1847.) 1 Kings 2

May 31, 2016

1 Kings 2 (New International Version)

David’s Charge to Solomon

1 When the time drew near for David to die, he gave a charge to Solomon his son.

2 “I am about to go the way of all the earth,” he said. “So be strong, act like a man, 3 and observe what the LORD your God requires: Walk in obedience to him, and keep his decrees and commands, his laws and regulations, as written in the Law of Moses. Do this so that you may prosper in all you do and wherever you go 4 and that the LORD may keep his promise to me: ‘If your descendants watch how they live, and if they walk faithfully before me with all their heart and soul, you will never fail to have a successor on the throne of Israel.’

Matthew 6:33 (Amplified Bible)

But seek (aim at and strive after) first of all His kingdom and His righteousness (His way of doing and being right), and then all these things taken together will be given you besides.

5 “Now you yourself know what Joab son of Zeruiah did to me—what he did to the two commanders of Israel’s armies, Abner son of Ner and Amasa son of Jether. He killed them, shedding their blood in peacetime as if in battle, and with that blood he stained the belt around his waist and the sandals on his feet. 6 Deal with him according to your wisdom, but do not let his gray head go down to the grave in peace.

7 “But show kindness to the sons of Barzillai of Gilead and let them be among those who eat at your table. They stood by me when I fled from your brother Absalom.

8 “And remember, you have with you Shimei son of Gera, the Benjamite from Bahurim, who called down bitter curses on me the day I went to Mahanaim. When he came down to meet me at the Jordan, I swore to him by the LORD: ‘I will not put you to death by the sword.’ 9 But now, do not consider him innocent. You are a man of wisdom; you will know what to do to him. Bring his gray head down to the grave in blood.”

Does it seem a little shady to you — that David technically keeps his vow not to kill Shemei, then orders his son to do it? Or that after years of loyal if not totally obedient service to David, Joab is put on the “To Kill” list? Clearly, David sees these matters, as well as the kindness to be shown to the sons of Barzillai, as important matters of justice.

10 Then David rested with his ancestors and was buried in the City of David.

King David’s Tomb in Jerusalem today

11 He had reigned forty years over Israel—seven years in Hebron and thirty-three in Jerusalem. 12 So Solomon sat on the throne of his father David, and his rule was firmly established.

_________________________

Music:

The end of an era, the death of a hero, the story already a legend.

Music from a stirring death today:  HERE  is The Epilogue from Les Miserables. Composed in 1980 by French composer Jean-Michel Schonberg, Les Mis is one of the the longest-running musicals in history, with over 12,500 performances in London and more than 6,600 on Broadway. Based on a novel by Victor Hugo, the story follows Jean Valjean as he struggles for redemption. And as is always true in redemption, love wins. (Thank you, Jesus!)

_________________________

Solomon’s Throne Established

13 Now Adonijah, the son of Haggith, went to Bathsheba, Solomon’s mother. Bathsheba asked him, “Do you come peacefully?”

He answered, “Yes, peacefully.” 14 Then he added, “I have something to say to you.”

“You may say it,” she replied.

15 “As you know,” he said, “the kingdom was mine. All Israel looked to me as their king. But things changed, and the kingdom has gone to my brother; for it has come to him from the LORD. 16 Now I have one request to make of you. Do not refuse me.”

“You may make it,” she said.

17 So he continued, “Please ask King Solomon—he will not refuse you—to give me Abishag the Shunammite as my wife.”

With David’s death, Abishag is now a “concubine widow.” But according to custom, the harem goes to the next king. Adonijah is using her to try to establish a claim on the throne.

18 “Very well,” Bathsheba replied, “I will speak to the king for you.”

19 When Bathsheba went to King Solomon to speak to him for Adonijah, the king stood up to meet her, bowed down to her and sat down on his throne. He had a throne brought for the king’s mother, and she sat down at his right hand.

20 “I have one small request to make of you,” she said. “Do not refuse me.”

The king replied, “Make it, my mother; I will not refuse you.”

21 So she said, “Let Abishag the Shunammite be given in marriage to your brother Adonijah.”

22 King Solomon answered his mother, “Why do you request Abishag the Shunammite for Adonijah? You might as well request the kingdom for him—after all, he is my older brother—yes, for him and for Abiathar the priest and Joab son of Zeruiah!”

Which is to say, give the throne to all who had not supported David in his choice of Solomon as king.

23 Then King Solomon swore by the LORD: “May God deal with me, be it ever so severely, if Adonijah does not pay with his life for this request! 24 And now, as surely as the LORD lives—he who has established me securely on the throne of my father David and has founded a dynasty for me as he promised—Adonijah shall be put to death today!” 25 So King Solomon gave orders to Benaiah son of Jehoiada, and he struck down Adonijah and he died.

One down . . .

26 To Abiathar the priest the king said, “Go back to your fields in Anathoth. You deserve to die, but I will not put you to death now, because you carried the ark of the Sovereign LORD before my father David and shared all my father’s hardships.” 27 So Solomon removed Abiathar from the priesthood of the LORD, fulfilling the word the LORD had spoken at Shiloh about the house of Eli.

Another one out of the way . . .

28 When the news reached Joab, who had conspired with Adonijah though not with Absalom, he fled to the tent of the LORD and took hold of the horns of the altar. 29 King Solomon was told that Joab had fled to the tent of the LORD and was beside the altar. Then Solomon ordered Benaiah son of Jehoiada, “Go, strike him down!”

30 So Benaiah entered the tent of the LORD and said to Joab, “The king says, ‘Come out!’”

But he answered, “No, I will die here.”

Benaiah reported to the king, “This is how Joab answered me.”

