Summary: God’s wonderful grace is sufficient for all of our need.
A Perfect Picture of Grace
Sunday, July 26, 2009
By Pastor Jim May
2 Samuel Chapter 9
This chapter in 2 Samuel contains one of the most outstanding stories of grace found in the Old Testament. It is the story of two people; one named Mephibosheth, the child of grace; and Ziba, the self-righteous man. When we look at Mephibosheth we will quickly see that he represents all who are in a sinful condition and without hope.
2 Samuel 4:4 says that Mephibosheth was the son of Jonathan, who was the son of King Saul and the best and most loyal friend that David ever had. But now both Saul and Jonathan were dead. At the end of the battle when both his father and grandfather were killed, his nurse grabbed up the infant baby named Mephibosheth and carried him away to safety. In the process of trying to flee from the enemy she somehow dropped the baby and Mephibosheth never fully recovered from the injuries he suffered that day. He was lame in both legs his entire life.
Mephibosheth lived a place called “Lo-debar” which means a place without pasture. Since King Saul had done his best to kill David, Mephibosheth fully assumed that David would be his sworn enemy. For this reason he hid in obscurity, hoping to escape the notice of David. He figured he was better off poor and cripple than to be a political prisoner in the prison system of Israel.
Does this remind you of the condition of fallen man? He sins against God his Father and immediately begins to hide in the trees, trying to make sure that God didn’t find him. Now we don’t see people run to the trees and hide. We see them run to the bar room or the night club. We see them run to the places where they can enjoy worldly pleasures. In the last day the Bible says that they will even be crying out to the rocks and mountains to fall on them, so that God won’t notice them. But there is no escaping the eyes of God.
Revelation 6:15-17, "And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains; And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?"
What makes a man afraid of a loving God? It isn’t God’s love that is frightening to a sinner; it’s His holiness and righteous judgment! Surely we have all sinned. We all have a certain amount of fear to face God in all of his power, glory and holiness. But we must remember that God gave his only Son so that we would not have to fear Him.
1 John 1:7, "But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin."
Let’s look at the story of Mephibosheth again in 2 Samuel. 2 Samuel 9:1, "And David said, Is there yet any that is left of the house of Saul, that I may shew him kindness for Jonathan’s sake?" I believe that, in essence, this is the same question that God is asking today? As the Holy Spirit moves throughout the sea of humanity, there is but one question that He asks, “Is there yet a fallen son or daughter of Adam to whom I may show kindness?” It doesn’t matter to Him that we are lame, even lame-brained; or that we are trying to hide from his presence. God still searches out those who will receive Him.
And nothing of this world in which the sinner hides will keep God from seeing him as he is. Men chase the things of this world, forgetting God days without number, yet nothing ever fulfills man’s empty heart. There is nothing but disappointment and despair in this world. Nothing satisfies for long. Jesus will never disappoint you. Run to Him!
David called for the servant of his house, a man by the name of Ziba, whose name meant “self-righteous”. Ziba came to David and then we read what happened next in 2 Samuel 9:4-5, "And the king said unto him, Where is he? And Ziba said unto the king, Behold, he is in the house of Machir, the son of Ammiel, in Lodebar. Then king David sent, and fetched him out of the house of Machir, the son of Ammiel, from Lodebar."