“Benaiah was the son of Jehoiada, the son of a valiant man from Kabzeel, who had done many deeds. He had killed two lion-like heroes of Moab. He also had gone down and killed a lion in the midst of a pit on a snowy day.”
II Samuel 23:20 NKJV
“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.” I John 4:7 NKJV
Do you ever read the Bible and come across a word or phrase that contradicts what you have previously read in the Bible? For me yes. Sometimes, after I will read a passage of scripture I will know exactly what God is talking to me about. But then, the next passage will say something completely different to what I just read.
Soooooo which one is it? Should I go to war? Or should I love? Should I pull out my sword or not? Should I kill or forgive?
The word sword is written 382 times in all the Bible.
War is 228 times.
The word Love occurs 322 times in all of Scripture.
Kill is written 185 times. The word murder is written 20 times.
Forgive is in there 45 times. Forgiveness is 8.
Death is written 360 times.
The word life is written 450 times in all the Bible.
This is all depending on which version you use for how many times each word is written.
War or Love?
Kill or Forgive?
Death or Life?
So how do we know which one to do??? Let me answer that question this way…
Say you are driving on the interstate. The speed limit is listed at 75mph. Does that mean you get to drive 75mph all the time? No, sometimes you have to slow for a curve or traffic or a storm. Sometimes you are completely stopped, no movement. And sometimes, you drive 85mph to get a cup of coffee for your significant other. Just because a sign is set at a certain number doesn’t mean you go that speed all the time.
Just because the Bible says “kill,” that doesn’t mean you pull your sword out for everyone you meet.
Just because the Bible says love, that doesn’t mean you tell everyone your thoughts and feelings and they are your best friends.
Just because the Bible says something, it doesn’t mean you always do that in every situation.
Scripture does says though be ready in every season.
“Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching.” II Timothy 4:2 NKJV
What season are we to be ready for? All of them.
“To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven: A time to be born, And a time to die; A time to plant, And a time to pluck what is planted; A time to kill, And a time to heal; A time to break down, And a time to build up; A time to weep, And a time to laugh; A time to mourn, And a time to dance; A time to cast away stones, And a time to gather stones; A time to embrace, And a time to refrain from embracing; A time to gain, And a time to lose; A time to keep, And a time to throw away; A time to tear, And a time to sew; A time to keep silence, And a time to speak; A time to love, And a time to hate; A time of war, And a time of peace.” Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 NKJV
Understand that God will help you through every season you find yourself in.
Everyone of us has our own convictions. These are the things God has asked us to be concerned about. For me, that’s eating organic foods, using essential oils instead of modern medicine, using healthy language instead of curse words, no alcohol and so many more. Does that mean I disown everyone who doesn’t fall under the same convictions? No. For some of my friends, gluten is a conviction. They don’t eat any foods with gluten. I don’t even know what that is exactly. All I know is, if they unfriended me because I ate gluten. That’s a pretty dumb reason. I don’t want to be judged that way so I won’t judge them.
Let me put it another way. Jesus ate dinner with sinners not demons. There is a difference.
“Later, Matthew invited Jesus and his disciples to his home as dinner guests, along with many tax collectors and other disreputable sinners.”
Matthew 9:10 NLT
I have done some pretty horrible things. But, I never would have come to Christ if all I ever heard was hell, fire & brimstone. Jesus is in my life right now because someone showed me His love when I didn’t even know what love was.
“By this everyone will know that you are Mine, if you love one another.” John 13:35 NIV
How do you love?
“If I speak with human eloquence and angelic ecstasy but don’t love, I’m nothing but the creaking of a rusty gate.
If I speak God’s Word with power, revealing all his mysteries and making everything plain as day, and if I have faith that says to a mountain, “Jump,” and it jumps, but I don’t love, I’m nothing.
If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don’t love, I’ve gotten nowhere.
So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without love.
Love never gives up. Love cares more for others than for self. Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have. Love doesn’t strut, Doesn’t have a swelled head, Doesn’t force itself on others, Isn’t always “me first,” Doesn’t fly off the handle, Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others, Doesn’t revel when others grovel, Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth, Puts up with anything, Trusts God always, Always looks for the best, Never looks back, But keeps going to the end.” 1 Corinthians 13:1-7 MSG
The Bible is the greatest book ever written. It never contradicts itself. But, always complements itself. If you want to go to war. Go to war against the demons influencing you and your family. Kill the enemy within. As Master Shredder says in the original Ninja Turtle, “never lower your eyes to an enemy.”
But, as for love. Let’s start loving ourselves. Loving our family. Loving our kids. Loving our coworkers. Don’t throw stones at them. Throw it at their demons. Now is NOT the time to cast rejection against a person or the sins they have committed. The feel bad enough for what they have done. Now is the time to raise people up to be the ones that God created them to be.
Benaiah was a valiant warrior because He attacked his demons & his brothers demons. Benaiah stood in the gap, just as our Big Brother Jesus does for us. Because Benaiah loved without condition, because he was trustworthy, he became a leader in King David’s Army.