“I will call on the Lord, worthy to be praised so shall I be saved from mine enemies.”
Now at the end of the life of David, after 47 years of ruling Israel, a three year famine came upon the nation. He had experienced numerous magnificent wonders at the hand of Jehovah and had suffered so many sorrowful woes by the same hand and at the answer of the voice of Jehovah, he was told that this famine was because of the late King Saul. A famine of this magnitude drastically effected the entire nation and David was faced with the reality that this was not his fault nor the fault of anyone living in the nation. Saul in his zeal for Israel and Judah, thought it proper to address the problem of the Ammorites who were living within the boundaries of the nation by slaying them all (21:1). These Gibeonites were made subject to the nation under Joshua after they had deceived him. They disguised themselves as weary travelers who had come from afar and begged for peace with the nation who had defeated 5 kings mightier than themselves. Joshua granted their boon and then discovered that they had lied, therefore, they were made the servants of the nation to draw water and chop wood (Josh. 9).
The Ammorites were descendants of Canaan (Gen. 10:15) and the land of the Ammorites was promised to Joseph from Jacob just before he died (Gen. 48:22). Jehovah sent Moses into Egypt to deliver His people from Pharaoh and take them to the land of promise (Ex. 3:8) and the Angel of Jehovah would lead and protect them (Ex. 23:20). Joshua and the nation conquered the warriors (Sihon) of the mountains, they took the strongholds (Hesbon) and they dwelt in the mountains (Ammorite). So the nation gained the inheritance of the land while the people of the land were in servitude to them. God had prevented the tribes from ridding themselves of the people of the land and from utterly destroying them as a constant reminder that the victory was not by the will of the flesh nor the strength of the arm of the flesh. Yet these Gibeonites (little hill), by subterfuge and deceit, were ordained of God to be servants to Israel. King Saul thought it best to rid the land of these people and 47 or so years after his death, God sent a famine into the land that lasted three years.
David approaches the aggrieved party and asks them what can be done to resolve this matter and make an atonement for it. They do not want any gold or silver from the house of Saul and they do not want David to shed any blood but if they could have seven sons of Saul’s household, they would hang them and call the account settled. David delivers two sons of Rizpah and five sons of Michal and the Gibeonites hang them in the days of the harvest, in the first days of the barley harvest (the month Abib/ Aven). For this God is satisfied and the famine is over.
Does this sound of justice to our feeble minds? What had David done to inherit Saul’s transgression and what had these seven sons of Saul done to be hanged by the neck for the crimes of their grandfather, who at the time of the offense was King over the land of Israel? God’s ways are not our ways and what He calls just we call unfair. God had given the land of the people of the mountain to the children of Israel as an inheritance. He had brought them in and made them victorious over these people and He brought them to the low estate of servants, what right did the desire of the people (Saul) have in trying to help God finish the work? By what, Thus saith the Lord” did Saul take on this mission of destruction against these servant? Did not God specifically tell the people not to oppress the servant of their house nor the cause of the stranger among them? Saul, the ‘desired’, took a vengeance against them without just cause or commandment of God. These seven sons of the ‘desired’ represent a compilation of the sins of the flesh (Gal. 5:19ff) which David delivered up to the righteous judgment of Jehovah. The Gibeonites, however, were not released from the oath they were under and remained the servants of David and his people. These people of the hills are of the people of the mountains who are of their father, the devil, that great burning mountain that was cast out (Rev. 8:8) which God destroyed when He delivered His people from Egypt. (Amos 2:9 the Ammorite is Pharaoh is Satan sitting in the midst of the river proclaiming himself to be God). They are the angels and seed of the serpent. He has desired to exalt himself against the throne of the most high God but he and all the hills around him are brought low in the day of the Lord (Is. 40:4). In this day the meek and lowly are exalted and the proud and mighty are made low, for the mouth of Jehovah has spoken it, for God has bound the strong man, who is mightier than the people, and has destroyed his house. Now the accuser of the brethren no longer stands by the throne of God to resist the High Priest for Jehovah has rebuked him and has cast him out. He has no place in the Holy city wherein dwells nothing that defiles or is unclean and those who love and make a lie are kept without the gates but he is not vanquished by the desire of man, the will of the flesh or the works of righteousness which we may attempt. The hands of Zerubbabel laid the foundations thereof and the hands of Zerubbabel shall complete it, not by might nor by strength but by My Spirit saith the Lord of Hosts. Everything which opposes God and exalts itself above God is brought down and no longer shall man worship God in the mountains of Samaria or the mountains of Jerusalem. Every knee shall bow before Him in His Holy Mountain wherein is established the house, temple of Jehovah.
Therefore, in the midst of adversity, famine and strife, God is exalted and worthy to be praised. He has taken unto Himself His power and has ruled over all things. Death, hell, Satan and his seed are the servants of the Holy Israel of God while they inhabit these earthen vessels. They learn patience by the trials and tribulations that are delivered unto them by the hill people. Even for this same purpose did God raise up the sons of Gibeon of the Ammorites, that he might shew forth His power in them and that His name might be declared throughout all the earth (Rms. 9:17). And everyone of these, who do the works of their father, the devil, are the servant of God’s people for all His works are for His Beloved. All His desire is upon her and all things work together for her good according to His purpose.
“I will call upon Jehovah who is worthy to be praised, so shall I be delivered from mine enemies”. David was not delivered from his enemies because he called upon the name of Jehovah, he was blessed of the Lord to have all his enemies put under his footstool and therefore Jehovah is worthy to be praised.
Your servant in Christ,
(Elder) Chet Dirkes
May 6, 2012