And Ittai answered the king, and said, As the LORD liveth, and as my lord the king liveth, surely in what place my lord the king shall be, whether in death or life, even there also will thy servant be. ~2 Samuel 15:21
In marriage vows, husbands and wives make solemn, lifelong commitments and pledges to one another. One of these pledges we make is, “Till death do us part.” Let us see how a choice friend of David pledged his loyalty and commitment to him at a time when many in the kingdom had abandoned him. Let us see the makeup of true dedication.
We see the purpose.
True dedication is an absolute commitment of effort, resources, and availability. There is no reservation in a pledge of dedication. In the Christian life, dedication is a surrender of our bodies and lives to the good, perfect, and acceptable will of God. In dedication, we make it known that our whole reason for living is to honor and please our Lord. The hymn writer wrote, “Take my life and let it be consecrated, Lord, to Thee.” It is giving our life for the glory and pleasure of our Lord.
We see the persuasion.
Ittai promised, “Surely in what place my lord the king shall be, whether in death or life, even there also will thy servant be.” There were risks being associated with David, but Ittai was convinced he would live out the remainder of his life with David. The blessing of God on a life dedicated to Him can be measured by the person giving up everything about his previous, selfish interests and doing what his Lord wants him to do. I think of men who made incredible sacrifices to take the gospel to foreign soil and how God blessed this complete dedication with salvation decisions, churches being started, and national pastors being trained.
We see the performance.
After a marriage vow is made, the husband and wife seal this vow with rings, the lighting of a unity candle, the first kiss, and the pronouncement that they are husband and wife. In true dedication, we do what our Lord wants us to do and go where He wants us to go. We are in absolute, surrendered submission to the will of God. Ittai made it publicly known that David was his king and he would follow him and do whatever his king asked of him. This performance is for the duration of our life, even to our death. There is an inseparable commitment in true dedication. Hardships, setbacks, criticisms, and any other challenges to our pledge are ignored. True dedication goes forward with passion and perseverance.
We see the person.
Ittai’s name means “with me.” Symbolically, his name represented affection, loyalty, commitment, and true dedication. He was with David in life and death. He dedicated himself to defending, representing, and doing what David required of him. He determined to be with David at all times of the day. He determined to travel where David went. He determined to suffer for David, if required. The ultimate test was his sacrificial commitment to even die for David, if necessary. Ittai did not make this decision because there was the promise of a great reward at a time when the stakes were high and death was very imminent.
Our Lord is looking for men and women who are completely dedicated and sold out to Him, whether in life or in death. “Play the man” this morning, and let it be known you are the King’s man, no matter what the cost.
Have a dedicated God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: 2 Corinthians 5-9