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David, God's Hero

Summit Life / J.D. Greear
The Truth Network Radio
May 1, 2016 6:00 am

David, God's Hero

Summit Life / J.D. Greear

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At all our campuses, if you have your Bible, I'd love you to take it out now and open it to 1 Samuel 16. 1 Samuel 16 is after the book of Ruth. It's on page 238 in my Bible, if that helps you at all.

As you are opening there, I'll tell you the last year I read a book called Undaunted Courage by Stephen Ambrose. It was about the Lewis and Clark expedition of the early 1800s. Lewis and Clark had set out to find what they just thought was one contiguous waterway that connected the Atlantic and the Pacific oceans.

For two years, these two men and their team battled through hunger and fatigue, enemies, desertion. All the information they'd receive up to this point made them think that there was, once they crossed the continental divide, they would face about a half day's walk down to the Columbia River, which they would then be able to ride kind of coast lazily down river all the way to the Pacific Ocean. The story goes that as they approached the continental divide, Meriwether Lewis was the first in the group to run up ahead to try to be the first one to get a glimpse of this huge plane, he thought, that would lead to the Pacific Ocean. Instead, he didn't see the Columbia River.

He didn't see a gradual downward glide. He became the first non-native American to lay his eyes on what we now call the Rocky Mountains. Can you imagine what that moment felt like to him? Stephen Ambrose, the author of the book, shows how somehow Lewis and Clark were able to deal with disappointments and setbacks like that and keep pressing on. And because of that, on November 5th, 1805, Lewis and Clark put their feet into the Pacific Ocean, and then they turned around and started the journey back.

Here is what I want you to consider as we get into things today. How do you or are there places in your life that you feel like that? Like you just encountered a Rocky Mountain moment when you were not expecting it. Maybe it's a Rocky Mountain moment in your marriage. Maybe you suddenly got a health report that you just were not prepared to receive. Maybe it's a Rocky Mountain moment in your job. Maybe it is an unexpected delay that's taken place in something, and you can't figure out why things aren't happening more quickly.

Or maybe it was a sudden problem that you've developed with your kids that you just didn't see coming. What I want to show you today is that God has a very special way of preparing His people, and that these kinds of things, these Rocky Mountain experiences, are always part of His plan. What we want is an easy downriver waterway into eternity, but what God usually does is He sends us into the Rocky Mountains instead. And y'all, that frustrates us. I know it frustrates you.

It frustrates me. But God sees these things totally different than we do. Hardships and mountains are never a problem to God.

God can fling them out of the way whenever He wants. God's biggest objective in this journey is not to get you to a destination. He can just rapture you out any time you want it. His biggest objective in this journey is preparing you individually. It's like I've often told you, His primary objective is not just to get you into heaven. It's to get the heart of heaven into you.

It's to put His heart into you. And so what He's going to use are these moments like this, and you're going to see that in 1 Samuel 16 and 17. If you're new around here, by the way, we're doing a series this year in which we're going all the way through the whole Bible and looking at sort of the high points so that we can get our minds around the whole story. We're on message number 16 from 1 Samuel 16.

Let me just take a moment to catch you up on the bigger story in case you are new this week. After the terrible downward cycle of the book of Judges, Israel, the nation of Israel, decides that what they really need is a king. And God says to them, but I was supposed to be your king. And they said, well, yeah, but we want one that we can see and touch somebody who'll make us proud, somebody who will take care of us and lead us into battle.

And God says, you know, you're going to end up regretting that, but He agrees to it. So He tells a prophet named Samuel to go find a king. And Samuel chooses a man named Saul. Now Saul really was an obvious choice for king. He was tall. He was charismatic. He was good looking. He would have been a great warrior. He was a great warrior. He was very smart.

He would have gone on full scholarship, any college that he had chosen. Nobody was surprised when Saul was chosen to be king. And he started out pretty good, but he turned out to be a king like most kings. Power corrupted his heart. He became proud and self-willed. He used his position of power, not to serve the people he was leading, but to serve himself. He began to use and abuse people rather than serve them.

