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August 17, 2020 1:00 am
We do not deserve the grace or favorite God. We're just that it was called Grace. Grace is unearned favor from God and we often look at other people to go, well, that person doesn't deserve to be forgiven. None of us deserve to be forgiven. And it's interesting that believers and followers of Jesus, because of this, because of the grace that's been extended to us. We should be the most gracious and forgiving group of people on the face of the planet. Painful question. Is that what we're known for?
Welcome to Cross the Bridge with David Magee, the senior pastor of the bridge in Kernersville, North Carolina. Today in the studio, we have one of David's associate pastors, D.A. Brown. Welcome, brother.
Hey, Bob. It's great to be here. We want to take a minute to pray for some cities in our listening audience. Hope everyone prays with me. Holbrook Pace and Pinetop Winslow, Yuma, Arizona. Bentonville, Fayetteville, Arkansas. God, we pray that many in these cities would tune in and listen today. Got it. We pray that summer under the weather. Sick not feeling will that you would heal them. God for your glory. Well, we also pray that some would give their lives to you, receive your grace and mercy to Jesus Christ. We pray that these cities would get excited about following you. The churches would fill up. And you give the pastors wisdom and discernment on how to expound upon your word for your glory in Jesus name. Hey, man.
Hey, man. Pastor, D.A., we appreciate your prayers. And if you are in one of the cities he mentioned or anywhere else in the country, please feel free to contact us and tell us what God is doing in your life now today as we're going into the teaching. It's a very sad time for King David and there's some very important lessons that we can learn in life. D.A., can you share some of that with us?
Bob, we don't deserve the goodness of God. We can't earn it. And yet he still wants to pour his favor out on us.
You know, even in the times of grief, as we're gonna hear about in this chapter, God still loves us and still wants to provide for us his grace. And so let's listen as David Magee shares verse by verse through First Samuel, chapter 18.
Now, in the last chapter, Chapter 17 found ourselves in the midst of this rebellion of Absolom against his father and against the King David. And we saw that a half a fellow who betrayed Jesus committed suicide.
We also saw that God in the midst of this desert experience that David was having God providing for David. So even in the midst of our desert experiences, we can know that the Lord is going to take care of us. And even when we're hungry and we're weary and we're going to and we're weak, the Lord will look after us. So we'll pick it up. Second, Samuel, Chapter 18. And this is David. No, the people who were with him and set captains of thousands and captains of hundreds over them. Then David sent out one third of the people under the hand of Julep, one third under the hand of Abbassi, the son of Zoriah, Joe Epps brother, and one third under the hand of Ittai.
They get tight on the king said to the people. I also will surely go out with you myself.
So they were getting organized. They were getting ready for battle.
And let me mention something, because here's here's a challenge that I go through. Leadership goes through this. It's always a challenge for any organization to be organized. I think it's a bigger of a challenge for a church and tell you what a church needs to be organized enough to efficiently minister to the people that God is bringing any.
And it has to be very careful that that quest for organization doesn't lead to something weird.
In other words, that the cart starts driving the horse of your will, then the organization becomes the goal and the vision kind of gets lost in the shuffle. We have to be careful everywhere, has to be careful. This church included that we keep the vision, the main thing, and the organization comes after the vision.
What's our vision to reach and teach.
So the things that we do to be organized around that should be organized and organized around reaching and teaching. But it is important, you know, to be organized. And David senses this. We're going out to battle. We need to be organized as churches into battle. So we need to be organized.
And David says, I also will surely go out with you myself. David is wanting to go out to the battlefield with the soldiers.
What do they do? Well, verse three. But the people answer, you shall not go out for we flee away. They will not care about us, nor have half of us that will they care about us. But you are worth 10000 of us now. Four. You are now more help to us in the city. So they're saying, David, if you go out with us and you're killed and you know the whole thing's over, we need to protect you.
So you need to stay in the city and let us go out and do battle for you. So they were trying to protect David. And I think that's that's a noble thing. It's a good thing.
Let's look at verse four. Then the king said to them, whatever seems best to you. I will do so. The king stood beside the gate and all the people went out by hundreds and thousands. This is interesting because this is this is King David.
