1 Chron. 12 Qualities of Mighty Men
A continuation of various tribes coming to Hebron to be enjoined with David during the time Saul was still chasing him, at Ziklag where Achish gave to David as refuge from Saul. The overwhelming majority of people were desiring to follow and connect with David as king; which the numbers given of those who “mighty men” ready to do battle indicates.
As you read this chapter’s account of the various tribes that sent their “mighty men” to David, there are some very interesting characteristics that they had, which distinguished them as men that benefit David’s reign. The tribe of Benjamin’s mighty men was ambidextrous in using “both the right hand and the left”.
Gadites “joined David” men that were “trained for battle” those were resolute and quick on their feet.
When approached by “some of the sons of Benjamin and Judah”, David met them with some suspicion about their motives, as those in particular from Benjamin were of the same tribe as Saul. When confronted by David, “the Spirit came upon Amasai who declared that “peace” be “to your helpers” because God helped David. Upon hearing that, they were received by David.
The people that came and were coming to David at this time were “a great army, like the army of God.” What a description of those who came to stand with and for David.
Among those who came were men “of the sons of Issachar who had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do”. The Targum says they were astronomers and men that study astrology; which provided to them the various times of the year that would be used as calendars. Also, they had “understanding” in areas of political and social areas that were a tremendous resource to David and his inner circle of thirty men.
Zebulun’s men were “stouthearted men who could keep ranks”. It’s worth noting that these men were not only brave and bold; but they “could keep ranks”. They were able to be men of order in the midst of chaos around them. They weren’t double minded; rather they were committed and loyal mighty men.
As the chapter comes to a close, we read that “all” of the men that came to David in Hebron were 1) men of war, 2) men who could keep rank (order), 3) men with loyal hearts and 4) men of one mind. These men weren’t just brutes you’d find in a barroom brawl; they were men of integrity, loyalty and unity.
As a leader, these are qualities that are essential for our positions to be established. These are characteristics that ought to be evident in those that are placed in leadership capacities and responsibilities. As we seek out those who will “have our backs” and stand with us, there are many things we can look for and observe. However those that are listed above are far and away the most critical.
Finally, there was a three day party to celebrate David’s ascension to reign over all Israel; and “there was joy in Israel.” When the righteous rule, the people rejoice and the land is at peace.