Tag Archives: King David

David, Desire and Designs

1 Chronicles 23-27 details the event of King David towards the end of his life. David was a young shepherd who made his “coming out” by taking on the Philistine giant Goliath. He was the youngest son of Jesse and of the line of Judah. David was called a “man after God’s own heart.” David was not a perfect man, but was a repentant man. Psalm 51 tells of his great desire to be right with the LORD. King David’s life was anything but simple and peaceful. War seemed to be the motif that surrounded him. He fought against the enemies of Israel, with his children, with giants [Philistines] and with the reigning King – King Saul. In these last chapters that conclude King David’s life, we find that he still has the DESIRE to serve and honor God. David had to learn so valuable lessons. One of those lessons was captured for us in 1 Chronicles 21, where he arrogantly requested that Joab perform a census. The taking of the census itself was not bad, but the prideful arrogance of the king to glory in the size and number of Israel caused it to be bad. Joab performed the census, and reported the findings to David. Israel was 1,570,000 strong. We may not be impressed with that number, but for a small land mass of Israel, that was a strong amount of people. The outcome of David’s arrogant pride was accounted for by God – because the census displeased God, He offered one of three options as punishment. [21:9-13] David could have 3 years of famine, 3 months of subjection to his enemies or 3 days of pestilence which would cause death angel to hover over Israel. David again admits that he was the one who had sinned, and asked God to be merciful. King David elected to take the 3 days of death, and 70,000 people died. God was about to destroy Jerusalem, but had compassion on the people and said “it is enough” to the angel of death. [1 Chrono 21:14-15] David and the Elders displayed a great brokenness and humility before God, which then God had compassion on them and stayed the hand of death. As I was reading this all I could think of was the 70,000 that died because of King David’s arrogance and pride. It was the leader that greatly sinned; the story written by Lord Alfred Tennison the “Charge of the Light Brigade.” The men , 600 of them marched into a valley and we all killed. The men – soldiers followed their commanders orders and payed with their lives. Here David sinned and caused 70,000 to die. Now I don’t know or begin to understand the why of it all, for 70,000 to die because of someone else’s sin except that Jesus – innocent was delivered over on our behalf and crucified for our sins. The innocent die for the guilty happens in all three cases. I could ask why innocent have to bear the brunt of sinful men; but then God’s ways are not our ways, His thoughts not our thoughts. Sin has always been a problem and destroyer of the innocent. In our world today, many lament over the guilty, depraved men and women destroying lives for their own pleasure and benefit.

David came back to the LORD after the death of these men. He repented and was restored to fellowship with God. It was after this great sin aftermath that King David desired to honor and glorify God with a “House” for the Ark of the Covenant. He was allowed to design, develop and raise the resources for the building of the Temple, but not allowed to build the building. The reason was that David had blood on his hands. He was a man of war. He also had innocent Uriah killed, and as we just saw 70,000 died because of him.  Solomon will be the next king, from all of David’s children. How ironic that from an adulterous relationship with Bathsheba, the next king of Israel would come.

David was allowed to develop designs of how the Temple would look and was also the architect of how the Temple worship would function. This is a huge shift for the people of Israel and God. No longer would the Temple be a temporary place, but a fixture in the land. King David also put forth how worship would be conducted, again changing the way wilderness worship previously was done. David lived to be 70 years old. He reigned over all of Israel for 40 years. He designed and desired to bring great glory though a House of God, but never saw it completed. Talk about planting a tree he would never sit under the shade of!

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Men of Valor

1 Chronicles 10-13 tells us the exploits of 30 men of valor, often referred to as the “30”. Actually there were 37 in total listed as part of the heroic group of fighting men. Saul was known for his “drafting” men in support of Israel’s army. David did not draft men, they were “attracted” to him. These chapters record for us the mighty men of valor who surrounded David in his struggle and battles with King Saul and the Philistines to be the reigning king as Samuel the Judge and Prophet had anointed him to be.

I personally like this passage for it reminds me of what men use to be like. My father was a noble man, not a large man at 5′ 7″, but every ounce was true man. All you had to do was talk with him or shake his hand and you would recognize him to be a “man’s man!”

Some of the names are missing from the list here in Chronicles, but found else where [2 Samuel 23:11-12]. I kept on looking for the third man to be named, but had to research it and find his name in the 2 Samuel 23 passage.