He's an extremely wise man. He's an extremely powerful man. He has probably as much power as anybody in that region of the world.
He could have easily looked at these man and said, you know, I don't care what you say, I'm going out. That's not what he did. He listened to their council, verse five.
Now, the king and commander Joab Abshir Nettie's saying deal gently for my sake with the young man Absolom and all the people heard when the king gave all the captain's orders concerning Absolom. It's interesting because I go through and I read various commentaries and stuff and there's basically two takes on this verse.
The first one is Absolom. If you haven't been with us during this study, Absolom has done some horrible things. Absolom is making this mad dash at the throne.
He has taken unto himself the king's concubines. Meaning these ladies that were part of the king's entourage of you will. That he had relations with them on the roof of the palace.
Again, kind of making a mad dash at the throne. He's done some really bad things.
But it's interesting because most of the commentary said, we'll see here we have David saying to his military leaders, deal gently with Absolom. And it reveals what a weak father that David was, because even in the midst of this battle, he sang diligently with my son Absolom.
That's one take. It has some validity. And certainly has some some content to it.
But there's a deeper picture, I believe, because let's remember something, David, in the Bible is a picture of Jesus Christ and a lot of ways and a lot of ways. We just saw that, you know, David had his fifth offill who betrayed him, who was his friend.
Jesus had his Judas, who betrayed him, who was his friend. A hit the fall hung himself. Judas also hung himself. David was a shepherd. Jesus is the great shepherd. There's a lot of pitchers and parallels between David and Jesus. And here we have Absolom in this rebellion, mad dash at the throne. And David is saying, deal with him gently. Look at the grace that David is extended toward James Sewell. And at first glance, you go, well, he shouldn't be doing that. But hold on. See, Absolom is at war with David at this point. He's in utter rebellion. He is at war with David. And yet David is extending grace towards an understanding that Jesus extends grace towards us even while we are at war with him and in rebellion to him and taking our own mad dash at the throne.
And maybe we shouldn't go at war with God. Pastor David, what in the world are you talk about? Paul talks about Romans Chapter seven. He says, you know what? Things I don't want to do? I end up doing those things that I want to do somehow I don't end up doing.
And then I think most of us can relate to that. There's a war going on inside of you. There's a theological word dichotomy. That means there's part of you that wants to follow God. And there's part of you that doesn't. Tonight, you're here, the part that wants to follow God, at least one out enough to get you here.
So you're here. Praise God. OK, but part of you may be sitting there going right now, going, I want to leave. I hope he ends early. He was just teasing about, you know, there's part of that war going on. Part of you is still at war with God and friend. It's always gonna be like that until you die. There's gonna be a part of you that doesn't want to follow the Lord. There's gonna be a part of you that wants to sit down at the throne of God and say, you know what, God, I want to run my own life. I don't want you running my life. I want to run. I want to make these decisions. God, you don't know what you're doing. You don't know how it ended today. So let's let's draw the parallels here for a moment with ourselves and Absolom, because they're their folks. They're there.
But even in the midst of our rebellion and bill and being at war with God, goddesses, diligently, diligently, with much. And one more in the midst of rebelling and running from God backsliding and taking her mad dashes at the thought. It's amazing how restrained God is and what he allows to happen to us.
I know personally in my life I have been in these positions and yet. It might have gotten tough, but it didn't get us off as really it could have gotten or maybe even should have gone. Why God was restraining not and not just himself, but those things which were coming into place.
You know, that that verse we reap what we saw. But you know what? We only reap a little bit of what we saw and we read all that way.
So, man, we would have some miserable lives. Why is that God saying, you know what? Deal gently with my child.
And it was interesting, as I read some of these commentaries of saying, well, you know, well, David's being a weak father. I don't think so. I think David's being incredibly strong father in the midst of this rebellion, saying, you know, deal gently with him. How many fathers would say that?
See, we we look at this and I know what worth it. We're all thinking. Let me just go ahead and verbalize what we're thinking. Well, absolutely. He doesn't deserve this mercy or this grace.
