SEPARATED, STRONG AND SERIOUS! - 1 Chronicles 12:8-15

13th of the 11th month 2016/2017

Shalom all,

Qorintiyim Bět/2 Corinthians 6:17Therefore, “Come out from among them and be separate, saysיהוה , and do not touch what is unclean, and I shall receive you.

While many may know this verse and even be able to recite it, we also take note that while many be able to say the right words, so to speak, their ‘works’ or actions do not often line up and therefore the professed obedience of their lips is rendered useless by their inability to properly guard and do righteousness, revealing how their compromised actions weaken their called for set-apartness and stand in the Master! To properly hear the call to ‘come out and be separate’ requires strength and commitment that is held fast to with great courage in the Master that involves a zealous and determined belief that does not waver when circumstances are not necessarily favourable, nor shrink back when the heat of trials or the pressures of life is turned up!!!

Being separated involves a ‘coming out’ from among that which is foreign and contrary to the set-apart way that the Torah of Elohim instructs a set-apart Bride to walk in! It is the ability to properly separate oneself from that which is common and that which profanes!

The Greek word here for ‘come out’ is ἐξέρχομαι exerchomai – Strong’s G1831 which means, depart, come out from, go forth, and is the same word used in:

Ḥazon/Revelation 18:4 “And I heard another voice from the heaven saying, “Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues.

The Greek word that is translated here as ‘separate’ is ἀφορίζω aphorizō – Strong’s G873 which means, to mark off by boundaries, ostracise, separate, set-apart and this word comes from the two words: 1 - ἀπό apo – Strong’s G575 which is a preposition and primitive particle, meaning, from, away from, against and 2 - ὁρίζω horizon – Strong’s G3724 which means, predetermined, fixed, appointed, to mark off by boundaries’.

What is abundantly clear, all throughout Scripture, is that we are ‘called to come out and be separate’. If we do not heed this ‘call to come out and be separate’ then we may just find ourselves among those whom the Messengers of יהוה will ‘separate’ from the congregation!

Mattithyahu/Matthew 13:49-50 “Thus shall it be at the end of the age: the messengers shall come forth, and separate the wicked out of the midst of the righteous, 50 and shall throw them into the furnace of fire – there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.

The choice is not a difficult one and in fact is a very clear choice: separate yourself from all foreign worship and its associated practices and separate yourself from all that profanes set-apartness or you will be separated for destruction and thrown into outer darkness!

Mattithyahu/Matthew 25:30 “And throw the worthless servant out into the outer darkness – there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

So many struggle with being separate and so quickly compromise the clear set-apartness that is to be pursued simply because they do not properly ‘come out’ as they continue to mix their ways with the twisted practices that present a form of reverence yet lacks proper power, proving by their compromised actions that they are actually lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of Elohim!! We are warned against such people as Sha’ul teaches us to turn away from these!

Timotiyos Bět/2 Timothy 3:1-5But know this, that in the last days hard times shall come. 2 For men shall be lovers of self, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, thankless, wrong-doers, 3 unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, fierce, haters of good, 4 betrayers, reckless, puffed up, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of Elohim, 5 having a form of reverence but denying its power. And turn away from these!

There is no way to ‘sugar-coat’ the clear danger of not coming out and being separated unto Elohim and rightly so for those who turn their ears from this call and refuse to be set-apart are heading for destruction and the punishment of the ‘second’ death.

In a message called, ‘SEPARATED, STRONG AND SERIOUS!’ I want us to be reminded of how important this is and to do that I would like us to take a look at a passage that highlights the strength of some of the mighty brave men who had separated themselves unto Dawiḏ. Please turn with me to Diḇre haYamim Aleph/1 Chronicles 12:8-15 (Read)

For the purposes of this message I have simply highlighted 8 verses from an entire chapter that presents to us the names of some of the very mighty brave men of Dawiḏ!

As I was reading through Diḇre haYamim Aleph/1 Chronicles 11-12 looking at Dawiḏ and those who were gathered to him I was gripped by the verses that I am highlighting for this message on being separated, strong and serious.