It is interesting to see the list as they are presented to us from each of the tribes. Now having already read the Books of Kings, we know that that Judah and Israel were divided over David. Judah quickly embraced David as King, but many in Israel [to become the Northern tribes later] held out over David, but chose to embrace Ishbosheth instead.  Eventually, all of the tribes came to David and claimed him as King.

There is a name that I happen to stumble on of the listed names, but hadn’t made the connection. Really, many names are repeated over and over, so I didn’t make the correlation. The Name is Uriah the Hittite in 1 Chronicles 11:41. Yes you guessed it, this is the same Uriah that King David had an affair with his wife – Bathsheba. Yes the same Uriah that was eventually slain in the battlefield, after Joab left him in the heat of the battle against the enemy. Whoa! Let that sink in a bit. In our reading we find these men are men of distinction and valor. Valor means great courage in the face of danger, especially in battle; Strength of mind in regard to danger; that quality which enables a person to encounter danger with firmness; personal bravery; courage; prowess; intrepidity.

Okay, now that we have identified what kind of man Uriah was, we know what kind of death he was subjected to – does anyone else see the great hypocrisy of David exposed here? The betrayal is beyond words. Uriah counted as one of the “30 men of valor” that secured David the throne of Israel is treated with such utter contempt!

I get the image of Jesus looking at Peter after he denied him three times. Uriah had done nothing wrong, and gave unwavering allegiance to David, and without so much as a second thought David orders Joab to put Uriah up front then withdraw from him so he would be killed – why? SO that David’s sin would be hid – or so he thought.

Sin affects innocent people, valorous people. We live in a world today that is filled with contempt for other human life. I don’t know how many who are reading this have ever been betrayed by someone who took their allegiance and friendship of no value? There will be times in our living that those whom we hold the dearest will let us down, even betray us, cheapened our lives as meaningless. Uriah died – but many of us are still alive. We must know that as believers Jesus has sent us our like lambs before ravenous wolves. Our resolve must be like that of Uriah – faithful to the end.

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Houses and Palaces

1 Kings 5-9 our reading for the week is filled with the extraordinary descriptions of the House of the LORD [Temple] and the Palace of King Solomon. It took 7 years to build the Temple of God and 13 years to build Solomon’s Palace. There is such extravagance in the building of these to structures, it consumes the reader’s imagination on what it could possible look like. I couldn’t help but think of the intricate details given to Moses on how to construct the Ark of the Covenant and the Sanctuary in the Wilderness. Meticulous instructions and descriptions. The grandeur of Solomon is still talked about today. The wisest man in the world, because God granted it to him, spares no expense on constructing the original Temple Mount and Holy of Holies for God to put His name there. Obviously God can’t be contained, but the Temple would be engulfed by the Presence of God at the dedication later. One can think of when Isaiah went to the Temple [still standing temporarily] and how the smoke-filled the Temple. Solomon didn’t waste much time in his reign before he started building – 4 years. Also note it had been 480 years since the deliverance from Egypt – the “iron furnace.” I stopped and went back to the book of Exodus and thumbed through the books between it and 1 Kings – I was exhausted with thinking about how God had been orchestrating the habitation of Israel into the Promise Land, promised 460 earlier to Abraham. God’s WORD is sure!

David had wanted to build for God a “place to put His name.” But because of the blood on David’s hands, being a man of war, and note it was during the reign of King David that God granted peace on all sides of Israel. David would be greatly instrumental in gathering in all the resources for the building of the Temple, but He wouldn’t see the temple in His day. I have used this next phrase time and time again lately – I wonder if we the Church of today are willing to plant a Tree that we will never sit under the shade of it?” In other words are we willing to plan for the ability of the next generation to come after us to “build a strong Temple of worship” to the Lord? Even through all of the building and construction, at the dedication of the Temple – Solomon is reminded – “I will put my Name here only if you follow me like your father David before you did.” there is more, but too much for this blog.