Absolutely. Absolutely. He does not deserve that. The fact that David is saying they'll gently labs Absolom is trying to kill David and David and deal gently with Absolom does not deserve the grace and the mercy David is extending towards you. May I ask your question? Do we deserve the grace and mercy that God extends towards us? Not does it ever bother us that God extends his mercy and his grace to us? Not much. Not often. We're okay with that. What bothers us is when God extends that grace and mercy to others and then we look at them and go, oh, they don't deserve that grace and mercy. It's okay that we get extended grace and mercy. But when God starts and extended his grace and mercy to others, we want to start drawing lines and say, well, no, they didn't learn that. Now they're there now.
That's just not right. God, your blessing them. And I know how they are and you know how they are. And you shouldn't be blessing them.
Our prayers kind of tell this sometimes, right? If we're honest in your protocol, you don't pray these prayers openly. But in your prayer closet, you say, Lord, it's OK if you bless me and it's okay if you judge that person, because, Lord, you know, they they're worthy to be judged.
So just blessed with a brick lord. And, you know, just see, that's come in the prayers. We pray sometimes, Lord, it's OK if they begin to reap some of what they're so what. But we don't want that for us do we.
Absolutely not. Here's what the Bible says has a chapter 53, verse six says All we like sheep have gone astray.
We have turned every one to his own way and the Lord has laid on him. Capital H. Jesus, the iniquity of us all says we all, like sheep, have gone astray. We have turned everyone to his own way, sheep, or they want to do their own thing. They're not really known for their acute wisdom, but the fact that they will wander off in a heartbeat.
And that's what's really important. If you have horses, you don't. There's a problem with the fence. It's not good. But if you've got a problem with a fence and you've got sheep inside there, you got problems. Because here's what the sheep will wander around and they'll look for a place to get through the fence. They don't stop and think there's no food. There's no water. There's all sorts of pest over there.
Oh, there's a hole in the fence. Hallelujah.
Now, members in there go all. We don't do that. Oh, yes, we do. Here's the way we do it. Can I be a Christian and still drink or smoke dope or look at pornography or whatever?
What is that? That's a sheep looking for a hole in the fence is exactly what that is.
Oh, look, there's a hole I can get. Look, I can't keep one foot over there, one foot in here.
All of us, like sheep have gone astray. The life lesson here, we do not deserve the grace or favor God shows towards us. That is why it is called grace. We do not deserve the grace or favor God shows to her just that it was called grace.
Grace is unearned favor from God and we often look at other people might go, well, that person doesn't deserve to be forgiven. None of us deserve to be forgiven. And it's interesting that believers and followers of Jesus, because of this, because of the grace, it's been extended to us. We should be the most gracious and forgiving group of people in the face of the planet.
Painful question. Is that what we're known for? It's not. We've been forgiving of so much. And Jesus told some stories that he can't get around. No. You know, the guy that owed the king a lot of money and the king forgave that debt. But then the guy went out to somebody that owed him a little bit of money. It was ready to beat him up, throw him in prison.
We've been forgiven much and maybe you've been wounded. But the things that people have done to you don't compare to what they did to him.
You're listening to Pastor David McGee on Cross the Bridge. He'll be back with more in just a moment. But first, if you haven't been to our Web site at Cross the Bridge dot com yet, what are you waiting for? Go to cross the bridge dot com to learn more about how listeners like you are helping get the life changing truth of God's word to more people through the radio, Internet and mobile technologies at Cross the bridge dot com. You can also check out our broadcast schedule. Listen to more teaching from Pastor David. And sign up for Pastor David's free daily devotional. And there's more there, too. So visit. Cross the bridge dot com today. Now, here's Pastor David as he continues sharing verse by verse, verse six.
So the people went out into the field of battle against Israel and the battle was, in the words of Ephraim and the people of Israel were overthrown there before the servants of David and a great slaughter of 20000 thousand took place that they now realize David had seasoned warriors.
These guys had seen a lot of battles and they knew battle strategies. They knew how to conduct themselves in the field. I believe most of these seasoned warriors went with David because they had they had fought with him. And there's just something special about being with people that you fought with, whether it's in the trenches and in the military or spiritually speaking here.
There's people that are near and dear to my heart that I have fought alongside of as we've ministered to people.
