Help the Stragglers
They shall set out last, standard by standard. - Numbers 2:31
The camp of Dan brought up the rear when the armies of Israel were on the march. The Danites occupied the hindmost place, but their position wasn't important, since they were as truly part of the company as were the foremost tribes. They followed the same fiery cloudy pillar, ate of the same manna, drank of the same spiritual rock, and journeyed to the same inheritance. Come, my heart, cheer up, even though last and least; it is your privilege to be in the army and to fare as they fare who lead the expedition. Someone must be at the rear in honor and esteem, someone must do menial work for Jesus, and why shouldn't it be me? In a poor village among an ignorant peasantry or in a back street among degraded sinners, I will work on and take my assigned place at the rear.
The Danites occupied a very useful place. Stragglers have to be picked up on the march, and lost property has to be gathered from the field. Fiery spirits may dash forward over untrodden paths to learn fresh truth and win more souls to Jesus; but some of a more conservative spirit may be well engaged in reminding the church of her ancient faith and restoring her fainting sons. Every position has its duties, and the slowly moving children of God will find their peculiar state one in which they may be eminently a blessing to the whole company.
The rear guard is a place of danger. There are foes behind us as well as before us. Attacks may come from any quarter. We read that Amalek fell upon Israel and slew some who were at the rear. The experienced Christian will find much work for his weapons in aiding those poor doubting, desponding, wavering souls who are slowest in faith, knowledge, and joy. These must not be left unaided, and therefore let it be the business of well-taught saints to bear their standards among the rear guard. My soul, watch tenderly to help the stragglers today.
Family Bible reading plan
verse 1 Judges 1
verse 2 Acts 5
Name above All Names
By Alistair Begg & Sinclair Ferguson
Jesus Christ has been given the name above all names, the highest seat of honor, the right to reign and rule. Yet the busyness of our lives and the diversions of this world often distract us from knowing the most important person we could ever know. Perhaps we need some help to see Jesus afresh.
In this thoughtful study and worshipful reflection, two influential pastors draw on decades of pastoral experience in order to guide us through the whole sweep of Scripture and examine seven key qualities of Jesus’s identity and ministry:
- Jesus as the True Prophet
- Jesus as the Great High Priest
- Jesus as the Conquering King
- Jesus as the Seed of the Woman
- Jesus as the Son of Man
- Jesus as the Suffering Servant
- Jesus as the Lamb on the Throne
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From Morning & Evening revised and edited by Alistair Begg copyright © 2003. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187, www.crossway.org.