Summary: Why Jesus saved me, I have NO idea. It surely wasn't because I was a good person. The story of David's love for his best friend Jonathan is shown in the love shown toward Jonathan's son Mephebosheth. This beautiful story shows how God saves anyone!
The Church Beyond The Church Walls Part II: Even Dead Dogs!
Love God...Love Family...Love The Brotherhood...Love Others!
We've been on a journey here at Resurrection for the past two months this being the ninth message in this series, Kindred United. The overarching idea is that we must, as a church body (the kindred, the family, the brethren or brotherhood) be melded or joined together (united) in our faith. In short, we as a church family needs to be on the same page!
Key in this thought is that if we truly love God (the first principle from the Scripture above) then all else will follow. We will love our families, and make Jesus Christ a priority in our lives. We will love the brotherhood because we are all brothers and sisters in Jesus, they are our church family and scripture in clear in 1 John 3 that the unsaved "will know we are Christians by our love". We look upward to God first as our God, we look around us to our family and our church family. However, we are called lastly, as part of the definition of "neighbors", to look outward to others--particularly those in need. But how do we reach people that are in need?-
Last week, we start a multi-part series of messages that will show how real ministry does not just happen on Sunday or just within the four walls of the church. Real ministry often happens beyond the church house, and where the church brethren go the other six days per week. Last week, we saw how God sent Elijah from Ahab’s palace to boot camp at the Brook Cherith, then after about a year of being cared for there to Zaraphath to a widow and her son. God took care of a single mom that was prepared to watch her son die of starvation while did as well. God provided an endless supply of flour and oil for all three of them and other family members as well.
This week, we will look again to the Old Testament, and we will see a picture of the grace of God through Jesus Christ in 2 Samuel 9. We will see how we are just like the crippled man--unworthy of salvation yet recipients of kindness and grace
Remembering The Kindness Of A Best Friend...And A Promise
Now David said, "Is there still anyone who is left of the house of Saul, that I may show him kindness for Jonathan's sake?" And there was a servant of the house of Saul whose name was Ziba. So when they had called him to David, the king said to him, "Are you Ziba?" And he said, "At your service!" Then the king said, "Is there not still someone of the house of Saul, to whom I may show the kindness of God?" And Ziba said to the king, "There is still a son of Jonathan who is lame in his feet." So the king said to him, "Where is he?" And Ziba said to the king, "Indeed he is in the house of Machir the son of Ammiel, in Lo Debar." 2 Samuel 9:1-4 (NKJV)
King David is known as a “man after God’s own heart” (Acts 13:22). The love that David had for God is well known, more so than his failures at times with Bathsheba and others. David is well known from the famous story of his battle with the Philistine giant Goliath, and how he defeated the huge pagan with a single stone launched from his sling. Further, David is known as a fierce warrior.
David is also known for the great love he had for his best friend, Jonathan--Saul’s son: When David had finished speaking with Saul, Jonathan committed himself to David, and loved him as much as he loved himself. (1 Samuel 18:1, HCSB). In fact, Jonathan protected David when his father King Saul was trying to kill him on different occasions. The deep brotherly love between these two best friends was so deep that they both entered into a covenant--a special promise--as seen in 1 Samuel 18 and 20. Part of that promise was that when David became kind and Jonathan would die, David would show kindness to his family. Saul and Jonathan both died, and David became king.
Later we catch up to David in 2 Samuel 9 above. David had settled in as king of Israel, and remembered his covenant with his best friend Jonathan: "Is there still anyone who is left of the house of Saul, that I may show him kindness for Jonathan's sake?". Ziba, Saul’s servant was summoned and asked the same question, and answered "There is still a son of Jonathan who is lame in his feet."
What we see here is an example of God reaching out for us for the sake of another, Jesus Christ. Perhaps you have heard of the term “whipping boy”; this is a reference to a boy that was a good friend and companion of a prince that would endure the punishment--a whipping--on behalf of the prince. A prince could not be spanked or whipped by anyone other than his father the king, so in order to maintain order with the child their friend--to whom he was close--would be punished in his place. While David exercised kindness for Jonathan’s sake, God exercises kindness--grace, which is unmerited or unearned favor--to us for Jesus’s sake, and even punished Jesus on our behalf so that we would not be separated from Him forever.