31 Then the king commanded Benaiah, “Do as he says. Strike him down and bury him, and so clear me and my whole family of the guilt of the innocent blood that Joab shed. 32 The LORD will repay him for the blood he shed, because without my father David knowing it he attacked two men and killed them with the sword. Both of them—Abner son of Ner, commander of Israel’s army, and Amasa son of Jether, commander of Judah’s army—were better men and more upright than he. 33 May the guilt of their blood rest on the head of Joab and his descendants forever. But on David and his descendants, his house and his throne, may there be the LORD’s peace forever.”

34 So Benaiah son of Jehoiada went up and struck down Joab and killed him, and he was buried at his home out in the country.

Claiming refuge at the altar meant protection to the innocent. Joab was guilty of treacherously killing Abner and Amasa (not to mention Absalom). Solomon has the law on his side in this decision:  But if a man acts with premeditation against his neighbor, to kill him by treachery, you shall take him from My altar, that he may die (Exodus 21:14).

One more down . . .

35 The king put Benaiah son of Jehoiada over the army in Joab’s position and replaced Abiathar with Zadok the priest.

36 Then the king sent for Shimei and said to him, “Build yourself a house in Jerusalem and live there, but do not go anywhere else. 37 The day you leave and cross the Kidron Valley, you can be sure you will die; your blood will be on your own head.”

38 Shimei answered the king, “What you say is good. Your servant will do as my lord the king has said.” And Shimei stayed in Jerusalem for a long time.

39 But three years later, two of Shimei’s slaves ran off to Achish son of Maakah, king of Gath, and Shimei was told, “Your slaves are in Gath.” 40 At this, he saddled his donkey and went to Achish at Gath in search of his slaves. So Shimei went away and brought the slaves back from Gath.

41 When Solomon was told that Shimei had gone from Jerusalem to Gath and had returned, 42 the king summoned Shimei and said to him, “Did I not make you swear by the LORD and warn you, ‘On the day you leave to go anywhere else, you can be sure you will die’? At that time you said to me, ‘What you say is good. I will obey.’ 43 Why then did you not keep your oath to the LORD and obey the command I gave you?”

44 The king also said to Shimei, “You know in your heart all the wrong you did to my father David. Now the LORD will repay you for your wrongdoing. 45 But King Solomon will be blessed, and David’s throne will remain secure before the LORD forever.”

46 Then the king gave the order to Benaiah son of Jehoiada, and he went out and struck Shimei down and he died.

1K2 4 candles

 

 

 

 

 

 

And yet another one down . . . 

The kingdom was now established in Solomon’s hands.

_________________________

New International Version (NIV) Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2010 by Biblica

Images courtesy of:
King Solomon’s chess game.   http://markmeynell.files.wordpress.com/2010/11/1kings1-2-chess3.png?w=365&h=207
Matthew 6:33.    https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2010/11/2-matt633l.jpg
King David’s Tomb.    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/7/77/Jerusalem_Tomb_of_David_BW_1.JPG/225px-Jerusalem_Tomb_of_David_BW_1.JPG
one candle.   https://0.s3.envato.com/files/43491309/preview_candle_burning.jpg
two candles.     http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2264/2155967132_a40428343e.jpg
three candles.    http://www.freefoto.com/images/90/20/90_20_14—Three-Advent-Candles_web.jpg?&k=Three+Advent+Candles
four candles.    http://photos-ak.sparkpeople.com/nw/4/2/l423958300.jpg

1846.) 1 Kings 1

May 30, 2016

King Solomon!

1 Kings 1 (New International Version)

Adonijah Sets Himself Up as King

1 When King David was very old, he could not keep warm even when they put covers over him. 2 So his attendants said to him, “Let us look for a young virgin to serve the king and take care of him. She can lie beside him so that our lord the king may keep warm.”

As medical treatments go, not as bad as leeches . . .

Strange as this may sound to us, it was proper because it was a recognized medical treatment in the ancient world, mentioned by the ancient Greek doctor Galen. When Josephus describes this in his Antiquities of the Jews, he says that this was a medical treatment and he calls the “servants” in 1 Kings 1:2 “physicians.”

–David Guzik

3 Then they searched throughout Israel for a beautiful young woman and found Abishag, a Shunammite, and brought her to the king. 4 The woman was very beautiful; she took care of the king and waited on him, but the king had no sexual relations with her.

She-of-the-unfortunate-name becomes, no doubt, David’s concubine and part of his household.

5 Now Adonijah, whose mother was Haggith, put himself forward and said, “I will be king.”

2 Samuel 3:2-5 describes the sons of David and lists Adonijah as the fourth son. We know that two of the three sons older than Adonijah are dead (Amnon and Absalom), and it seems that the other older son (Chileab) either also died or was unfit to rule because he is never mentioned after 2 Samuel 3:3. As the oldest living son of David, Adonijah would likely be considered the heir to the throne.

So he got chariots and horses ready, with fifty men to run ahead of him. 6 (His father had never rebuked him by asking, “Why do you behave as you do?” He was also very handsome and was born next after Absalom.)

A son too handsome for his own good . . . and again David’s failings as a father reap sad consequences.

Proverbs 29:17 (ESV)

Discipline your son, and he will give you rest;
he will give delight to your heart.

7 Adonijah conferred with Joab son of Zeruiah and with Abiathar the priest, and they gave him their support. 8 But Zadok the priest, Benaiah son of Jehoiada, Nathan the prophet, Shimei and Rei and David’s special guard did not join Adonijah.

Joab (David’s chief general) and Abiathar (the high priest of Israel) both supported Adonijah, without any record of them asking the King David or, more importantly, asking the Lord.

9 Adonijah then sacrificed sheep, cattle and fattened calves at the Stone of Zoheleth near En Rogel. He invited all his brothers, the king’s sons, and all the royal officials of Judah, 10 but he did not invite Nathan the prophet or Benaiah or the special guard or his brother Solomon.

— and some very important people are not invited!

11 Then Nathan asked Bathsheba, Solomon’s mother, “Have you not heard that Adonijah, the son of Haggith, has become king, and our lord David knows nothing about it? 12 Now then, let me advise you how you can save your own life and the life of your son Solomon.