And he bent the laws of God whenever it would serve him. And so God rejected him as king. And he told Samuel to go and look for a new king. And so, as we saw last week, God sends Samuel to the house of a man named Jesse to anoint one of his sons to be king.

That is Jesse, the grandson of Ruth, the Moabite. Well, Jesse answers the door and there's Samuel. And Samuel says, God told me, Jesse, that one of your sons is supposed to be king.

And Jesse thinks, oh, I know exactly which one you're talking about. If there were one of my sons that were going to be a king, it's going to be my oldest, Eliab. And so he went and gets Eliab and brings him out.

Verse six, when they came, Samuel looked on Eliab and he thought, surely the Lord's anointed is before him. Eliab looked kingly. He was tall. He had a commanding presence.

He had those blue steel eyes. I know you're expecting me to put up a picture of Nicolas Cage here, but I'm not going to do it. Verse seven. But the Lord said to Samuel, do not look on his appearance. Do not look on the height of his stature because I have rejected him. For the Lord, Samuel, sees not as man sees.

Man looks on the outward appearance, but God, the Lord looks on the heart. Now, y'all, Samuel really should have known better, should he not? Samuel, don't you remember Saul?

Remember Saul? Are you really going to make that mistake again, Samuel? You're going to choose Eliab just because he looks kingly? If you trace the story of Eliab on from here, you're going to see that he turns out to be really critical and arrogant and very untrusting of God. God says to Samuel, I'm looking for something different in my king. Listen, y'all, when God looks for leaders, he doesn't look at what we look at.

And he rarely values what we typically value. He's not after the pretty face. God never looks at somebody and says, wow, he's a great dresser or impressive resume or what a nice body. He looks at the beauty here.

That's the only place he looks at it, the beauty here and here alone. So let me just ask you before we move on, how much time do you spend preparing the beauty of this right here? I know some of us spend so much time working on the exterior part of our lives, which has no value at all to God. So we spend our time working out, making sure we dress correctly, saying all the right things. Some of you spent a significant amount of time this morning, getting that part ready.

Do you come in today with this prepared? Because what God looks at is purity and humility and compassion. People who are quick to ask for forgiveness, quick to admit when they're wrong, quick to forgive others when they have been wrong. Well, like I said, Samuel should have known all this, but even the best prophets forget things from time to time. So God says to Samuel, nope, I've not chosen this one. And so Samuel then says to a very surprised Jesse, well, God has not chosen this one.

Do you have another son? Verse 10 and Jesse made seven of his sons pass before Samuel. And Samuel said to Jesse, the Lord has not chosen any of these. Then Samuel said to Jesse, are all your sons here?

Now that kind of seems like a dumb question to me. Are there any kids that you have forgotten about? And Jesse says, you know, starts counting, Oh yeah, there's one more, but he is no King. I promise you there remains the youngest and behold, he's keeping the sheep.

Now youngest in the Hebrew is the word haka tone, which Hebrew scholars say literally means runt. He was wimpy and skinny. He's the kind of kid that had to run around in the shower to get wet. And he's out keeping the sheep, which was the lowest of all the low jobs in Israel.

This was the equivalent of the 20 toilet cleaning job. And Samuel said to Jesse, send and get him for we will not sit down until he comes here. Now, is it me or does Samuel strike you as a little bit ornery as an older man? He's kind of like, how many sons did I ask you to get Jesse? All of them. We're not even going to sit down until you get this one back.

So we're just going to stand right here until you bring them to me. And so some guy goes tearing out across the field to find David gets him verse 12, sends him and brings him in. Now, David was ready and he had beautiful eyes and was handsome, ruddy. Some say this means in Hebrew that he was redheaded and freckled. Others say that that word means that he was dirty, disheveled, tan, and smelled like the pasture.