And so Absolom probably had a lot of inexperienced people. And let's remember, this is a this is a civil war in the nation of Israel. A lot of people are getting hurt. Brother fighting against brother verse eight for the battle there were scattered over the face of the whole country and the woods devoured more people that day than the sword devoured.
Keep in mind, this is a rocky terrain. A lot of woods, the running from each other, their fall in the running in the trees. They're beating themselves up against the rocks. And again, this is a civil war. Brother fighting against brother, father fighting against brother, that sort of thing. And it's devastating to a country. And all of this is because of the rebellion of Absolom against this father. Now, was their content to this thing with Absolom and David? Absolutely. You know, David had some problems with Absolom, absolutely had some problems with David.
But instead of working through these issues, they kind of took it public. And all this stuff is happening. That's what happens when two people won't sit down and talk and work through issues because people get hurt. And Rebellion's that's the next life lesson when rebellion occurs. People always get hurt when rebellion occurs. People always get hurt. You can see it in your life. You can see it. If you've got children that are grown up enough, you can see that that happens in the family in the House version. And then Absolom met the servants of David and Absolom rode on a mule and the mule went under the thick bows of a great terabits tree in his head. Caulton the terrible. So he was left hanging between heaven and earth and the mule which was under him went on. This is interesting verse.
And you may remember there was a verse prior that talked about Absolom had a lot of pride about his hair.
That's kind of interesting that it was his point of pride that snagged him.
And we have the verse that talks about the unit.
Pride comes before the fall in this versus so rich and pitchers because let's look at something.
He Absolom was on a mule, a mule. And he remember Jesus came into town, the triumphant entry. Riding on a mule. And that was the day his kingship, as it were, was announced. Wow. Well, in part because what he was riding on so it was a I know we don't think of a mule as a as a royal animal, but it is. So it's interesting that Absolom is on this mule. But in his rebellion, he loses his seat on this mule because there's a picture going on. He's prince. He could very well be destined to be king at this point. But because of his rebellion, he's going to lose that authority. He is going to lose that prince and this, if you will, through his rebellion. And then we're told he's left hanging in the air, his feet dangling. I don't know if you've ever had your feet dangling, if you're hanging from something. It's a very unnerving thing. Why? And have you ever seen somebody you notice what they do. They kick around. Why are they kicking? Because you're trying to get their feet on the ground.
In his rebellion, Absolom lost his footing or his foundation.
That's when the first things that happens in rebellion, you'll lose your footing, you'll lose your foundation. And something doesn't quite feel right because you can't really get your feet solid on the ground and you're kind of waiting for the next thing that the next shoe to drop, if you will.
There's no solid footing. And and God doesn't intend for you to live like that. But he'll lay in that season. He'll allow you to feel like that.
So you recognize you know, at some something's not right. Something's not right.
I can't get my feet up under me in front when you're rebelling against God and when you're rebelling against God given authority, that's what happens because we lose our foundation. We lose our sure footing when we try to go our own way.
And that's the way we see Absolom in this picture. Verse 10 thou certain Mansoor and told Joab and said, I'm just so Absolom hanging in a terrible story. So Jilib said to the man who told him, You just saw him. Why did you not strike in there to the ground? I would have given you 10 shekels a silver and a belt. The man said, Did you do our work to receive a thousand shekels of silver in my hand? I would not raise my hand against the King's son for an hour hearing the king commanded you and Abshire enticing beware lest anyone touch the young man Absolom. Otherwise I would have done forcefully against my own life. Sir, there's nothing hidden from the King, and you yourself would have set yourself against me.
So the guy saying, you know, even of what I've done that I wouldn't come back to you. He probably wouldn't kill me for it.
And now you're asking me why I didn't do it than Joe upset. I cannot linger with you. And he took three spears in his hand and thrust them through Absolom heart while he was still alive in the midst of the terabits tree and ten young men who board jabs jobe's armor surrounded Absolom and struck and killed him. And less noticed something. Joab is the first to strike Absolom. Now he knows that he was not supposed to do this, but he did it anyway. And notice what happens.
The other men that are with Joab enter into the thing with him. We need to recognize something when a person is a leader. There's more of a responsibility to be careful in submitting yourself to God. Why? Because if someone falls, it's it's always a bad thing. But if a leader leads other people astray, it's not just him. It's those other people. And we see Joe believing these other people into something that the king said not to do.
