Thursday, March 31, 2016

Seeking Advice

O. T.#726  "Seeking Advice"
March 31, 2016
2 Samuel 16-Part 3
...What should I do next? 2 Samuel 16:20


What kind of people do we seek for advice? Are they godly or rebellious, worldly or spiritual folks? Are we the right kind of person that others can seek for godly advice? 

David fled from his palace when he heard of his son Absalom's plan to lead a revolt and take over the throne as king. He encountered some characters along the way to safety-Ziba who lied about Mephibosheth desiring to take his grandfather's position as king of Israel, and the rocks and curses of Shimel. Through all of that, David continued to trust God for victory in his life and to return his reigning over Israel. He was patient under those trials. He knew God would avenge him at the right time, as He did later.

Absalom and his army arrived at Jerusalem, accompanied by Ahithophel, who had been David's counselor turned traitor. Next, David's spy, Hushai arrived in the city and went to Absalom. (Keep in mind that Ahithophel was already Absalom's adviser by this time.)

What did Hushai tell Absalom?
  • Ohhhh, long live the king, of course. He was pretending to support Absalom who established himself as king of Israel.
  • He was there because he belonged to the man that was chosen by God and all the men of Israel. Sounds like a good supporter, doesn't he?
  • And anyway, why shouldn't I serve you? (Come on Hushai, keep it up and he will believe your allegiance.)
  • Just as I was your father's adviser, now I will be your adviser! (Hey man, you are convincing doing good.) 
At first, Absalom was hesitant to believe Hushai change of alliance.
"Is this how you treat your friend, David?" he asked.
Absalom turned to old Ahithophel the traitor and asked what he should do next. Guess it wasn't convincing enough, Hushai.

Most rulers had advisers to help them make decisions about governmental and political matters. They probably arranged the king's marriages as well because these were usually politically motivated unions. But God mad Ahithophel's advice seem foolish, just as David had prayed (15:31). (Life Application Study Bible)

Do we have godly advisers in our life? Are we using the Word of God for the basis of our decisions? Are we the type of person that others come to for godly advice?


David was being disgraced not only in the wilderness, but also back in his own palace. For Ahiithoophel had counseled Absalom to take David's concubines for himself and thus openly break with his father. This was a fulfillment of the prophecy in 12:11-12. (Wirsebe)

Of all things, Ahithophel tells Absalom to go sleep with his father's concubines (10 in number), for David left them to look after the palace. (This was the first piece of advice.) Then all Israel will know that you have insulted your father beyond hope of reconciliation, and they will throw their support to you.
So they set up a tent on the palace roof where everyone could see it, and Absalom did as he was advised, had sex with his father's concubines. Yuck! Talk about sinning in the open for all to see. Where was shame? Rebellion in Absalom's heart began when he planned to kill his brother and carried it out. Talk about a downward spiral in immorality. Absalom not only waded out into sin, but he was diving in and going under.

For every word Ahithophel spoke seemed as wise as though it had come directly from the mouth of God. (New Living Translation, NLT)

In the Near East, possession of the harem came with the throne. The tent was set up for this scandalous event, thereby fulfilling the judgment announced by Nathan. (MacArthur)

Hey, does this sound familiar? America is heading down into the pit of immoral sins. When we think it can't get worse (abortions, homosexual marriages), states are passing laws that allow homos and transgenders to use restrooms of their choice. People, can we not rise up against these and protect our grandchildren? Come on, folks, please pray with me that God will have mercy on us and turn us back to Him in repentance. It is a serious time in our nation.

Remember, our Lord Jesus was despised and rejected of men like David was. Do we have the courage to remain loyal to our Savior? He will reward us, friends, sooner or later.

Well, I do not like leaving us here in the midst of sin and rebellion, but the LORD's better plan is coming soon, so continue with us.


Give godly advice to others.

Live the Word before others.

Pray for my nation throughout today.

Take a stand for God's ways of living.