Before taking a closer look at the passage from Diḇre haYamim Aleph/1 Chronicles 12:8-15 I will give a brief overview of the preceding events.

Dawiḏ had been anointed by Shemuʼěl the prophet, to be king, yet he was driven into a fugitive existence being continually pursued by a jealous king Sha’ul, who was still reigning as king over Yisra’ĕl and had set up an established system to which he wanted to hold so tightly on to and not permit Dawiḏ to become king but rather sought to kill him in the process.

 Dawiḏ had escaped to the cave of Aḏullam and was joined by his family as well as those who were in distress, had debt or who were bitter in being and he became head over them. In other words, the down and outs came to him!!! Dawiḏ then fled to the land of the Philistines and came to Aḵish, sovereign of Gath and was then given Tsiqlaḡ and he dwelt there for just under a year and a half and was joined there by many of his mighty warriors. It was also at Tsiqlaḡ that he received news of the death of king Sha’ul. The mighty warriors that were gathered to him at Tsiqlaḡ became what we could call the ‘forerunners’, being instrumental in the establishment of the king’s reign. These men, in effect, had ‘prepared the way’ for Dawiḏ’s ultimate establishment as sovereign over all Yisra’ĕl.

These men who came to Dawiḏ at Tsiqlaḡ were mighty, in the sense that they went against what we could call the ‘Sha’ul system’ of a man driven fleshly kingdom! These mighty men had aligned themselves to Dawiḏ, who had become a fugitive outlaw in the eyes of the wicked king Sha’ul. Dawiḏ had become one who had been rejected, in a sense, by his own; and by these mighty men joining Dawiḏ they, in effect, “burned their bridges” and there was no turning back to where they had come out from! They had turned their backs on the ‘established order’ that had promised them security, a future, promotions and a reputation – all of course, matters of the flesh! But what we can see from their motivation to go to Dawiḏ in the wilderness was that they showed their loyalty to the one which יהוה had anointed to rule and have an established reign forever, upon the throne of Dawiḏ that would usher in the Messiah, who would forever rule!

Yeshayahu/Isaiah 9:6-7 “For a Child shall be born unto us, a Son shall be given unto us, and the rule is on His shoulder. And His Name is called Wonder, Counsellor, Strong Ěl, Father of Continuity, Prince of Peace. 7 Of the increase of His rule and peace there is no end, upon the throne of Dawiḏ and over His reign, to establish it and sustain it with right-ruling and with righteousness from now on, even forever. The ardour of יהוה of hosts does this.

Dawiḏ symbolises for us the full manifestation of the emerging kingdom of Elohim and he represents for us a picture or type of Messiah and His kingdom reign that will firmly be established here on earth!

In Diḇre haYamim aleph/1 Chronicles 11 we are given a few of the accounts of the exploits of some of these mighty warriors and the immensely great victories they had, which I encourage you to read as I have spoken on this in the past and I will not go into the details now on these very great accounts of outstanding physical bravery. These men not only displayed physical bravery, but also displayed great moral courage in joining themselves to Dawiḏ by forsaking all the seeming comforts of the life in king Sha’ul’s court.

As we take a look at Diḇre haYamim Aleph/1 Chronicles 12:8-15 we are given a record of some Gaḏites who had separated themselves to Dawiḏ and as we take a closer look at the wording used here as well as the names of these sons of Gaḏ, we see some clear characteristics of what these mighty warriors in the king’s army entail. When we take a look at these characteristics or qualities we can certainly learn a great deal in regards to the characteristics and qualities of set-apartness that true set-apart ones and ambassadors of Messiah are to have.

As we take a look at these 8 verses and look at some of the Hebrew words and the names of these men we can get some wonderful lessons and metaphors for the requirements of set-apartness.

In verse 8 (verse 9 in the Hebrew text) of Diḇre haYamim Aleph/1 Chronicles 12 we are told that some Gaḏites separated themselves to Dawiḏ. The Hebrew word for Gaḏites comes from the word גָּדִי Gaiy – Strong’s H1425 which comes from the noun גָּד Gaḏ – Strong’s H1410 – ‘a troop, as in a group of soldiers or a collection of people’ as well as ‘fortune’; and this comes from the primitive root verb גּוּד gu – Strong’s H1464 which means, to invade, attack.

