What Is the Good News of Yeshua? (Part 18)
Rejected by both His people and their king, God nevertheless remained faithful to His covenant and to His plan of reconciliation and salvation for the world. Despite the people’s treasonous intentions in demanding a king, God would redeem their evil plea by establishing a king in Israel with a heart both for righteousness and for Him. From the sons of a lowly shepherd, Adonai would choose His true champion. To correct the people’s mistake in King Saul, the God of Redemption would restore Israel’s kingdom in David.
Directed by God, prophet-priest Samuel found and privately anointed young David well over a decade before he would ascend to the throne (1 Samuel 16:13). Saul, in need of a musician, soon brought David into his service, and also chose him as his armor-bearer (16:21). Eventually, David earned his place as a warrior in the king’s army, having had great success in battle and giant-slaying (18:5). Though Saul greatly loved David (16:21), finding relief in the anointed musician’s hands, he also came to fear him, “for Adonai had been with [David], and from [Saul] He had turned aside” (18:12ff). He also felt threatened because David had surpassed him in engendering the love and adoration of all the people.
As the Spirit of Adonai departed from Saul in exchange for a tortuous spirit from God (18:10), his mind darkened, and he grew increasingly obsessed with the unassuming shepherd’s son. Devolving into a spear-throwing, scheming, vindictive shell of a king, the more success and love that David obtained, the more paranoid Saul became. And so “Saul was an enemy with David all the days” (18:29).
Having issued a kill order to his servants, and even making an assassination attempt or two himself, Saul’s fixation on the future king sent David running for his life (19:1). Chased by Saul’s men, going from city to city, evading capture and living in caves, the man of God still managed to maintain both his integrity and his sanity. Without malice or hatred for his king, David would forfeit multiple opportunities to slay his pursuer and end his persecution (24:3ff, 26:11ff). But even when David offered undeniable proof of his boundless loyalty, Saul could only see his usurper.
And, after forty grueling years as king of Israel, Saul unceremoniously fell in battle, never having dispatched his imagined nemesis.
Mourning the passing of Saul, David finally returned from exile, his great exploits of years past still fresh in the minds of the people. Over his birth-tribe of Judah, David was immediately made king (2 Samuel 1:4), and after seven years of further infighting and adversity, at long last, the humble king took his place on Israel’s throne (5:3).
“…and David went on, going on and becoming great, and Adonai… was with him.” (2 Samuel 5:10, mjlt)
When God had finally given David rest from all his enemies, he became deeply moved concerning the Creator’s temporary Tent among His people, and desired in his heart to build for Him a permanent home (7:1-3). Seeing David’s devotion to bless Him with a Temple He had never asked for nor commanded, Adonai responded not simply with affirmation, but with a promise to build the house of David instead. The God of Redemption covenanted with David that of his descendants who would sit on Israel’s throne, there would be no end (1 Samuel 7:11ff).
Upon the heart of David—the man after God’s own heart—Adonai would establish his eternal throne. David had done nothing to earn such unconditional commitment from Israel’s God except to exceed all others in humility and love. Though David would now serve Israel as the template of a good and righteous king, he still would not escape his own moral failures (11:1ff) and the agonizing consequences that would result (12:14). But because of the man of God that he was, the turmoil he continued to endure, and the forgiveness and restoration he would faithfully receive (12:24), David could fathom—perhaps better than most—the lengths and depths of the God of Redemption…
… who shelters the soul of the outcast (Psalm 71:23)…
… who raises up life from the pit (Psalm 103:4)…
… who ties His reputation to the restoration of His one-of-a-kind people (2 Samuel 7:23)…
… who is ever-willing to redeem His covenant with Israel (Psalm 111:5-9).
For forty years David reigned as king until his death, yet in forty years more, the kingdom had split itself in two (1 Kings 11:42-12:19). Though David’s eternal line would appear to reach its end, still, the guarantee and hope of God’s covenant would endure. From that broken line, Adonai would one day raise up David’s greatest Son to sit forever upon his throne. That King of all kings would be not just the redeemer of Israel, but the One to offer redemption to every living soul.
The God of David was still making a Way to accept those who didn’t deserve to be accepted. Through Israel’s humble king, the God of Redemption showed His willingness to redeem even those who appear irredeemable.
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