Morning, July 18, edited from Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening

“They shall set out last by their standards.” — Numbers 2:31

The camp of Dan brought up the rear when the armies of Israel were on the march. The Danites occupied the rearmost place, but the importance of their position made no difference, since they were as truly part of the congregation as were the leading tribes; they followed the same cloud and pillar of fire; they ate of the same manna, drank of the same spiritual rock, and traveled to the same inheritance. Come, your heart, cheer up, though last and least; it is your privilege to be in the army, and to fare as they fare who lead at the forefront. Someone must be rearmost in honor and esteem, someone must do tedious work for Jesus, and why shouldn’t I?  In a poor village, among an uninformed group of laborers; or in a back street, among disrespected sinners, I will work on, and “go bring up the last with my banner.”

The Danites occupied a very useful place. Stragglers must be picked up upon the march, and lost property must be gathered from the field. Those with hearts aflame may dash forward over unexplored paths to learn fresh truth, and win more souls to Jesus; but some of a more conservative spirit may be well engaged in reminding the church of her ancient faith, and restoring her weak and struggling sons. Every position has its duties, and the slowly moving children of God will find their unique state to be one in which they may be eminently a blessing to the whole congregation.

The rear guard is a place of danger. There are enemies behind us as well as before us. Attacks may come from any quarter. We read that Amalek assailed Israel, and slaughtered some of the rearmost of them. The experienced Christian will find much work for his weapons in aiding those poor doubting, despondent, wavering souls, who are rearmost in faith, knowledge, and joy. These must not be left unassisted, and therefore it is the business of well-taught believers to bear their banners among the rearmost. I pray my soul will tenderly watch to help the rearmost this day.