While we take note that the men that are being referred to in verses 8-15 are from the tribe of גָּד Gaḏ, the picture that we are able to get here is that of a group of soldiers that had separated themselves to the beloved king and so we are able to begin to see a clear lesson of true soldiers of the belief do – they separate themselves to the King and stand ready and armed in the full armour of elohim and take their bold stand, having come out from the affairs of this life and the lusts that battle against the flesh! I just want to remind you that the name of דָּוִד Dawiḏ - Strong’s H1732 means, beloved, beloved one, and is a clear shadow picture for us of our Beloved King, יהושע Messiah, unto whom we separate ourselves, being continually dressed and armed in the Truth, taking our firm stand in Him as we faithfully submit to His clear instructions.

Some men from the ‘troop’ separated themselves to the beloved king in the wilderness! What is worth taking note of here is the picture of how many are called but few are chosen! By that I mean that it was not the entire troop that had separated themselves but only some of the troop, so to speak! Today there are many who ought to be fully armed in the Truth and serving as faithful soldiers of the belief yet they have not properly separated themselves to our Master and King and render themselves unfit to serve in His kingdom!

Before looking at the Hebrew word that is translated as ‘separated’ I first want to make mention of the Hebrew word that is translated as ‘in the wilderness’, which is מִדְבָּרָהmiḏbarahwhich comes from the root word מִדְבָּר miḏbar – Strong’s H4057 meaning, ‘wilderness, desert’ and can also mean ‘mouth’. This word comes from the primitive root - דָּבַר daḇar – Strong’s H1696 meaning, ‘to speak, command, counsel, declare, proclaimed, converse, warn, threaten, promise’; and a derivative of this word is also translated as ‘speech, word, commandment/s, message’.

The 4th book of the Torah of Mosheh is called Bemiḏbar and known in English as Numbers. The Hebrew word בְּמִדְבַּרBemiḏbar means, ‘in the Wilderness’ and the literal meaning of this actually carries the concept of ‘The place of words’ or ‘The place of speaking’. It was ‘in the wilderness’ where Yisra’ĕl learnt to hear the ‘voice’ of יהוה and be in the necessary place to listen to what was spoken through Mosheh, after having ‘come out’ and been ‘separated’ from Mitsrayim!

The picture we are able to gain from these accounts is clear when understanding this concept as we take note that the mighty brave men who had separated themselves to Dawiḏ, could only do so by coming out and meeting their king in the wilderness where they could submit to his clear instructions. True separation involves having ears to hear and to do so we much make ourselves available to hear the clear voice of our Elohim and King. We all need to have a ‘wilderness journey’ in order to be properly equipped to inherit the reign as we separate ourselves unto our King and listen to His clear voice!

The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘separated themselves’ is נִבְדְּלוּniḇḏelu which comes from the primitive root verb בָּדַל baḏal – Strong’s H914 which means, to be divided, separate, make a difference, make a distinction.

This root word is used in:

Wayyiqra/Leviticus 20:24-26 “But I say to you, “You are going to possess their land, and I Myself give it to you to possess it, a land flowing with milk and honey.” I am יהוה your Elohim, who has separated you from the peoples. 25  ‘And you shall make a distinction between clean beasts and unclean, and between unclean birds and clean. And do not make yourselves abominable by beast or by bird, or whatever creeps on the ground, which I have separated from you as unclean. 26 ‘And you shall be set-apart to Me, for I יהוה am set-apart, and have separated you from the peoples to be Mine.

3 times in these 3 verses we see the word בָּדַל baḏal – Strong’s H914 being used – twice translated as ‘separated’ and once as ‘make a distinction’. It is יהוה who has separated us from all peoples, to be a set-apart nation unto Him and therefore we are called to make a clear distinction between what is clean and what is not, and so by the hearing of His Torah and the obedience of keeping His Times and laws we are called to active separation from that which is not pleasing to Him!

