TEEN TREE OF LIFE

 God’s Goodness  –  Part 7

May 16, 2021

 

 

Before you begin, ask yourself a very important question: Do you believe that Jesus Christ died on The Cross for all of your sins? If you answered yes, you will need to be sure that you are filled with The Holy Spirit. How do you do this? You name your sins to God The Father in His Son’s Name. This is called Rebound. As a Christian, you must rebound any time you sin. This is taught in 1 JOH 1:9: If we confess [name] our sins [directly to God], He [God] is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins andto cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Now, if you have never believed that Jesus Christ died on The Cross for all of your sins, all you have to do is say to yourself that you believe in Him and you are saved! The Bible verse which teaches us this is ACTS 16:31: “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved.”

 

When you look at King David’s life, it should be very comforting to see the evidence of how great God’s Goodness truly is! Our Heavenly Father repeatedly showed David such benevolence, despite the wrong choices he made throughout his life.

 

No one lives a sinless life and David’s was certainly a prime example of one. But that made him no different than you or anyone else. Remember what Paul taught in ROM 3:22-23 (New International Reader’s Version): It is no different for the Jews than for the Gentiles. Everyone has sinned. No one measures up to God’s glory.

 

The Message Bible translates Paul’s message like this: But in our time something new has been added. What Moses and the prophets witnessed to all those years has happened. The God-setting-things-right that we read about has become Jesus-setting-things-right for us. And not only for us, but for everyone who believes in him. For there is no difference between us and them in this. Since we’ve compiled this long and sorry record as sinners (both us and them) and proved that we are utterly incapable of living the glorious lives God wills for us, God did it for us. Out of sheer generosity he put us in right standing with himself. A pure gift. He got us out of the mess we’re in and restored us to where he always wanted us to be. And he did it by means of Jesus Christ. (ROM 3:21-24 The Message Bible)

 

What we have to keep in mind is that David’s long and fascinating life is part of what The Holy Spirit intended for us to learn and apply to our own lives, as part of God’s Word. Why? Because it stands as a great example of how God’s Goodness is ever-present, despite the bad decisions we might make and despite the sins we might commit. For the times when we sin, God has provided rebound – simply naming and citing our sins to Him, in His Son’s Name.

 

Once a person has made the decision to believe in The Lord Jesus Christ and is born-again and saved, the opportunity to know how Good God truly is becomes clear; that’s part of His Plan! As we are seeing by studying David’s early life, all you need is faith and a zeal to know God. As believers who continue to stay in God’s Plan, by studying His Word and putting Him first in our lives, we’ll see His Goodness shining through, both in times of adversity and in times of prosperity. All we must do is keep on studying and applying His Word.

 

Our zeal – our passion – should come from knowing that Jesus Christ paid for all of our sins — past, present, and future. The Message Bible’s translation, of Our Savior’s own words in JOH 3:16-17, puts in perfectly: “This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again.” How is that for an example of God’s Goodness??

 

And God didn’t stop there, which we learn, if we look further into Our Savior’s message in JOH 14:25-27 (The Message Bible): “I’m telling you these things while I’m still living with you. The Friend, the Holy Spirit whom the Father will send at my request, will make everything plain to you. He will remind you of all the things I have told you. I’m leaving you well and whole. That’s my parting gift to you. Peace. I don’t leave you the way you’re used to being left—feeling abandoned, bereft. So don’t be upset. Don’t be distraught.”

 

Despite the terrible sins David committed, God’s Goodness, Peace, and Love carried him through because as he grew, he matured as a believer. He knew he could count on God. He knew God, His Beloved Heavenly Father would always be there for strength and guidance. He counted on this at the very start of his life, when as a 15-year old boy, he had enough faith in God to go to King Saul to boldly offer to fight Goliath. And so can you count on God – no matter who or what your “Goliath” is!

 

No, let’s pick up young David’s amazing story by reading 1 SAM 17:41-58 (The Message Bible): As the Philistine [aka Goliath] paced back and forth, his shield bearer in front of him, he noticed David. He took one look down on him and sneered—a mere boy, apple-cheeked and peach-fuzzed. The Philistine ridiculed David. “Am I a dog that you come after me with a stick?” And he cursed him by his gods. “Come on,” said the Philistine. “I’ll make roadkill of you for the buzzards. I’ll turn you into a tasty morsel for the field mice.” David answered, “You come at me with sword and spear and battle-ax. I come at you in the name of God-of-the-Angel-Armies, the God of Israel’s troops, whom you curse and mock. This very day God is handing you over to me. I’m about to kill you, cut off your head, and serve up your body and the bodies of your Philistine buddies to the crows and coyotes. The whole earth will know that there’s an extraordinary God in Israel. And everyone gathered here will learn that God doesn’t save by means of sword or spear. The battle belongs to God—he’s handing you to us on a platter!” That roused the Philistine, and he started toward David. David took off from the front line, running toward the Philistine. David reached into his pocket for a stone, slung it, and hit the Philistine hard in the forehead, embedding the stone deeply. The Philistine crashed, facedown in the dirt. That’s how David beat the Philistine—with a sling and a stone. He hit him and killed him. No sword for David! Then David ran up to the Philistine and stood over him, pulled the giant’s sword from its sheath, and finished the job by cutting off his head. When the Philistines saw that their great champion was dead, they scattered, running for their lives. The men of Israel and Judah were up on their feet, shouting! They chased the Philistines all the way to the outskirts of Gath and the gates of Ekron. Wounded Philistines were strewn along the Shaaraim road all the way to Gath and Ekron. After chasing the Philistines, the Israelites came back and looted their camp. David took the Philistine’s head and brought it to Jerusalem. But the giant’s weapons he placed in his own tent. When Saul saw David go out to meet the Philistine, he said to Abner, commander of the army, “Tell me about this young man’s family.” Abner said, “For the life of me, O King, I don’t know.” The king said, “Well, find out the lineage of this raw youth.” As soon as David came back from killing the Philistine, Abner brought him, the Philistine’s head still in his hand, straight to Saul. Saul asked him, “Young man, whose son are you?” “I’m the son of your servant Jesse,” said David, “the one who lives in Bethlehem.” Wow!!!!!! Imagine what it felt like for David at that moment. Think about how God empowered him and remember that He will do the same for you if you develop your relationship with Him by being faithful to His Word.

 

There’s an extremely important message for us in this incredible story. The message is that God’s Goodness is ever-present – always and forever! David was fully aware that God was in control of his life, and he had faith that God would deliver him from impending danger. That should be your goal as a young or new Christian – to have that kind of faith. How else would such a young man venture into a potentially fatal situation with such calm and confidence? David learned early on in life that all he needed to do was trust and obey God. David’s faith pleased God, and God rewarded David for his faithfulness.

 

Another reason David was a man after God’s own heart becomes clear when you look at Scripture. Of the 150 psalms in the Bible, David is credited for writing over half of them. Writing at various and often troubling times in his life, David repeatedly mentioned how much he loved God’s Perfect Word. What does that mean for you, in your life? Loving God’s Word means you have to make it first in your life. This means keeping your Bible study your number one priority!

{to be continued}

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