Murder, war, adultery, rape, and betrayal. Sounds like a television show…
One that I wouldn’t want to watch because it would probably be rated “R”, yet here I am, reading through the book of 2 Samuel, and I am a bit overwhelmed at the gory details.
Most of the time when we study the life of David, we talk about his defeat of the giant, Goliath, as a young shepherd boy or his conquests and victories as a great king or the promise that “his kingdom will never end.” (Fulfilled by Jesus!) We read his Psalms, see his poetic nature, and are drawn to worship.
“Your Love Oh Lord” Based on Psalm 36
These passages in 2 Samuel present a very different side of David–the human side. He faced fear, disappointment, betrayal, failure and, of course, death.
This was a man, “after God’s own Heart”, yet his sin was as blatant as any man. He seeks the Lord–and yet he sins against Him.
His life is filled with family problems. He’s not sure if he can trust his own son. He’s taken more than one wife–and the wife of another.
For all the good we see in this man, and there is much to be said about David’s legacy–we also see that HE IS JUST A MAN. A man who, for most of his life pursues a close relationship to God, and is blessed by God, in spite of his failures.
The key to David’s success has to be seen in the fact that even though he made mistakes, God blessed him. Why? Why did God bless this shepherd-boy-turned-king? A man who makes big mistakes with painful consequences? Looking at the full picture of this man, we can see success and failure–and in both, David’s life and words demonstrate that his confidence was not in himself, but His God. He looked to God for direction, for forgiveness, for wisdom, and for a heavenly purpose. He had a heart that desired a close relationship to the Lord and when he failed, he confessed his sin and cried out to God for forgiveness. (Psalm 51 is David’s prayer for forgiveness and restoration after committing adultery with Bathsheba.)
The more I read this Bible the more I see that I haven’t seen before. Lessons to be learned and truths that transform my thinking. In this process, I pray that like David, my purest intention will be to become a woman “…after God’s own heart.”
“…He raised up David as their king, of whom He testified; ‘I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after My heart, who will carry out My will.” Acts 13:22
I hope you will join me in memorizing this verse as a reminder that God desires for us to trust Him in the good and the bad times–and to know that He hears us when we cry out to Him.
I can’t know if you are in a place of distress, but I do know that none are exempt from trouble and heartache. My cries are different from yours, but the One who answers those cries is the same:
John 16:33 (NIV)
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
Let these words encourage you! We do not serve a God who is silent or absent. He knows. He sees. And He listens when we cry out to Him. If you are in a difficult place today, why not breathe
these words from David’s Psalm number 61:
God, hear my cry; pay attention to my prayer.
I call to You from the ends of the earth
when my heart is without strength.
Lead me to a rock that is high above me,
for You have been a refuge for me, a strong tower in the face of the enemy.
I will live in Your tent forever and take refuge under the shelter of Your wings.
For more verses from the Scripture Challenge see:
https://wateringcanblog.com/2013/05/06/scripture-challenge-a-verse-from-every-book-in-the-bible/; https://wateringcanblog.com/2013/05/11/scripture-challenge-week-2/; https://wateringcanblog.com/2013/05/22/scripture-challenge-leviticus/ ; https://wateringcanblog.com/2013/05/31/wilderness-response/ ; https://wateringcanblog.com/2013/06/15/what-does-god-want-from-me/