Summary: Nothing can thwart God's puposes. God accomplishes His purposes through us.
Power is a test of our character. When we are given the power to do what we want, what we choose to do will reveals WHO we really are.
• Whoever leads has great power. And that’s what worries many.
• That’s probably what makes the US Presidential election so tense. And nearer home, the anxiety we see in Philippines, in North Korea, or in Thailand now.
Historian Lord Acton said in 1887: “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men.”
• Not so if we can submit to God, that power becomes a great asset to God.
David has finally been given the power to rule. He started off with very little influence, put out in the fields by his family to keep a flock of sheep.
• When Samuel came to the house to anoint Israel’s future King, David was not even considered a possibility. They had to be told to get him in from the field.
• Soon he was given some power under King Saul, but that was momentary and fleeting. Even his wife was taken from him and he became a fugitive.
But now David has become the King of Israel. He has been given the power to rule over all Israel.
• In the next few chapters, we are going to see David at his best, but sadly, also the King at his worst.
• We will learn from his experience over the next few chapters.
Today we are going to look at 2 Sam 8. God said He is going to establish his Kingdom. And that would mean first establishing the territory of Israel.
• God grants David victory after victory (NIV bible) over his enemies. We are going to read his conquest of the land.
Read 2 Sam 8:1-14. TWO THINGS I want us to see from this text.
God’s Sovereignty - NOTHING CAN THWART GOD’S PURPOSES
Chapter 8 is the fulfilment of what God said to David in chapter 7:
• 2 Sam 7:9-11 “I have been with you wherever you have gone, and I have cut off all your enemies from before you. Now I will make your name great (8:13), like the names of the greatest men of the earth. 10 And I will provide a place for my people Israel and will plant them so that they can have a home of their own and no longer be disturbed. Wicked people will not oppress them anymore, as they did at the beginning 11 and have done ever since the time I appointed leaders over my people Israel. I will also give you rest from all your enemies.
The success and the triumph of chapter 8 is the result of the promise.
• It did not happen in isolation, it did not happen by chance. It happened because God has promised.
• David is seeing the fulfilment of what God had promised, not just to him NOW but to Abraham, at least 600 years ago.
God made this promise in a covenant with Abraham, some 14 generations before David, according to the genealogies.
• Gen 12:7 “The LORD appeared to Abram and said, "To your offspring I will give this land."
• Gen 13:14-15 “The LORD said to Abram after Lot had parted from him, "Lift up your eyes from where you are and look north and south, east and west. 15All the land that you see I will give to you and your offspring forever.”
• Gen 15:18-21 “On that day the LORD made a covenant with Abram and said, "To your descendants I give this land, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the Euphrates - 19the land of the Kenites, Kenizzites, Kadmonites, 20Hittites, Perizzites, Rephaites, 21Amorites, Canaanites, Girgashites and Jebusites.”
The geographical boundaries to this Promised Land were already in God’s mind when He made a covenant with Abraham.
And now that has come to pass. 2 Sam 8:1 says IN THE COURSE OF TIME, David defeated the Philistines, the Moabites, the Arameans… one after another.
• God gave David victories over the territories that belongs to Israel. These places surrounds Israel; not distant places that David conquers out of ambition.
• It wasn’t a personal conquest. It was a divine one. God did what was necessary to fulfil what He has promised, to Abraham and to David.
David was acting, not on his own impulse, but on the basis of what God said.
• 2 Sam 7:10-11 “I will provide a place for Israel that they can call HOME and no longer be disturbed; I will give you rest from all your enemies.”
Look at the text. These were the places David took back:
• In the WEST the Philistines (v.1), to the EAST the Moabites (v.3), in the NORTH the Arameans of Damascus (v.5), SOUTH the Edomites (v.12), NE Ammonites (v.12), SW the Amalekites (v.12).