(this is the Jordan River)
ITTAI AND THE LITTLE ONES
“As Jehovah lives and as my lord the king lives, wherever you shall be,
and even if it means death or life for me, I will be there serving you.”
II Samuel 15:21
King David’s son Absalom was estranged to him, and it may not have been entirely his fault. David was the
man after God’s own heart, but that being the case, you know he wasn’t a perfect parent by a long shot, and
you also know that God rarely chooses candidates who would pass the muster in “godly” circles. David’s life
was a series of up and downs, and with his own son Absalom coming after him for the kill, David once again
was in a downward slide trying to escape Jerusalem. Never doing anything in a small way, with him were
hundreds of people representing a number of factions.
The way of escape this time was by way of the Brook Kidron which flowed out of the east side of Jerusalem
through a somewhat secluded valley and on out to the Dead Sea. Sounds harmless enough until you realize
that this was the sewer and garbage route. Treading through that muck and smelly gunk and coming out
disease free in those days was highly improbable, and could drastically reduce your life expectancy.
David, David, what a life you had. So how come I want to meet you so badly? Maybe we could get together
at the Crystal Sea and catch up. I have questions.
Anyway, this guy Ittai the Gittite and his tribe joined up with David just one day before the swift exodus
began. David told him he’d be better taking his gang and turning around because Absalom wasn’t after the
Gittites. No such thing - thus the verse above. Ittai knew a good thing when he found it. He could see God’s
anointing on David, and from that perspective things about David which were less than perfect were easy to
overlook. In other words, he wasn’t judgmental or bigoted, and it was okay with Ittai to follow God’s servant
knowing full well that the right-wingers of the day would have advised otherwise.
Verse 22: “So Ittai the Gettite went with them and so did all of his people including the little ones.”
The children were put at risk every bit as much as the adults. The polluted stream may have been deep
enough in places requiring the parents to carry the smallest ones, but no mind, they did it because that’s
what people do who follow God. What Ittai knew was that God would protect them regardless of how
unpleasant their escape route happened to be. They all got a grip and pressed on.
“I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” - Paul