Pray, pray, pray.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Enduring Criticism

O. T. #725 "Enduring Criticism"
March 30, 2016
2 Samuel 16-Part 2


Who likes to hear criticism, especially when you are following the Lord? Sticks and stones break our bones, but words do hurt us, so the cliché' is not correct. How do we endure such things? David is our example today. Friend, come with me to see how he did.

David made a statement of his faith in God controlling his circumstances after Ziba's lies and Shimi's stone throwing.
In verse 12 he said, And perhaps the LORD will see that I am being wronged and will bless me because of these curses today.

You will recall the three lies of Shimei, accused David of murdering King Saul, stealing his throne, and stating that the Lord gave his throne to Absalom, David's son. Although these accusations were made publically, David did not use bloodshed to obtain his throne.
What happened next?
  • Abishai asked why that dead dog (Shimei) curse King David. (verse 9)
  • Dead dog means worthless and despised. (MacArthur)
  • Abishai wanted to take off Shimei's head, but David refused to allow it. (verse 10)
  • David's unusual response is If the LORD has told him to curse me, who are you to stop him? (verses 10, 11)
  • So David and his people continued on down the road, with Shimei keeping pace with them, cursing and throwing stones at David and tossing dust into the air.
Did David recall the time when he was eager to kill Nabal and Abigail, the man's wife, interceded.
All of those words of Shimei were uncalled for, as John MacArthur put it. David was penitent of his past sins and those were lies.

You can always find a person wanting to step in and handle your situation. We hear, "Stand up for yourself. You have rights. Sue the guy. Let me at him!" in our world today. But when Jesus was accused of saying He was God, did not revile, but said it was so. You may say, "Look what it got Him-death on the cross." I say, "It was in God's plan all along for Jesus to die on the cross to show mercy to sinners."
James 1 tells us to consider it all joy when we fall into divers (various) temptations. The trying of your faith works patience. Need some patience?

Life Application Study Bible explains this better than I can:
David and his followers quietly tolerated the abuse. Maintaining your composure in the face of unjustified criticism can be a trying experience and an emotional drain, but if you can't stop criticism, it is best just to ignore it. Remember that God knows what you are enduring, and He will vindicate you if you are in the right.

Swindoll tells us:  If we hope to be used by God, we need to have a soft heart and thick skin. David didn't take this personally, nor got offended. One thing for sure, we can count on there being Shimeis out there by the dozens. When you walk through the thorns, you have to have on heavy boots. Yu don't walk through thorns barefooted... at least not far. If you are called into leadership, where you must deal with people, you have to be well-shod and armor-plated.

Are we bigger than the person slinging rocks and can forgive? If not, we reduce our size to their size.
Do we have the skin of a rhinoceros or a reptile? Thick skin can be acquired. Just keep a soft heart toward God.


David and all that were with him grew weary along the way, so they rested when they reached the Jordan River.

Need some rest? Get alone with Jesus. He got away from the crowd and went in a boat with his disciples. He even slept during a storm. Oh, the peace of Jesus walking and talking with us. Sit still and know He is God, friend. If God is going to change your situation, He will. Have faith and trust His timing.


Let God handle those criticizers.

Love my enemies and do good to them.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Lies, Lies, They Are All Lies

O. T. #724 "Lies, Lies, They Are All Lies"
March 29, 2016
2 Samuel 16


We have learned about the revolt of Absalom, King David's son, David's counselor Ahithophel, who was a traitor and became Absalom's counselor, and David's leaving Jerusalem to protect his family and life. Previously, we read of David's friends during this trying time. David sent Hushai to pose as an ally of Absalom, but would serve as a spy.

As though David did not have enough difficulty going on, here enters Ziba, the servant of Mephibosheth, the only survivor of King Saul and son of Jonathan who was lame. (Chapter 9 gives the background for this man.)Saul was the first king of Israel and pursued David for about 15 years to kill him, however was obviously unsuccessful. Ziba is a lying scoundrel, that is what he is.