There is a clear separation that is called for; and the true royal priesthood has been separated unto Elohim, and therefore must no longer be ‘joined’ to the ways of the world:

Eph’siyim/Ephesians 5:7-11 “Therefore do not become partakers with them. 8 For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Master. Walk as children of light 9 for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, and righteousness, and truth 10 proving what is well-pleasing to the Master. 11 And have no fellowship with the fruitless works of darkness, but rather reprove them.

To be separated is a clear continual theme we find in Scripture yet why is it that so many fail to separate themselves as they should unto our Mighty Master, Elohim and King? Many are not separating themselves as they are not coming out from that which they should and in so doing they never are able to get to the place where they are able to hear the clear Word of Elohim that equips and builds belief! As we look at these men who separated themselves we can see that their actions can teach us what is means to come out and be separate; along with the ability to recognise how we who have been called out of darkness into the marvellous light of the beloved King can give the proper praise and thanksgiving that is due to His Name and faithfully abstain from the lusts of the flesh as good soldiers who are armed in the Truth!

Kěpha Aleph/1 Peter 2:9-12But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a set-apart nation, a people for a possession, that you should proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvellous light, 10 who once were not a people, but now the people of Elohim; who had not obtained compassion, but now obtained compassion. 11 Beloved ones, I appeal to you as sojourners and pilgrims, to abstain from fleshly lusts which battle against the life, 12 having your behaviour among the gentiles good so that when they speak against you as evil-doers, let them, by observing your good works, esteem Elohim in a day of visitation.

Diḇre haYamim Aleph/1 Chronicles 12:8 describes these Gaḏites as: mighty brave men, men trained for battle, who could handle shield and spear, whose faces were like the faces of lions, and were as swift as gazelles on the mountains

What a description!!! As we look at the various aspects that are mentioned here we are able to learn how true set-apart and separated ambassadors of the Beloved King are to be distinguishably different from the rest who are in the world!

These men who separated themselves were:

1 – Mighty brave men!

The Hebrew phrase that is translated as ‘mighty brave men’ is written as גִּבֹּרֵי הַחַיִלgibborey haḥayil which comes from the two root words:

1) גִּבּוֹרgibbor’ H1368 which translates as ‘mighty man, brave man, and valiant warrior, powerful’.

2) חַיִל ḥayil – Strong’s H2428 which means, strength, efficiency, wealth, army, ability, capability, excellence and comes from the root word חִיל ḥil – Strong’s H2342 which means, to be firm, strong, endure, prosper’.

This is a double witness of the strength of these men – not only on a physical level but also as seen in the character of their fervent commitment to their king. These were strong and courageous followers of the king – a repetitive call that we see in Scripture being given for all followers of Messiah! We are called to be strong and courageous!

In Hebrew soldiers are often told: ‘חֲזַק וֶאֱמָץḥazaq veematz which means, ‘be strong and courageous’, and is a phrase we see being used a number of times in Scripture. The Hebrew word for ‘be strong’ comes from the root word חָזַק ḥazaq – Strong’s H2388 and carries the meaning, to grow firm, fasten upon, strengthen, take hold ofand can have the concept of, ‘grasp between your ears’. The Hebrew word for ‘courageous’ comes from the root word - אָמֵץ amats H553 which means ‘to be alert both physically and mentally, be fully alert – awake and not asleep, be steadfast’.

We must remember to put on the armour of Elohim and fight the good fight of belief; and therefore as soldiers of Messiah we need the encouragement to be strong and courageous and are equally responsible in encouraging each other in this regard too As the faithful remnant Bride of Messiah we must be strengthened in his Word and stand courageously firm in the belief as we remain steadfast in the prescribed set-apartness that we are called to walk in!

In Mishlĕ/Proverbs 31 Shelomoh gives us a clear description of a capable wife that strengthens herself:

Mishlĕ/Proverbs 31:17 She shall gird herself with strength, and strengthen her arms.

The capable wife is dressed and ready for action!!!

The Hebrew word that is used here for ‘strength’ in Mishlĕ/Proverbs 31:17 comes from the word  עֹז oz – Strong’s H5797 which means, strength, might, fortress, power, stronghold, and this comes from the root verb עָזַז azaz – Strong’s H5810 which means, to be strong, be brazen, prevail, display boldness’. The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘strengthens’ is אָמֵץ amats H553, which is often translated as ‘courageous’. Why I am highlighting these words are the characteristics of a capable wife is to highlight how we are to be a capable and worthy Bride who has cleansed herself and armed herself in the Truth, having been separated unto the Beloved King and standing courageously in Him!

In Mishlĕ/Proverbs 31:10 the following question is asked:Who does find a capable wife?

The Hebrew word for ‘capable’ is חַיִל ḥayil – Strong’s H2428 the same word that is used to describe these mighty brave men who separated themselves to Dawiḏ! This is also the same word that is used to describe the ‘able’ men that Mosheh’s father in law instructed him to seek out!

Those who find strength in Elohim go from strength to strength and become capable and firm members of the body of Messiah! It is in the Master that we are equipped to go from strength to strength!

In the Hebrew ancient pictographic symbols the word for ‘capable, able, brave’ - חַיִל ḥayil was written as follows:

lamedyadchet

chet   - this is the Hebrew letter ‘ḥet’, which in the early script is pictured as a tent wall’, and carries a meaning of separation’, as a tent wall separates two halves of the tent, or can also reflect the outside walls that separate the people inside from that which is outside and so can also symbolise protection and security to those inside, while picturing a cutting off of those who are outside. Hence this letter can mean ‘established, secure’ as well as ‘cut off, separated from’. A wall is also built up by stones, which can also picture for us as living stones being built up in Messiah!

yad  - this is letter ‘yad or yod’ which in the ancient script is pictured as ‘an arm and hand’ and carries the meaning of ‘work, make, throw’, from the primary functions of the arm and hand, and it also represents worship or giving thanks in the extending of hands as a gesture of this. The work of one’s hands is the basic meaning of this letter!

lamed    - this is the Hebrew letter ‘lamed’, which is pictured as a ‘shepherd’s staff’, representing authority’ and can give the meaning of ‘to or toward’ and can represent that which pushes or pulls a flock in a direction, and can speak of authority or a yoke that is used to lead and guide, as well as the ability to bring back by Authority, as well as be submitted under the Authority of the Good Shepherd!

When we see these letters in the ancient script being used to describe someone who is considered ‘brave, and able’ we can certainly glean from this the following:

THE TRUE BRAVE AND ABLE ONES IN THE BODY OF MESSIAH ARE THE ONES WHO TRULY REPRESENTS WHAT IT MEANS TO BE SEPARATED AS LIVING STONES, AND BE SUBMITTED TO DOING THE WORK OF OBEDIENT SERVICE, BEING LED UNDER THE AUTHORITY OF OUR GOOD SHEPHERD, AND EQUIPPED TO TEACH AND LEAD OTHERS TO MATURITY IN MESSIAH!

Those who go from strength to strength appear before Elohim! This is a powerful promise for those who stay in the Master, for they shall see Him face to face when He comes for His capable Bride!

2 – Men trained for battle!

The Hebrew phrase that is translated as ‘men trained for battle’ is written as אַנְשֵׁי צָבָא לַמִּלְחָמָה an’shey tsaa lammilḥamah  - which comes from the following 3 root words:

1) אִישׁ ish – Strong’s H376 which means, man

2) צָבָא tsaḇa – Strong’s H6635 which means, army, war, warfare, battle, conflict, host (of organised army), and comes from the root verb צָבָא tsaḇa – Strong’s H6633 meaning, to wage war, perform, fight, serve, mustered, gone to war.

The compound title יהוה צְבָאוֹת – ‘יהוה tseḇaoth means, ‘יהוה of Hosts’ and the Hebrew word that is translated as ‘Hosts’ comes from the word צָבָא tsaḇa – Strong’s H6635.

