Sunday, July 1, 2012

David Embodies God's Justice from 2 Samuel 23:1-7; 1 Chronicles 18:14 will be our Adult Sunday School/Uniform Series/International Sunday School Lesson, herein is my commentary. This lesson is known by some as David Embodies God's Justice.

David Embodies God’s Justice
2 Samuel 23:1-7; 1 Chronicles 18:14
International Sunday School Lesson
July 8, 2012

Jed Greenough

He was a violent man, in fact he killed and had people killed.  He was a passionate man, in fact he committed adultery.  In the Bible we can see David from youth to manhood and finally a man of advanced age.  As his life story is revealed we see both the defeats and the victories.  We are given a view of all of his passions both the good and the bad and also his joy and his sadness.  And not just David himself is exposed but perhaps more telling in some people’s view are his children’s lives, both good and bad that are shown as well.  All that he was is available to us if we read the pages of the Bible.

David appeals to all sensibilities when you consider that he was a shepherd, a warrior, oppressed and victorious, romantic, musician, poet and prophet.  But what appeals to me and I would think what appeals to many is that this man is not portrayed as the great King David only.  He is also simply shown as a man, thus giving us encouragement by not just showing great successes but by his mortal characteristics that mirror ours.

David sinned and repented just as we do.  We may feel confident that we will not commit murder or adultery as David did,  but if David served God greatly perhaps one day  we too can serve the Lord despite our sins and likewise leave a lasting legacy to the Lord. 

David was called, so too are we all called, as Christians.  We are each called to do certain things,  but in our enthusiasm just like David’s aspirations to build God a temple were denied, we might not be able to accomplish all for which we aspire.  But rather than this being a negative I think that this too inspires us that David was real just like us.  Why?  Well, if a man were to create a slayer of giants he would not only have him slay a Goliath but he would have built that temple to the Lord as well.  But we should know that in our lifetimes we might only be good for one “giant killing” in our serving capacity to God but we can aim for more like David.

What was David in his own sight, a mighty ruler, long lasting King, unifier of peoples, one from whom a legacy flows?  I like what he had to say about himself in verse 1, “Israel’s singer of songs.”  From David all the people of Israel and all that care to hear him sing long after his death heard psalms such as:

Psalm 1, 17, 34 and more instructing about righteousness.
Psalm 2, 22, and 110 and more which are some examples of God revealing the Savior to come.
Psalm 6, 32, 38, and more that demonstrate appeals to God.
Psalm 23, 37, 91 and more that demonstrates how to trust God.

When now we hear in today’s scripture the last words of David that are recorded for us in 2 Samuel 23:1-7, what does a very successful follower of the Lord who was also a very victorious King relate with what are supposed to be his last words?  He uses the words that had been instructions from God, given to him as to how a king should lead: in righteousness in the fear of God (verse 3).  And in David’s last words you can see that he will depart with confidence, that his house was right with God (verse 5).

David shows us that you can fall and get back up again on a path to pleasing the Lord.  Often times leaders seem to have a preoccupation with a legacy more than leading but David shows what really matters not just to leaders but to all of us.  If you want to leave a legacy that will last then make your leading and your living about the Father, then your house also will be “right with God” (verse 5).

For Discussion:

1.      Discuss how we can be encouraged and motivated by the life that David lived.
2.      Discuss how David’s whole life was exposed and how one day also ours will be as well.
3.      As we approach the election season consider the things that we look at when we elect a leader.  See 1 Samuel 16:7a with regard to David.
4.      With regard to selecting leaders, those of us in America are bombarded with looking at the person as a whole and not to have litmus tests, but discuss whether you feel better with a successful businessman, a dynamic personality, an excellent speaker or one from the words of verses 3 and 4.
5.      See how David instructed his son Solomon 1 Kings 2:1-4.
6.      See what Solomon asked of God in 1 Kings 3:1-15.
7.      Discuss verse 1 in light of David’s beginnings.
8.      See 2 Peter 1:21 when considering verse 2.
9.      Discuss verse 3’s “God of Israel” “Rock of Israel”.
10.  Discuss verse 3 in light of the fact that no man is righteous so therefore David could not have really completely done this but his descendant Jesus could.
11.  Verse 4 is beyond merely poetry.  Discuss how one feels with regard to those moments mentioned in this verse.
12.  Discuss the words of David in verse 5.  Do people consider these words as confident, arrogant, prideful, matter of fact or what?
13.  Make it a point to discuss that these are the last recorded words of David and how that should play into our considering what is recorded here.  Rather like the weight given in legal cases in certain instances to the declaration of a dying person.
14.  Necessary to today’s verse 5 and the whole passage in general is reading 2 Samuel 7 especially when one considers certain happenings in the latter parts of David’s rule.
15.  Discuss the rough treatment that is used with thorns as mentioned in verses 6-7 in light of the Harvest at the End of the Age discussed in Matthew 13:24-30, 36-43 and Hebrews 6:7-8.

Upcoming Adult Sunday School Class Commentaries

7-15-12:  Solomon Judges With Wisdom and Justice 1 Kings 3:16-28; 2 Chronicles 9:8
7-22-12:  A King Acts on a Widow’s Behalf 2 Kings 8:1-6
7-29-12:  Jehoshaphat Makes Judicial Reforms 2 Chronicles 19:4-11
8-5-12:    Praise for God’s Justice Psalm 146

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 Biblica. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved

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