He brought generous supplies to David with the lie that his master still aspired to the throne. David was unable to see through his fabrication at the time. All the property and heritance  of
Mephibosheth were transferred to Ziba. (Falwell)

Now you see what I was talking about. That lying dog brought good food and wine to David's exhausted group. He got his reward that he set out to get when David was at his lowest in his life. David did not check out the facts of Ziba's story before making such a rash decision.

We sometimes do that-jump to conclusions without checking out the facts, asking questions, seeking advice. Especially when we are at our low time of our life, we need to be aware and alert to the schemes of people out to get us or hurt us. Look out for the Ziba's in life so we are not like the deceived David.


As though David has not had enough bad people in his life (a rebellious son, a traitor, a liar), he hen encounters a hateful enemy of Saul's family, Shimei. We see that he expresses his bitterness toward King David by throwing rocks at him. These were actual rocks, not words.

Listen to Shimei's three lies about David which Swindoll points out:
  1. The Lord is paying you back for murdering King Saul.
  2. You stole Saul's throne.
  3. The Lord has given your son Absalom your throne.
He's not only thrown rocks and cursed David, Shimei has lied three times in his personal attack. He is way out of line. David has done nothing to warrant these public assaults. But they have come, nevertheless.
Shimei was your basic reprobate-the kind of person who kicks you while you're on your face, down and out. You're at the very ultimate, lowest pit and along comes a Shimei. Boom! Hits you below the belt. And when you squirm, he comes back with another blow.
[Resource: David, A Man of  Passion and Destiny by Charles Swindoll]


Let God take the revenge upon the liars that throw the stones to injure me.

Forgive and love them, the liars.

Monday, March 28, 2016

When I Can't Handle It

O. T. #723  "When I Can't Handle It"
2 Samuel 15-Part 4
March 24, 2016
All who trust in Him will praise Him. Psalm 63:13

Happy belated Easter, ya'll!! He is our Risen Savior, alive, living on the inside of those who believe in Him.


Waves and waves of hurts, problems, conflicts have been raging high, knocking me down  for 3 months now. I realize that worry has literally made me sick. So I needed today's lesson on trusting and praising the Lord. It is time I apply my own words written here to my own life. I can't change some people and some circumstances, so when I can't handle it, I give it into God's hands to handle it and deal with them. Trusting Jesus. David had to do the same. How did he do it?

Absalom, David's son, was leading a revolt to take over Israel as king. He had a huge army from all over the nation of Israel supporting him. Absalom was coming, so David left the city of David, Jerusalem, with his small army and family. He sent the two priests, Zadok and Ahiathar, back with the Ark of the Covenant. David was trusting God for victory and a return to his throne. David would wait at the Jordan River for a report on things. We left David weeping as he walked up the road to the Mount of Olives.

David wrote Psalm 3 and 63 during this time when he fled from his son Absalom. What gold nuggets do we gain through his suffering?
  • The LORD is a shield around us. (verse 3)
  • God is our glory, as well as the lifter of our head. (verse 3)
  • We can cry out to the Lord and he answers us. (verse 4)
  • The Lord watches over us, even while we sleep. (verse 5)
  • We need not be afraid of 10,000 enemies who surround us on every side. (verse 6)
  • David prayed for God's revenge upon his enemies. (verse 7)
  • Victory comes from the Lord. (verse 8)
  • God's unfailing love is better than life itself. (Ps. 63:3)
  • Praise the Lord as long as we live, lifting up our hands in prayer and songs of joy. (verses 4,5)
  • Meditate on God both day and night. (verse 6)
  • God is our helper so sing for joy in the shadow of His wings. (verse 7)
  • Cling to God; His strong hands hold us securely. (verse 8)
  • God will destroy those plotting to destroy us. (verse 9)
  • All who trust in the Lord will praise Him, while liars will be silenced. (verse 11)
During his intense days, David trusted in the Lord. When it seems as though enemies (problems, trials, difficulties) surround us, as we trusting in Jesus?