. . . because a new king often kills all his rivals.

13 Go in to King David and say to him, ‘My lord the king, did you not swear to me your servant: “Surely Solomon your son shall be king after me, and he will sit on my throne”? Why then has Adonijah become king?’ 14 While you are still there talking to the king, I will come in and add my word to what you have said.”

David will get a one-two punch . . .

15 So Bathsheba went to see the aged king in his room, where Abishag the Shunammite was attending him. 16 Bathsheba bowed down, prostrating herself before the king.

“What is it you want?” the king asked.

17 She said to him, “My lord, you yourself swore to me your servant by the LORD your God: ‘Solomon your son shall be king after me, and he will sit on my throne.’ 18 But now Adonijah has become king, and you, my lord the king, do not know about it. 19 He has sacrificed great numbers of cattle, fattened calves, and sheep, and has invited all the king’s sons, Abiathar the priest and Joab the commander of the army, but he has not invited Solomon your servant. 20 My lord the king, the eyes of all Israel are on you, to learn from you who will sit on the throne of my lord the king after him. 21 Otherwise, as soon as my lord the king is laid to rest with his ancestors, I and my son Solomon will be treated as criminals.”

22 While she was still speaking with the king, Nathan the prophet arrived. 23 And the king was told, “Nathan the prophet is here.” So he went before the king and bowed with his face to the ground.

24 Nathan said, “Have you, my lord the king, declared that Adonijah shall be king after you, and that he will sit on your throne? 25 Today he has gone down and sacrificed great numbers of cattle, fattened calves, and sheep. He has invited all the king’s sons, the commanders of the army and Abiathar the priest. Right now they are eating and drinking with him and saying, ‘Long live King Adonijah!’ 26 But me your servant, and Zadok the priest, and Benaiah son of Jehoiada, and your servant Solomon he did not invite. 27 Is this something my lord the king has done without letting his servants know who should sit on the throne of my lord the king after him?”

David Makes Solomon King

28 Then King David said, “Call in Bathsheba.” So she came into the king’s presence and stood before him.

29 The king then took an oath: “As surely as the LORD lives, who has delivered me out of every trouble, 30 I will surely carry out this very day what I swore to you by the LORD, the God of Israel: Solomon your son shall be king after me, and he will sit on my throne in my place.”

As feeble as David is physically, he is strong in this situation, and takes definitive action immediately. He will abdicate his throne and place Solomon upon it.

31 Then Bathsheba bowed down with her face to the ground, prostrating herself before the king, and said, “May my lord King David live forever!”

32 King David said, “Call in Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet and Benaiah son of Jehoiada.” When they came before the king, 33 he said to them: “Take your lord’s servants with you and have Solomon my son mount my own mule and take him down to Gihon. 34 There have Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet anoint him king over Israel. Blow the trumpet and shout, ‘Long live King Solomon!’ 35 Then you are to go up with him, and he is to come and sit on my throne and reign in my place. I have appointed him ruler over Israel and Judah.”

Prophet, priest, and king all working together. What a great idea!

36 Benaiah son of Jehoiada answered the king, “Amen! May the LORD, the God of my lord the king, so declare it. 37 As the LORD was with my lord the king, so may he be with Solomon to make his throne even greater than the throne of my lord King David!”

38 So Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet, Benaiah son of Jehoiada, the Kerethites and the Pelethites went down and had Solomon mount King David’s mule, and they escorted him to Gihon. 39 Zadok the priest took the horn of oil from the sacred tent and anointed Solomon. Then they sounded the trumpet and all the people shouted, “Long live King Solomon!” 40 And all the people went up after him, playing pipes and rejoicing greatly, so that the ground shook with the sound.

These were the days before armored Cadillacs for heads of state in parades!

41 Adonijah and all the guests who were with him heard it as they were finishing their feast. On hearing the sound of the trumpet, Joab asked, “What’s the meaning of all the noise in the city?”

42 Even as he was speaking, Jonathan son of Abiathar the priest arrived. Adonijah said, “Come in. A worthy man like you must be bringing good news.”

43 “Not at all!” Jonathan answered. “Our lord King David has made Solomon king. 44 The king has sent with him Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet, Benaiah son of Jehoiada, the Kerethites and the Pelethites, and they have put him on the king’s mule, 45 and Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet have anointed him king at Gihon. From there they have gone up cheering, and the city resounds with it. That’s the noise you hear. 46 Moreover, Solomon has taken his seat on the royal throne. 47 Also, the royal officials have come to congratulate our lord King David, saying, ‘May your God make Solomon’s name more famous than yours and his throne greater than yours!’ And the king bowed in worship on his bed 48 and said, ‘Praise be to the LORD, the God of Israel, who has allowed my eyes to see a successor on my throne today.’”

49 At this, all Adonijah’s guests rose in alarm and dispersed.

Oops — the party abruptly ends!

50 But Adonijah, in fear of Solomon, went and took hold of the horns of the altar.

The altar was a place of sanctuary and safety against vengeance.

51 Then Solomon was told, “Adonijah is afraid of King Solomon and is clinging to the horns of the altar. He says, ‘Let King Solomon swear to me today that he will not put his servant to death with the sword.’”

52 Solomon replied, “If he shows himself to be worthy, not a hair of his head will fall to the ground; but if evil is found in him, he will die.” 53 Then King Solomon sent men, and they brought him down from the altar. And Adonijah came and bowed down to King Solomon, and Solomon said, “Go to your home.”

Virtually his first act:  Solomon  shows mercy.

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Music:

HERE  is “Praise, My Soul, the King of Heaven,” written in England in 1834 and played at the wedding of the future Queen Elizabeth in 1947. So this hymn has a doubly royal heritage! Lyrics below.

1 Praise, my soul, the King of heaven;
to his feet your tribute bring.
Ransomed, healed, restored, forgiven,
evermore his praises sing.
Alleluia, alleluia!
Praise the everlasting King!

