1 Samuel 31:1-2
Wed, 15 December 2021

Was It a Tragic Death?


Did Jonathan die a tragic death? Why or why not?

Deeper Reflection
IN RECENT YEARS, I have been observing and reflecting on how faithful followers of Jesus died. Someone whom I know personally was on a mission trip. Then one day, as she was crossing the road, a truck hit her and she died. It was like something that happened out of nowhere. There are no answers to questions like, “Why didn’t God protect her and prevent it from happening?” The fact is, this person who loved the Lord died in such an unexpected manner so suddenly. Was it a tragic death? On Mount Gilboa, “the Philistines killed Jonathan” (v.2) – the first reported casualty in that battle. Jonathan had played significant roles in previous narratives (1 Sam 14, 18-20, 23). Through Jonathan, God brought about for Israel a miraculous earth-shaking victory over the vast Philistine army because he acted in faith in God (1 Sam 14:6-23). The last time we hear of Jonathan was when he sought David in the wilderness and “encouraged him in God” and assured him that he “will be king over Israel” (1 Sam 23:16-17). Was it a tragic death that Jonathan died the way he did? Here is “Jonathan’s obituary”: “He remained a true friend of David and a faithful son to Saul. He surrendered his kingship to David (1 Sam 18:1-4) and he sacrificed his life for Saul. In this hopeless fiasco, Jonathan was nowhere else but in the place Yahweh had assigned him – at the side of his father.”13 When we remain faithful in the calling God has assigned us, there is nothing tragic in whatever evil that may befall us.
13 Dale Ralph Davis, 324

How do I live in situations that appear to be tragic?

Write a prayer to God as your response from your meditation on and application of the Scriptures.
Prayer Pointers:
  • Give thanks and praise:
  • Pray for leaders:
  • Pray for The Silver Generation:
  • To trust in God’s love and sovereign wisdom in adverse times
  • Pray for those in need:
  • Pray for self:

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Daily Devo
Daily Devotional Journal
Daniel 5:17, 25-31; 6:1-2
Mon, 5 June 2023

Serving from Babylon to Persia


What is the significance of Daniel serving in the Babylonian and Persian
courts successively?

Deeper Reflection
God’s word to Belshazzar that He would “put an end” to his kingdom and give it “over to the Medes and Persians” was fulfilled immediately – “that same night” (v.30) – after Daniel’s interpretation of the inscription on the wall (vv.25-31). God can fulfil His Word immediately or after a long time. Whatever time God may take to fulfil His Word, He is “trustworthy in all His promises and faithful in all He does” (Psa 145:13b, NIV).The demise of the Babylonian hegemony was not just a historical event, but primarily a theological one. Nebuchadnezzar was “My servant” whom God raised to judge His unfaithful people in the seventy-year Babylonian exile (Jer 25:8-9, 11). When God had accomplished His purpose through Babylon, “I will punish the king of Babylon and that nation” (Jer 25:12). This is how God deals with arrogant and evil nations: “And Babylon, the beauty of kingdoms, the glory of the Chaldeans’ pride, will be as when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah” (Isa 13:19).The end of Babylon does not mean an insecure future for Daniel. However drastically our circumstances may change, God’s call for our lives remains when we walk with Him faithfully. We are secure in God’s call, because it is God’s call. Daniel became one of “the three commissioners” in Persia (Dan 6:1-2). It wasn’t that having lost his job Daniel applied to serve the Persian king. Daniel couldn’t do that. It was purely by royal appointment. But behind the “It seemed good to Darius to appoint” (Dan 6:1) was God’s call for Daniel to serve Him from Babylon to Persia.

How do I relate God’s call for me in drastic changes of my life situations?

Lord, I believe You have a calling for my life which You have intended to be distinctive for me. I want to live my life with a deep sense of answering Your calling. Help me to walk with You faithfully, knowing that as I do so, You will unfold Your plans for me in that calling. Grant me wisdom and understanding to discern Your calling for my life.
Prayer Pointers:
  • Give thanks and praise
  • Pray for leaders
  • Pray for significant people
  • Pray for those in need
  • Pray for self

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