Posted by: genelnicholsblog | April 10, 2013

just like us

He faced huge problems.  He made right choices; He made wrong choices.  He overcame difficulty; He floundered in times of difficulty.  He was lonely.  He was humbled.  He was the baby in a large family.  He sometimes felt forgotten.  He had huge responsibilities in his life.  He was betrayed by those closest to him.  He was in a troubled marriage; he had a troubled child.

“Who is this?”, you may ask.  This is David.  Yes, the David of Scripture.  And although he lived thousands of years ago, the study of his life is much like reading today’s paper or listening to the evening news.

God must have felt that David was significant enough for us to study in depth, since the story of David’s life spans 54 chapters..  This compared to a couple other heroes faith, like Abraham and Joseph whose story covers 13 and 14 chapters of Scripture respectively.  Only Moses and Paul can be compared in the amount of coverage in the Bible, yet Paul’s name is mentioned only 163 times in Scripture as compared to 1,127 times that David’s name appears.  I think I may understand a little bit of the reason why.  Not only does David’s life and challenges mirror ours today, but God was also always gracious to David, even when he did not deserve God’s grace .. Just Like Us!

The historical setting is 1075 B.C.  Israel had suffered a devastating defeat at the hands of the Philistines.  They had captured the Ark of the Covenant, and this led to the death of Israel’s leader, Eli.  Samuel succeeded Eli as prophet and judge, and would be the last such leader before God would bring a king back to the nation of Israel.  It took 20 years, but Samuel revived the nation spiritually, and God began to bless Israel militarily once again.  But now they wanted a king.  Saul was chosen, but he proved to be unsuitable.  He made many mistakes and lost faith in his Lord.  Finally, God tells Samuel there will be a new king, one of the sons of Jesse of Bethlehem.  Samuel had been told that the new king would be a “captain over his people,” so he was looking for an adult, strong, tall – someone who looked like a king, of course.

I Samuel 16: 10 – 11
Jesse had seven of his sons pass before Samuel, but Samuel said to him, “The Lord has not chosen these.”  So he asked Jesse, “Are these all the sons you have?”  There is still the youngest,” Jesse answered, “but he is tending the sheep.”  Samuel said, “Send for him; we will not sit down until he arrives.”

Every one at this meeting stood until David, the youngest, arrived from the pastures where he tended the family’s sheep.  The moment he arrived, God told Samuel he’s the one, and Samuel anointed him with oil as the future king.

David was all of 15 years old.

David returned to the pastures, and his sheep, where he must have spent many hours pondering what all this meant.  He also practiced his harp and became an excellent musician (which took him to the court of King Saul).  He also wrote beautiful poetry about his Lord, and His creation (ever read a Psalm?).  He also learned how to fight while defending the sheep from bears and lions, (ever read the greatest Bible story ever told?)

Have you ever been lonely?  Have you ever been overlooked?  How about, forgotten?  Have you ever wondered about the direction of your life?  Then be encouraged by the life of David – and know God can use you too.


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