2 Praise him for his grace and favor
to his people in distress.
Praise him, still the same as ever,
slow to chide, and swift to bless.
Alleluia, alleluia!
Glorious in his faithfulness!

3 Fatherlike he tends and spares us;
well our feeble frame he knows.
In his hand he gently bears us,
rescues us from all our foes.
Alleluia, alleluia!
Widely yet his mercy flows!

4 Angels, help us to adore him;
you behold him face to face.
Sun and moon, bow down before him,
dwellers all in time and space.
Alleluia, alleluia!
Praise with us the God of grace!

_________________________

New International Version (NIV) Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2010 by Biblica

Images courtesy of:
King Solomon.     http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_YgpHa1oeHME/ScO4zskrUQI/AAAAAAAAAWo/Q3iOewh6kHY/s400/king+solomon.jpg
leeches.    http://media3.s-nbcnews.com/j/msnbc/Components/Photos/040628/040628_leeches_hmed.standard.jpg
discipline your son . . .   http://lh6.ggpht.com/_Zxgxl_-Wl0Q/S8cEwy8rL2I/AAAAAAAAA6g/v1AB1IBKfg0/s800/enforce%20house%20discipline%2001.jpg
It’s a party.    http://www.diyinvitationsensation.com/images/party_clipart.jpg
ka-pow.    http://www.comicsreporter.com/images/uploads/kapow.jpg
Prophet, priest, and king.     http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_OjmXe5ANutw/SxFgRsLcFHI/AAAAAAAAAgE/D2KRwccvqaU/s1600/prophet+priest+king.jpg
Presidential Cadillac.     http://www.armyrecognition.com/images/stories/news/2009/january/Cadillac_armoured_car_presidential_limousine_President_United_States_Barack_Obama_001.jpg

1845.) 2 Peter 3

May 27, 2016

HOPE for growing Christians!

2 Peter 3 (English Standard Version)

The Day of the Lord Will Come

1This is now the second letter that I am writing to you, beloved. In both of them I am stirring up your sincere mind by way of reminder, 2 that you should remember the predictions of the holy prophets and the commandment of the Lord and Savior through your apostles, 3knowing this first of all, that scoffers will come in the last days with scoffing, following their own sinful desires. 4 They will say, “Where is the promise of his coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all things are continuing as they were from the beginning of creation.” 5For they deliberately overlook this fact, that the heavens existed long ago, and the earth was formed out of water and through water by the word of God,

Genesis 1:9 (NIV)

And God said, “Let the water under the sky be gathered to one place, and let dry ground appear.” And it was so.

6and that by means of these the world that then existed was deluged with water and perished. 7But by the same word the heavens and earth that now exist are stored up for fire, being kept until the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly.

“How Blest Are They Who Hear God’s Word”
by Johan N. Brun, 1745-1816
Translated by Oluf H. Smeby, 1851-1929

How blest are they who hear God’s Word
And keep and heed what they have heard!
They wisdom daily gather;
Their light shines brighter day by day,
And while they tread life’s weary way,
They have the oil of gladness
To soothe their pain and sadness.

God’s Word a treasure is to me,
Through sorrow’s night my sun shall be,
The shield of faith in battle.
The Father’s hand hath written there
My title as His child and heir,
“The kingdom’s thine forever.”
That promise faileth never.

Today I was my Savior’s guest,
My soul was here so richly blest,
The Bread of Life receiving.
Oh, may thereby my faith prevail,
So that its fruits shall never fail
Till my account is given
Before the throne in heaven!

8But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. 9 The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.

Hebrews 10:37 (NIV)

   “In just a little while,
   he who is coming will come
   and will not delay.”

10But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed.

11Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness,

from Experiencing God Day-by-Day,
by Henry T. Blackaby and Richard Blackaby

WHAT MANNER OF PERSON OUGHT YOU TO BE?

When God told Abraham He was going to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah, Abraham’s life was immediately and radically affected. Noah could not carry on business as usual once he knew what God was planning for his generation. Knowing that God is preparing judgment brings a sobering reality to Christians, helping us recognize what is eternally significant and what is not.

Peter cautions us that a catastrophic time of judgments is coming. On the day of the Lord there will be a great noise, and the elements will melt with a fervent heat. On that day, he warns, the earth will be consumed. Peter assures us that this is not mere speculation; it is certain and imminent. He then asks the crucial question that applies to each generation:  “What kind of persons ought you to be?” With judgment pending for us and countless millions of people facing destruction, how should we live our lives?

Many Christians attach great value to temporal things. Hobbies and possessions consume us, leaving little time or energy to invest in what is eternal. More than anyone else, Christians should be sensitive to the times in which we live. Since Christ has been long-suffering in his return so that no one might perish (2 Peter 3:9), should we not invest our effort in building God’s eternal kingdom? Should there not be an urgency about us to complete the tasks that God gives us?

12 waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be set on fire and dissolved, and the heavenly bodies will melt as they burn! 13But according to his promise we are waiting for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.

Final Words

14 Therefore, beloved, since you are waiting for these, be diligent to be found by him without spot or blemish, and at peace. 15And count the patience of our Lord as salvation, just as our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you according to the wisdom given him, 16as he does in all his letters when he speaks in them of these matters.

St. Peter and St. Paul both were eventually imprisoned in the famous Mamertine Prison of Rome and each had foreseen his approaching death. Saint Peter was crucified; Saint Paul, a Roman citizen, was slain by the sword. As Christ died for them, they lived for him.  Now in the 21st century, God grant us grace to follow Christ wherever he leads us!

There are some things in them that are hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other Scriptures. 17You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, take care that you are not carried away with the error of lawless people and lose your own stability.

The better we know Jesus, the less attractive false teaching will be.

–Life Application Bible note

18But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.

Peter signature

 

 

 

 

 

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Music:

Yes, Lord, I do want to grow in the grace and knowledge of you, and truly be a witness to the love of Christ in the world!  HERE  is “Lord, I Want to Be a Christian.”  I think I will sing this song all day long!