In Charles Swindoll's book, David, A Man of Passion and Destiny, describes five faithful and true friends David had during all of this:
  1. First was Ittai the Gittite (Gentile) from Gath, who declared his faithfulness to David in verse 21, then joined David's group.
  2. Second were the two priests and Levites Zadok and Abiathar. They did whatever David wished and were available friends.
  3. Third was Hushai, the Archite. He joined David in his expression of sorrow, as though his presence wrapped him with love around David. No great message or verse, just a hug of encouragement when needed. Someone told David that his advisor, Ahithophel, was a traitor and now supported Absalom. Then David devised a plan. He sent Hushai, who was in a mournful way due to all the activities, to go to Jerusalem and tell Absalom that he would now be Absalom's advisor as he was his father's advisor. (He was posing as an ally, but actually a spy, in hopes of his advise would change Absalom and an informant of Absalom's decisions.)
  4. We will read of a group of three men in chapter 17-Shobi, Machir, and Barzillai. These were nobodies who became somebodies in David's corner and meeting the needs of David and his group.
  5. Last, we recognize Joab, captain of David's army, cared enough to confront him, tell him the truth, and give advice. We will read about it in chapter 19.
Swindoll points out that friends:
  • are not optional, but essential. They care, listen, comfort, and reprove occasionally.
  • are not automatic but must be cultivated. It is developed through constant care.
  • are not neutral, but impact our lives. Choose your friends wisely and carefully.
  • come in varying degrees, some of whom play more significant roles in our life than others. We have many acquaintances, several close friends, and a few intimate friends. Mutual understanding and trust is established between intimate friends.
What kind of friend are we?


Stop worrying and trust in God.

Give it into God's hands to handle.

Be an intimate friend with whom others can share their heart and it remains between us.

Show that I care about my friends.

Friday, March 25, 2016

How Are We Walking on Our Road of Faith?

O. T. #722  "How Are We Walking on Our Road of Faith?"
March 25, 2016
2 Samuel 15-Part 3
David walked up the road to the Mount of Olives, weeping as He went.  2 Samuel 15:30


How are you walking on your road of faith today, friend? I must admit, the past month I have been dragging my feet, with my head down, stumbling around, feeling discouraged and defeated. With the death of my friend's son and my husband's aunt, hearing hateful words, yeah, they got me down. Arrows of discouragement were hitting their target-me.
Lately, though, Jesus has been walking with me, dusting me off as He lifts me up, stands me firm on The Rock, and lifts up my head. I feel His love surrounding and filling me. My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus blood and righteousness, as the song goes. I have a hope to share-Jesus is my Savior, preparing a place in heaven for me, is my hope. His will be done in my life today.
How was David walking on his road of faith? We will read about it today.

King David, along with his family and political cabinet left the city of David, Jerusalem when they got word that Absalom had organized a group to attack in a revolt against his father. Absalom had wormed his way into the hearts of the people. He had followers and the majority vote. It was a mistake for David to allow him to return home. David's family would always be a constant threat for David as God had said to him earlier. Trouble was on its way. Had David not left, he would have become a prisoner in his own palace.

The priests Zadok and Abiathar, along with the Levites carrying the Ark of the Covenant, were a part of those leaving Jerusalem with David. They set the Ark down and Abiathar offered sacrifices to God until everyone had passed out of the city. (verse 24)
Either this was without David's knowledge or he changed his mind concerning the Ark accompanying them. In verse 25, he tells Zadok to return with the Ark to Jerusalem.
 David says, If the LORD sees fit, He will bring me back to see the Ark and the Tabernacle again. But if He is through with me, then let Him do what seems best to Him.

