigals will get you on your knees a lot. For sure. Years go a friend encouraged me to make gratitude lists and to say gratitude prayers as part of a daily practice. Life changing. Q4. Small steps? Constantly “inquire of the LORD”.

Hugh Stephenson

How much does appearance have to do with leadership? Way too much. In our culture and many others it’s the first filter many people use. Personality and like-ability are probably next. In this regard I’d put JFK and Reagan as the two top Presidents in my lifetime. If I lived in the ancient near east, I’d probably pick Saul; if I was picking before he ascended to kingship. Thus, most likely guy to be king is tall, handsome, and from a well-known and wealthy family. He looks the part. Right out of Central Casting, I would never pick David. Besides, you have to be 35 to be President of the US. But God…picked David. He knew there would need to be a time of trading and equipping. Most importantly, he knew David’s heart. So…he put him on the run for 10 years as Saul pursued him and tried to kill him at least 10 times. Here’s a weird line from the ESV SB - “Now that Saul has been completely disqualified as king, David is introduced as his successor, and God trains David, through suffering, to lead his people.” Training through suffering. Odd. B.C. I’d wonder if I’d misread that. But now I can nod my head and say, “yeah, I totally get it.” Here’s a short piece on Cupelation--- "Cupelation is a refining process in metallurgy in which ores or alloyed metals are treated under very high temperatures and subjected to controlled operations to separate noble metals, like gold and silver, from base metals, like lead, copper, zinc, arsenic, antimony, or bismuth, present in the ore. The process is based on the principle that precious metals do not oxidise or react chemically, unlike base metals. When they are heated at high temperatures, the precious metals remain apart, and the others react, forming slags or other compounds." Stated another way, extremely high heat causes the lesser metal to become adhered to each other as “slag”. But the “precious metals’ get refined and become extremely… wait for it… PURE! Isn’t that what God wants? PURITY! See also, the entire book of Leviticus. If I start all the way back to David the young shepherd boy, the arc of time, events, and people from that chapter to this is really amazing. Just in 2 Samuel 1 do we start to see David finally step forward into the role God has called him. Fully tested. Fully trained. And as pure as a human can get. He is now ready to be the greatest King that Israel ever had. And the ancestor of Jesus. And the worthy recipient of the Davidic Covenant in 2 Samuel 7. From the notes: “Thus David's kingship stood on three legs: -his human kinship, -his proven merit, and -his divine election. These are the same three qualifications that Jesus Christ has to serve as our King.” ———————

Hugh Stephenson

I found the comments on shepherds very interesting- "In the ancient East, shepherd at an early date became a title of honor applied to divinities and rulers alike." “For example, King Hammurabi of Babylon (ca. 1792-1750 B.C.) referred to himself as the shepherd of his people.[84] This is the first time the Bible refers to a specific human ruler as a shepherd, though as an analogy the term appears earlier (Num. 27:17) and with reference to God (Gen. 48:15; 49:24). “The New Testament refers to David's greatest son, Jesus Christ, as the Good Shepherd (John 10:11, 14), the Great Shepherd (Heb. 13:20), and the Chief Shepherd (1 Pet. 5:4).” ——————— Some extended notes that are definitely worth reading "Two of the most significant events in world history now took place. The first was when David became king of a united Israel. The second was when he made Jerusalem the capital of his united realm." "David's victory over the Philistines at this stage was significant for several reasons. It indicated that the capital had been fully established and Israel was now a force with which to be reckoned. The victory certainly must have produced a great deal of confidence in the people regarding David's ability. Finally, this was an encouragement to David and a stabilizing factor among his officials." “In all parts of this section (3:6—5:16), the writer placed emphasis on God's blessing of David, and the nation, that came about as Judah and Israel united under David's divinely anointed leadership. The emphasis is on how David united Israel with Judah. Part of his success was the result of divine providence (God working through circumstances) and part was the result of David's skillful planning.” -First, Abner threw his support behind David, after a disagreement with Ish-bosheth. -Second, David punished Ish-bosheth's assassins. -Third, all Israel finally accepted David. Note the parallel career of Jesus Christ: initial rejection (in the past) followed by complete acceptance by His chosen people (in the future). Again David sinned by multiplying wives (Deut. 17:17). Nevertheless in spite of this sin, God continued to bless him with fertility because he was God's elect, and for the most part, God's obedient servant. Fortunately, God does not cut off all His blessings because His servants are less than perfect. "This is the first time that concubines are mentioned in connection with David (cf. also 1 [sic 2] Chron 11:21)—and it is also the only time that the phrase 'concubines and wives' occurs in the Bible (the usual order is 'wives and concubines'; cf. 19:5; 1 Kings 11:3; 2 Chron 11:21; Dan 5:2-3, 23). By placing the word 'concubines' in emphatic position, the narrator is perhaps deploring David's proclivity for the trappings of a typical Oriental monarch, including a harem."[110] "The status of kings in ancient times was often measured in part by the size of their harems."[111] Previously the writer listed six sons born to David in Hebron (3:2-5). Now he listed 11 more born to him in Jerusalem (vv. 14-16). Note that Solomon was tenth in the line of succession. First Chronicles records two additional sons: Nogah (1 Chron. 3:7), and a second Eliphelet (1 Chron. 3:8), who is also called Elpelet (1 Chron. 14:5). "David had many wives, and yet that did not keep him from coveting his neighbour's wife and defiling her; for men that have once broken the fence will wander endlessly."[112]

