Thursday, 17th June 2021
Rev Daniel Xi An Poon
Section One: V1-8 Forget the Hurt
At the beginning of the chapter, David focused too much on his own loss and forgot that he was not only leading his family but also the 12 tribes of Israel. Joab spoke up to David but he didn’t speak the truth in love. Instead, Joab put all the credits on himself and his people. He was very close to David, he was also David’s relative, but he seemed to forgot his position as David’s subordinate and the fact that David was God’s anointed king and also his authority.
Joab has lost David’s trust in him, and the important position he had next to David as he was later replaced by Amasa. On the other hand, as a leader, David should not make decisions based on his emotions. When our emotions take over and affect our leadership, we will create great confusion and influence the people follow us. When David heard this problem, he did not argue with Joab, instead he arose and sat in the gate, then people came before him. When a leader stand in the right position, let go of their emotions, and do what they are assigned to do, then people’s hearts will return.
Section Two: V9-15 Return People’s Hearts to the King
The Israelites saw the king rising up and returning back, so they invited the king to return to Jerusalem. Before David responded, he turned to Zadok and Abiathar the priests to remind them and to remind the tribe of Judah about unity. We need to first see the people God has given around us and have unity with them, because those who are closest to us are the ones that we often ignore. This is a wake up call, we need to have unity among ourselves first before serving others, otherwise people from outside will easily confuse us.
Joab thought his relationship with David was close so he could do or say anything he wanted to. But because his heart and his attitude were not right, therefore he was then replaced by Amasa. David wanted the hearts of people to return to him, to have unity because God treasures unity. So he swayed the hearts of all the men of Judah, just as the heart of one man, so that they sent this word to the king: “Return, you and all your servants!”
Section Three: V16-39 Live out the Grace by Action
The first person welcomed back David from River Jordan was Shimei, who cursed David and threw stones at him before. Abishai suggested David to put Shimei to death, but David knew he must not put to death anyone, who returned to him. Instead, David reminded Shimei his position and his grace for him, “What have I to do with you, you sons of Zeruiah, that you should be adversaries to me today? Shall any man be put to death today in Israel? For do I not know that today I am king over Israel?” As a leader, we need wisdom and give opportunity to people who repented and returned. We don’t know if they really repented but we need to forgive and give them the opportunity to return.
The people who welcomed back David next were Ziba and Mephibosheth. It was another challenge for David, because when Ziba accused Mephibosheth for not following David, David gave Ziba all the land of Mephibosheth. But now the story seemed different. It was difficult to decide who was right and who was wrong, so David took up his authority as the king said to Mephibosheth, “Why do you speak anymore of your matters? I have said, ‘You and Ziba divide the land.’ ”
Similar situation happened in Solomon’s time, when the two women fought for one baby, Solomon said to cut the baby in half and with his wisdom he found the real mother of the child. In here, Mephibosheth did not give David a hard time, he treasured more the relationship with David and said “Rather, let him take it all, inasmuch as my lord the king has come back in peace to his own house.” We need to know that everything we have right now is from God, everything we have is a blessing, because without Jesus Christ, we are already dead people! If we know this truth, then how can we argue in front of God and in front of our authority?
Barzillai also came to David, he was willing to provide for David without asking anything in return. When David invited him to come along, Barzillai did not seek his own gain but gave David his servant to support him. He loved David not only by providing the food to David, but also sending people that could be helpful to David.
Section Four: V40-43 Face the Quarrelling People
As leaders, we are not only facing our own problems, but also the problems of the people following us. David was facing the people, who were quarrelling and fighting among each other, there were rebellious people but he still chose to come back and lead them. David did not stay in his own cave or his own comfort zone, but he rose up and returned back to Jerusalem, where the trouble was. God appoints us to be leaders, and He gives us people to follow us. No matter what, God’s grace is sufficient for us. Therefore we should not focus on the problems we are facing or the problems our followers are creating, but focus on bearing the fruits of the Tree of Life in our every decision!
Prayer & Pursuit
Lord, we truly believe You will fight for us and lead us to victory. We come to Your gracious throne, and believe You love us, You care for us and You are able to help us. Lord, in You we receive true peace. Unlawful things filled our lives, but by Your love and sacrifice, we can see lightly the troubles we are facing, and focus on the fruits of the Tree of Life You have given to us. Help us to forgive, to let go, and to overcome all the hinderances, which stop us to come to You.
Lord, You win the battle for us, we are Your chosen ones. Help us to focus more on Your promises and less on ourselves. Thank You for the identity You have given to us as leaders, help us to learn from David, to hold onto our leadership positions in front of all the quarrelling and rebellious people. Let us live in the fragrance of the Tree of Life. Bless us Lord, as Your chosen leaders, to learn from Jesus, to humble and obey, to deny ourselves and benefit others. Amen!
以色列人众支派看到押沙龙死了，知道他们需要王的统领。看到人的归回之后，大卫做了一件重要的事，就是请祭司去跟犹大长老劝话，提醒犹大支派要合一。大卫的家人不是只有自己家里的妻妾儿女，而是神所给他的支派 – 犹大。大卫没有因为那些以色列人来拥戴他而忘记自己的支派。我们是否也愿意看神所赐给我们的教会为自己的家呢？我们是否看到神在兴起我们的教会，是否像犹大人回归到大卫那里一样归向我们的权柄吗？
V15 过了约旦河就意味着大卫再次回到自己的土地 – 大卫需要亲自踏足在神所赐给以色列的应许之地上，整合众支派。
V21-23 大卫对亚比筛的回答是话里有话 – 他说“洗鲁雅的儿子”，洗鲁雅的三个儿子中死了一个，现在剩下亚比筛和约押，大卫其实是对他们说“我与你们有何关涉”。大卫知道现今是收回人心的关键时刻，不能跟示每翻旧账，所以没有治死示每。大卫以恩赐给示每机会和饶恕。
V24-30 大卫要过约旦河的时候，所面临的考验一关比一关更难，现在他要处理米非波设和洗巴之间的问题。面对大卫的质疑，米非波设解释了自己当初为什么没有与王同去。大卫当初因为听到洗巴的一面之词而一时冲动将米非波设的土地赐给洗巴。V29 – 大卫作为王所说的话就是法令。当时这件事情，双方各执一词，很难判断，所以大卫决定平分土地。而米非波设也没有让大卫为难（V30)，他重视跟大卫的关系，没有计较自己的得失，因为他知道自己原本就是什么都没有的。我们是否知道我们原本什么都没有，是耶稣基督的恩典让我们得到一切？我们若知道这一点，就不会跟神或权柄去争去抢。愿我们都能想米非波设一样，活出生命树的“谦卑顺服、舍己利他”！