Benaiah

lionHis is not one of the names that most Bible students have memorized. Benaiah was the son of Jehoiada the priest. He was born in a little town in the southern part of Judea called Kabzeel. He loyally served as one of King David’s “mighty men” during the rebellions of Absalom and Adonijah. He even assisted with Solomon’s coronation and ultimately became his commander-in-chief.

Second Samuel 23:20-21 introduces Benaiah to us with a resume of his bravery:

“And Benaiah the son of Jehoiada was a valiant man of Kabzeel, a doer of great deeds. He struck down two ariels of Moab. He also went down and struck down a lion in a pit on a day when snow had fallen.  And he struck down an Egyptian, a handsome man. The Egyptian had a spear in his hand, but Benaiah went down to him with a staff and snatched the spear out of the Egyptian’s hand and killed him with his own spear.”

He killed two of the greatest Moabite warriors. He killed an Egyptian with his own weapon. He struck down a lion in a pit on a snowy day.

Does one of those things strike you as a bit unusual?

On a snowy day it is a whole lot safer to stay inside. It’s warm and dry inside. The lion’s tracks in the snow would have been obvious. The lion was contained in a pit—this is a problem that could have reasonably and safely postponed until conditions improved, but none of these reasonable and true circumstances stopped Benaiah from doing what he needed to do.

Please don’t read me too literally here. Stay inside and off the roads when you need to stay off the roads. Be prudent! Here’s the point: we could learn a thing or two from a man like Benaiah. Sometimes, we just need to do the things that need to be done—no matter what.

Sometimes we are like the love-struck young man who wrote a letter to his girlfriend: “I miss you so much! I cannot wait to see you again! Nothing shall stop me from being reunited with you! My heart breaks until we are together again. I shall see you Friday, unless it is raining!”

Let’s be the sort of people who would take on a lion in a pit on a snowy day!