Summary: “And David shepherded them with integrity of heart; with skillful hands he led them.”(Psalm 78:72)
“And David shepherded them with integrity of heart; with skillful hands he led them.”(Psalm 78:72)
78th Psalms is a Psalm of instruction. Asaph bring to our attention what God had done in Israel’s history from the time of Moses to David. In it we see the failure of the people and the faithfulness of God.
First: the psalmist reminds us that we have a responsibility that extends beyond ourselves to the next generation. In verse 70 we find the Lord God choosing a leader for His people. Then the first statement reveal about David’s performance as leader was about his integrity, not his ability, not his military accomplishments, not his victory over Goliath, but his integrity. Integrity means (1) an unimpaired condition (2) a firm adherence to a code especially of moral or artistic values (3) the quality or state of being complete or undivided. Integrity also means being the same inside and out; there are no double standards or justifications.
Secondly in verse 72 it also shows us that... David led them with skillful hands. What made David so skillful was the fact that he care for not only the sheep, but also he cared for the flock of the Lord. It was this David that battled and killed a bear and a lion for the sheep. It was David that also slew Goliath in 1 Samuel 17 for Israel. David was not only a compassionate shepherd and king but he was a skillful warrior as well. When David came from the sheep pens, when he used integrity and skill as a King, it was a result of God’s work in his life. God directed Prophet Samuel to go to the abode of Jesse, where he would anoint a king from among Jesse's sons. Samuel did as he was told, then began to take stock of each son. Samuel reasoned the way so many of us do: He was certain that Jesse's oldest son, Eliab, with his confident bearing, height and impressive good looks, was the one God would choose. "But the LORD said to Samuel, 'Do not look at his appearance or at his physical stature, because I have refused him. For the LORD does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart'" (1 Samuel:16:7).
To God the heart-a person's innermost motivation and attitude-is of prime importance: "But on this one will I look: On him who is poor and of a contrite spirit, and who trembles at My word" (Isaiah: 66:2). 1 Samuel 16:13 says, “So Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the presence of his brothers, and from that day on the Spirit of the Lord came upon David in power." David usually wholeheartedly sought God's will. He didn't withdraw from the responsibilities of life. The biblical record shows that, the more conditions around David deteriorated, the more he grew in character. David remained faithful to God throughout his life. His loyalty to His Creator was beyond question. So Luke writes in the book of Acts the assessment of the apostle Paul, that David was a man after God's own heart. God, wrote Paul, "raised up for them David as king, to whom also He gave testimony and said, 'I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after My own heart, who will do all My will'" (Acts: 13:22). What a tribute to the former shepherd boy who became king.