1 Chronicles 12-14: Lead with Vision; Proceed with Consensus
July 6, 2020
TODAY'S BIBLE READING:
The description of David’s greatness continues. Throughout these chapters, two themes begin to emerge that distinguish David as a godly and great man. To begin with, though, we are told of all the “mighty men” who flock to David’s standard (1 Chron. 12). This is the narrator’s way of underscoring the attractive leadership qualities of David—that such “mighty men” would follow David indicates that David is mightier.
David wisely “calls the question” when “some of the men of Benjamin and Judah” came to him (12:17). He wants to know frankly whether they are for him or against him. And at that point, clothed by the Spirit, the chief of the thirty renowned warriors speaks of David as being the one they are “for” because “God helps” him (12:18). The touch of God is evidently upon David.
Then in chapter 13, two themes that were indicative of David’s greatness emerge. First, he “consulted” (13:1). David was a leader, but he was not a bully. He consulted with those he led and then, with the whole assembly, if it seemed good to them and “from the LORD our God,” then they were going to take the next step of bringing up the ark (13:2-3).
Before the next aspect indicating David’s greatness emerges, there is the ongoing story about the bringing up of the ark. David, though great, is human, and he is angry because of Uzzah’s death (13:11). But while he is angry, we are told he is “afraid of God” (13:12). This fear of God, the beginning of wisdom (Prov. 1:7), is a characteristic tendency of David.
Now towards the end of 1 Chronicles 14, the other theme that indicates David’s greatness emerges. We are told twice that he “inquired of God” (14:10, 13). So he “consulted” the people (we learned earlier, 13:1), but he also “inquired of God.” Saul, on the other hand, was afraid of the people, and did not inquire of God (10:13-14). Saul feared man; David feared God. But David’s fear of God did not make him think David always knew best. He consulted the people, and he inquired of God. A good model for any leader. Lead with vision (from the Bible); proceed with consensus (from the people you lead).
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Josh Moody (Ph.D., University of Cambridge) is the senior pastor of College Church in Wheaton, IL., president and founder of God Centered Life Ministries, and author of several books including How the Bible Can Change Your Life and John 1-12 For You.
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