Summary: This is the first in a series on the life of David. After giving some background, this lesson focuses on how God chooses and prepares His servants.
A. Happy New Year church family! Welcome to 2009 – the last year of the first decade of the 21st century! Hard to believe.
B. Have you chosen any resolutions for the new year?
1. I heard about a man who announced that he was starting a diet as the new year began.
2. His friend said, “Good, I’m ready to start a diet too. We can be dieting buddies and help each other out. When I feel the urge to drive out and get a burger and fries, I’ll call you first.”
3. “Great!” he replied. “I’ll ride with you.”
C. As the new year begins, we are beginning a new sermon series on the life of David called “Cultivating A Heart For God.”
1. Our world is desperately in need of models worth following.
2. We need authentic heroes - people of integrity, whose lives inspire us to do better, to climb higher and to stand taller.
3. David’s life is certainly one worth studying, and one worth imitating.
4. David is the only one in all of Scripture to be called “a man after God’s own heart.”
5. Would it surprise you to learn that more has been written about David than about any other biblical character? (Except Jesus, of course)
a. Abraham has some 14 chapters dedicated to his life, and so does Joseph. Elijah has 10.
b. But do you have any idea how many are dedicated to David? Sixty-six if we are counting correctly.
c. And that doesn’t include the 59 references to his life in the NT.
6. David is the person mentioned more than any other Old Testament character in the pages of the New Testament.
D. We will learn, if we don’t already know, that David was a poet, musician, courageous warrior, and national statesman.
1. In battle, he acted with invincible confidence.
2. In decisions, he judged with wisdom and equity.
3. In writing, he wrote with transparent vulnerability and with quiet trust in God.
4. In friendship, he was loyal to the end.
5. Even in his promotion to the highest position in the land, David modeled integrity and humility.
E. But having said all that, I don’t want you to get the wrong idea about why God chose David – or why God chooses anyone, for that matter.
1. As we will see, David, like us, was anything but perfect.
2. Having earned the public’s trust and respect, he forfeited it all in a brief season of pleasure.
3. Then, as the consequences kick in , we discover another side of the man’s make-up – we see his lustfulness as a husband, weakness as a father, and deceitfulness and ruthlessness as a leader.
F. It’s all there in the Bible, written for all to learn, preserved for all to remember.
1. The Bible never flatters its heroes.
2. The Bible tells us the truth about each biblical character in order that against the background of human breakdown and failure we may appreciate the grace of God and recognize that God delights in working through the platform of human weakness.
3. And so David, and all the great men and women of Scripture, though far from perfect, leave us with a lives lived with strengths worth emulating, and failures to be avoided.
A. Before we delve into the life of David, we need to go back about 40 years and get a sense of what was happening in Israel, the country in which he was born and lived.
1. G. Frederick Owen, in his book Abraham to the Middle-East Crisis, describes those ancient times perfectly in one sentence: “The people were on a long drift from God.”
2. That was the world into which David was born.
B. Eli, the high priest, and his wicked sons were gone.
1. His God-chosen successor, Samuel, the last of the judges, was an old man.
2. Samuel appointed his sons to judge Israel, but that was a mistake.
3. The Bible says, “When Samuel grew old, he appointed his sons as judges for Israel…But his sons did not walk in his ways. They turned aside after dishonest gain and accepted bribes and perverted justice.” (1 Sam. 8:1,3)
4. So the people were disillusioned, and they wanted something done about it.
5. What they really wanted was a king.
6. The elders of Israel met with Samuel and gave him three reasons why they wanted a king.
a. First, you are old. Second, your sons don’t walk in your ways. And third, we want to be like the other nations. (1 Sam. 8:5)
7. Most people have always wanted to be like everybody else, to do the popular thing, and these folks were no exception.
C. And So God let them have exactly what they wanted.