This sermon is part of the sermon series Earthy Spirituality.See series.
The movie Cinderella Man is based on the true story of a boxer named James J. Braddock. Braddock was a good boxer who lost his passion and purpose for fighting, so he quit the sport. When the Great Depression hit and his family slid into poverty, Braddock went back to boxing. He made a startling comeback, fighting with passion and focus while upsetting better, younger boxers. At one point in the movie, a stunned reporter asks Braddock, "What are you fighting for?" Braddock replied, "Milk. I'm fighting for milk for my children."
In 1 Chronicles, we meet a group of courageous people who knew how to fight for what was right. This concept of fighting well can—and should—make us nervous. We've seen enough terrorist attacks, school shootings, beatings, and lynchings—not to mention destructive gossip and character assassinations—that we cry out, "When will the violence end? We don't need any more fighting!" I am sympathetic to that plea, but I also agree with author John Eldredge when he writes: "Eventually a man (or a woman) must come to realize that there are certain things in life worth fighting for … Take anything good, true, or beautiful upon this earth and ask yourself, "Can this be protected without a fight?" First Chronicles 11:10-25 challenges us to fight well for the right things, in the right way, with the right purpose and motive.
For the next 20 chapters of 1 Chronicles, the focus is on David. Our text really begins in in 11:1: "All Israel came together to David at Hebron and said, 'We are your flesh and blood.'" This section of 1 Chronicles then ends in 12:38 with these words: "They came to Hebron fully determined to make David king over Israel." These two bookends give us ...
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Matt Woodley serves as the Editor for PreachingToday.com and the Pastor of Compassion Ministries at Church of the Resurrection in Wheaton, Illinois. He is also the author of God With Us: The Gospel of Matthew (IVP).