Finished Race

2 Samuel 19-24; the end of the days of King David. If we look at David’s life, it has so many ups and downs, successes and defeats. Acts 13:36 “For David after he had served the purpose of God in his own generation, fell asleep, and was laid among his fathers and underwent decay.” Many of you probably thought I was going to quote Apostle Paul in 2 Timothy 4:7-8; about finishing the race set before him. Well, both men finished what GOD wanted of them in their lives. When I was growing up, and after I became a Christian through faith in Jesus Christ; I asked the Lord for one thing – that my life would count, that my life would make a difference. Well, it some 45 years later and I’m not sure of the answer. We all have our lives that we live out, and I’m sure we all wonder did our lives count?

David was chosen, brought into fame and success as a young boy [shepherd boy] who took on the giant Goliath and won. He demonstrated a faith and obedience unlike many his age. Yet being anointed as the future King, David went through tremendous battles and persecution from King Saul. Yet, David had a friend the king’s own son – Jonathan. David was a warrior, he had blood on his hands from all the thousands of enemies he killed. The people loved David, the Lord loved David, but David was a mere man. Scripture tells us that he was a man after God’s own heart. He would be blessed with a covenant from God, whereby the Messiah/Savior would come through his line and would one day sit on the throne of Judah as the Lion of Judah – this covenant/prophecy will be enacted with the reign of Jesus Christ when He comes back as the Conquering LORD.

David was not a good father figure. We have looked at the lives of Ammon, Tamar, Absalom, and King Saul. David like Eli and several other fathers did not reprove the sins of their children. Absalom kills Ammon after he raped Tamar; then Absalom hides for three years, when he does come back, David doesn’t talk to him for two years. Even when Absalom for 40 years undermines the King’s throne by swaying people to listen to him rather than David; David does nothing but run away from the situation.
I find that David is very high at times and very low at times. He is so gifted with musical talent and artistry, yet he is also plagued with a melancholy spirit for long periods of time.

David dances before the LORD while bringing the Ark of the Covenant to Zion; yet is forbidden to build the Temple [left for Solomon to do]. So David after he had served God in his generation, he died and suffered decay. I find that many of us can identify with David. Our spiritual life has successes and defeats; there are events and actions that have caused us great pain and guilt. We fail, and when we do, we really fail BIG. David was not perfect, but he was forgiven. Reading 2 Samuel 22 a great song – I call David’s Swan Song. I read through and find that David says that he is blessed because he has not acted wickedly, he has kept the ways of the LORD. I go huh? What about the failure with Bathsheba, the murder of Uriah, the absentee father? What about all those failures? How can you say that you are innocent and blameless? [22:22-26] I had to be reminded by the Holy Spirit that God does not see as I see. Isaiah 1:18-20 speaks of God’s forgiveness. Either we have complete and total forgiveness or we don’t. David a man after God’s own heart – read Psalm 51 and note the completer brokenness of David, the strong confession and repentance he speaks of. Admitting that we are failures and have great offense towards God is the beginning. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. If we know us, we must admit not only are we sinners, but we have a sin nature. The root of our problem is the heart in the problem, namely our heart.

People in Israel still worship at the tomb of David; David was a great man, but he was a man. Something that I learned reading through 2 Samuel – Israel was always ready to leave David, only Judah was fully committed to him. Also the life lesson of David’s failure with Bathsheba, changed him. He was no longer that strong warrior. It seems that the failure and murder of Uriah plagued him from then on. We must move past our failures and sins and not let them keep us captive and shackled. I don’t mean minimize them – but deal with them according to the Lord and then move on. We only have “our generation to serve God” – there is someone coming after us. A new generation, a new king in Solomon.

 

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