Saturday, March 31, 2007

The Shepherd King

When I get to heaven , David – the Shepherd King- is someone I want to meet.
I want to see his boyish smile light up his face.
I want to look into his eyes and see the soul of a man who knew God in a time when so few others did.

What was his secret ? What taught him to love God , and cling to Him with such deep emotion?
Was it the long lonely days he spent in the hills and meadows watching his sheep , where his thoughts centered on God and his heart learned to commune with Him ? Was he so struck by the similarities of the relationship he had with his sheep and the relationship he had with God that Psalm 23 wrote itself?
His shepherd Psalm is even today the most loved passage of all scripture. Did he know how inspired the words were - that Jesus would confirm them by identifying Himself as the Good Shepherd?

Who could have guessed that the gentle shepherd boy would be thrust into the public and political arena to be remembered down through the corridors of time as Israel’s most beloved King. Doesn’t God love to take the most unlikely, the weakest, the smallest to demonstrate His power through a life submitted to Him?

The greatest epitaph on the life of David are God’s own words about him, “I have found a man after my own heart, who will do all my will !” (Acts 13:22)
How the highest accolades of men pale before this high praise from God !
When we look at this man who so pleased God , what is it about him that set him apart from other men?
We are told he walked " in integrity of heart and in uprightness "
(I Kings 9:4) and he kept God's commandments and followed God with all his heart, "to do only what was right" in God's eyes. (I Kings 14:8)
We know that David sinned , but what sets him apart is his attitude toward God, his heart of repentance, and his humble ability to admit he was wrong and turn away from the things that displeased his Lord. Only in the matter of Uriah does God say that David calculated to sin
(I Kings 15:5) …and even there he found a place of forgiveness before God.
Could God say about you or me that we only purposed to sin ‘once’ in our lifetime? I think not.

But more than looking at David as a man who lived a God-fearing exemplary life, David was a prophet who ‘shadowed’ the One who was called the Messiah, the awaited redeemer of Israel.
Peter in a sermon recorded in Acts 2:30 tells us that God promised with an oath that one of David’s descendents would be the Christ who would rule forever from the city of David, Jerusalem. We know that the church is revealed as the spiritual Jerusalem in Hebrews 12:22,23 and Jesus as the head of the church rules forever and ever.
David not only shadowed Jesus as a shepherd , and as a King, but also in another very distinctive way.
David in providing everything that was needed to build the temple, or dwelling place , for God, shadowed that Jesus would provide everything that is needed to build ‘the church’ or temple where God dwells. Just like Solomon, the church was young and inexperienced and the work was big (I Chron.29)… Jesus provided all that the church needed through His death , His resurrection, and sending the Holy Spirit as the ever present ‘Helper’.

Can you imagine the bible without David’s psalms? Through his psalms, he has taught us so much about how to find that intimate place close to God’s heart.
How often do his words comfort you, inspire you or bring you back into the presence of God?
David knew how to commune with God. More of his prayers are recorded that any other person in the bible.

The Lord’s prayer has been prayed more often in the last 2,000 years than any other prayer… and we always think of it as the prayer Jesus taught his disciples , but it was not totally new to them. The words were familiar, they had heard them before. We have a recorded prayer of David’s that expresses the same essence as Jesus' prayer… did David know God so well, that even his prayers were prophetic? Is David’s prayer an example of what Romans 8:26 is talking about that when we don’t know how to pray the Spirit prays for us?

The Lord’s prayer is found in Matt. 6 and David’s prayer is found in I Chron. 29 ….
I have paralleled the two prayers here, The Lord’s prayer is in bold italics and the selected words of David’s prayer in regular font with indicated verse reference.

Our Father which art in heaven
Blessed are you….. our Father (vs 10)
Hallowed be thy name
And praise your glorious name (vs13)
Thy kingdom come
And you reign over all (12)
Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven
for all that is in heaven and in earth is yours (vs 11) In your hand is power and might (vs 12)
Give us this day our daily bread
Now therefore our God, we thank you for all things come from you (vs 13,14)
And lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil
For we are aliens and pilgrims before you ….Our days on earth are as a shadow and without hope (vs 15)
And forgive us our debts as we forgive those who trespass against us
You test the heart and have pleasure in uprightness (vs17)
For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory for ever and ever !!
Yours is the kingdom , to you O Lord is the greatness and the power and the glory , the victory and the majesty , for ever and ever (vs 11, 10)

The focus of all His-story is Jesus, He is the One before whom every knee will bow.
My heart breaks every time I hear His wonderful name taken in vain.
Those who call on His name to save them will not use His name in vain - He “will in no wise cast (them) out”. (John 6:37)
When I meet David one day, I want to thank him for pointing to Jesus, and for encouraging me to do the same.


Thoughts on Life and Millinery. said...

Hi Julie! David's name in Hebrew letter symbolism can also be read as "door /power ruler door."

Each Hebrew letter is also a picture symbol, like our h could also be a symbol for a chair.

I love that the "picture" that David's name presents is "Door way to Power, or door way to God.

Through David's Son we truly did find the Doorway to God.

Lovella ♥ said...

wow, between you and Jill there is such a wealth of info. I read your blog and I'm inspired to delve deeper into the Bible and I read Jill's blog and I'm fascinated by history (more recent history that is) . ..
Who knew that I could learn so much in blog land.

Demara said...

I love this Julie!!! Thank-you for this analogy...and yes I believe that David was such a "man after God's own heart" that he WAS prophetic!