Monday, April 16, 2012

April 17, King David

King David
By Joseph Carvalho

King David is known for his skills as a writer of psalms, a musician, and warrior, particularly when as a boy he defeated and killed Goliath.  The prophet Samuel, as chosen by the Lord, anointed David king at an early age.  David was 30 years old when he began to reign, and he reigned for 40 years in all (believed to have been between 1050-970 B.C.).  He had reigned over Judah from Hebron for seven years, and from Jerusalem he reigned over all of Israel and Judah for 33 years.

David’s lifetime is depicted in the following books of the Bible:

1 Samuel: the selection and preparation of Israel’s greatest king, David
2 Samuel: records the history of David’s reign, to validate the Davidic dynasty, and to depict David as the ideal example of good leadership
1 Kings: opens with the death of David to contrast the lives of the godly and ungodly kings throughout the history of Israel and Judah and to demonstrate the consequences of idolatry and wickedness
Psalms: to provide poetry for the expression of praise, worship, and confession to God

The Lord’s covenant promise to David was spoken through the prophet Nathan.  In part the Lord said, “And now the Lord declares that he will build a house for you – a dynasty of kings!  For when you die, I will raise up one of your descendents, and I will make his kingdom strong.  He is the one who will build a house, a temple, for my name and I will establish a throne of his kingdom forever.  I will be his father, and he will be my son.”  Hence, Jesus Christ is a direct descendent of Kind David and of Abraham.  In all, Jesus Christ is 42 generations removed from Abraham and 28 generations from King David.

It is believed that King David wrote over 73 Psalms.  It is in the words of these Psalms that we find comfort and guidance.  Throughout life, we experience a wide range of emotions, such as joy, anger, peacefulness, frustration, despair, happiness, and anxiety. 

One of my favorites is Psalm 23.
“The Lord is my shepherd; I have everything I need.  He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams.  He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to his name.  Even when I walk through the dark valley of death, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me.  Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me.  You prepare a feast for me in the presence of my enemies.  You welcome me as a guest, anointing my head with oil.  My cup overflows with blessings.  Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me all the days of my life, and I will live in the house of the Lord forever.”

Many of us tend to turn to prayer most often when the chips are down in our lives.  What about when we have joy, peace, and happiness?  Should we not turn to the Lord as well?   Should we not give praise?  King David knew this too well.  We should emulate King David by praying to the Lord when the chips are down as well as when good things are happening. 

What personally draws me to David is that he was the ideal example of good leadership.  Effective leadership often has more to do with character than with accomplishments.  Among the godly men and women mentioned in the Bible, King David stands as one of the most prominent.  The prophet Samuel had said that God wanted “a man after his own heart” and David was that man.

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