How one word could potentially mean both things. I have no idea, but we at least know we had pretty eyes. The point is he doesn't look like a king. He doesn't look like a ferocious man of war, which is what they wanted in a king. He looks like a rut kid with a baby face.

Think Justin Bieber or bow wow, or a Jonas brother or our own Jonas brother that we have our own Justin Bieber. This was King David verse 12 and the Lord said, arise, anoint him for this is he verse 13. And from that day on the spirit of the Lord rushed upon David. David's strength was not going to come from any inward awesomeness that he has. In fact, he doesn't have that much inward awesomeness. God chose him because he was going to be weak in himself. And therefore he could be full of the spirit of God, because when you're full of yourself, you're not going to be full of the spirit of God.

And when you're empty on yourself, you can be full of him. And that's why I got chooses him for Samuel 17. This brings us now to the most famous Bible story of all time, the story of David and Goliath y'all everybody thinks they know this story. Everybody thinks they know the main point of this story, but I am telling you, um, there are some deep Bible things hidden in this story that will unlock not just the meaning of the Bible, but the entire meaning of your life.

And in my experience, not trying to be critical, but very few people understand what's actually going on in this passage. First Samuel 17 verse one. Now the Philistines gathered their armies for battle.

All right, really quick. Who are the Philistines? The Philistines were the bad guys.

That's a short answer, but there were a group of people still living in the land of Canaan that Israel had failed to drive out. Ironically, in our culture, when we say so and so as a Philistine, we mean that they are culturally backwards. That's ironic because in those days, the Philistines were the most culturally sophisticated advanced civilization of the time. They were the first ones to ever work with metal. That's why it was the iron age. And they were at the forefront of that. So they had metal for their weapons.

They had metal for their chariots, which gave them superior weapons. The Israelites are all fighting with rocks and wood and slingshots. Um, so Israel was intimidated by them verse three and the Philistines stood on the mountain on the one side and Israel stood on the mountain on the other side with this big valley between them. I've actually been to this place. It's a pretty unbelievable spot. Verse four, and there came out from the camp of the Philistines, a champion named Goliath, whose height was six cubits and a span, which would have made him in our measurements about nine foot six.

He would have barely missed the basketball goal with his head. When he walked by verse five, he Goliath had a helmet of bronze on his head and he was armed with a coat of mail, which didn't mean that he had a bunch of postcards attached to him. It meant that he had a shirt on that was made out of metal. And in case you didn't know that, and the weight of the coat was 5,000 shekels of bronze and he had bronze armor on his legs and a javelin of bronze slung between his shoulders. Now, why does it keep bringing up bronze and metal? Because Israel doesn't have any of that at this point. This guy is superior in every possible way.

The shaft of his sphere was like a weaver's beam and he stood and shouted to the ranks of Israel. Why have you come out to draw up for battle? Am I not a Philistine? This is, this is meet the Philistine right here. And are you not just servants of Saul?

Choose a man for yourselves and let him come down to me. And if he is able to fight with me and kill me, then we'll be your servants. But if I prevail against him and kill him, then you shall be our servants. This is what they called representative warfare. One person fights on behalf of the army.

And if your representative wins, you win. Verse 16 says that every morning and every evening Goliath did this for 40 days. Every morning at breakfast, verse 10, give me a man that we may fight together.

And at night when they're on their campfire roasting s'mores or smoking their pipes or doing whatever, give me a man. He comes out and says, again, it was really intimidating. Verse 11, when Saul and all Israel heard these words of the Philistine, they were dismayed and greatly afraid.

Right? Meanwhile, back at the ranch, verse 20, Jesse sends ruddy David up to see his brothers at the battle with some crackers and cheese. All David's brothers were in the army, which is how we know, by the way, David was a teenager because the cut off for the army age in those days was 20 years old. So David's not all dump being the army, which means he was a teenager. His teenage David rises up early in the morning and he leaves the sheep with a keeper. He finds a sheep sitter like a responsible young man would, and he takes the lunchables that his daddy had given him and takes them to his brothers. He is essentially a teenager making a donut run for his daddy. That's what's going on here. So he brings the snacks to his seven older brothers who are doing the fighting.

And to be technical here, fighting is probably not the best term because up to this point, their fighting consists basically of yelling insults at the other team. Yeah, well, you're dumb. Your mama's a Goliath and that kind of thing, those sort of things. Verse 23, as David talked with them, behold, the champion, the Philistine of Gath, Goliath by name, came out of the ranks of the Philistines and spoke the same words as before. But this time David heard him.

Jump down to verse 32. And David said to Saul, let no man's heart fail because of him. Your servant, me, ruddy little David, I'll go fight the Philistine. And Saul said to David, you got to hear the condescension in this.

You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him for you are but a youth. And he has been a man of war from his youth. In other words, David, this guy has been fighting and killing people for longer than you have been alive.

He's got socks older than you, David. Verse 34, here we go. But David said to Saul, your servant used to keep sheep for his father.

And by used to, I mean, this morning I was keeping sheep for my father. And then there came a lion and a bear and took a lamb from the flock. And I went after him and struck him and delivered it out of his mouth. And when he arose against me, I caught him by his beard and I struck him and killed him. Now, first a beard.

What did bears look like in those days is the question I ask. Verse 37, the Lord who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the ball of the bear will deliver me also from the hand of the Philistine. And Saul said to David, go and the Lord be with you.

In other words, good luck dying, man. Have a good time with that. Verse 42, when the Philistine looked and saw David, he disdained him for he was but a youth with his freckles and his floppy hair. Verse 43, the Philistine said to David, am I a dog? Am I a dog that you come out to me with sticks? Seriously, you sent out Sheldon Cooper from Big Bang Theory to come and fight me?

Would you think this was a, so you think you can dance contest? Verse 44, the Philistine said to David, come to me and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air and to the beast of the field. Then David said to the Philistine, well, see the problem dude is you come to me with a sword and a spear and a javelin and they're all made of bronze and they're pretty impressive. And they're kind of nice by the way, but I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel whom you have defied and so this very day the Lord will deliver you into my hand and I will strike you down and cut off your head.

That's not bad for a novice trash talker if you ask me. And I will give the dead bodies of the hosts of the Philistines this day to the birds of the air, to the wild beasts of the earth that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. Notice by the way, there's your audience number one, all the earth. Verse 47, and that all this that all this assembly may know that the Lord saves not with sword and with spear. Notice the two audiences.

One is the world to know that God exists and that he answers prayer. The other is the church to prove to other people in the church, all the cowards on the sidelines that God is trustworthy. For the battle, David says, is the Lord's and he will give you into our hand.

And he's going to prove that right here. Verse 48, when the Philistine arose and came and drew near to meet David, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet the Philistine. David put his hand in his bag and took out a stone and slung it and struck the Philistine on his forehead. The stone sank into his forehead and Goliath thought, well, this was the last thing to ever enter my mind. And he fell, see what I did there? And he fell on his face to the ground. Then David ran and stood over the Philistine and took his sword and drew it out of his sheath. David didn't even have a sword y'all. And he killed him and he cut off his head. And when the Philistines saw that their champion was dead, they fled. And the men of Israel and Judah rose with a shout and pursued the Philistines and they plundered all their camp.

All right. Here's the big question. What is the main point of this story? I know you've heard the story, but what's the main point of it?

Is it that the bigger they are, the harder they fall? I mean, that literally is a proverb that comes right from the story that people get. How about, there's always hope for the underdog, so never stop believing in yourself. Don't stop believing. Hold onto that feeling or whatever. Is that the main point?

Or how about, how about this? If you trust God, God will give you victory over all the giants in your life. Like maybe a really good football team that you're about to play, or maybe a lousy job, or maybe cancer. Or how about this is the main point.

God has appointed you to conquer the giant of mediocrity and dominate in your workplace. I've heard all of these as the explanation for this story, right? Are those the main point of this story? What do you think?

Ladies and gentlemen, this is the audience participation part of the program. What do you think? No. Let me teach you something about Bible interpretation. This is a mistake that people most often make with the Bible. The story of David, like all stories in the Bible, is not David, you. That's not the way it goes. In the Bible, it is David, Jesus, you. Don't ever cut out the middleman.

At least in this form, don't cut out the middleman. We'll get to what it means for the giants in your life in a minute. But this book that we talk about every week, this book, first and foremost, is not a book about you. It's not even a book about your life.

It is a book about him. It is not written to give you a bunch of heroes whose examples you're supposed to emulate as much as it is to give you a savior that you're supposed to adore and to hope in. Jesus was the small, unassuming shepherd boy who fought the real giant, Satan, our sin and the curse of death. He fought as our representative on our behalf while we all stood on the sidelines like cowards doing nothing to help us.

Doing nothing to help him. As our representative, Jesus lived the life we were supposed to live, and then he died to death that we were condemned to die in our place. And just like David, Jesus was opposed by all of his brothers, and he was abandoned by everybody at the moment of battle. He walked out on that field all alone, and he conquered the giant all by himself.

And now we, his brothers, who stood like cowards on the sidelines while he went and did it, we get to share in the plunder of his victory even though we did not even lift a finger to help him. The real giant in our lives, our real Goliath, was our alienation from God and the penalty we owed because of our sin. And that is something that Jesus knocked out for us on the field of battle all by himself. So David, Jesus, now you.

Right? Because after we do that, now you can understand what it means for your life. Number one, because Jesus has taken out the real giant in my life, I can bravely face all the lesser giants. So write this down if you're taking notes.

Do a little letter A here. In Christ, I don't have to be afraid of death. Y'all, if cancer comes, I don't know for some of you, it has. If cancer comes, ultimately, I don't have to be afraid of it because even if it kills me, Jesus has taken the sting out of death. And in the moment of death, I can say like Paul, for me to live is Christ and to die is nothing but gain.

In fact, King David would write it himself this way. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil for thou art with me. The valley of the shadow of death. All I will ever go through is the valley of the shadow. I won't even go through the valley of death. I'll just go through the valley of the shadow of death. You're like, what's this? I've told you this before. This is one of my favorite illustrations.

I'll probably use it a couple times a year. True story of a little girl whose mother died when she was 12 years old. And she's on her way from the funeral to the graveside. And, of course, she's just overcome with grief. But she's thinking about what the pastor said at the funeral. And he quoted the 23rd Psalm where he said, yea, they all walk through the valley of the shadow of death.

I will fear no evil. She turns to her daddy and she said, dad, what does it mean to go through the valley of the shadow of death? And her dad thought for a minute about how to explain it to her. And he said, just at that moment, this semi-tractor trailer went by on the right-hand side and the way the sun was shining, it made its shadow come across our car. And I turned to my daughter and I said, I said, I said, sweetheart, if you had to choose, would you rather get hit by that truck or get hit by its shadow? She said, well, I'd rather get hit by the shadow, of course.

He said, yeah. He said, Jesus was hit with the truck of your mommy's death so that all that would ever pass over her is the shadow. You see, Jesus took the real sting out of death, which was alienation and separation. So that now when you go through cancer, when you walk into death's doorstep, what you're going to deal with is only the shadow because Jesus actually took the full impact of it in Christ. I don't have to be afraid of death in Christ. I don't have to be afraid of the future flying out of control. So if you lose your job, you got something more secure than money to hang onto. And that thing that's more secure is God's personal promises to take care of you. Again, here's how David wrote it. The Lord is my shepherd.

So I'll never really be in need. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He prepares a table for me before me in the presence of my enemies.

You know how comforting that is? The moment that all my enemies are trying to kill me, God's fixing me a five course meal right in the middle of it. And they can't touch me. Surely goodness and mercy, David says, are going to follow me all the days of my life. I can't get away from it. When I wake up, it's there.

When I get up in the morning, when I go to bed at night, you can never separate me from it. I'll dwell in the house of the Lord forever. I'll never be abandoned. I'll never be alone.

I'll never be forsaken. So if I lose my job, it's not the end of the world. Cause you want to know what really would be the end of the world? Losing your relationship with God and standing in judgment before Him. And since Jesus took care of that, you can be confident that He'll take care of this situation too. Just ask yourself, what would feel like the end of the world to you?

What would feel like the end of the world? Losing a job, losing a loved one, maybe getting hurt in a relationship. I know people in our church who pull back from being in relationships because they got really hurt in a relationship and they think I just can't have that ever happen to me again. And so their heart's damaged and they can't trust. They can't love. But see in Christ, you can go, you can go back into those relationships because listen, even if you get hurt again, that won't be the end of the world.

Why? Because Christ took into Himself the real end of the world for you. Christ has given you true life, a life that joblessness cannot threaten, a life that friends cannot damage and a life that cancer can't even kill. So yay though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death or the valley of joblessness or poor health or a bad marriage, I will not be afraid because thou art with me.

Your rod and your staff, which are instruments of protection, they're the ones that bring comfort to me and they're always fighting for me and you never go to sleep. Here's this, let her see in Christ I don't have to fear the disapproval of others. I have the absolute approval of the only one whose opinion really matters.

I've told y'all before that for most of my life I've been captive to what other people thought about me. Well see in Christ I know that even if people reject me, even if people don't like me, I have the absolute approval of the only one whose opinion really matters anyway. Y'all sometimes even as I preach, even in the very moment of preaching, I will have these thoughts. I look out and partially it's some of your faults because there are some of you that are extraordinary sermon listeners. There's about five of you in every audience and what I mean by that is you smile and when I make eye contact you nod like this and I'm just like I feel awesome right now and I always figure out who you are and I just look at you the entire time but see the right between you and the next person like that are a bunch of really bad sermon listeners and everybody's and they just consider like this and they get this kind of look on their face and I'm like are they mad are they what's going on and I start like feeling like I think I'm really terrible at this. Based on that person's expression I am a very terrible preacher. I think you should probably do something else in my life and I just get kind of overcome with this like I don't think these people I don't think that guy right there likes I think that guy's mad at me that guy might come up and punch me after this thing is over and in the middle of that kind of thought when the Holy Spirit helps me I get this other quick glimpse you're like what is all happening in your head as you preach you preach the same thing five times you watch what happens in your mind. So as I'm as I'm seeing this I'll get this image of God the father like right here just kind of in heaven he's standing right up there and I get this image of him looking out over heaven watching me preach and then I kind of picture him like calling the angels like blowing a whistle like hey guys come here watch this gets them all around he's like y'all look it's JD he's trying to preach again and as usual he's going way too long and his production team's gonna kill him but that's my boy that's my boy and he's doing exactly what I told him to do and I'm proud of it and I suddenly get this big feeling of like confidence again and I'm like if he's smiling at me I don't even care about your frown so go on with your bored self just put your head down I don't care what you do because he's happy he's listening he's into it and if I got his respect I can endure your scorn see in Christ I don't have to be afraid of the disapproval of others by the way this is also how you gain the courage to be honest about your faults to admit that you don't always have it together let me tell you the secret of those people who can admit that they're messed up in front of everybody else the secret is they know that they're accepted by Christ and I know that if I'm confident in Christ I don't need you to think that I'm perfect and awesome in order for for me to know you why because Christ accepts me and so I can be weak and I can be vulnerable because ultimately your admiration is not my life Jesus is my life real courage is not the assurance that everything's gonna go smoothly real courage doesn't come from finding your inner awesomeness so you're a snowflake you're a rainbow you're a skittle it's not finding that real courage doesn't come from not having difficulties or knowing that the way is going to be smooth real courage is knowing that you have a God that is better than life and a God that is larger than death who constantly stays besides you and says surely my goodness and my mercy are gonna follow you you can't get away from it all the days of your life wherever you go that's where I'm gonna go with you now y'all before I go on to the second thing here let me ask do you know Christ like this because see he's your representative but you've got to receive him as your representative he went out on that field and he fought for you he restored God to you but you have to personally receive him as savior and lord here's the second big thing number two because Jesus won this battle I can trust God to fight my lesser battles for me also you see old testament stories like this one do two things as I showed you first and foremost most importantly they point us to Jesus secondarily they give us an example for how we should live those are the two purposes of these stories in that order so really quickly what is a giant in your life let me give you a definition of a giant a giant is anything that prohibits the advance of the will of God in your life you see satan will oppose all the good things God wants to do in your life he'll do it in your marriage he'll do it when you're in the lives of your kids he will do it in your job he will even he will even do it in your health how do we overcome the giants that satan uses to impede the progress of the will of God you do it like David did running confidently toward them believing that God will fight for you listen the Christian life is not just learning to endure defeat well there's a lot of Christians that talk like that's what it means to be a Christian you just gotta walk through life and learn to endure suffering yes you need to learn to endure suffering well but the Christian life is also seeing the power of God and his salvation break into different spheres of your life again let me just use David to teach this to us this is an all David weekend psalm 27 13 I remain confident of this David said watch this I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the where say it say say living I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the in other words not just in death I'm actually going to see God's goodness in life a lot of people think it's only going to be in death it's only in the sweet by and by no God says I want you to see it now you see I think of this when I pray for my kids and I pray for their salvation and I pray for the salvation of their future kids oh my God I want to see your goodness break into my family I think about it when I pray for this church oh my God yeah I understand that you could give us a difficult you could make this church fail and fail and fail and you would still be good and I'd still be heaven that'd be awesome but God I want to see you use this church to reach people in Raleigh Durham and I want to see us baptize 50,000 people I want to see us reach an entire generation of teenagers and college students I want to see us actually transform this community I want to see us plant a thousand churches around the world I want to see us take countries like the Dominican Republic and so flood them with leaders like Samuel that they unite and change the entire face of the nation I think I want to see God's goodness in the land of the living and I'm not going to be satisfied until I see him break in and transform everything it is perfectly fine for you to pray for victory over cancer so that you can keep serving God and blessing others who need you yes God might have a different and a better plan but you can ask him for the outbreak of his goodness in this area it is perfectly fine for you to ask God to bless you in your career so that you can give glory to him and use your prosperity to further the cause of his mission it's okay for you to say God and multiply what you're giving to me so that I can sponsor 100 compassion kids you can be asking God to move you should be asking God to move powerfully in the lives of your friends and you should be expecting him to do so God I want to see your goodness in the land of the living y'all and when God doesn't do what you think he should do you just know that it has nothing to do with him not caring or forgetting about you how do you know that because you saw him face the real giant you saw him take out sin and condemnation and death and you know that if he did not default from you if he did not run away when he faced that giant for you surely he's not going to abandon you when you face these lesser ones where do you see the kingdom of God needing to advance have courage don't look at the size of the giant look at the graciousness of God listen giants are not a problem to God they never have been what kills us is the giant of unbelief that resides right here which brings us back to the last question I want to ask where do you learn this kind of courage where do you learn to listen to God's voice and act in faith let's go back real quick to chapter 16 verse 13 to where the spirit of God first rushes on David this is so important where do you learn this right after verse 13 okay here's my Bible I know you can't see this rule well there's verse 13 right there verse 14 is right here in between verse 13 verse 14 changes the subject and starts talking about Saul again so David just got anointed David has been chosen to be king then we change the subject and this little itty bitty thing between verse 13 and 14 is a white space about that big in my Bible what do you think that white space was like for David because that white space lasted about seven years after David gets anointed to be king what's he do he doesn't you know run down to the palace and start doing an intense elite king training program he doesn't go down to hosanna republic and try on robes sorry but he doesn't do any of that back to the pasture now I'll tell you guys I went to seminary and in seminary they taught us how to exegete aris tense of Greek verbs and Hebrew cognates and blah blah blah they never taught me how to exegete a white space and a white space is the most difficult thing in the Bible to interpret because it's that space where you think God ought to be doing something and he's not right it's a white space where you're like God I don't understand what was his life for David did God did you forget you anointed me to be king and I went back and I started to shovel sheep dung did you make a mistake did I make a mistake no David no mistake it's that God uses the pasture to prepare his king it's only in the pasture that God's going to build into you his skill his patience endurance and character y'all listen chuck swindoll says that three words characterize David's time in the pastor I would encourage you if you can write them in that little tiny white space in your Bible write these three words the first word is obscurity nobody paid any attention to David during that time obscurity second word monotony monotony what you do today David I watched the sheep they went from here to there what else you do I practiced with my slingshot could knock that apple off a tree you want to see nope I don't care David what else did you do I got so bored I played a heart wrote a song you want to hear it I call it the 23rd song not really David don't want to hear a song written by a blue-collar worker who's not skilled at all not particularly anything else David uh a bear attacked the sheep I grabbed his beard and killed it with my knife its beard David do bears even have beards David did can anybody verify this nope obscurity monotony you see there's a third word reality and that third word is that in the pasture the reality is that God that nobody else is paying attention to David God the master builder was using every moment every second to shape him with the slingshot right that was going to come in handy with the heart David's going to write the most famous song ever written the song that brought brings more comfort to Christians in the hour of trial than any other song that's ever been written in the pasture God honed Dave David's courage in the pasture David learned to forgive and be patient in the pasture he learned humility you can only be so proud when you spent the majority of your life shoveling cheap dung David never really forgot where he came from and that's going to be the secret to his success because he never forgot about how small he was and how much he owed to God summit this is how God works in your life already in the series we've seen it haven't we we saw it with Joseph we saw it with Moses we saw it with Joshua when God calls somebody he trains him in the pasture hey mom what'd you do today I changed diapers did your children rise up and call you blessed nope hey teacher what'd you do today I tried to teach some kids a long division they appreciate it nope one tried to flush his math book down the toilet hey business professional what'd you do today I settled some accounts hey student what'd you do some nonsense and calculus and history that I'm never going to use obscurity monotony see the reality is is that God's at work in at all shaping you and moving the mission forward do not despise the pasture do not despise suffering because these are God's laboratories for forming in you the heart of a king that's what he does so let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus see let this mind be in you that was also in him that though he was in the form of God he did not choose equality with God as a thing to be clung onto but he made himself of no reputation and took the form of a servant and humbled himself and became obedient even obedient to the point of the cross therefore therefore God has also highly exalted him and given him the name that is above every name that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow in heaven and on earth that's not just about Jesus it's about you it's telling you how God will exalt you you want to be exalted by God you want to be used by God you want to have the spirit of God rush upon you it means that the way up is the way down you become a servant you become humble you become obedient and then God raises you up in the power of his spirit so don't despise your pasture because what God is doing is he's putting into you a power you can't get any other way any other way so see we just got two questions this weekend back bow your heads with me if you would at all of our campuses bow your heads two questions have you ever received Jesus as your representative he went onto the field he fought the battle for you but you've got to surrender to him and receive him personally you got to choose to receive him as your personal Lord and Savior and then number two are you trusting him in your pasture right now are you trusting him in your pasture let me leave you just to meditate to soak let the Holy Spirit do his ministry in your heart and then our worship teams will come in just a minute and they'll lead us
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-09-05 09:37:03 / 2023-09-05 09:53:55 / 17

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