December 2017 Issue of Christian Worker (David: The Man After God’s Own Heart – Part 3)

Here’s a link to the latest PDF issue of the Christian Worker.

Here are the topics you will find:

  • The Lord’s Anointed (Jason Jackson)
  • David: The Man After God’s Own Heart (Cody Westbrook)
  • David and Uzzah (Don Walker)
  • Saul vs. David (Ken Hope)
  • The Son of David (Clay Bond)

Christian Worker is an edification effort of the Southwest church of Christ in Austin, Texas.

You can subscribe to the email version of the Christian Worker paper by clicking on the publications link on their website and then following the given instructions.

Copyright © 2017 Southwest church of Christ, All rights reserved.

#anointing, #bible-characters, #christian-worker, #jesus-on-davids-throne, #king-david, #king-saul, #respect-for-authority, #throne-of-david

October 2017 Issue of Christian Worker (David: The Man After God’s Own Heart)

Here’s a link to the latest PDF issue of the Christian Worker.

Here are the topics you will find:

  • David’s Place in the Story of the Bible (Steven Lloyd)
  • Give us a King! (Cody Westbrook)
  • David the Friend (Bill Burk)
  • David the Prophet (Daniel F. Cates)
  • David the Giant Slayer (Kevin Cauley)

Christian Worker is an edification effort of the Southwest church of Christ in Austin, Texas.

You can subscribe to the email version of the Christian Worker paper by clicking on the publications link on their website and then following the given instructions.

Copyright © 2017 Southwest church of Christ, All rights reserved.

#bible-characters, #christian-worker, #david-and-goliath, #david-and-jonathan, #gods-prophet, #king-david, #king-saul

FAIR AND BALANCED

Can you be “fair and balanced” in all that your think and do? It is likely you think that you can. This is a reasonable perspective, but not one that is necessarily accurate.

I recall receiving jury summons a number of times, but only once being in the jury pool where I was interviewed by the lawyer. I made it a point to answer truthfully, giving all indications that I could be fair with the evidence presented in the trial. I was not chosen. I do not know why, but since then I was told that, in part, you were not chosen because you think and live by absolutes, that is, as a Christian. A Christian not chosen because he or she lives by the Lord’s authority and not one’s own?

This philosophy of life I live by encourages and demands that I interpret life through the lens of God’s righteousness. In other words, things are wrong, or they are right because there is a measurement that is higher than man’s law, or perspective. It is this perspective that should be the foundation of being “fair and balanced.”

Sometimes, however, one’s philosophy is warped. This was the case in 1 Samuel 23:7 when King Saul interpreted the events in front of him as God’s deliverance of his enemy David. How could Saul be so wrong when on occasions previous to this he had been told by the Lord’s prophet, Samuel, that God has rejected him and chosen another to sit on the throne? Saul was wrong because he deceived himself into thinking that God still might be assisting him in his reign—after all, didn’t God place him on the throne? Since he was there, isn’t it reasonable that God will protect him while on the throne?

Interpreting life by God’s standard demands that I be “fair and balanced.” That means that I judge all by the same standard, showing no partiality. This is fairness. It is righteous judgment when one takes the information gathered, puts it into the context of the scenario, and renders a verdict. This is balance.

The challenge for each Christian, then, is to have the determination to do exactly that, not being quick to come to incomplete conclusion, but deliberate to come to righteous conclusions.

#fair-and-balanced, #judgment, #king-saul, #philosophy-of-life

One grew stronger while the Other grew weaker

2 Samuel 3:1 is an interesting verse to me. It says, “Now there was a long war between the house of Saul and the house of David. But David grew stronger and stronger, and the house of Saul grew weaker and weaker.” To say that the war was over between the two houses after the death of Saul would have been wishful thinking. The king had been taken off the board, but the deadly game continued. There were still violent battles that would be fought and acts of treachery that would take place between the two camps for quite some time to come. And despite the length of the skirmishes it soon became a war of attrition, and with one party on the in and the other on the out, the conflicts only delayed the inevitable.

The house of David no doubt grew in confidence. On the run for so many years but now sitting in the seat of power. They were no longer pursued; they were the pursuers!   Each subsequent battle would seal the entire political, and nearly the entire physical fate of Saul’s progenitors.

The house of David no doubt grew in number of followers. What had been a relatively small number of men who fought for the cause of David had now swollen to the giant majority. In the past they had lacked food and force, but now with the changing tide of influence the ones who once had to resort to eating the showbread of the Tabernacle now had a multitude of tables at their disposal. Soon all of Israel would serve David.

The house of David obviously grew in descendants according to 2 Samuel 3:2-5. David had multiplied wives while in Hebron and therefore he had several sons. A reading of 2 Samuel 5:14-16 also reveals the names of those born to him in Jerusalem as well. A person with knowledge of David’s future would notice the name of Solomon in 2 Samuel 5, and with that knowledge they would know that David’s bad habit of multiplying the women in his life would lead to the sad and painful loss of several of his sons. The mighty house of David would suffer great loss, but its promise of lasting strength rested upon a descendant that David could only see through the Spirit (Acts 2:22-36).

The history that makes up the rift between the houses of Saul and David is powerful, intriguing, suspenseful and but for the grace of God it would be an altogether tragedy in every sense of the word. It highlights the deceptiveness of sin, the dangers of politics, the consequences of quenching the Spirit of God and the awe-inspiring providential will of God. It reveals how a righteous God works with and even in spite of the intentions of man. And in the end it shows what happens to every house (people, places, and nations) who resists the will of God.

And if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” (Joshua 24:15)

#god, #king-david, #king-saul, #old-testament-lessons

It is not always easy

Have you ever felt compelled by circumstance to alter what you previously planned? It is likely that you have. This seems to be a norm in life, and one that each of us “plan” for (if you will). However, it is not always good to alter our plans; this is especially the case when a higher authority (the Lord) has commanded something to be done. Because of circumstances, King Saul felt compelled to offer of a sacrifice to the Lord before Samuel arrived. Samuel replied to what Saul did as one who acted foolishly (1 Samuel 13:13). People might be sympathetic to circumstances in one’s life and be charitable to altered plans, but you will underscore the word might. The Lord was not charitable to Saul even when Saul felt compelled; he presumed on the Lord’s authority and this was not a presumption the Lord allowed him to make. Saul’s anxiety in the situation is instructive to us. There might be some legitimacy to Saul’s concern (as Saul saw it), but it was a test to Saul as to which would be the stronger “pull.” Would it be the Lord’s command or man’s compunction?

#king-saul, #plans, #presumption

Reflection

Some reflecting thoughts on 1 Samuel 22:6-8.

1) Saul was a man of political opportunism, 2) a poor pitiful me attitude, 3) and insecurity. The combination of these three resulted in disaster toward innocent people. Contrast Saul and his moral failings with the response of David when he heard the news (1 Samuel 22:22).

#king-saul