Sometimes in the Scriptures, God uses words strategically to highlight a certain command or phrase to make sure that readers don’t miss what He is trying to communicate. It’s almost like he underlines the passage, highlights it, draws boxes around it and arrows pointing to it to get our attention.
One such time is when David speaks his last words in 2 Samuel 23:1-4. After the author of Samuel’s gracious introduction for David in verse one of 2 Samuel 23, David tells readers four consecutive times that God has given Him something to say, alerting readers to pay close attention to what follows:
“The Spirit of the Lord speaks by me;
his word is on my tongue.
The God of Israel has spoken;
the Rock of Israel has said to me:
When one rules justly over men,
ruling in the fear of God,
he dawns on them like the morning light,
like the sun shining forth on a cloudless morning,
like rain that makes grass to sprout from the earth.” 2 Samuel 23:2-4
King David’s wanted future generations to know that when a king rules in the fear of God, it breathes fresh air into the lives to those he rules. The images he uses are striking—kings that fear God are like the rejuvenating energy radiating from morning light and the nourishing effects of rain.
David wanted the world to know that when leaders fear God, it blesses people.
This is a lesson that David learned the hard way several times over the course of his life. (Just ask Uriah.) This will be the same for us, because only One perfectly feared the Lord.
Christ perfectly feared the Lord at all times. His fear of the Lord resulted in bringing “every spiritual blessing” (Ephesians 1:3) to those who believe in Him and turn from their sins. Christ is the true fountain of blessing that brings not only refreshment and nourishment to His people; but also salvation, adoption as sons and daughters of God, and as a result; hope, peace, joy, and everlasting rest in Him.
Leader: Do you fear God? How does your fear of God impact your daily decisions as a leader? Would those you lead say that you are a leader who fears God or man? Are your people blessed by your fear of God?
Whether you are a boss, teacher, pastor, or a student leader, lead in the fear of God for your sake and the sake of your people.
Seek Him and obey Him first over everything, and make His approval what you long after. Commit yourself to hate sin (Proverbs 8:13).Commit yourself to integrity at all times—even when it costs you. Commit your soul to be molded by God’s Word (Proverbs 2:1-8). Commit yourself to serve God, seeking His approval above all else (Galatians 1:10).
The same One who feared God perfectly is interceding for us now at God’s right hand. Cry out to Him and ask for divine grace and strength to fear the Lord in all of life and as a leader.
Even as fearing the Lord in our fallen world comes with trouble (2 Timothy 3:12), we can fix our eyes on the One who feared God perfectly and make the words of Psalms 86:11 our leadership prayer:
Teach me your way, O Lord, that I may walk in your truth;
unite my heart to fear your name.
While we’re on the subject:
- 4 Leadership Lessons from a King Who Finished Poorly
- The Fear of God: Definition, Bible Verses, Quotes & Songs
- How to Persevere In Prayer When You’re Really Stressed Out
- 5 Things Every Christian Leader Should Pray Everyday for Themselves
- 250 Free Online Seminary Courses, Resources, and Book Recommendations
- Finding Gospel Hope in Prayer: Reflections on Psalm 130