Once Eleazar and David stood together against the Philistines
when the entire Israelite army had fled.
He killed Philistines until his hand was too tired to lift his sword,
and the Lord gave him a great victory that day.
The rest of the army did not return until it was time to collect the plunder!
2 Sam. 23:9-10, NLT
Ever get tired of doing the right thing? Ever feel like you’ve fought against the evil one until you can’t even raise your sword anymore? The enemies of God are plentiful – lies, deceit, hatred, abuse, ignorance, apathy, laziness, greed…they surround us from everywhere to attack our faith and destroy the effectiveness of the Good News of Christ. Some of those enemies even rise up from inside our ranks, and inside our own hearts and minds. It takes stout determination to keep fighting. Battle fatigue is a reality, if you’re really serious about living the Christian life.
Sometimes we feel like we’re the only ones standing for what’s right. Other believers may be distracted, uncommitted, or only interested in showing up to collect the blessings during times of celebration or worship. They are like Eleazar’s fellow soldiers who didn’t show up until it was time to collect the plunder.
The Bible doesn’t say too much about him, but I like Eleazar. He didn’t give up until the job was done. He fought till he couldn’t fight anymore, and God gave him victory. Apparently he didn’t worry too much about what the other guys were doing. There’s no word of him complaining that the rest of the army ran away and left he and David to do all the fighting. He wasn’t even resentful when they came back to collect rewards.
My guess is that Eleazar wasn’t in the battle for the goods, or the fame, or how buff he would get wielding his sword. I think he fought the way he did because he loved his king; he loved his people; and he wasn’t willing to give even one inch of ground to the enemy. No matter what the cost, what the odds - no matter how tired he got.
That’s the kind of soldier I want to be for the Lord. I want to stand with my King, even if all others run from the battle, and fight until I am too weary to even raise my sword, the Word of God. I will fight for love of our King; for love of the worldwide body of believers; refusing the let Satan gain any ground. Through prayer and complete abandonment to my Lord and Savior, I want to be victorious in my personal life, for my family, for my church, and our community.