Sin Against God Brings Separation
In order to understand the experiences of David and the wonderful psalms he wrote, we need to think back to the days when he was a shepherd boy. Since he was the youngest of eight sons, his father gave him the most ordinary tasks. When his brothers joined the army, he stayed with the sheep. He did errands for his father and brothers. We know by the accounts that he was faithful, obedient, efficient in his work. In addition, he had a special talent in music and poetry. He played the harp and wrote songs. Yet to his family he was an ordinary boy. His position was that of the youngest brother in a common country home.
Therefore, it came as a surprise to his family and neighbors when God chose David to lead His people, the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. “David is the one I want,” God said to His servant, who had been sent to anoint the new King. “Anoint him with oil as a symbol that he is now chosen by God to be the king.”
We can understand why the people were surprised. How could a young shepherd be King? How could he rule over the people whose leaders of the past were great men such as Abraham, Joseph, and Moses? We have seen in our previous lessons that God has been careful to guide and protect His people. He has chosen great men to be His prophets and has given them special tasks. Through them He has revealed Himself, His love, His power, His wisdom.
We have found that God chose Noah to save life on earth during the Flood. God led Abraham out of a land of idolatry and promised to make of his seed a great people. God saved this people from famine by sending Joseph to rule in Egypt. Then God called Moses to lead the people out of slavery and to receive His own written revelation.
Now we come to a time when God’s people had indeed become great. God had blessed the seed of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and sons of Jacob had 5 become the heads of powerful tribes. In the name of God they were fighting holy wars against surrounding nations which served idols and mocked God. Once again there was need for a strong and wise leader. That is why the people were surprised when God chose a shepherd boy to be their king. But soon they under-stood the reason. They found that David was a person who trusted and loved God, and God filled him with strength and wisdom. Yes, soon this shepherd boy became known as the most courageous and successful soldier in all the land.
Even though he had been anointed king, David was to remain with his family until God prepared the way for him to take his throne. He continued to tend the sheep and do errands for his father. One day his father sent him with food for his brothers who were in the army. When he came to the place of battle he saw that there was no fighting. Instead, all the soldiers were standing, facing each other across a small valley. At the front of the enemy line there stood a giant soldier, mocking and shouting challenges.
“Come fight with me. Send a man to fight with me,” he demanded. He was about three meters tall, dressed in heavy bronze armor, holding a huge spear. He was insulting in his manner, speaking in defiance of God. All the soldiers were terrified.
“Who is this ungodly fellow, that he should defy the armies of the Lord?” asked David. “I will go and fight him.”
Everyone thought David was too young and too small to fight the giant. Still he insisted that God would give him strength. “God helped me to kill a lion and a bear when they attacked the sheep, and I know He will give me power to defeat this giant.” So he went out to meet the giant, taking in his hand only his shepherd’s sling and some stones.
“You come against me with sword and spear,” David called out as he advanced, “But I come against you in the name of the Lord, whom you have defied. This is God’s battle!” With this he let fly the stone from his sling and the giant fell to the ground. The enemy soldiers ran away in fright, for they knew that David fought in the power of the one true God.
For You To Do
David was chosen to be king because he had the qualities which God required of those whom he called for special tasks. We found that each of the prophets had these qualities. All of us need these qualities in order to be close to God and know His will for our lives. Choose the sentences which show qualities shared by David and the other prophets.
- They were obedient.
- They believed and trusted God.
- They wrote poetry.
- They put their faith into action.
- They were humble and yet brave.