יהוה is not only our Commander and Chief who fights for us, He is also the one under whom we march and fight the good fight of belief. The question you must ask yourself is whether or not you are staying in the Master and have counted the cost of following Him and are serving as a faithful soldier in His army, having separated yourself unto Him!

3) מִלְחָמָה milḥamah – Strong’s H4421 meaning, battle, war, warfare, military comes from the word לָחַם laḥam – Strong’s H3898 which means, to fight, do battle, conquer and can also carry the meaning, consume, to use as food, eat, and it is from this root word that we get the word לֶחֶם leḥem – Strong’s H3899 which means, bread, food, provision. Understanding that the word for fighting or war/battle comes from the same root word from which bread comes from, which as we know from Scripture that bread is a symbol or picture of community, then it helps us further understand how when we stand up and fight against ‘self’ and the lusts of the flesh that wage war in our lives; for then we are in fact feeding the community with growth as we conquer that which does not belong, in order to enrich the community or body we are made a part of!

 

These Gaḏite men who had separated themselves to Dawiḏ were men of war – ready and armed to fight for their king and see his reign established!

3 – Handle shield and spear!

In the Hebrew the phrase is as follows: עֹרְכֵי צִנָּה וָרֹמַחorḵey tsinnah varomaḥ  - and comes from the following root words:

1) עָרַךְ araḵ – Strong’s H6186 which means, to arrange or set in order, draw up in formation, prepared, set, draw up battle lines, and clearly speaks to us of something that has been properly prepared and set in order according to a proper plan and design.

2) צִנָּה tsinnah – Strong’s H6793 which means, shield, buckler, and is also a word that is used to describe a large rectangular covering for the whole body, used as a defensive, protecting weapon of war.

The Greek word used in the LXX (Septuagint) for ‘shield’ is θυρεός  thureos – Strong’s G2375 which means, a shield and was typically understood as being a large oblong four cornered shield, and comes from the word θύρα  thura – Strong’s G2374 which means, a door, entrance or gate’. This shield would be as large as a door that would cover the whole man like a door, which could also cover the entrance to a cave, and many of the ancient shields were typically made of wood and covered with animal’s skins. When we think of the picture of this kind of shield, we can immediately see this pointing to יהושע Messiah, who is The Door, and in reference to the Tabernacle, we remember that the Set-Apart Place that had coverings of animal skins, we are able to understand that יהוה is our shield and we find our refuge in Him!

3) רֹמַח roma - Strong’s H7420 which means, spear, lance, a weapon with a sharp metal tip and a long, aerodynamic shaft for throwing.

When we consider the wording that is used here to describe how these mighty men could handle the shield and spear we are able to get the clear image of how skilled, prepared and equipped these men were. These were men who could be trusted to fight as they were expertly skilled in handling the shield and spear, which would take a lot of training to do!

As we also consider the armour of Elohim that Sha’ul describes in his letter to the believers in Ephesos we take note of how we too are to be able to handle the shield (of belief) and the spear (sword of the Spirit), while being properly dressed in righteousness (breastplate) and walk in Truth (belt), having our minds transformed by being renewed each day (helmet), standing firm in the fullness of our Master’s provision and protection and favour, being fitted for the good works He has prepared for us (shoes of peace).

The picture of these mighty brave men who could handle shield and spear highlights a clear image that Sha’ul may have reflected on when he instructed Timotiyos in:

Timotiyos Bět/2 Timothy 2:15 Do your utmost to present yourself approved to Elohim, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly handling the Word of Truth.

Only those who have truly separated themselves are able to be properly strengthened in the Word and equipped to handle the Word of Truth without being ashamed!

These guys were trained for battle and were not novices – they could handle both shield and spear with great precision and craftsmanship. The shield and spear represent for us both offensive and defensive weapons and speaks of their ability to handle any situation in standing firm in their belief!

Timotiyos Bět/2 Timothy 4:2 “Proclaim the Word! Be urgent in season, out of season. Reprove, warn, appeal, with all patience and teaching.

