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David on the Run

Christians are commanded to put others before ourselves (Philippians 2:1-4; Romans 12:10; James 2:8,9). But this is not an easy thing to do. Take the example of King Saul and his son Jonathan. They had very different reactions to David. Saul hated David, a man who had done him no wrong, because David had greater fame. In his jealousy and fear that David might replace him as king, Saul tried to kill him and ended up driving him into exile. But Jonathan, though Saul’s heir and the next in line to be king, befriended David and helped him. He even expressed the anticipation that David would one day be king and he would serve at David’s side (1 Samuel 23:17). How can we more like Jonathan than Saul?


David Is Anointed King

God is big enough to deal with our problems. But He does not always do it in the way and with the timing we prefer. Take the example of David. God had chosen him to be anointed king over Israel. David then faced a giant, and the giant went down. But afterwards, he spent many years running from King Saul, who was trying to kill him. God kept His promise, and eventually David became king. But he had to get there the long way around. God never lacks the power necessary to handle the giants. But He also does not do it on our time schedule.


Failure of King Saul

One of the great dangers of life is being worried more about what people think than what God thinks. A good example of this was King Saul. He started out well. He looked good. He was tall and good-looking, and he rescued the people of Jabesh-gilead. But as time went on, it became clear that he was more concerned about his image than he was about trusting God. When the people started deserting him, he offered the sacrifice rather than waiting for Samuel. When he failed to carry out God’s orders with regard to the Amalekites, he blamed the people. Though rejected by God and Samuel, he then pleaded with Samuel to honor him before the people. And he ended up pursuing David from pillar to post, a man who had never done him any harm other than being more greatly admired by the people.


The Lion and the Lamb

It is common in the world to see Jesus Christ as simply a great teacher, not the coming King. But sometimes even believers can fall into that type of attitude. We can start to see Jesus as the Man of Sorrows (Isaiah 53) and not the ultimate Conqueror. We can remember that He is God, who humbled Himself (Philippians 2:5-8; John 1:1-18; Hebrews 2:9-18) to pay the price for our sin (1 Peter 2:24,25; Colossians 2:13,14; 2 Corinthians 5:21). But we also need to remember He will be coming as the true Ruler (Revelation 5:5-14; 19:11-18; Philippians 2:9-11). Otherwise, we can end up with a picture of “gentle Jesus, meek and mild” (apologies to Charles Wesley) that is drained of His true majesty.


God the Glorious King

God is in control of the world, even though it does not sometimes seem so. Scripture makes it clear that God is in control (Ephesians 1:11; Isaiah 43:13; Psalms 135:6). He uses the events of the world to accomplish His purpose (Romans 8:28; Genesis 50:20; Daniel 4:34,35). And He is able to bring about specific events, even if the people involved may not be intending to serve Him (Acts 4:27,28; Isaiah 44:28; 2 Kings 17:6-8). But while God uses evil to accomplish His purposes, evil still exists. How do we deal with this?


Christ Light of the World

Christ is the light of the world (John 1:4,5; 8:12; Isaiah 9:2). And He has called us to be lights reflecting Him (Matthew 5:14-16; Ephesians 5:8; Philippians 2:15). But what does that mean? Light is the revelation of God’s truth (2 Corinthians 4:4-6; Luke 2:32; Acts 13:47). This light not only enlightens, but it opens the eyes of the blind and sets the prisoners free and gives life (Isaiah 42:6,7; John 9:5-7; Isaiah 58:8-10). It also reveals evil and guides us into righteousness (John 3:19-21; Ephesians 5:11-13; 1 John 1:5-10). This is rooted in the fact that Jesus paid the price for our forgiveness (Ephesians 1:7; Colossians 2:13,14; 1 Peter 2:24,25).


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