_________________________

English Standard Version (ESV)   The Holy Bible, English Standard Version Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers.

Images courtesy of:
2 Peter title.  http://calvarychapelsavinggrace.com/teachings/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/2_peter_title.jpg
Word of God.   https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/picture2.jpg
Live well.   http://www.allposters.com/IMAGES/WIL/5393_Live_Well.jpg
St. Peter and St. Paul, by El Greco.   http://media.photobucket.com/image/St.%20Peter%20and%20St.%20Paul,%20El%20Greco/skimac/StPaulPeter-ElGreco.jpg
Peter signature.    https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2009/08/5-peter_signature.gif?w=114&h=111

1844.) 2 Peter 2

May 26, 2016

DANGER to growing Christians!

2 Peter 2 (English Standard Version)

False Prophets and Teachers

1But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction.

Even as there were holy men of God who spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit (2 Peter 1:21), so also there were false prophets – and false teachers today. Peter stated this as a fact and not as a possibility; and he said they were among you, not only on the outside of the church.

“There were not only holy men of God among the Jews, who prophesied by divine inspiration, but there were also false prophets, whose prophecies were from their own imagination, and perverted many.”   — Adam Clarke

 False teachers work secretly. It isn’t that their teaching is secret, but the deceptive nature of their teaching is hidden. No false teacher ever announces himself as a false teacher.

 False teachers bring in destructive heresies that destroy by telling lies about Jesus Christ and His work for us and in us. By these heresies people are hurt and destroyed. Heresy isn’t harmless.

— David Guzik

2And many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed. 3And in their greed they will exploit you with false words. Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep. 4For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to chains of gloomy darkness to be kept until the judgment; 5if he did not spare the ancient world, but preserved Noah, a herald of righteousness, with seven others, when he brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly; 6if by turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes he condemned them to extinction, making them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly;

These three examples of judgment show us the important principle that Peter wants to highlight.

  • God judged the angels who sinned, so no one is too high to be judged.
  • God judged the ancient world before the flood, so God doesn’t grade on a curve.
  • God judged Sodom and Gomorrah, so even the prosperous can be judged.

Therefore, what makes the ungodly think they can escape God’s judgment? Their coming judgment is certain. As Jesus said in Luke 10:10-12, for those who reject the truth it will be more tolerable in that Day for Sodom.

 — David Guzik

7and if he rescued righteous Lot, greatly distressed by the sensual conduct of the wicked 8(for as that righteous man lived among them day after day, he was tormenting his righteous soul over their lawless deeds that he saw and heard); 9then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials,

“St. Peter freed by an angel” -by Jusepe de Ribera (1639)

Peter, as much as anyone, knew how true it is that “the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials,” because the Lord had sent an angel to jail to bring Peter out (Acts 12).

and to keep the unrighteous under punishment until the day of judgment, 10and especially those who indulge in the lust of defiling passion and despise authority.

Bold and willful, they do not tremble as they blaspheme the glorious ones, 11 whereas angels, though greater in might and power, do not pronounce a blasphemous judgment against them before the Lord. 12 But these, like irrational animals, creatures of instinct, born to be caught and destroyed, blaspheming about matters of which they are ignorant, will also be destroyed in their destruction, 13suffering wrong as the wage for their wrongdoing. They count it pleasure to revel in the daytime. They are blots and blemishes, reveling in their deceptions, while they feast with you. 14They have eyes full of adultery, insatiable for sin. They entice unsteady souls. They have hearts trained in greed. Accursed children!

Let’s talk about sin.

He that falls into sin is a man; that grieves at it, is a saint; that boasteth of it, is a devil.
–Thomas Fuller

I would rather die than do something which I know to be a sin, or to be against God’s will.
–Joan of Arc

You sin in thinking bad about people — but, often, you guess right.
–Giulio Andreotti

Sorrow is held the eldest child of sin.
–John Webster

15Forsaking the right way, they have gone astray. They have followed the way of Balaam, the son of Beor, who loved gain from wrongdoing, 16but was rebuked for his own transgression; a speechless donkey spoke with human voice and restrained the prophet’s madness.

Balaam was hired by a pagan king to curse the people of Israel.  For a while he refused, out of obedience to God — but eventually his greed overpowered him:  “he loved gain from wrongdoing.”  His donkey had to try to talk sense into him!

17 These are waterless springs and mists driven by a storm. For them the gloom of utter darkness has been reserved.

Jude 1:12 (NIV)

These people are blemishes at your love feasts, eating with you without the slightest qualm—shepherds who feed only themselves. They are clouds without rain, blown along by the wind; autumn trees, without fruit and uprooted—twice dead.

18For, speaking loud boasts of folly, they entice by sensual passions of the flesh those who are barely escaping from those who live in error. 19They promise them freedom, but they themselves are slaves of corruption. For whatever overcomes a person, to that he is enslaved. 20For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. 21For it would have been better for them never to have known the way of righteousness than after knowing it to turn back from the holy commandment delivered to them.

Christians warmly debate the issue of whether or not it is possible for a true Christian to ever lose their status as a true Christian and fall away to damnation. Perhaps the best way of understanding the issue is to say that it is certainly true that those who appear saved – those who fit the description of Peter here – can end up in a place where it would have been better for them not have known the way of righteousness.

Regarding these, those with a Reformed perspective will say that they were actually never saved; those with an Arminian perspective will say that they were actually saved and lost their salvation. To divide along the lines of this debate – which focuses on things that are unknowable to outside observation – seems to fall into the category of being obsessed with disputes and arguments over words, as in 1 Timothy 6:4.

–David Guzik

22What the true proverb says has happened to them: “The dog returns to its own vomit, and the sow, after washing herself, returns to wallow in the mire.”

