In 2 Samuel 24, when The Lords anger burned against Israel, Satan moved David to number Israel and Judah without instruction from God.
[1 Chronicles 21:1-2 NASB]
21 Then Satan stood up against Israel and incited David to count Israel. 2 So David said to Joab and to the leaders of the people, “Go, count Israel from Beersheba to Dan, and bring me word so that I may know their number.”
[2Sa 24:1-2 NASB]
1 Now again the anger of the LORD burned against Israel, and it incited David against them to say, “Go, number Israel and Judah.” 2 The king said to Joab the commander of the army who was with him, “Go about now through all the tribes of Israel, from Dan to Beersheba, and register the people, that I may know the number of the people.”
In Exodus 30:12-13, God told Moses that when he took a census of the Israelites to count each one and to pay the LORD a ransom for his life at the time he is counted. Then no plague would come on them when Moses numbered them.
[Exodus 30:12-13 NASB]
12 “When you take a [a]census of the sons of Israel [b]to count them, then each one of them shall give a ransom for [c]himself to the Lord, when you [d]count them, so that there will be no plague among them when you [e]count them. 13 This is what everyone who [f]is counted shall give: half a [g]shekel according to the shekel of the sanctuary (the shekel is twenty gerahs), half a shekel as a [h]contribution to the Lord.
If David was going to do a census it was only at God’s command! After numbering the people, David felt guilty because It was God’s place to command a census. He repented before God because a man only had the right to count or number what belonged to him.
[2 Samuel 24:1-13 NASB]
10 Now David’s heart [b]troubled him after he had counted the people. So David said to the Lord, “I have sinned greatly in what I have done. But now, Lord, please [c]overlook the guilt of Your servant, for I have acted very foolishly.”
A couple things I learnt reading this, today.
1. Do not do things in anger, it only invokes bad choices! David was able to be moved by Satan because the anger of the Lord incited David’s anger. In that sin, Satan was able to use that anger and make David sin further. Anger is a sin… and it usually begets more sin!
2. Numbers in your pew, attendance list etc. mean nothing unless you are planning on caring for, feeding and laying down our life for each one counted. We do not have the right to count off attendance and claim that victory for ourselves. Those souls belong to God! On this earth, we are merely vessels. If Our Heavenly Father so chooses to pick one of us up and use us. Thank Him.
Father, I pray that today, we will strive to stay humble, keep our eyes on You and serve You all the days of our lives. We repent for any pride that has overtaken our hearts to make us believe that we have any place in the victories we see around us except to be obedient to you. You O Lord are the one who changes hearts and minds! We love you Father. Amen.