Summary: Sometimes in life it feels like we are at the bottom and then the bottom falls out. What do we Do? This outline describes 5 steps back to where we need to be with God.
When the Bottom Falls Out
Sermon By: Evangelist Robert Osborne
3. And Absalom said unto him, See, thy matters are good and right; but there is no man deputed of the king to hear thee.
4. Absalom said moreover, Oh that I were made judge in the land, that every man which hath any suit or cause might come unto me, and I would do him justice!
5. And it was so, that when any man came nigh to him to do him obeisance, he put forth his hand, and took him, and kissed him.
6. And on this manner did Absalom to all Israel that came to the king for judgment: so Absalom stole the hearts of the men of Israel.
7. And it came to pass after forty years, that Absalom said unto the king, I pray thee, let me go and pay my vow, which I have vowed unto the Lord, in Hebron.
8. For thy servant vowed a vow while I abode at Geshur in Syria, saying, If the Lord shall bring me again indeed to Jerusalem, then I will serve the Lord.
9. And the king said unto him, Go in peace. So he arose, and went to Hebron.
10. But Absalom sent spies throughout all the tribes of Israel, saying, As soon as ye hear the sound of the trumpet, then ye shall say, Absalom reigneth in Hebron.
11. And with Absalom went two hundred men out of Jerusalem, that were called; and they went in their simplicity, and they knew not any thing.
12. And Absalom sent for Ahithophel the Gilonite, David’s counseller, from his city, even from Giloh, while he offered sacrifices. And the conspiracy was strong; for the people increased continually with Absalom.
13. And there came a messenger to David, saying, The hearts of the men of Israel are after Absalom.
14. And David said unto all his servants that were with him at Jerusalem, Arise, and let us flee; for we shall not else escape from Absalom: make speed to depart, lest he overtake us suddenly, and bring evil upon us, and smite the city with the edge of the sword.
15. And the king’s servants said unto the king, Behold, thy servants are ready to do whatsoever my lord the king shall appoint.
The bottom fell out of David¡¦s world when his own son Absalom conspired to take his throne. David¡¦s actions demonstrate how we can cope when the bottom falls out of our world. Let us consider what David did when he confronted his calamities.
I. RETREAT (vv. 13-14)
„X When David received news that ¡§the hearts of the men of Israel are with Absalom,¡¨ he ordered the immediate evacuation of those who were loyal to him in the city. This began a desperate retreat toward the desert.
„X When disaster strikes, one of the best initial reactions we can take is to retreat toward the desert. In Scripture the desert is often used to represent a place of God¡¦s special care: ¡§I care for you in the desert¡¨ (Hosea 13:5).
II. RECEIVE (vv. 19-22)
„X David placed no demands upon others when his crises came: ¡§Why should you come along with us?¡¨ (v.19). However, friends like Ittai the Gittite offered their support, ¡§Wherever my lord the king may, be whether it means life or death, there will your servant be¡¨ (v.21). David gratefully received their support (v. 22).
„X When the bottom falls out for us, Christian friends will want to help and will offer help. Receiving help from friends in times of trouble is just as important as offering it. ¡§Unless I wash you, you have no part with me¡¨ (John 13:8).
III. RELEASE (vv.24-26)
„X David released control over the Ark of the Covenant by sending it back to Jerusalem with Zadok the priest. The ark represented the very presence of God. In this action, David releases his fate to the sovereignty of God saying, ¡§I am ready; let him do to me whatever seems good to him¡¨ (v. 26).
„X When the bottom falls out we must remember that there are so many things beyond the reach of our control. We must release ourselves to the sovereignty of a good and just God. ¡§Therefore do not worry about tomorrow¡¨ (Matthew 6:34).
IV. REPENT (v. 30)
„X As David fled the city he was repenting, ¡§weeping as he went; his head was covered, and he was barefoot.¡¨ In the midst of his tragedy, David wasn¡¦t blaming God; rather he was humbling himself before God and seeking his face.
„X Whether we believe our suffering is the result of our own sin or not, it is always a good idea to turn to God in humility and repentance in times of crises. When the bottom falls out we only have two choices, turn toward God or turn away from God. To repent means to turn--let the directions of that turn always be toward God. ¡§Your sorrow led you to repentance (2 Corinthians 7:9).