Michael Sisson

Re: 2Sam 5:3 2Sam 5:3 (NASB) So all the elders of Israel came to the king at Hebron, and >>>King David<<< made a covenant with them before the LORD at Hebron; then >>>they anointed David king over Israel.<<< David was anointed king long before all Israel was ready to acknowledge his Sovereignty. Likewise, as all Israel ultimately pledges fealty to David here, so everyone will eventually confess the Son of David, born King of the Jews, (e.g. Yeshua, Jesus) is L-rd of all. (c.f. Php 2:9-11) Re: 2Sam 5:8 2 Sam 5:8 (NIV) On that day, David said, >>>“Anyone who conquers the Jebusites will have to use the water shaft<<< to reach those ‘lame and blind' who are David's enemies.” That is why they say, “The ‘blind and lame' will not enter the palace.” For a deeper dive into this “water shaft,” (i.e. “Warren’s Shaft”) used by David & Joab to conquer the city, checkout this four minute video by Megalim Institute at the City of David.

Sue Bohlin

Bless you, Shoni. Love how your time in re:gen has made you aware of the sin ditch of self-sufficiency. It's so common we don't see or sense it at all--like asking a fish what it's like to be wet! Since last year I've been journaling what the text teaches about God. The last entry was from 1 Samuel 15. Today I got to write down the two verses that show up as JTJ's Key Verse: "And David became greater and greater, for the LORD, the God of hosts, was with him. And David knew that the LORD had established him king over Israel, and that he had exalted his kingdom for the sake of his people Israel." It is such a sweet truth, as New Testament believers, that David has nothing on every one of us today: Immanuel, GOD WITH US, left heaven to become one of us, a human being. When He returned to heaven, He promised He would be with us always (Matthew 28:20), through the Holy Spirit. So "the LORD, the God of hosts, was with [David]," and He's not only WITH us, He is IN us! When isolation, anxiety, and depression are at an all-time high, this is an astounding promise and game-changing truth. Thank You, Lord!

Greg Jones

The focus on perceptions in the deeper dive along with the passage really resonated with me. I think the first part of chapter 5 sets up chapter 9. Combining those two passages the writer shows us one way negative perceptions can sometimes form. Ch5 From the dialogue all the tribes of Israel speaking V1b-2a “We are your own flesh and blood. In the past, while Saul was king over us, you were the one who led Israel on their military campaigns. Not quite accurate David has actually been hanging out with the enemy for the past year so it would seem a different image is being projected onto him. V2b “And the Lord said to you, ‘You will shepherd my people Israel, and you will become their ruler.’” True, concerning what the Lord said but the perception seems to be because of some things you haven’t actually done the Lord has declared, this, about you. So the writer shows us some evidence of a perception the tribes of Israel have projected onto the Lord. With that in mind this dialogue is written while David actually leads in battle David speaking “Whoever would strike the Jebusites, let him get up the water shaft to attack ‘the lame and the blind,’ who are hated by David's soul.” Switching from dialogue to Narrative Therefore it is said, “The blind and the lame shall not come into the house.” I want to keep in mind some perceptions the writer has put into place when Mephibosheth Jonathan’s lame son is reintroduced in chapter 9. Ch9 Dialogue David speaking to Mephibosheth “Don’t be afraid,” David said to him, “for I will surely show you kindness for the sake of your father Jonathan. I will restore to you all the land that belonged to your grandfather Saul, and you will always eat at my table.” Not the perception I have of someone who is considered to hate the blind and lame in their soul. Dialogue Mephibosheth bowed down and said, “What is your servant, that you should notice a dead dog like me?” Where did Mephibosheth get this perception of himself? The narrative conclusion And Mephibosheth lived in Jerusalem, because he always ate at the king’s table; he was lame in both feet. A stark contrast to “The ‘blind and lame’ will not enter the palace.”

Tiffany Wilkins

Beautiful devo Shoni! You live a life of faithful surrender and pursuit of God. Thankful for you!

Michael Scaman

The Jebusites mock David saying even a handicapped army can fight you off. It didn't go well for them either and Jebus becomes Jerusalem David grew up in a small town outside Jerusalem. Maybe that made it even more meaningful to conquer it. Saul apparently was not able. The citadel of David form 3000 years ago still stands Once David was established in Jerusalem, all the Philistines go out on a search and destroy mission to finish off David like they finished off Saul but were defeated. God gave David a cool strategy against the Philistines which would inspire faith and confidence. , “You shall not go up; go around to their rear, and come against them opposite the balsam trees. 24 And when you hear the sound of marching in the tops of the balsam trees, then rouse yourself, for then the LORD has gone out before you to strike down the army of the Philistines.” The Philistines didn't seem to believe in 'no idol left behind'.

Amy Lowther

1. Life is ok. I trust God. 2. God’s will and character help me achieve my desires. 3. God has a positive effect in situations of pain, suffering, and uncertainty. Making a gratitude list helps in acknowledging what’s gone on, what’s going on, and what’s ahead. 4. Things are currently good.