Summary: This is the last sermon in a series on the Life of David. It contains his words of advice to his son Solomon which can be useful to us, too. It contains an amusing story.
The Last Words
1 Now the days of David drew near that he should die, and he charged Solomon his son, saying:
2"I go the way of all the earth; be strong, therefore, and prove yourself a man.
3And keep the charge of the LORD your God: to walk in His ways, to keep His statutes, His commandments, His judgments, and His testimonies, as it is written in the Law of Moses, that you may prosper in all that you do and wherever you turn;
4that the LORD may fulfill His word which He spoke concerning me, saying, 'If your sons take heed to their way, to walk before Me in truth with all their heart and with all their soul,' He said, 'you shall not lack a man on the throne of Israel.'
5 Moreover you know also what Joab the son of Zeruiah did to me, and what he did to the two commanders of the armies of Israel, to Abner the son of Ner and Amasa the son of Jether, whom he killed. And he shed the blood of war in peacetime, and put the blood of war on his belt that was around his waist, and on his sandals that were on his feet.
6Therefore do according to your wisdom, and do not let his gray hair go down to the grave in peace.
7 But show kindness to the sons of Barzillai the Gileadite, and let them be among those who eat at your table, for so they came to me when I fled from Absalom your brother.
8And see, you have with you Shimei the son of Gera, a Benjamite from Bahurim, who cursed me with a malicious curse in the day when I went to Mahanaim. But he came down to meet me at the Jordan, and I swore to him by the LORD, saying, 'I will not put you to death with the sword.'
9Now therefore, do not hold him guiltless, for you are a wise man and know what you ought to do to him; but bring his gray hair down to the grave with blood."
10 So David rested with his fathers, and was buried in the City of David. 11The period that David reigned over Israel was forty years; seven years he reigned in Hebron, and in Jerusalem he reigned thirty-three years.
Fred Martin was 85 years old and had been a faithful Christian.
His wife had died several years ago and Fred lived alone.
Old age was reducing Fred's ability to do certain things.
His family wanted to admit him to a nursing home,
but Fred refused to do that.
His two sons and daughter would frequently check on their Dad
to see if he needed anything.
One day, Fred suffered a heart attack
and was rushed to the hospital.
Doctors did every thing they possibly could,
but they could see that Fred was going to die.
More of that story a little later!
For more than a year, we've been looking at the life of David.
This is the last sermon about David.
As we have covered David's life,
I hope we have learned something for ourselves.
David has grown old and is about to die.
Before David died, he had some very important final words
for the new king, his son, Solomon.
Even though he was a man who had defeated many enemies,
he could not avoid death.
David had written the 23rd Psalm.
In it, he speaks about "the valley of the shadow of death".
He would have to walk through that valley.
However, David could do that with assurance
because he knew that the great Shepherd was with him.
If we truly are Christians,
death should not be something we dread.
It's just the doorway through which we step from this earth
into heaven and everlasting life.
We are set free from sin, sorrow, sickness, and death.
In heaven, we will live in the presence of God
and all the people we look forward to seeing again.
Heaven is a place more beautiful than any place here on earth.
Knowing that should give us great comfort!
David had no fear of dying.
He had faith in the goodness and blessing of God.
Even so, before his death,
David was concerned about Solomon and his empire.
Some people might try to destroy Solomon and his kingdom.
So Solomon was summoned to his father's bedside.
The advice David offered was both spiritual and practical.
Let's get back to the story of Fred Martin.
A call was quickly placed to Fred's family.
They were told that their father didn't have long to live
so they better hurry to the hospital.
The two sons and daughter rushed to Fred's bedside.
They found their father unconscious in the Intensive Care Unit.