_________________________

Music:

Ick! I don’t want to return to my vomit!  Leave the past and all its sin alone!  Instead, “Take me to the cross again,” for there is where I see most clearly Christ’s redeeming love and find my new life. Listen and rejoice  HERE.

_________________________

English Standard Version (ESV)   The Holy Bible, English Standard Version Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers.

Images courtesy of:
2 Peter title.  http://calvarychapelsavinggrace.com/teachings/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/2_peter_title.jpg
heresy stamp.  https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/heresystamp1.png
de Ribera.   http://render.fineartamerica.com/images/rendered/medium/greeting-card/images-medium-5/saint-peter-freed-by-an-angel-jusepe-de-ribera.jpg
apple.  http://school.discoveryeducation.com/clipart/images/apl-bite.gif
Balaam and his donkey.   http://fc05.deviantart.net/fs71/i/2010/248/f/5/balaam_and_talking_donkey_by_miguel0100-d2y3rmu.jpg
eternal security.   https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/eternalsecurity.jpg

1843.) 2 Peter 1

May 25, 2016

GUIDANCE for growing Christians!

2 Peter 1 (English Standard Version)

The date and destination of this letter are uncertain, and the authorship has been disputed. Because of this, 2 Peter was the last book admitted to the canon of the New Testament Scripture.

In an culture that places decreasing value on God’s Word as “the” single authority of truth, Peter’s second letter is a timely series of reminders to help followers of Jesus guard against false teaching that proliferates in a truthless society.

Greeting

1Simeon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ,

To those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with ours by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ:

2 May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.

Make Your Calling and Election Sure

3His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, 4by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises,

“He tells us too, that faith is ‘precious;’ and is it not precious? For it deals with precious things, with precious promises, with precious blood, with a precious redemption, with all the preciousness of the person of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”

— Charles Haddon Spurgeon

from Whispers of His Power,
by Amy Carmichael

Exceeding great and precious promises. — 2 Peter 1:4

“Promises precious and supreme,” “precious and wondrous,” “precious and very great.” To read the different translations is like turning a jewel in the light. Each turn shows some new beauty.

In the end we shall find every promise perfectly fulfilled. Then why should we not let our hearts rest in peace about everything that happens? For nothing can happen that can break a single one of these precious and exceeding great, supreme, and wondrous promises.

What depth it gives to Peter’s words when we remember that he was to die by crucifixion, and knew it. There is no promise of an easy passage, but there are countless promises for every day of the voyage, and for a welcome when He brings us to our desired haven (as Psalm 107:30 puts it).

Let us take one promise for our own today, live on it it, test it and prove it — and thank Him for it.

so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire.

Galatians 4:4-7 (NIV)

But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law,  to redeem those under the law, that we might receive adoption to sonship.  Because you are his sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba, Father.”  So you are no longer a slave, but God’s child; and since you are his child, God has made you also an heir.

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5For this very reason, make every effort (= giving all diligence!) to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, 6and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, 7and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. 8For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins.

10Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to make your calling and election sure, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall. 11For in this way there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

“There are two ways of entering a port. A ship may come in, waterlogged and crazy, just kept afloat by continual working at the pumps; or it may enter with every sail set, her pennon floating at the mast-head. The latter is what the apostle desires for himself and those who he addresses. He desired that an entrance abundant should be ministered unto them.

“An ‘abundant entrance’ was really a choral entrance. The idea was of a Roman conqueror coming into his city, welcomed by singers and musicians who would join him in a glorious, happy procession into the city.

“Will your entrance into heaven be like that? Will you enter it, saved so as by fire, or to receive a reward? Will you come unrecognized and unknown, or be welcomed by scores and hundreds to whom you have been the means of blessing, and who will wait you?”

— F. B. Meyer

12Therefore I intend always to remind you of these qualities, though you know them and are established in the truth that you have.

A sports team going for the championship will practice the same fundamentals over and over again. They do this, even thought they know the techniques, because they know what is at stake. (Although when my husband watches sports on television, I often hear him getting irked by the carelessness of players regarding the basics that even kids ought to know!) In the same way, we Christians should never get tired of hearing and reviewing the rudiments of the Christian life. 

13I think it right, as long as I am in this body, to stir you up by way of reminder, 14 since I know that the putting off of my body will be soon, as our Lord Jesus Christ made clear to me. 15And I will make every effort so that after my departure you may be able at any time to recall these things.

Established is the same word translated strengthen in Luke 22:32, when Jesus told Peter “when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.” Here, Peter fulfilled that command of Jesus. He would establish and strengthen us by reminding us of the basics of the Christian life.

–David Guzik

Christ’s Glory and the Prophetic Word

16For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 17For when he received honor and glory from God the Father, and the voice was borne to him by the Majestic Glory, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased,” 18we ourselves heard this very voice borne from heaven, for we were with him on the holy mountain.

Mark 9:2-8 (NLT)

The Transfiguration

Six days later Jesus took Peter, James, and John, and led them up a high mountain to be alone. As the men watched, Jesus’ appearance was transformed,  and his clothes became dazzling white, far whiter than any earthly bleach could ever make them. Then Elijah and Moses appeared and began talking with Jesus.

Peter exclaimed, “Rabbi, it’s wonderful for us to be here! Let’s make three shelters as memorials—one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” He said this because he didn’t really know what else to say, for they were all terrified.

Then a cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my dearly loved Son. Listen to him.”  Suddenly, when they looked around, Moses and Elijah were gone, and they saw only Jesus with them.

19And we have something more sure, the prophetic word, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts,

Morning Star so radiant and holy
Shine on me in my great hour of need
Jesus Christ so beautiful and lovely
Shine over me

20knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. 21For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.

_________________________

Music:

How grateful I am for Scripture, a love letter from God which illuminates my way through all of life’s vicissitudes and helps guide me to eternal life.   HERE  “Thy Word”  is sung by the Maranatha Singers.

_________________________

English Standard Version (ESV)   The Holy Bible, English Standard Version Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers.

