Daily Devotionals

He Has Magnified His Word, Psalm 138:2

Dangers Of False Security

2Sa 24:1-16, 9 Then Joab gave the sum of the number of the people to the king. And there were in Israel eight hundred thousand valiant men who drew the sword, and the men of Judah were five hundred thousand men15  So the LORD sent a plague upon Israel from the morning till the appointed time. From Dan to Beersheba seventy thousand men of the people died.

In the previous chapter, we are impressed by the wise words spoken by David. However, in this chapter, we learn about some of his final actions, which were far from commendable. Driven by his pride, David made an ill-advised decision to have his general, Joab, conduct a census of the people, specifically the soldiers. This decision even puzzled Joab, but David’s command prevailed. The census revealed that there were approximately 1.3 million valiant men from both Israel and Judah. David soon realized that this act was sinful, and divine judgment was passed.

In a short span of time, God, through His angel, swiftly struck down about 5% of David’s trusted army. This was an army that David had painstakingly built over the years, and took it Joab months to complete the census because of the size. Now this army was on the brink of being decimated in a single day. This serves as a reminder that our confidence in worldly things, such as our possessions, politicians, systems, military, or economy, is nothing more than a false sense of security. We witness how easily God can humble even the proudest sinners that all can be gone in no time.

As stated in Psalm 33:16-18, no king can be saved solely by the size of his army, and a mighty man cannot rely solely on his strength. Placing our hope in material things or earthly power is futile. Instead, we should fear and hope in the Lord, for His watchful eye is upon those who do so. Confidence in anything other than God is merely an illusion, leading us down a treacherous path. It is like building on shifting sand rather than on the solid foundation of the rock. David came dangerously close to losing everything when his pride clouded his judgment in where to put his confidence.