Kěpha Aleph/1 Peter 3:15-16But set apart יהוה Elohim in your hearts, and always be ready to give an answer to everyone asking you a reason concerning the expectation that is in you, with meekness and fear, 16 having a good conscience, so that when they speak against you as doers of evil, those who falsely accuse your good behaviour in Messiah, shall be ashamed.

Being skilled in sword and shield is not simply a physical or bodily function but is also the ability to show great reverence through being skilled in one’s faith through the application and doing of the Word.

Timotiyos Aleph/1 Timothy 4:8 “For bodily exercise is profitable for a little, but reverence is profitable for all, having promise of the present life, and of that which is to come.

These might brave men were skilled in their following the commands of their king and making their stand firm in every way.

We know that the shield pictures for us faith or belief and the sword as the Word and the two go hand in hand to be a skilled mighty child of the Living Elohim. It is the hearing of the Word that brings the belief and is lived out in the active doing of the Word. Ya’aqoḇ/James tells us that a man is declared right by works and not by belief alone! (2:24)

Being skilled for the king entails being a proper doer of His Word and to do that you have to be trained in His Word and to do that you have to be immersed in His Word, diligently seeking and studying and meditating on His Word, day and night!

To be able to handle shield and spear takes continued effort and diligence, which is why so many fail, due to lack of discipline, in their assumed strength when the battles that rage against them come rushing in and they find that they do not know how to rightly handle the Word!

4 – Faces like the faces of lions and swift as gazelles!

These mighty men were described as being fierce looking and very swift in the ability to move on rough and rugged terrain!

Their faces were like the faces of lions – that tells me that they were fierce looking yet they showed a calm demeanour of men who were very confident in Elohim! They carried a countenance of being fierce yet calm warriors – they never panicked but stood confident and firm in their king; and were very terrifying to their enemies. Listen, the enemy does not want to stand against a secure and confident warrior and we know that the enemy is not a lion but is ‘like a lion’ seeking who he can devour! When we stand firm in the Word and guard righteousness as faithful ambassadors we reflect the very character of Messiah, who is the True Lion of the tribe of Yehuḏah and when we do so and draw near to Elohim in Truth and continue to stand firm in the Truth then the enemy will flee when we confidently resist him as we submit to Elohim; and stand firm as the security and sureness of His Word that enables us to be sure-footed (as gazelles).

That is the other characteristic of these men – swift as gazelles on the mountains. The gazelle is a clean animal that we are permitted to eat and it has a split hoof that is completely divided into two parts enabling them to be sure footed, even when the body weight seems to be out of proportion to their skinny legs! The picture of a sure footed clean animal with a hoof completely divided is a reminder to us of how we are to be sure footed in His Word or able to rightly divide the Truth.

So to be as swift as a deer on the mountains speaks of being clean – be sure footed in His Word and adhering to His Appointments and be able to ascend rough terrain with confidence and ease! These men were faithful and trustworthy and these were the guys who passed over the Yardĕn while it was overflowing – they were not afraid to get their feet wet so to speak and this is what is being called for today as we see the day of our Coming King approaching!

Verses 9-13 give us the names of the eleven sons of Gaḏ who were chiefs of the army:

Ězerעֵזֶר – Strong’s H5829 means, ‘treasure/help

Oḇaḏyahעֹבַדְיָה – Strong’s H6552 means, ‘servant of Yah

Eliyaḇ - אֱלִיאָב – Strong’s H446 means, ‘El is Father/my Elohim is Father

Mishmannahמַשְׁמַנָּה – Strong’s H4925 means, ‘fatness

Yirmeyahיִרְמְיָה – Strong’s H3414 means, ‘whom Yahweh has appointed

Attaiעַתַּי – Strong’s H6262 means, ‘opportune, timely, ready

Eli’ĕlאֱלִיאֵל – Strong’s H447 means, ‘EL is EL/my EL is ELohim

Yoḥananיוֹחָנָן – Strong’s H3110 means, ‘Yah has favoured/Yah has been gracious

Elzaḇaḏ - אֶלְזָבָד – Strong’s H443 means, ‘El has given

Yirmeyahuיִרְמְיָהוּ – Strong’s H3414 means, ‘whom Yahweh has appointed

Maḵbannaiמַכְבַּנַּי – Strong’s H4344 means, ‘bond of the Master

The treasure of the servant of Yah is in having the full knowledge that El is Father and the fatness or provision that Yah has appointed is timely showing us that El is Elohim and there is no other and He has favoured us and given us the appointed assurance of being grafted in to the bond of the Master!

