Men of Valor

1 Chronicles 10-13 tells us the exploits of 30 men of valor, often referred to as the “30”. Actually there were 37 in total listed as part of the heroic group of fighting men. Saul was known for his “drafting” men in support of Israel’s army. David did not draft men, they were “attracted” to him. These chapters record for us the mighty men of valor who surrounded David in his struggle and battles with King Saul and the Philistines to be the reigning king as Samuel the Judge and Prophet had anointed him to be.

I personally like this passage for it reminds me of what men use to be like. My father was a noble man, not a large man at 5′ 7″, but every ounce was true man. All you had to do was talk with him or shake his hand and you would recognize him to be a “man’s man!”

Some of the names are missing from the list here in Chronicles, but found else where [2 Samuel 23:11-12]. I kept on looking for the third man to be named, but had to research it and find his name in the 2 Samuel 23 passage.

It is interesting to see the list as they are presented to us from each of the tribes. Now having already read the Books of Kings, we know that that Judah and Israel were divided over David. Judah quickly embraced David as King, but many in Israel [to become the Northern tribes later] held out over David, but chose to embrace Ishbosheth instead.  Eventually, all of the tribes came to David and claimed him as King.

There is a name that I happen to stumble on of the listed names, but hadn’t made the connection. Really, many names are repeated over and over, so I didn’t make the correlation. The Name is Uriah the Hittite in 1 Chronicles 11:41. Yes you guessed it, this is the same Uriah that King David had an affair with his wife – Bathsheba. Yes the same Uriah that was eventually slain in the battlefield, after Joab left him in the heat of the battle against the enemy. Whoa! Let that sink in a bit. In our reading we find these men are men of distinction and valor. Valor means great courage in the face of danger, especially in battle; Strength of mind in regard to danger; that quality which enables a person to encounter danger with firmness; personal bravery; courage; prowess; intrepidity.

Okay, now that we have identified what kind of man Uriah was, we know what kind of death he was subjected to – does anyone else see the great hypocrisy of David exposed here? The betrayal is beyond words. Uriah counted as one of the “30 men of valor” that secured David the throne of Israel is treated with such utter contempt!

I get the image of Jesus looking at Peter after he denied him three times. Uriah had done nothing wrong, and gave unwavering allegiance to David, and without so much as a second thought David orders Joab to put Uriah up front then withdraw from him so he would be killed – why? SO that David’s sin would be hid – or so he thought.

Sin affects innocent people, valorous people. We live in a world today that is filled with contempt for other human life. I don’t know how many who are reading this have ever been betrayed by someone who took their allegiance and friendship of no value? There will be times in our living that those whom we hold the dearest will let us down, even betray us, cheapened our lives as meaningless. Uriah died – but many of us are still alive. We must know that as believers Jesus has sent us our like lambs before ravenous wolves. Our resolve must be like that of Uriah – faithful to the end.

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