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Weekly Bible Devotion By Books

March 2-6, 2020

Enter the presence of the Lord

(All)Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.
Worship the Lord with gladness;
come before him with joyful songs.
(W)Know that the Lord is God.
It is he who made us, and we are his;
we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
(M)Enter his gates with thanksgiving
and his courts with praise;
give thanks to him and praise his name.
(All) For the Lord is good and his love endures forever;
his faithfulness continues through all generations.

(Psalm 100:1-5)

Scripture Reading

2 Samuel 5:1-5

All the tribes of Israel came to David at Hebron and said, “We are your own flesh and blood. 2 In the past, while Saul was king over us, you were the one who led Israel on their military campaigns. And the Lord said to you, ‘You will shepherd my people Israel, and you will become their ruler.’”3 When all the elders of Israel had come to King David at Hebron, the king made a covenant with them at Hebron before the Lord, and they anointed David king over Israel.4 David was thirty years old when he became king, and he reigned forty years. 5 In Hebron he reigned over Judah seven years and six months, and in Jerusalem he reigned over all Israel and Judah thirty-three years.

Thoughts to share: A Leader After God’s Own Heart

2 Samuel recorded the period of David from his uniting tribal factions, ruling over the land and people, and to the final years of his reign. We can say that this is a book of David. Through all, he was considered, in the eyes of God and people, as a great leader after God’s own heart. As we read through the book and looked into his life, we realize what pleases God and how we can follow God in practical ways.

David was God’s chosen king over Israel. God set and promised special favors to David. David was a capable shepherd. He was talented in many ways. However, these are not all that God please him. Looking into his life, we find some revealing and ordinary aspects in this unique person.

On the military front, besides his famous courage in facing giant Philistine enemies, David often inquired of God with his move and plan before God. He asked for exact target he was going to go up before he went into the cities of Judah. (2:1-3). He inquired of God with his move against the Philistines in the valley of Rephaim. (5:19) He did as God commanded him. He let God go before him.

On interpersonal level, David showed great mercy, grace, and patience toward the people who were not very friendly to him. For example, how he treated his long-time antagonists Saul and his descends. Book of 2 Samuel gave a great space to describe this relation. He greatly grieved over the deaths of Saul and Jonathan. Finally, he authored lamination for them. He even instructed the entire Judah people to say it. (1:17-18). And he further sent blessings to those who had treated Saul and his family nicely. (2:5)

On the emotional level, David demonstrated a great maturity in managing his own emotion. He encountered many extremely difficult people and dealt with many criticisms. He had to handle his own many negative emotions. In the book of Psalms, we saw that he handled those negative emotions in rather creative and healthy way, even from the perspective of today’s psychology. He poured out his agonies. He vented his complaints. He named his feelings. He cried for help. In the end, he left avenge and justice to God to carry. He put faith and trust in God even he had to move on with his own hurts and wounds.

On the bottom of his heart, he had deeply cherished His Lord. At the high point of his all achievements, he remembered his Lord. He said, “See, now, I dwell in the house of cider, but the ark of God dwell in the tent.” He intended to build a house for God to dwell in. He sought the counsel with Nathan and waited upon the Lord for direction. What he loved most was the presence and hands of God with him.

On dealing with temptations and sins, he had moments of falling into temptations and became sinned. He unconsciously and consciously lost the sense of right and wrong. He misused his power and position. He made the mistakes. The book gave rather surprisingly detailed descriptions on his sin with Bathsheda. Yet, we saw he was willing to admit and repent quickly. He humbly accepted the truth and painfully dealt with the consequences results from his own faults. (12:7ff). In his unauthorized number Israel and Judah’s militant men, he quickly realized what wrong he did. He on behalf of his people to ask God,” …But these sheep, what have they done? Please let you hand be against me and against my father’s house.” (24:1ff)

David showed us that he was not a perfect leader. But God chose him and trusted him with the kingdom responsibility. What did God see him? Characters count! Heart conditions count! Those ordinary and small acts flowing from the characters and hearts count!

Prayer suggestions

What are in God’s heart and mind? What are in our hearts and minds? Get a spiritual checkup and ask God to lead us on the righteous road for his name’s sake.

King and the Leader of my life, I come to you and I am subjective to you. Send your Holy Spirit and your word to reveal my heart and mind in the light of your heart and mind. Cleanse me. Forgive me. Renew me and transform me. I’ll move on my life path with your new vision. Thank you, Amen.

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