Collect a stick or a twig. Grab the stick or twig you found, and firmly bend it at its ends – break it! Was it difficult to do this? Now, considering you didn’t get for yourself a 2×4 or a thick branch from a tree, it ought to have been fairly simple to break. Now, go back and get a handful of whatever it was you broke in the first place. Try it all over again. How easy was it this time?
There is strength in numbers.
Consider how extraordinary insects are, colorful, radiant, and full of energy. However, rarely does the term “strength” come into mind when imagining them.
Ants manage to construct vast and intricate networks of living spaces above and below ground. Constantly on the move, constantly watching, ants work toward the greater benefit of their colonies. And who could forget bees? Busy buzzing creatures that fly from flower to flower, and work together to construct and defend the hive – there is strength in numbers!
In 1 Chronicles 27, there is a vast lineage of people – a census – that is depicted, and it’s first mentioned in chapter 21. Chapter 27 numbers army divisions, leaders of tribes, and the king’s overseers, in other words, people of power, but not just power, human strength.
Now historically, Israel was looking to build a temple to worship God in, furthermore Israel was to be prepared for war, ready to defend herself against enemies, and like us, they understood that there’s strength in numbers.
1 Chronicles 27:24 reads, “Joab the son of Zeruiah began to count, but did not finish. Yet wrath came upon Israel for this, and the number was not entered in the chronicles of King David.”
What happened? What did David do wrong? See, yes there is strength in numbers, and we can all attest to this reality. However, Israel’s God offered them all of the safety and security, and all of the strength they could ever hope for or need.
The wrath that fell upon Israel was not for counting, it was for counting in the wrong place, and for counting on the wrong thing.
For the people of God, it’s HIM who counts. The only one we can truly count on to be our strength.
Blessings, and keep looking up,
Scripture portions taken from the Holy Bible, English Standard Version, Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers.