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The Final Song, Part 2

Wisdom for the Heart / Dr. Stephen Davey
The Truth Network Radio
February 8, 2022 12:00 am

The Final Song, Part 2

Wisdom for the Heart / Dr. Stephen Davey

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February 8, 2022 12:00 am

The last words of a godly man are sometimes his most memorable, and that is true for David. In spite of the spiritual failures that haunted his household and kingdom for the latter years of his reign, his prayer to God in 1 Chronicles 29 reveals that underneath the wrinkled skin and tattered crown there was still a heart beating fast for God.

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How can you be a man after God's own heart and do all the things he did, have to confess all the sins he confessed? Being a man or a woman or a young person who pursues after the heart of God doesn't mean you've arrived at some state of perfection. It has to do with your direction, your priority.

And out of that kind of priority ought to flow your job and how you take care of your stuff, how you mind your manners. In fact, that's the ultimate motive for doing anything of value because we know him and we want to make him known. The last words of a godly man are sometimes his most memorable.

Have you ever experienced that? Maybe there was someone in your life who passed on some wisdom to you before dying and going to be with God. Well, that was certainly true for David. As we've seen in this series, David had many spiritual failures.

Those failures had a negative impact on his life, his family and his ministry. But what David says in First Chronicles 29 reveals that at the end of his life, he was passionate about God. Today on Wisdom for the Heart, Stephen Davey concludes a series on David's life.

He's calling this lesson the final song. When David laid his head on his pillow at night for the last 15 years or so, what was swirling in his mind was not battle plans but building plans. That's what thrilled his heart. His one great desire, his legacy, he wanted it to be the building of this magnificent temple for the glory of his magnificent God and God said no. I wonder when nobody's around, when you're able to be honest with your own heart before the Lord and you entertain those dreams and plans, if God allowed you to have the intention of your heart, would it look like what you have today?

I think all of us would have to be honest enough to say, you know, even in my best happiest day, I'd change this or I wouldn't have allowed that to happen or I would have changed that. My guess is almost every one of us would have to say in one way or another, God has often said no where the intention of my heart and the desire of my heart was good, even godly, but he didn't say yes, he said no. In David's farewell speech that he's had plenty of time to collect, he doesn't begin to spew bitterness and anger at God, look what God made me do, all those battles, all those wars and now look what God won't let me do.

Instead he tells his audience what God has allowed him to do instead. God chose me to be king. He's chosen my son to rule in my place and build this temple. Don't think for a moment by the way that because it's his son that makes it easy.

No. David wants to see this built. So it's interesting that instead of anger or frustration, he's resigned and surrendered and joyfully submissive that while God has chosen to use his plans, he has chosen to use someone else's hands. In fact from verses 9 through 19 of chapter 28, what you have here is the intention of his heart. You have the floor plan, you have the treasuries, the storage rooms, the upper rooms, the inner chambers, you have the holy of holies, you've got the divisions of the priests which by the way he's been preparing, he's been seeking and training, they now swell over 30,000 men ready to go. He's designed the gold and the vessels and the weight needed for all of that and even the design of the lamp stands and the table and the silver and forks and basins and cups and bowls and on and on. This has been his greatest longing. What do you think he's been doing for 15 years? He's been gathering and planning and drawing and designing what God has allowed him to know. But at this point in the narrative, we really ought to be studying the final speech of a bitter man, an angry, frustrated king who had followed the will and was now kept from his dream.

And you can almost hear him, can't you? Pine away, this is the thanks I get for 40 years of battling for God. No, instead he models surrender and submission and with that self-sacrifice and humility, his life didn't turn out like he wanted it to but he knew God was still worthy of praise. For those of you who are in your 50s, that 50 just marks something, doesn't it? Half a century, you begin to think differently, you forget what you thought but you think it anyway, 60s, 70s, 80s. Somewhere along the line, you wake up to the reality and the truth of David's speech, don't you? By now, you've probably figured out that you'll not own a Fortune 500 company. You probably now know you're not going to have that cottage in Key West or maybe buy a pond in the Northeast.

By now, you're realizing you're stuck here with us. Maybe that dream of a paid-off mortgage isn't going to happen. Maybe a dream of good health.

I know a couple in their 80s who recently have lost their home after paying it off only through financial reversals, literally in their 80s losing that home and having to sign on and start over. Those of you with children, your dream was that they would walk with God and maybe they walked away from God. Your chapter is different than what you had intended for God to write and you certainly wouldn't have written everything just like he has.

David here is in his 70s. This was the intention of my heart. I love his honesty. He admits it.

He doesn't say, nah, I didn't think about that. Nah, no big deal. No, this was it. This was the longing of my heart. God has given it to somebody else. I don't know about you but it's one thing to not have your dreams fulfilled. It's another thing to have your dreams postponed. It's another thing entirely to see God give your dream to somebody else. Wait, I wanted to do that.

That's what I wanted to experience. Solomon will build the temple of God that David designed. What David is doing here is all the more remarkable and that's just sort of a setup because what he's doing is focusing on what God did allow, what God did do, what God did give him, how God did bless him. In fact, go back to verse 4 again. That opening word yet in my translation, yet. Here's the intention of my heart.

Didn't get to do that yet. God chose me from all my father's house to be king. He took pleasure in making me king. Now, he's not trying to sound super spiritual because this is going to go down to the record as his farewell speech, earning some additional badge of honor. David would have and admittedly here says he would in a heartbeat trade in his crown for a hard hat.

He would have willingly, gladly laid down his royal scepter and picked up a hammer. He's honest but he doesn't stop there. He says yet, yet.

I think maturity is getting us to that point and beyond. Yet, this is what God did. He leaves us an example of godly surrender. Secondly, he leaves us an example of godly parenting. Now, for those of you that know much about David, that's probably a surprising thing to hear me say. Godly parenting and David don't necessarily go in the same sentence, do they? But the truth is, for those of you who have studied the life of David, you're well aware that he got it wrong a lot more than he got it right. And that is so encouraging to me.

How about you? He will fail in many areas. He will nurse a grudge and refuse to see Absalom when he needed him most. He will fail to provide spiritual leadership. He's going to ignore the sins of his sons. He's going to choose to pamper instead of punish. And for it, he's going to lose the respect of many in his household and nearly lose his kingdom to a son who grows to hate him.

So you might be surprised by me saying in the second example that leaves us is an example of godly parenting. But I got to tell you, and I'm glad I can point this out, though David often got it wrong and so do we, here's an opportunity near the end of his life in his farewell speech. I want to get it right.

I want to get it right. Look at verse 9. He gives his son a classic father-son speech. And you, Solomon, my son, know the God of your father and serve him with a whole heart and with a willing mind. For the Lord searches all hearts and understands every plan and thought. If you seek him, he will be found by you, but if you forsake him, he will cast you off forever. Be careful now, for the Lord has chosen you to build a house for the sanctuary.

Be strong and do it. You might go back into this text, by the way, and circle some key verbs in this father-son farewell speech of a lifetime. And the first one is know. K-N-O-W. Get to know God.

Of all the things I want to tell you, that's it. Get to know God. Then serve.

You see that verb? Serve him. Seek him. That is, pursue him. Be strong.

Do it. Do the right thing, is what he's telling you. Now if there's a key word that makes this speech effective and without it absolutely ineffective is David's personal pronoun. Maybe you caught it in verse 9. Solomon, I want you to get to know the God of your father.

See the worst thing you could ever do is expect to have a child listen to you talk about getting to know God when that child knows you don't care about God. What's interesting here is that Solomon doesn't double over and laugh and say, you've got to be kidding. He knows it's true. He's seen the tears of his father's confession and repentance. And so David uses this powerful, possessive pronoun. He's not saying, look Solomon, I want you to get to know the God of your grandfather. Man, your grandfather had a great walk with God.

Get to know the God of your mother. He could have said that. Bathsheba, his mother repented. One of the untold stories is her own repentance and a nickname I believe she used for Solomon with other Old Testament scholars revealing that that final chapter in the book of Proverbs was Bathsheba's advice to Solomon on what to look for in a woman and a wife.

That shows you her turnaround. He didn't say that. He doesn't say, Solomon, get to know the God of Israel's high priest. There's a man who walks with God. Or even more tragically, Solomon, I want you to get to know the God I used to know. The God I once walked with. I can tell you, don't imitate me, just listen to me.

That's the worst message we can give. He isn't saying get to know the God I used to serve. Get to know him whom I serve now. In fact, look down at verse 20. David's going to repeat much the same. Be strong and courageous and do it. Do not be afraid and do not be dismayed for the Lord God, even my God, there it is again, even my God is with you.

He will not leave you or forsake you. I'm afraid that if the average parent, if the message they're communicating to their children were put up on the screen, and I'm not talking about the world, I'm talking about the church. I fear that the average message communicated, because it's the one we constantly might harp on, would be, listen, here's what I want you to know. Get a good education. Get a good job. Get a good car.

Change of oil every 3,000 miles. Mind your manners. Eat vegetables. Settle down. Obey the law.

Follow your budget. Do your laundry every six months, which would be an improvement. I mean, that's all good advice, all of it, but you can check every one of those boxes and live an absolutely miserable life, amounting to nothing for the glory of God, knowing nothing of him, following nothing of his character, making no distinctive. In fact, you can do all those things that I just rattled off and die and go to hell, but sinners can do that.

Unbelievers can do that. Get a good education. Get a good job. Get a nice car. Settle down. Obey the law.

Mind their manners. Is that what we're communicating to the next generation? David is saying, Solomon, look, what I'm doing is I'm commending someone to you that I claim as my own, and you've seen my life. You've seen my failures.

You've heard my confessions. I got to tell you, the best advice I could give you is know him and follow him and serve him and live for him. That's the message. Now, we're not told exactly how long it was between David's last words and his death, but he's publicly ending his life with this message, further proof he was indeed the man after God's own heart. Now, we encountered that phrase earlier in our study in 1 Samuel, and maybe you wondered, how can he be a man after God's own heart and do all the things he did, have to confess all the sins he confessed? We learned it together, and I'm going to review it in 30 seconds, that being a man or a woman after God's own heart has nothing to do with perfection because none of us are. It has everything to do with priority. Being a man or a woman or a young person who pursues after the heart of God doesn't mean you've arrived at some state of perfection. It has to do with your direction, your priority.

And out of that kind of priority ought to flow your job and how you take care of your stuff, how you mind your manners. In fact, that's the ultimate motive for doing anything of value because we know him and we want to make him known. David looks over Solomon's shoulder now and addresses the nation in chapter 29 and verse 1.

He openly admits that Solomon is young and inexperienced and the work is great. It's intimidating that God had chosen him. David effectively asks the nation to rally to Solomon's aid, which they will do, and the temple which will be built will become one of the marvels of the ancient world until it is destroyed in judgment. David doesn't just want Solomon to know God and pursue God as any godly parent primarily desires. David wants this for his nation, for the people around him, just as I hope we do. Notice his prayer in the open air before his people. Look at verse 16 of chapter 29. Look over there.

Let's just kind of land there on that tarmac for a moment or two. Verse 16 of chapter 29, O Lord our God, all this abundance that we have provided for building you a house, that's all the silver and gold they've donated, for your holy name comes from your hand and is all your own. In other words, we donated all this gold and silver but it really belonged to you to begin with.

It's a great stewardship principle. And you have to remember the fact that David during his reign was surrounded by wealth. He was surrounded by wealth, but he never surrendered to wealth.

As Warren Wiersbe put it, he had possessions but they did not possess him. Notice verse 18, O Lord, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, our fathers, keep forever such purposes and thoughts in the hearts of your people and direct their hearts toward you. Now, this is one of the few times in the Bible you're going to read a prayer of a parent on behalf of their child, though grown, but here it comes, verse 19. Grant to Solomon, my son, a whole heart that is a heart of integrity, that he may keep your commandments, your testimonies, your statutes performing all, and that he may build the palace that is this temple for which I have made provision. Now, did you notice what David didn't pray?

I don't want to belabor this point too much, but I do want to kick this dead horse before it's completely dead. Did you notice he doesn't pray? God give Solomon a successful reign. God give Solomon material benefits. Keep Solomon safe from all those would-be assassins out there. Protect him from any harm. Give him good health.

Make his life comfortable. O God, make all his dreams come true. That's Disney. That's not biblical. And David knew better.

Why? Because his best dream won't come true. And he knows there's more to life than that. So God give my son a heart of integrity. Give his hands perseverance to do your will.

In fact, if you could pull up a chair one more time at verse 20 back in chapter 28, it's the second time David challenges his son, and you listen in, and he's saying to his son, be strong and courageous. Notice, and do it. Just do it.

That's where Nike got their campaign from. Somebody's reading First Chronicles over there. Probably not. But at any rate, don't just be strong and courageous and talk about it. Don't just be strong and courageous and think about it. Don't just be strong and courageous and have some really great ideas. No, Solomon, for you it is the will of God. If that could be the message that rings in the hearts and the minds of our children and the generation coming up, here's the best thing you can do with life. Know God, pursue God, and just get on with living for him. Do that.

Do that. And by the way, he'll never leave you nor forsake you. Can you picture this old gray-headed king? I picture him leaning on his staff out there on the porch of his court. His nobles gathered around him in all the nation that can gather there, close enough to here. Maybe he's leaning on the shoulder of his son, Solomon.

If I could paraphrase his last recorded words to his son, he would have been saying something like, Solomon, I've been king for 40 years. I've been walking on this planet for over 70. I've been a shepherd. I've been a fugitive. I've been a soldier. I've been a desperado.

I've been a husband and a father, a composer, a poet, and a king. But I want you to know God has never ever failed me. Though I have stumbled off and God never has, he is worth trusting. I want you to pursue my God.

One more example. David leaves us an example of godly worship. In fact, in chapter 29, verses 10 through 13 are part of his final prayer, but they form poetic lines. Your English translation may not pick up on that.

A more wooden translation in my study has. And so you can, and it would be appropriate to view these four verses, verses 10, 11, 12, and 13, as poetry. This is effectively David's last song. So let's just read the lyrics of this God-honoring song. Verse 10. Therefore, David blessed the Lord in the presence of all the assembly. He's blessing, praising, more than likely chanting.

Here it comes. David said, blessed are you, O Lord, the God of Israel, our Father forever and ever. Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty for all that is in the heavens and in the earth is yours. Yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and you are exalted as head above all. Both riches and honor come from you, and you rule over all. In your hand are power and might, and in your hand it is to make great and to give strength to all. And now we thank you, our God, and praise your glorious name. He's saying everything comes from your hand, everything belongs under your rule, and everything about you deserves praise. Everything comes from your hand. Here's my last song.

Everything belongs to your rule, and everything about you deserves praise. I couldn't help but go back and rehearse the composition of what we call Handel's Messiah, first performed in 1741. If you know anything about that man's life, it was troubled. He went from poverty to poverty with a few spikes of wealth in between. He was in physical and spiritual desperation. He knew the Lord.

In fact, a friend, in order to encourage him, slipped him some pieces of paper with scriptures written on them. He didn't really give them much attention. But in his apartment, at the end of his robe, he pulled those pages out and began to read those passages and then went to his piano and began to compose.

In fact, for three weeks, he barely stopped to eat or sleep. No one came over. He entertained no one as he began to put those passages together and then composed the music. Finally, after 22 days of solitude, a friend made his way into Handel's apartment and found him at the piano, sheets of music strewn everywhere. It looked like a tornado. George looked up at him when he interrupted him.

George had tears streaming down his cheeks. He said to his friend, I do believe I have seen the greatness of God. The Messiah was first performed in 1741. It was performed in London as they arrived at what we call the Hallelujah Chorus. It's not at the end.

The original composition is near the middle. England's King George, in the audience, removed his crown and stood up. In that culture and time, one never sat in the presence of the superior. It was his acknowledgement of God. I want you to see here, friends, King David, the great king of Israel, the greatest until his son, the son of David, reigns upon the throne. I want you to see him effectively removing his crown and standing there publicly in honor and deference to his king and his Lord.

And then get ready. He sings his composition. He ends his prayer. And in his last recorded words in scripture, you want to see them?

Look at verse 20 of chapter 29. Then David said to all the assembly, bless the Lord your God. In other words, that song I've just sung, I want you to learn and I want you to sing praise to God, too. And it would be wonderful to be said of all of us who know the king that we would lead those around us, our generation, our congregation, our world, to sing praise to God with us. With that, we conclude this lesson and this entire series, the singer, the life and times of King David.

This concluding lesson is called the final song. If you missed any of the lessons in this series, or if you'd like to listen to any of them again, we've posted them to our website. You'll find all of this at wisdomonline.org. That's wisdomonline.org.

Just go to the resource section and search for the words, the singer. Thanks for joining us today here on Wisdom for the Heart. This is the Bible teaching ministry of Steven Davey. Steven is the pastor of the Shepherd's Church in Cary, North Carolina. Steven has written a booklet called Blessed Assurance. In it, he shares how we can know for certain that we are saved and how our salvation is secure. That booklet is available in our store. However, this month, a free copy of the ebook is available for you to download. When you go to our website, there's a link right at the top of the page, and that will take you to this free offer. On our next broadcast, Steven takes us to a portion of the Gospel of Luke. Be sure and join us then here on Wisdom for the Heart.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-08 13:28:52 / 2023-06-08 13:38:41 / 10

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