It's Just a Field of Lentiles
Next to him was Shammah son of Agee the Hararite. When the Philistines banded together at a place where there was a field full of lentils, Israel’s troops fled from them. But Shammah took his stand in the middle of the field. He defended it and struck the Philistines down, and the Lord brought about a great victory. 2 Samuel 23: 11-12
In the list of King David’s mighty men in 2 Samuel 23:8-39, we read that Sammah earned the appellation of being one of David’s mighty men by defending a field of lentils.
Now, it might seem insignificant and not worthwhile to risk one’s life over a field of lentils. So, why did Sammah risk his life to defend a plot of lentils? Israel’s troops fled from the Philistines. They thought it would be wise to choose to pick their battles at a more favorable location. But, Sammah thought otherwise. He chose to defend the field of lentils. Sammah knew (1) the field belonged to Israel and that (2) the lentils were food for God’s chosen people. As a result of Sammah’s courage, it is recorded, the Lord brought about a great victory.
I think we are too ready to surrender small portions of truth to avoid conflict. When we do, we surrender the knowledge of the truth and the sustenance that truth affords for our daily lives.
Let us remember the words of the Apostle Paul, when, in his last conversation with the elders of Ephesus in the coastal town of Miletus, he reminded them that he ministered to them all the counsels of God. May we not forget the little word, all, and may the example of Sammah defending a field of lentils encourage us to defend even a small field of truth for ourself as well as for the Lord's people.
For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God. Acts 20:27.
So, when you read the list of David’s mighty men, ponder the example of Sammah. Even though he did not attack the enemy’s land, yet, he courageously defended Israel’s land and the crops it produced. So, at least, may we have the courage to defend all the truth of God’s word, so that we can be nourished and grow in everything that God has provided for us.