I have always had a problem with the way David treated the water three of his men risked their lives to bring him. David said he was thirsty – maybe he said he was dying of thirst – and three soldiers sneaked into the Philistine camp to draw water from a Philistine well for their king.
You’d think David would be grateful. You’d think, if he couldn’t bring himself to drink it, he’d at least offer it to the men who had just risked their lives to get it. They were probably thirsty, too.
But, no. David pours the water on the ground. I always saw that as disrespectful toward those soldiers… until today when I read Matthew Henry who called it a “drink offering.”
Hello, Connie. Read what’s there in God’s Word. David didn’t simply pour the water out, he poured it out “before the Lord.” He gave the precious gift, that gift obtained at great risk, to God!
So often I find myself thinking I deserve someone’s kindness. I’m a Baby Boomer, after all, and we were raised to believe we deserve the best. We raised our children to believe in the “Me First” philosophy of life, and they raised their children to believe no one else matters, except “Me.” It’s ingrained in us to believe we deserve only good things.
Why didn’t David drink his fill, and reward the men who gave it to him? He was King. Who deserved it more than he? And didn’t the men deserve a little recognition for their sacrifice?
The reason David did what he did is because he was humbled at the gesture. It caused the king to take a closer look at himself. David realized that even he did not deserve it. So he turned around and offered that life-giving gift to God, with thankfulness and praise.
I have a friend who loves to bake. She is also one of the most giving people I know. And occasionally she shows up at my door with a warm loaf of homemade bread. Let me tell you, there is nothing better.
I thank her. I give her a hug. I praise her baking skills, and recognize her generosity. I hope she knows how much her gesture (and the delicious bread) means to me.
But I never considered thanking God for it. James 1:17 tells us “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father…” Now I know this is talking about sin, and salvation, and God’s unchanging nature. But I wonder if it doesn’t speak to what David did here in I Chronicles, too.
Because the reality is everything good in my life is a direct gift from God. And I don’t deserve any of it. Not even that delicious bread. So shouldn’t I, like David, turn around and give God the praise for it all? Shouldn’t I be aware of the many ways God blesses me through the kindness of people around me?
If King David, a man after God’s own heart, was humbled at the kindness of his men, how much more should I be humbled when good things happen to me? I don’t deserve God’s blessings, but I am blessed.
I don’t believe God would have me toss that warm bread into the trash can as an offering to Him. But I wonder if cutting a slice or two and taking it to my neighbor, or giving the whole loaf to someone who is ill, or inviting someone who needs Jesus into my home to share the bread, wouldn’t be a better way of giving it back to God than enjoying the whole thing myself.
I want to pour myself out before the Lord, empty myself of self, and acknowledge that God is the giver of every good and perfect gift, even those that come out of my friend’s oven.
May God be praised.