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II Samuel 21 – Kingdom Principle: Covenant-Keeping 撒母耳记下21- 神国法则: 守约

Tuesday, 22nd June 2021

Rev Daniel Xi An Poon

Section One: Saul Saw Covenant Lightly

David went back to Jerusalem, but he did not live happily ever after in there. There was famine in the land then when David asked God, God revealed to him about the broken covenant between the Israelites and Gibeonites back in Joshua’s time. In Joshua 9:22, the Gibeonites were willing to be servants of Israelites; Joshua also promised them not to harm them and let them live among them. Even though it was a covenant kept by word of mouth, but God is a covenant-keeping God and He remembers His promises even after so many years later. Yet Saul did not care about God’s covenant for Gibeonites, he only focused on killing the Philistines and ignored Israel’s covenant with the Gibeonites.

When David came back to Jerusalem, because there was gap in David’s life, it stopped the prayers of Israelites to go to God. When an authority cannot cover their people, then it would leave a loophole for devil’s schemes to come in. After three years David finally decided to seek God, it was not God, who did not look after Israel, but it was the king, who did not seek God during the famine until three years later. Despite of all of David’s sins and transgressions, God still heard his prayers and responded right away. David was humble when he sought God, he also went to Gibeonites with a humble heart and sought their forgiveness. David knew he needed to pay a price, there was no bargain. It was like how Jesus had to die for our sins and pay the price in order for us to receive a new life.

The Gibeonites were also wise, they knew it was not money that could repay the broken covenant, instead, they asked for seven of Saul’s sons. Because seven is a complete number and this will bring completely restoration of the covenant made by their forefathers.

Section Two: V7-14 David Saw Covenant Seriously

David promised Jonathan not to harm his sons, and after Jonathan died, David still kept his promises. Furthermore, he was not in a doing mode, and he fulfilled what he promised Gibeonites accordingly. A lot of time when we find out about the solutions of a problem, we thought the problem is solved and did not carry it out seriously. But God looks into our heart, even for a covenant made by Joshua and Gibeonites many years ago, God still treats it seriously, therefore we should also treat it seriously. Is there also famine in our lives? Do we seek God straight away and follow His guidance accordingly?

God is a faithful God, when David gave the seven sons of Saul to Gibeonites, the famine to stopped. When we pay the price, God’s rain of grace will fall. Again here we saw David looked at covenant seriously, even though Saul was already dead, but David still saw him as God’s anointed leader, therefore he went and took off the bodies of Saul’s sons and buried them after the Gibeonites have avenged.

Section Three: V15-22 God Sees Covenant Seriously

As humans, we cannot rely on ourselves. David was old and the younger generation of the Philistines were big and strong, David was not able to fight against them because he was no longer the warrior he used to be. But God is faithful, He put all the capable people around David to protect him and to win the battle for him. Even though David was old, but his servants were all mighty warriors and defeated the Philistines without David. We must believe that God has given us capable people to support us. This time, David did not use his own strength, but allowed people following him to come up and win the battle. Do we also have spiritual inheritance? Do we raise up the people, who are following us, to carry out the works of God?

Prayer & Pursuit

Lord, we come humbly before You this morning, for we have sinned against You and sinned against people. There are too many things we have promised and we look at them too lightly. We have forgotten about the promises we kept, but Your Holy Spirit reminded us this morning, to come out of darkness and go into the light. Help us not to be afraid to pay back the price, and believe everything that happened is in Your hands. Your are a covenant-keeping God, Your blessings for us will never change. You are a true God and You will not leave us. Thank you for teaching us to be humble and obedient, let the light comes into out lives. You are covenant-keeping God, so let us learn from You, to never forget our promises to our marriages, to our families, to our church and to You. Amen!