What a statement from David. This is a step of faith for David. He was trusting God to give  him victory and return him to his throne.
Do we get to the end of our rope and then say, "If the Lord is through with me, then let Him do whatever seems best to Him?" He was willing to have God's will be done in his life.
Why do we have to get to that point where we can no more hang on, slipping, with no more hope, at the end of our self,  not knowing what to do in our situation, before we surrender to God? Pride, I suppose, keeps us from surrendering in the first place.

This reminds me of our Lord Jesus as He was rejected in Jerusalem, left the city, and crossed the Kidron to pray in the garden (John 18:1).
Jesus got to that same point in His life as David, in the Garden of Gethsemane. H was praying, alone, since the Peter, James, and John fell asleep. There Jesus prayed three times, asking the Father to remove His cup (the cross or death/divine wrath against sin). In Matthew 26:42, Jesus surrendered, My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may Your will be done.

What does it take to wake us up and follow Jesus, completely? People/family turning against us, loosing our job, financially struggling, health problems growing worse?

What amazing love, that Jesus would endure the beatings, shame, death on a cross, die for me, a sinner, and you a sinner! Friend, He did that so we would not have to pay for our sins. He paid our sin debt. God requires a perfect sacrifice, and He found it in Jesus.
Jesus voluntarily surrendered His will to the will of the Father in all things. (MacArthur)
How can we but praise Him??

Let's bring our brokenness to Him. His mercy is waiting to be poured out on us.


In verse 27, David reveals his plan to Priest Zadok:
  • Zadok and Abiathar returns quietly to Jerusalem, along with Ahimaaz (Zadok's son) and Jonathan (Abiathar's son).
  • David would stop at the shallows of the Jordan River and wait there for a report from Zadok.
  • The two priests did as David said.
What happens next is something, and it can be tied to Jesus.
Look at verses 30-31(NLT): David walked up the road to the Mount of Olives, weeping as he went. His head was covered and his feet were bare as a sign of mourning. And the people who were with him covered their heads and wept as they climbed the hill.

Christ and His disciples met here (Gathsemane) frequently, just across the Kidron Valley from Jerusalem. (MacArthur)

The Garden of Gathsemane was located at the foot of the Mount of Olives. This is where olive groves of olive trees covered its slopes of the mountain range. They would grind the oil out of the olives to use in the Temple and their homes. Also, it was has been used as a Jewish cemetery for over 3,000 years (over 150,000 tombs are there). During N. T. times, the route from Jerusalem to Bethany and where Jesus stood when He wept over Jerusalem. It was also the place where Jesus ascended into heaven after his death Acts 1:9-12). Some believe Jesus' return to earth will be here in this elevated place, to overlook Jerusalem. It is referred to in Ezekiel 11:23.

Since this is considered Good Friday, let us take a few moments to consider all Jesus went through for us, His sacrifice, and His resurrection power.

Have you asked Jesus to be your Savior, to forgive you of your sins, to be Lord of your life? He is waiting with outstretched arms, nailed scared hands, and a heart of love and forgiveness.
Are we going to share the true meaning of Easter with others this weekend? I pray you will go to church and worship with me, this Risen Savior.
Glory to God in the highest! Our Savior is Risen and alive!


Drink the cup of my Heavenly Father's will.

You will, Your way, today, I pray.

Seek His forgiveness o my sins today.

He is risen, Jesus Christ!!!!!!

Praise Him forever!!!!

Thursday, March 24, 2016

When It is Time to Go

O. T. #721  "When It is Time to Go"
March 24, 2016
2 Samuel 15-Part 2
I don't know where we will go.  2 Samuel 15:20


Abraham followed God, not knowing where He was leading. As it turned out, Abraham saw the Promised Land that God gave to Abraham's heirs. David left King Saul's palace fleeing for his life. He lived in the wilderness for about 15 years. When we follow God, we may not know all the details of our journey until we step out. Again, David had to flee for his life, only this time it was his son who threatened him.

