King David Judged By What Was In­side

McDonald County Press - - CHURCH - By Dr. Don Kuehle DON KUEHLE IS A RE­TIRED UNITED METHODIST MIN­IS­TER WHO LIVES IN JACK­SON. OPIN­IONS EX­PRESSED ARE THOSE OF THE AU­THOR.

Saul was the first earthly king to rule over Is­rael. But Saul had dis­obeyed God and dis­pleased God, so God made up His mind to re­place Saul with a new king.

God di­rected the prophet, Sa­muel, to go to the house of Jesse and to anoint one of his sons to be the next king of Is­rael. And that is what Sa­muel did. Jesse in­tro­duced Sa­muel to his old­est son, Eliab. And Sa­muel thought, “This is the man; he is tall and strong and has the look and de­meanor of a king.” He was about to anoint Eliab as king when God said, “No! You see what’s on the out­side; I see what’s on the in­side. Eliab is not My choice!” Next, Sa­muel was in­tro­duced to Abi­nadab, to Shammah, and to three other broth­ers. None of them met God’s ap­proval. Sa­muel threw up his hands in de­spair, start­ing to doubt God’s di­rec­tions. Then turn­ing to Jesse, Sa­muel asked, “Do you have any other sons?” “Yes, I have another son, David,” Jesse replied. But he is young and in­ex­pe­ri­enced; he is not the one you’re look­ing for.” As the young David ap­pears, God says to Sa­muel, “He’s the one I have cho­sen to be the next king of Is­rael; anoint him.” And that is how David be­came the most pop­u­lar king of Is­rael.

God chooses — Sa­muel and most oth­ers saw David as be­ing too young; he’s just a kid — what does he know? David was the small­est of all the broth­ers; he was also much too hand­some; plus, David had an artis­tic streak that was looked down on. God, how­ever, saw David’s in­ner self: his depth of char­ac­ter; his de­vo­tion to God; his loy­alty in serv­ing God; all the tal­ents and skills nec­es­sary to rule over Is­rael. God sensed David’s strengths, phys­i­cal and spir­i­tual. David had the outer strength to kill the gi­ant, Go­liath. David had the in­ner strength to rely on God’s power to de­feat the en­emy. God saw David’s brav­ery — only David was

God sensed David’s strengths, phys­i­cal and spir­i­tual. David had the outer strength to kill the gi­ant, Go­liath. David had the in­ner strength to rely on God’s power to de­feat

the en­emy.

brave enough to face Go­liath; he saw what needed to be done, and he did it. God knew that David could re­late to all kinds of peo­ple, com­mon peo­ple and roy­alty alike. David also had a vi­sion for the fu­ture of Is­rael; to cre­ate a great army, and to build a Tem­ple, hon­or­ing God. Fi­nally, David had the abil­ity to show mercy and com­pas­sion for his en­e­mies; David could have killed King Saul many times over and be­come the new king; he didn’t, be­cause David had the pa­tience to wait on God to work ev­ery­thing out.

David, in spite of ev­ery­thing, sinned against God. He lusted af­ter Bathsheba; he had her hus­band mur­dered. Yet, God used David for 40 years; those years were times of peace and pros­per­ity — the Golden Age of Is­rael.

Fi­nally, King David stands as the ex­am­ple and the an­ces­tor of one yet to come — King Je­sus.

David is a re­minder to us that (a) God chooses lead­ers; (b) God uses im­per­fect, sin­ful, and even un­godly peo­ple as lead­ers to ac­com­plish his divine pur­poses here and now; (c) God judges all of us by what’s in­side of us, not what’s on the out­side of us; (d) God’s de­ci­sions, choices and judg­ments are al­ways right. Praise be to the Lord God!

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