Images courtesy of:
2 Peter title.  http://calvarychapelsavinggrace.com/teachings/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/2_peter_title.jpg
precious promises.   https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/2-peter1-4-precious-sm.jpg
pyramid.   https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/marriagemountain.gif
sailing into port (Cleveland Tall Ships Festival 2010).    http://www.examiner.com/images/blog/replicate/EXID37922/images/575-100707_3CS8090.jpg
Transfiguration.   http://www.gerhardy.id.au/images/transfiguration2.jpg
morning star.   http://www.torchleader.com/tl/3975199949_668c3575ff.jpg

1842.) Proverbs 8

May 24, 2016

In this Greek icon, Lady Wisdom is presented with her three daughters, Faith, Hope, and Love.

Proverbs 8 (The Message)

Lady Wisdom Calls Out

1-11 Do you hear Lady Wisdom calling? Can you hear Madame Insight raising her voice?
She’s taken her stand at First and Main,
at the busiest intersection.
Right in the city square
where the traffic is thickest, she shouts,
“You—I’m talking to all of you,
everyone out here on the streets!
Listen, you idiots—learn good sense!
You blockheads—shape up!
Don’t miss a word of this—I’m telling you how to live well,
I’m telling you how to live at your best.
My mouth chews and savors and relishes truth—
I can’t stand the taste of evil!
You’ll only hear true and right words from my mouth;
not one syllable will be twisted or skewed.
You’ll recognize this as true—you with open minds;
truth-ready minds will see it at once.
Prefer my life-disciplines over chasing after money,
and God-knowledge over a lucrative career.
For Wisdom is better than all the trappings of wealth;
nothing you could wish for holds a candle to her.

from Whistling in the Dark:  An ABC Theologized
by Frederick Buechner

In the Book of Proverbs, Wisdom is a woman.  “The Lord created me at the beginning of his work,” she says (Proverbs 8:22).  She was there when he made the heaven, the sea, the earth.  It was as if he needed a woman’s imagination to help him make them, a woman’s eye to tell him if he’d made them right, a woman’s spirit to measure their beauty by.  “I was daily his delight, rejoicing before him always,” she says (Proverbs 8:30), as if it was her joy in what he was creating that made creation bearable, and that’s why he created her first.

Wisdom is a matter not only of the mind but of the intuition and heart, like a woman’s wisdom.  It is born out of suffering as a woman bears a child.  It shows a way through the darkness the way a woman stands at the window holding a lamp.  “Her ways are ways of pleasantness,” says Solomon, then adding, just in case there should be any lingering question as to her gender, “and all her paths are peace” (Proverbs 3:17).

12-21 “I am Lady Wisdom, and I live next to Sanity;
Knowledge and Discretion live just down the street.
The Fear-of-God means hating Evil,
whose ways I hate with a passion—
pride and arrogance and crooked talk.
Good counsel and common sense are my characteristics;
I am both Insight and the Virtue to live it out.

from Whispers of His Power,
by Amy Carmichael

Proverbs 8:14 — Counsel is Mine and sound wisdom:  I am understanding; I have strength.

Job 28:23 — God understandeth the way thereof and He knoweth the place thereof.

God understands. There are no ways and no places that He does not understand.

Have you ever thought what a tremendous difference it would make to our lives if this were not true? Imagine the feelings of a soldier if he had good reason to doubt that his commanding officer understood the situation. We are soldiers. Our Commander understands. His understanding is infinite (Psalm 147:5). Though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident (Psalm 27:3).

Because of His infinite understanding, God knows that we want to be sure that the One who says He understands has been through the mill Himself. And so we have this wonderful touch of His special understanding in Proverbs 8, where it is clear that the speaker is our Lord Jesus Christ Himself. I am Understanding. I, the man of Sorrows acquainted with grief, I who was tempted in all points just as you are, I am Understanding.

It is restful to be understood, to be with one who never misjudges. Let us rest in his presence today.

With my help, leaders rule,
and lawmakers legislate fairly;
With my help, governors govern,
along with all in legitimate authority.
I love those who love me;
those who look for me find me.
Wealth and Glory accompany me—
also substantial Honor and a Good Name.
My benefits are worth more than a big salary, even a very big salary;
the returns on me exceed any imaginable bonus.
You can find me on Righteous Road—that’s where I walk—
at the intersection of Justice Avenue,
Handing out life to those who love me,
filling their arms with life—armloads of life!

Though described as with God, wisdom is not asserted to be God. Such a presentation is consistent with personification, a literary metaphor in which a thing or an abstraction is represented as a person. (Common examples of personification in our ordinary lives include Mr. Clean, Aunt Jemima, the Jolly Green Giant, etc.) So “Lady Wisdom”  is not the female side of God, nor is she a feminine deity in her own right. Instead she praises God; she calls people to heed her teachings and so to find life. Wisdom shows the character of God, and God will give wisdom to all who learn from the Proverbs.

22-31 “God sovereignly made me—the first, the basic—
before he did anything else.
I was brought into being a long time ago,
well before Earth got its start.
I arrived on the scene before Ocean,
yes, even before Springs and Rivers and Lakes.
Before Mountains were sculpted and Hills took shape,
I was already there, newborn;
Long before God stretched out Earth’s Horizons,
and tended to the minute details of Soil and Weather,
And set Sky firmly in place,
I was there.
When he mapped and gave borders to wild Ocean,
built the vast vault of Heaven,
and installed the fountains that fed Ocean,
When he drew a boundary for Sea,
posted a sign that said no trespassing,
And then staked out Earth’s Foundations,
I was right there with him, making sure everything fit.
Day after day I was there, with my joyful applause,
always enjoying his company,
Delighted with the world of things and creatures,
happily celebrating the human family.

_________________________

Music:

HERE  Hillsong sings  “God Is Great.”  The whole earth sings to the glory of the Creator!

_________________________

32-36 “So, my dear friends, listen carefully;
those who embrace these my ways are most blessed.