Solomon conscripted the undisposed tribes that lived in the Land to build. AT the height we find that 150,000 men were employed to build the Temple and Palace. It is interesting that Solomon spent twice as long on His Palace than he did on the Lord’s Temple. The lifestyle and the extravagance of Solomon and his court is mind-boggling. In Chapter 4, we are told that it took 12 deputies that provided for the king’s house – one each month. Even secular history is filled with the mythical stories of the riches and wealth of Solomon. We know that God not only granted Solomon wisdom, but everything else in riches of the world. NOTE: it is Solomon who will conduct a test of the world’s resources to see if they satisfy – he alone had the access and capability to find if the world’s commodities could bring happiness – read the book of Ecclesiastes]

We are told over and over again that there would not cease to be on the throne of David, an ancestor as long as they were obedient like David. How did David walk – 1 Kings 9:4; he walked in integrity of heart, in uprightness, doing all according to all that the LORD commanded, and kept His statutes and ordinances.

King Solomon and Israel had inherited the result of defeating the enemies by their forefathers. Looking back at 480 yrs. of Israel history shows how bloody it was, until God gave “His king” to reign over them.  We have a bloody history, we have been fighting enemies for centuries; it many places the war still rages. BUT God has given us HIS King – King Jesus. David was a man of blood – so was Jesus; His blood cleansed us, purified us and brought us great peace on each side. Jesus our King of Kings has given us “This Temple [body] to put His Name on.” Solomon spared no expense for a Palace; Jesus spared no Expense for His House – of which we are the Temples of God.

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Contested Leadership

2 Samuel 19-1 Kings 2; in these chapters we find that there is a sub-topic that is often overlooked. I kept pondering the relationship with Israel and Judah. Judah remained with King David through all conflicts; yet Israel was quick to embrace the instigator of the conflict. The relationship between the Northern kingdom and Southern kingdom was an on-going battle. The battle rages through the time of King Saul until the “cleansing” of ancestors by King Solomon in 1 Kings 2.

David was anointed king by Samuel after the debacles of Saul, and the Spirit of God withdrew from him. David was hunted and haunted by Saul until his death. Even then Judah embraced David, but Israel delayed their support. The first time authority is challenged it is by Ish-Bosheth, Saul’s son. This results in a civil war between the people of God. Prior to that David was made king over Judah.[ 2 Samuel 2] If we look at this time in Israel’s history, we notice the evidence of a “divided kingdom.” Why is a very good question. With King David on the throne, there is a united kingdom, but that wasn’t for seven years. One could ask why this problem of two kingdoms within the same people? We cold look at major and minor nations – population wise. Could it be more spiritual than that, I would think so. Judah will remain somewhat faithful to Yahweh, whereas Israel quickly embraces Baal gods.

There is much that flows under the bridge of David’s life when we get to Ammon, Tamar and Absalom event. David did a great ministry by reaching out to Mephibosheth, but then he sins a great sin with Bathsheba. Great victories are often followed by lapses into sin. David is never the same man after the Bathsheba incident. The next conflict or challenge to Kingship comes from Absalom, David’s son. Of course there were 5 years of parental neglect on David’s part. But Absalom begins to usurp kingly authority by sitting at the Gate and issuing judgments for the people. Absalom does this unchecked for 40 yrs. [2 Sam 15:6-7] What does David do, he flees. Through Joab, the general of the armies, Absalom is killed, and David assumes kingship again.

Then Sheba a worthless man, a Benjamite leads a revolt against David. Again Joab puts down the revolt by killing Sheba. King David lives out the remaining days is sickness/cold. On his death-bed we have a challenge for the throne from another son, Adonijah. Through the work of Nathan and Bathsheba, Solomon is enthroned. It isn’t until there is a “family heir cleansing” by Solomon, do we finally get peace. Oh, before the revolt is put down, Israel embraces Adonijah as king.

You are probably wondering where is this all going. Well, I find there is a correlation between the Church and the Pastor [appointed leadership], where the choice of God and the leadership of pastors are very often challenged. In the absence of leadership, leadership comes forth. In King David’s case, he did not aggressively put down the challenges to the throne which was appointed to him by God. Too often pastors will not confront the perpetrators in a revolt for leadership. The Pastor is not a hired gun, but an appointed shepherd by the LORD Jesus to care for the Church/flock/sheep. Too many times the Church body will follow those in their midst that have NO RIGHT to the Throne. Pastors/leaders must be bold in their leadership. Admonish and correct for the sake and health of the Body. In many of the challenges to leadership we find that David had to deal with Joab, and Abithar the priest. Two worlds, the flesh and the spirit at odds, yet will come together if they think they can overthrow the rule of the righteous. This happened with Pilate and King Herod in the death of Jesus.

