by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions
1 Samuel 14:6-7; 13-15 Then Jonathan said to the young man who bore his armor, "Come, let us go over to the garrison of these uncircumcised; it may be that the Lord will work for us. For nothing restrains the Lord from saving by many or by few." So his armor-bearer said to him, "Do all that is in your heart. Go then; here I am with you, according to your heart." And Jonathan climbed up on his hands and knees with his armor-bearer after him; and they fell before Jonathan. And as he came after him, his armor-bearer killed them. That first slaughter which Jonathan and his armor-bearer made was about twenty men within about half an acre of land. And there was trembling in the camp, in the field, and among all the people. The garrison and the raiders also trembled; and the earth quaked, so that it was a very great trembling.
The setting in 1 Samuel 14 is war between the Israelites and the Philistines; and while King Saul relaxed under a pomegranate tree [1 Samuel 14:2], his son Jonathan along with his armor-bearer left the camp quietly to see if the Lord would fight the battle on their behalf. Jonathan had no idea what he would face out there, how many Philistines he would encounter, their battle skills or strategies. He only knew that if God delivered the enemy into his hands he would be victorious. And he was.
“Nothing restrains the Lord from saving by many or by few”, is Jonathan's faith statement to his absolute conviction that victory is not determined by numbers but by God. But notice that Jonathan didn't fight the battle alone; his trusted companion, his armor-bearer was with him. We don't know his name, we don't have much information about him, except this one sentence, "Go then; and here I am with you!"
Jonathan rose up, a man with divine initiative, a sense of spiritual adventure, and a total conviction that YHVH was with him. He was a leader whose name is forever memorialized by deeds of valor. And then, there was this nameless fellow who accompanied him with deep loyalty doubtless inspired also by the Lord and his knowledge of Jonathan's faith and character. When the judgment of our works is given there will be those who were known and those who were "nameless"; loyal armor-bearers standing alongside their leader/friends whose loyalty, faith and bravery will be honored and recognized in full. Be sure of it!
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