Tuesday, September 26, 2017

EmmDev 2017-09-26 [Lessons from Samuel] The Ragamuffin Community of Adullam

The Ragamuffin Community of Adullam

David left Gath and escaped to the cave of Adullam. When his brothers and his father's household heard about it, they went down to him there. 2 All those who were in distress or in debt or discontented gathered around him, and he became their leader. About four hundred men were with him.
      (1Samuel22:1-2 )
After David killed Goliath his popularity grew and so did Saul's jealousy. Saul festered and plotted ways to expose David to as much danger as possible and get him killed. As his anger simmered he twice threw a javelin at David who managed to evade him. Eventually his rage erupted at a banquet where he accused his son Jonathan of being disloyal to his family because of his friendship with David.

David fled for his life and tried hiding out among the Philistines where he had to pretend that he was crazy because they were so threatened by him. Eventually it wasn't even safe among the enemies of his enemy and so David opted for a nomadic existence in the wilderness.

There, a group of people gather around him. His family and then a riff-raff of people - society's dropouts. This is a diverse and unexpected group of people.

They're a rag tag bunch. At one point they even wanted to kill David when their families had been abducted by the Amalekites because they blamed David for taking too many risks. But David leads them through all of this.

But strangely enough, they become a unit and a significant force.

Read through the pages of 1 and 2 Samuel and you will meet them:

  • Looking after a local farmer's flocks without stealing any
  • Pretending to fight Israel with the Philistines but raiding the Amalekites and keeping up the ruse.
  • Successfully evading Saul and obeying David's instructions to respect the King.
  • Performing heroic deeds - facing Goliath's kin and crossing enemy lines just to give David a drink of water.
  • Fighting loyally with David.

At the end of 2Samuel we have a few chapters that describe the exploits of David's mighty men. This is what the ragamuffins of Adullam have become!

This is a powerful image of the church. We don't have David, but we have Jesus and the Holy Spirit who will help us grow from a rag-tag bunch of ragamuffins to become a powerful force to accomplish justice and reconciliation in our world.

No comments:

Post a Comment