Now, was it the right thing to do? You know, you can build a pretty strong case for it was the right thing to do because Absolom is at war with David. Joab understands that while both of them are alive, there's going to be a war and job, realizes the moment one of them dies, that the battle's over.
So we can come up with reasons why Joe did this. But still, David had spoken and given a command verse 60.
Sujoy blew the trumpet and the people returned from pursuing Israel for Joab held back the people and they took Absolom and cast him into a large pit in the woods and laid a very large heap of stones over him. Then all Israel fled everyone to his tent. Now I absolom in his lifetime and taken and setup a pillar for himself, which is in the King's Valley. He said, I have no son to keep my name in remembrance. He called the pillar after his own name, and to this date is called Absolom Monument. This monument is still there at the foot of the Mount of Olives. It was rebuilt in the days of Herod, but it's still the same place.
Verse 19, then a hymn as the son of Zadok said. Let me run now and take the news to the king. Now, the Lord has avenged him of his enemies. And you have said to him, you shall not take the news this day, for you shall take the news another day. But today you shall take no news because the king's son is dead.
Why did Joab not want the son of the priest to take this news to David? It's more than just that. Part of the news was Joab smoke. Absolute. Let's remember other times when other messengers came to David. One of the times was when the guy came talking about how Saul had been killed. And how did David respond? David killed the guy. And then another time, a guy, a messenger, came talking about the death of Ishbel Schiff and what happened to that messenger. David killed him. So Joab is like, you know what? You're the son of a priest.
I'm not going to send here to David with a message because it might not go that well.
So you wait another day.
And there does seem to be some recognition in Joab that even though Absolom was an name, an enemy. He was the king's son.
And I think it tells a lot about us, about how we treat our enemies or how we react to our enemies when we hear that they're going through a tough time or misfortune or something tells a lot about us, not about them, but about us.
And Jesus actually points this out in the New Testament, talks about he goes, you know, I pray for your enemies. Bless them. I understand. Bless them. And you understand the concept of blessing. Bless your enemies. Pray and wish them well. That's tough. It got to have the supernatural power of God to wish your enemy well, friend.
You know for sure that your sins have been forgiven. You can know right now. I want to lead you in a short, simple prayer, simply telling God you're sorry and asking him to help you to live for him. God wants you to pray this prayer so much that he died to give you the opportunity and the ability to ask him to forgive you. Please pray this prayer with me out loud right now.
Dear Jesus. I believe you, dad, for me. That I could be forgiven. And I believe you were raised from the dead. That could have a new life. Now, I've done wrong things. I have sinned. And I'm sorry. Please forgive me of all those things. Please give me the power to live for you. All of my days in Jesus name.
A man friend of you prayed that prayer. According to the Bible, you've been forgiven. You've been born again. So congratulations, friend. You just made the greatest decision that you will ever make.
God bless you if you pray that prayer with David for the first time. We'd love to hear from you. You can visit cross the bridge dot com to receive our first steps package with helpful resources to help you begin your walk with Christ. Or you can write to cross the bridge at P.O. Box 12 515. Winston-Salem, North Carolina two seven one one seven. And share how God is working in your life. Well, D.A., before we go.
What are some ways that we can bless our listeners if you're not able to make it to your home church this Sunday? Why not join us for our livestream at 10:00 a.m. Eastern Time or on Thursday nights at seven p.m. Eastern Time? Does visit cross the bridge dot com and click on our livestream link? There you experience a live service from Davis Home Church, the bridge in North Carolina. Again, that Web site is Cross the Bridge dot com.
That sounds good. Pastor Day. And again, it's been great to have you with us on the program today. But tell us, what else can our listeners find on Cross the Bridge dot com?
Each day you can wake up with encouragement from Pastor David to the word of God with his email devotional life lessons to consider a daily reading plan and a thought to meditate on throughout your day. From the heart of David Magee. Those are terrific. And it's easy and it's free. So folks sign up today at Cross the Bridge dot com. And thank you for listening. We hope you'll join us again next time as we continue studying verse pipers through second Sam.