This morning we had the privilege of hearing from Jason Jimenez, one of Carmel's own. Jason helped us see four phases of David's life that made him very unlikely to become the influential man that he was. David's life was a Cinderella story, and now he stands as a spiritual model for us.
Phase 1 - David is overlooked (1 Samuel 16)
Samuel is disappointed in King Saul's decisions as King, and now God has instructed Samuel to go and anoint a new king for Israel. He was sent to Jesse and 7 sons passed before Samuel. None of them were the one that God told him to anoint. "Samuel said to Jesse, 'Are all your sons here?' And he said, 'there remains yet the youngest, but behold, he is keeping the sheep.'". This "youngest" term was a term of insignificance. But God said to Samuel "Arise, anoint him, for this is he." He was anointed in front of his family and the "Spirit of the Lord rushed upon David from that day forward."
Lesson 1 - Even though David was overlooked by others, he still believed in God's call on his life.
Phase 2 - David is discredited (1 Samuel 17)
David became a helper to King Saul and encouraged him. One day, Jesse sent David to check on his brothers during the battle with the Philistines. The Israelites were all afraid of Goliath, who had been mocking God for 40 days. David said to the men, "Who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God?" Well, Eliab, the eldest brother, heard what David was saying and became angry. He discredited David by saying 1. Why have you come? 2. Who is tending the few sheep that you left behind? 3. I know the evil in your heart. Then King Saul says (v33) "you are not able to go aaginst this Philistine to fight with him, for you are but a youth, and he has been a man of war from his youth. But David said to Saul, "Your servant used to keep sheep for his father. And when there came a lion, or a bear, and took a lamb from the flock, I went after him and struck him and delivered it out of his mouth....Your servant has struck down both lions and bears, and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be like one of them, for he has defied the armies of the living God." David took what was insignificant and used it for God's glory.
Lesson 2 - Even though David was discredited by others, he remained confident of victory.
Phase 3 - David is hunted (1 Samuel 18:8-16)
Saul became very jealous of David because the people were singing of David as a bigger victor than Saul. We see in verse 12 that God had removed his authority from Saul. Saul was trying to marginalize David, but God continues to show him favor. He begins to trick him and challenges him with tasks that will hopefully kill him. In 1 Samuel 19:10 Saul tries to spear David, but David escapes and becomes a fugitive. He continues to run, and continues to find favor with God. Psalm 57 is a Psalm of despair as he is running for his life. In 57:7 he says, "My heart is steadfast O God, my heart is steadfast! I will sing and make melody!"
Lesson 3 - Even though David lost everything, he never lost faith in God.
Phase 4 - David is compromised (2 Samuel 11-12)
David commits adultery with Bathsheba, Uriah's wife, and then makes sure Uriah is killed in battle. When Uriah dies, David takes Bathsheba as his wife. The prophet Nathan confronts David and tells him how displeased God is and that this son will die. When Bathsheba gives birth, David fasts and prays for the 7 days the child is alive. When the child dies, David gets up, eats, and worships God. Psalm 51:3-4 says, "For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me. Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight, so that you may be justified in your words and blameless in your judgment."
Whatever sin is in you, God's love is greater than your sin. David was a nobody, but became a somebody for God.
Lesson 4 - Even though David fell into sin, he didn't fall out of love with God.
To Discuss Today:
1. Where do you feel inadequate to be used by God? Why? How does David's story encourage you?
2. Have you discredited somebody for selfish reasons? Is there a time that you saw God use that person to do great things?
3. When was the last time you sinned against God? Have you confessed those sins? Remember, He loves you regardless, but wants to be in relationship with you. Make sure you are in a place to be used by Him!