In the family of God there are many conflicts and challenges to the authority of leadership. Today in the Church we struggle to accomplish the work of God because the “family” is in conflict on who should lead.

I find it extremely interesting that after the reign of Solomon, that Israel under Jeroboam departs quickly from Judah and Benjamin. The Lost Ten tribes of Israel become entrenched in idolatry – Jeroboam gave the people what they wanted – they wanted a leader that would give them what THEY wanted, not what Jehovah wanted.

Acts 13:36, After David serve the Lord God in His generation, he slept with his fathers and under went decay.

David is renowned for loving God, not perfect, but repentant. Pastors – lead, and stand against the wiles of the devil; do not give up your leadership without a hold fight!

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Proverbs Parenting

Last week was more of an introduction to Proverbs, written by King Solomon the heir of King David to the throne of united Israel. King Solomon is known for his many wives and concubines, his myriad of chariots and horses, the “Solomon mines” myth or reality story; our focus is on his Wisdom. At the request of God, Solomon was asked to request one gift or wish – He asked for Wisdom and God granted him the “wisest man ever” title with all the luxuries and wealth besides.

Where did he get the ability to know how/what to ask for? In Proverbs 4 we find that his father had been teaching and instructing him in the understanding of Wisdom. So when we wonder how Solomon knew to ask for wisdom rather than some other “human desire”, we find that he was following his father David’s advice.

Being a Proverbs Parent is difficult, especially in today’s cultural environment. There is a tendency to give way too much credence to youth and their ideas, than to give them the hard-earned and learned sage wisdom of living. Children of all ages do not need “friendly parenting” they need a strong loving and disciplining parent. I can already hear some saying “oh hear we go someone who is out of touch with reality is going to tell me how to raise my children.” Nope I’m going to let God’s Word do that. I remember growing up and hearing about a well-known author on parenting – Dr. Spock ring a bell? When i think of how many parents followed his advice [he wasn’t married and didn’t even have children when he wrote his parenting book]; how many bought into the ill-advice he promoted? We got plenty of Dr. Spock parented kids running around out of control as adults!  The christian environment has been trying to offset such teaching with things from James Dobson and others – Parenting By Grace.

Parenting is the hardest job anyone can do; and the results are eternal. I know as a pastor so many broken and dysfunctional families in and out of the church. Often I hear parents talk and say “I took them to Church, they attended the youth group, or went to Youth Camps” “I don’t know why they are they way they are – I’ve done everything!” Hummm, not to guilt trip parents but the youth minister, camps and weekly church activities do not suffice if they are not reinforced at home!

There is such a contrast between a “home schooled child” and a church schooled child.” Parents must talk about life with their children. I know it’s embarrassing; better to learn from you than from the kids at school. I grew up in a disciplining home; I did fear getting in trouble because I knew the consequences if I did. We wonder why children are rebellious, uncontrollable and flat out brats? Someone told me one time if you don’t like what your kids are acting like – look in the mirror! Ouch! Parenting with “I’m counting to three!; you’re going grounded and I will put you in time out – doesn’t work. Children need instruction from their parents; they need examples from their parents. Proverbs is a great book for self-reflection. The book is filled with adult topics of discussion for families.

There are warnings after warnings of what happens to rebellious, sensual, godless living. Life has repercussions – so does sin! We talk to our children about everything except the very topics they need to hear from parents not liberal teachers and street lawyers. The “Living for Me” attitude is catastrophic for the person and society. Immorality is not benign; pornography is not harmless – it is an opioid of addiction. Proverbs 6 is a great warning to both men and women about their sexual prowess. The sanctity of marriage is real – divorce is terrible and damaging to lives – Tell your children “Don’t Go There!” There could be volumes written on the attraction of beauty. Sensual living has its moment; but it also has its scars and disgrace.

I know this may sound like ranting and raving – but our society and our global are filled with the debasing of women, children and the homosexual agenda that promotes itself as “Born that way”  – “It’s how God made me” LGBTQA has been around a lot longer than just this generation. Remember the evil cities that were destroyed because of defiled men? It saddens me to think that my grandchildren are growing up in a world that has so inundated us with their ideological heresy that my grandchildren think that “alternate lifestyles” is a right. Proverbs gives every mom and dad the topics of discussions for their children. Talk about these topics from the vantage point of God, our Lord Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit. Solomon isn’t the only one who can ask for wisdom and get – James 1:5 we can have it too!

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