2021年6月22日 星期二

-潘锡安牧师-

撒母耳记下21

神国法则守约

有时候我们会只把神的恩典放大却忘了神也是“守约”的神。今天的经文帮助我们看到“守约”对我们有什么实际的影响。

一、v.1-6 扫罗轻看盟约

大卫经过风风雨雨,回到耶路撒冷,但并非从此一帆风顺。他们仍然面对饥荒- 也就是没有雨。天不下雨,于是“大卫就求问耶和华”(V1) ,神就指示说跟基遍人有关。在约书亚记第9章记载基遍人用欺骗的方式让约书亚和以色列会众跟他们立约,承诺不杀他们(22-27节),这个口头的约既然已经定下来就要遵守。然而,扫罗作为一个被呼召去击败非利士人的以色列王,没有专心走在神给他的命定里,却想要去杀灭亚摩利人中的基遍人,破坏了以色列与基遍人的约定。当我们生命中有破口的时候,恶者就会借着这些事来攻击我们。扫罗所做的事让以色列人有破口,而大卫作为以色列的王,他生命的问题也阻碍了以色列人的祷告蒙神垂听,一直到三年饥荒后大卫寻问神才知道原因。我们不能够骄傲,而是凡事寻问神。大卫是神所爱的仆人,之前的生命出现了很大的破口,但当他回转寻求神的时候,神就垂听他。大卫听到神的指示后,马上用行动悔改,召了基遍人来,要为“耶和华的产业”(V3)-也就是以色列人祝福。基遍人指明要以扫罗七个子孙的死来偿还(V6)。杀人流血的罪就要用血来赎,大卫也明白这是没有可以讨价还价的余地。 “七人” – 七是一个完全的数字,预表一个完全的救赎。

二、v.7-14 大卫看重盟约

三年的饥荒,民不聊生,大卫却并没有自乱脚步。他没有急躁的随便将扫罗后代的七人抓出来,而是记念他曾经与约拿单立的约 – 他曾答应约拿单不会灭了他的后裔,于是没有将约拿单的儿子交出来。当我们与人立约却没有履行的时候,咒诅会一直在,就好像约书亚时代立的约到大卫时代都成立。我们是否有答应人的事却不遵行?我们在被神兴起前,要看自己生命中是否有“荒年”。我们不要与荒年同活,而要知道神给我们的是祝福,所以在遇到“荒年”的景况要懂得警醒祷告,看是否有破口。

大卫看重盟约,于是将扫罗其他的七个后裔交给基遍人处死,神终于将恩雨降下(V10)。大卫看重神对以色列的约,也看重神曾经所膏立的王扫罗的后裔,所以将那七个人与扫罗和约拿单的骸骨一同安葬。以色列的权柄大卫王带头悔改,“此后神垂听国民所求的”(V14)。当我们愿意负上代价回转的时候,神就垂听我们的祷告祈求。

三、v.15-22 神看重盟约

非利士人一直凭着自己的血气来行事,他们身强力壮,仗着自己是“伟人”的后代就不断来攻打以色列人。大卫亲自带领军兵出征,然而他年纪老迈,很快就“疲乏”,于是大卫手下的将领代他应战。当年巨人歌利亚对以色列人骂阵,以色列中除了大卫无人敢出来,如今大卫所带领的新一代将领勇敢迎接挑战,最后都得胜了。大卫不再需要靠自己的努力去争取争战的胜利,他学会倚靠神的话语,也就是当年神借着先知拿单的口跟大卫家立的约,应许大卫家的国位“坚定直到永远”(撒下7:8-16),这个约直到如今都不改变。大卫知道神的信实和保守,他就不害怕下面的人比他厉害而抢了他的位置,而是愿意让他们都出来领兵杀敌。圣经在总结这最后的胜利时,说那四个非利士伟人的后代“都死在大卫和他仆人的手下”(V22),虽然大卫没有亲自去杀敌,但这里记载的仍是大卫的名字,说明神的信实。所以,我们若想下面的人能得到祝福,不是靠自己的力气去为他们争取,而是给他们出来的机会, 因为我们而是靠神的应许来得到属灵的产业。我们要将我们属灵的产业祝福下面的人,让他们能兴起发光,而不是只是在doing(做事)的模式。我们要能够带领门徒,使他们成为神国将领!

*回应祷告

我们得罪神,得罪人,我们的嘴承诺过太多,也跟人立了盟约,却轻看了这些约定。谢谢圣灵提醒我们,求你帮助我们,让我们出黑暗入光明,让我们相信,当我们回转 、为守约而偿还的时候,我们不会成为贫穷的人。主你与我们的约直到如今都没有改变,你给我们的祝福永不改变!谢谢主一直爱我们,帮助我们不再倚靠自己的力量,不轻看我们对婚姻、对教会的盟约。奉耶稣基督的名祷告,阿们!