“Mother Jeanne Nursing Her Baby” painted by Mary Cassatt, 1907

Luke 11:27-28 (ESV)

As he said these things, a woman in the crowd raised her voice and said to him, “Blessed is the womb that bore you, and the breasts at which you nursed!” But he said,  “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and keep it!”

Mark a life of discipline and live wisely;
don’t squander your precious life.
Blessed the man, blessed the woman, who listens to me,
awake and ready for me each morning,
alert and responsive as I start my day’s work.
When you find me, you find life, real life,
to say nothing of God’s good pleasure.
But if you wrong me, you damage your very soul;
when you reject me, you’re flirting with death.”

_________________________

The Message (MSG) Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson

Images courtesy of:
Lady Wisdom.    http://hindsfoot.org/xsophia3.jpg
painting by Arthur Douet.    http://www.arthurdouet.com/gallery/goddess_463x600.jpg
“He Cares” by Valeria Jean Marcus.   https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/9-he_cares.jpg?w=450
Aunt Jemima.    http://darwen.us/darrell/blographics/080325d.jpg
Cassatt.    http://www.wikiart.org/en/mary-cassatt/mother-jeanne-nursing-her-baby-1908?utm_source=returned&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=referral

1841.) David in the New Testament

May 23, 2016
King David by Adamo Tadolini on the base of the Colonna dell'Immacolata, Rome Italy

King David by Adamo Tadolini on the base of the Colonna dell’Immacolata, Rome Italy.

1841.)   David in the New Testament

You may find it interesting to know that David is mentioned 54 times in the New Testament — 35 times in the Gospels, 10 times in Acts, and the remainder in the letters. David bookends the New Testament, mentioned in the first and last chapters. In Matthew 1 he is noted as an ancestor to Jesus:

Matthew 1:1

[ The Genealogy of Jesus the Messiah ] This is the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah the son of David, the son of Abraham:
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At the close of Revelation Jesus calls himself both an ancestor and a descendant of David:

Revelation 22:16

“I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this testimony for the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, and the bright Morning Star.”
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When an angel comes to tell Joseph that Mary’s pregnancy is not to be feared, the angel addresses him by his connection to David:

David Joeseph's dream

Matthew 1:20

But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.”
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On the night of Jesus’ birth, angels announce the good news to shepherds and send them to Bethlehem, also known as the City of David:

David angels sing to shepherds

Luke 2:11

“Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.”

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Even foreigners knew the connection between David and Jesus:

David Canaanite woman

Matthew 15:22

A Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to him, crying out, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter is demon-possessed and suffering terribly.”
.
When Jesus was passing through Jericho on his way to Jerusalem and the cross, a blind beggar named Bartimaeus shouted out to him. Jesus asked him what he wanted and then restored his sight:

David Bartimaeus

Mark 10:47

When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”
.
The people in the crowds who welcomed Jesus into Jerusalem on his Triumphal Entry called him by David’s name:

David triumphal-entry

Matthew 21:9

The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Hosanna in the highest heaven!”
.
On Pentecost, Peter contrasts the death and burial of King David with the death and resurrection of Jesus:

David Peter Pentecost

Acts 2:29-32

My friends, it is right for me to speak to you about our ancestor David. He died and was buried, and his tomb is still here. But David was a prophet, and he knew that God had made a promise he would not break. He had told David that someone from his own family would someday be king. David knew this would happen, and so he told us that Christ would be raised to life. He said that God would not leave him in the grave or let his body decay. All of us can tell you that God has raised Jesus to life!

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On Paul’s First Missionary Journey, he preached to a crowd at Pisidian Antioch. His sermon displays a pattern he often followed — giving a brief account of Jewish history and religious beliefs, and then showing that Jesus is the fulfillment of their story:

David Paul preaching

Acts 13:22

After removing Saul, he made David their king. God testified concerning him: ‘I have found David son of Jesse, a man after my own heart; he will do everything I want him to do.’
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The writer of Hebrews includes David in his famous chapter of the faithful:

David King

Hebrews 11:32

And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson and Jephthah, about David and Samuel and the prophets.
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Finally, in the last book of the Bible, Jesus is noted as the ultimate Victor and associated forever with David:

David Lion of Judah

Revelation 5:5

Then one of the elders said to me, “Do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has triumphed. He is able to open the scroll and its seven seals.”
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So we see the life of David as foreshadowing the life of Christ. Born in Bethlehem, shepherd, king — clearly there are similarities. Yet David, great as he was, bows to a greater one, the Messiah, while singing the praises of the Most High!
_________________________

Music:

HERE  is a song that goes with the story of the healing of blind Bartimaeus.  Certainly our souls cry out with him:  “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”

_________________________
Images courtesy of:
statue of King David in Rome.  https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/24/Adamo_Tadolini-David-Colonna_dell’Immacolata.jpg
Joseph’s dream.   http://www.bibleimages.ca/images/josephdream1/dwnload4.jpg
angels sing to the shepherds.   http://www.layman.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/angels.jpg
Canaanite woman appeals to Jesus.   http://www.trentonmonitor.com/SiteImages/Article/2555a.jpg
blind Bartimaeus.   http://maryricehopkins.com/wp/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/Bartimaeus3.jpg
Triumphal Entry of Jesus.   http://www.dondetrick.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/triumphal-entry-jesus-.jpg
Peter preaches at Pentecost.   http://www.tolleetlege.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/St.-Peter-Preaching-in-Jerusalem-Poerson-1642-e1365780433925.jpg
Paul preaching to the Greeks.   https://i1.wp.com/stpaulsseminary.in/wp-content/gallery/seminary-pics/st_paul_preaching.jpg
King David and his harp.   http://cdn.timesofisrael.com/uploads/2014/10/shutterstock_52352260.jpg
Lion of Judah.   http://www.shoutsofjoyministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/Lion-Of-Judah-HD-Wallpaper.jpg