“This is the list of David’s mighty men … Asahel the brother of Joab, Elhanan son of Dodo from Bethlehem, Shammoth the Harorite, Helez the Pelonite, Ira son of Ikkesh from Tekoa, Abiezer from Anathoth, Sibbecai the Hushathite, Ilai the Ahohite, Maharai the Netophathite, Heled son of Baanah the Netophathite, Ithai son of Ribai from Gibeah of Benjamin, Benaiah the Pirathonite, Hurai from the ravines of Gaash, Abiel the Arbathite, Azmaveth the Baharumite, Eliahba the Shaalbonite, the sons of Hashem the Gizonite, Jonathan son of Shagee the Hararite, Ahiam son of Sacar the Hararite, Eliphal son of Ur, Hepher the Mekerathite, Ahijah the Pelonite, Hezro the Carmelite, Naarai son of Ezbai, Joel the brother of Nathan, Mibhar son of Hagri, Zelek the Ammonite, Naharai the Berothite, the armor-bearer of Joab son of Zeruiah, Ira the Ithrite, Gareb the Ithrite, Uriah the Hittite, Zabad son of Ahlai, Adina son of Shiza the Reubenite, who was chief of the Reubenites, and the thirty with him, Hanan son of Maacah, Joshaphat the Mithnite, Uzzia the Ashterathite, Shama and Jeiel the sons of Hotham the Aroerite, Jediael son of Shimri, his brother Joha the Tizite, Elial the Mahavite, Jeribai and Joshaviah the sons of Elnaam, Ithmah the Moabite, Eliel, Obed and Jaasiel the Mezobaite” 1 Chronicles 11:11, 26-47
I know, you’re probably wondering why on earth I would quote such a passage. One needs a course in linguistics just to pronounce the names. In fact, the first time I read through the Bible I glanced at the first name then skipped through to chapter twelve (maybe you didn’t want to read it either?). But that meant I wasn’t valuing this portion of Scripture like the rest. After all, “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work” 2 Timothy 3:16-17. Which presented a minor dilemma for me. How could a tongue-twisting list of names teach, rebuke, correct, or train me in righteousness? Then the obvious hit me. David’s mighty men are an example of the many mighty men God raises up to support those in leadership.
With this in mind, I’m now grateful when I read this passage. For as I read about David’s mighty men I’m reminded of the mighty men God has placed around me. Now I’m not for one moment comparing myself to David, far from it. But I am thankful for the mighty men who stand shoulder to shoulder with me on the Leadership Team of Orillia Community Church. And, like the writer of Chronicles, I believe it’s prudent to name them. Here are some modern day mighty men you probably don’t know but may find a little easier to pronounce: John Audia from Italy, generous and merciful; Rick Aldom of Warminster, discipler and teacher of God’s Word; Alan Jarvis from South Africa, a wise counsellor and man of praise; John Annunziello of Orillia, true blue; Dean Langman and Ron Thompson, faithful doers of the Word; Ray Scriver from Peterborough, anointed worship leader; Paul Ego and Glen Gillespie, wise stalwarts in the faith. These are spiritual men, full of joy, united in purpose, steadfast in the Way.
You can probably think of a number of present day mighty men that you know. Why not take time to thank God for them and pray that He will continue to strengthen and protect them as they serve Him. In addition, write a note of encouragement or phone them up and tell them they’re appreciated.