Encourage Each Other

2 Samuel 19:5-7 (NIV)

5Then Joab went into the house to the king and said, “Today you have humiliated all your men, who have just saved your life and the lives of your sons and daughters and the lives of your wives and concubines.6You love those who hate you and hate those who love you. You have made it clear today that the commanders and their men mean nothing to you. I see that you would be pleased if Absalom were alive today and all of us were dead. 7Now go out and encourage your men. I swear by the Lord that if you don’t go out, not a man will be left with you by nightfall. This will be worse for you than all the calamities that have come on you from your youth till now.”

David’s son Absalom tried to overthrow his own father for the Kingdom, but was defeated and killed.  Instead of celebrating with his army for saving his life and the kingdom, his tear-filled eyes were focused on the loss of his son.  He mourned all day for his son and his men felt humiliated for all that they sacrificed to save his life from the rebellion.  Joab had to straighten David out and let him know that his role as a leader and king takes precedent over his role of a father.  David was appointed as a leader by God and his men were looking for the leader to speak up and address the victory.  When God appoints leaders, there is expectation for them not to allow personal failures to deter them from fulfilling their responsibilities to the people that they lead.

Joab addressed David to encourage the men or they will desert him.  As a leader, his men stood behind David.  After David heard that his son was killed, his men didn’t feel that David was behind his own men.  He was mourning so much for his son that he failed to accept the work that was done by his own men.  If somebody has done something for you, they want to feel appreciated.  It’s good to say thank you for their effort and time.  Encourage your men is the instruction that David needed to hear.  For me, maybe it is to encourage your wife and encourage your children.

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