The least of these was over a 100 while greatest was over a thousand and this gives us a clear picture of how our Master has appointed each member of His body their unique gifts and talents and responsibilities. We are all called separate ourselves to Him, be string and be serious about our responsibility of being faithful ambassadors!!!

Having taken a brief look at a few of the Hebrew words and phrases that describe these 11 mighty brave men we can see a great and powerful lesson of what is means to be:

SEPARATED, STRONG AND SERIOUS!

The question each one must ask themselves is whether or not they are being separated, strong and serious!

To be mighty in the Master you have to come out and be separate and to do that correctly you have to be strengthened in the Word continually, for we are in the world but not of the world, so making sure we are separated is a daily task that requires skill and discipline in the Word of Truth and this is not a laughing matter but a very serious one! So many say they believe yet they do not take the Word seriously as they so easily compromise set-apartness and reveal that they are not only weak to stand up in the Truth but that they are not actually that serious about their belief in the Master!

These men carried sword and spear as well as all kinds of weapons and were always prepared for all. We too need to be always ready and armed for the fight we fight:

Qorintiyim Bět/2 Corinthians 10:3-6For though we walk in the flesh, we do not fight according to the flesh. 4 For the weapons we fight with are not fleshly but mighty in Elohim for overthrowing strongholds, 5 overthrowing reasonings and every high matter that exalts itself against the knowledge of Elohim, taking captive every thought to make it obedient to the Messiah, 6 and being ready to punish all disobedience, when your obedience is complete.

In a time when most are being weakened by deception and falsehood the true mighty brave soldiers of Messiah must stand up and be:

SEPARATED, STRONG AND SERIOUS!

As you consider the words we have looked at and the example that is given to us in describing these mighty brave men of Dawiḏ how SEPARATED, STRONG AND SERIOUS are you?

May the record of these 11 men, along with all the others of course, stir your belief and cause you too to be one who is being steadfast and committed to being:

SEPARATED, STRONG AND SERIOUS!

We serve an awesome and Mighty Elohim who has called us to come out and be separate. Are you responding to this clear call?

Qorintiyim Bět/2 Corinthians 7:1 “Having, then, these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of the flesh and spirit, perfecting set-apartness in the fear of Elohim.

Qorintiyim Aleph/1 Corinthians 16:13 “Watch, stand fast in the belief, be men, be strong.

Titos/Titus 2:2 “the older men are to be sober, serious, sensible, sound in belief, in love, in endurance

The Greek word that is translated here as ‘serious’ is σεμνός semnos – Strong’s G4586 which means, reverend, venerable, serious, dignified, honourable, men of dignity and comes from the root word σέβω sebō – Strong’s G4576 which is a verb that means, to worship, revere, Elohim-fearing.

This word σεμνός semnos – Strong’s G4586 is translated as ‘noble’ in:

Pilipiyim/Philippians 4:8 “For the rest, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is righteous, whatever is clean, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good report, if there is any uprightness and if there is any praise – think on these.

The reason for me highlighting this is to emphasise how serious this is! So many are not being serious enough as they lack a proper reverence and fear of Elohim as they do whatever is right in their own eyes, which simply highlights that they are not strong enough to be skilled in the truth and are unable to walk in set-apartness!

The True Bride has been called out, strengthened and equipped to be:

SEPARATED, STRONG AND SERIOUS!

Eph’siyim/Ephesians 6:10-11 “For the rest, my brothers, be strong in the Master and in the mightiness of His strength. 11 Put on the complete armour of Elohim, for you to have power to stand against the schemes of the devil.

יהוה bless you and guard you; יהוה make His face shine upon you and show you favour; יהוה lift up His face to you and give you Shalom!