Absalom's conspiracy begins. His scheme was to lead a revolt and take over as king of Israel, but God intervened. Ittai, a messenger from Gath (a Gentile), revealed Absalom's plans, notifying David of his son's support. Did David believe the man who told such horrifying news? Join me as I answer that question.

David does believe the informer, since he quickly gets his family and household away from Jerusalem. He knew that if they did leave before Absalom arrived, then both he and the city would be spared from disaster. I wonder if it had been in the back of David's mind that this son of his might possibly do such a thing.

What does David do next?
  • David is supported and protected by 600 men from Gath in addition to his own bodyguards and they are going with David's group. However, he encourages those men and his informer to return home for their protection.
  • David realizes that he did not know where they would go for protection, yet he blesses them with  the Lord's unfailing love and faithfulness.  (verse 20)
  • Ittai refuses David's offer of escape.
Now in verse 21, we read of such dedication of this man to his king: I vow by the LORD and by your own life that I will go wherever my lord the king goes, no matter what happens-whether it means life or death.

Are we that committed to our King Jesus? Are we willing to go wherever He goes? Is our dedication so strong that it is for life or death?


After that statement, David agreed to let Ittai, his men, and family join David. News traveled quickly. As David and his group passed through the city, all the people wept.

It was a tragedy for the heart of a nation, and all those who were faithful to David, as they passed over the Brook of Kidron toward the wilderness east of Jerusalem.  (Falwell)

If a fight is too costly, do we have the courage to back down, swallow our pride, and think of others?
If it is necessary to stand up, do we do so with the leading of the Lord? Are we prepared to suffer any cost it may require for the Lord's will t be done?


Go wherever my King Jesus leads me.

Go no matter if it cost me life or death.

Discern when it is time to stay or go.

*Update: My friend's son did pass away Friday morning. They got his heart and breath restored at the hospital, sent him to Children's Hospital, and tests revealed his brain dead on Sunday. On Monday, the parents decided to donate his organs to other children. They knew it was time to let him go. Please pray for this family as Saturday morning is his funeral. Thanks brothers and sisters in Christ.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

The Three R's

O. T. #720  "The Three R's"
March 23, 2016
2 Samuel 15
...and so he stole the hearts of all the people of Israel.  2 Samuel 15:6


Here we have the three R's-reconciliation, rebellion, and revolt.
Now David and Absalom are reconciled, but hang on, Absalom had royalty symbols of chariots and charioteers (1 Samuel 8:11). His rebellious schemes are beginning to unfold and take place as the rebellion of a prince turns into a revolt. Shall we look at them?
  • After 2 years, Absalom had Joab's field burned, he used Joab to persuade David to see Absalom. 
  • He met with his father and Absalom and David reconciled their relationship.
  • Then he bought a chariot and horses, and hired 50 bodyguards to run ahead of him.
  • Now we see his scheme playing out. Every morning Ab got up and wet out to the gate of the city.
  • When the people brought their case for judgment to the king to resolve, Ab would ask where in Israel they were from and they would tell him which tribe.
  • So Ab would tell the people the king didn't have anyone to hear their case. If he were judge, then he would hear them with justice, and showing sympathy.
  • The people would want to bow before Ab, but he would not let them. Instead, he would kiss their hand. Sweet. Sweet. Yuck. Yuck.
  • He did this to everyone who came to see the king.
  • Absalom stole the hearts of all the people of Israel. What a schemer.
Life Application Study Bible explains:The city gate was like a city hall and a shopping center combined. Local and national leaders met at the in Jerusalem for daily business transactions and government affairs. Merchants set up tent shops there. Witnesses needed were available. So Absalom went to the city gate to win the hearts of Israel's leaders and the common people as well.  His political strategy was to steal the hearts o the people with his good looks, grand entrances, apparent concern for justice, and friendly embraces. Many were fooled and switched their allegiance.

Absalom was building a group of loyal followers without King David's knowledge.
Are we aware of people who sweet talk to get their way? Do we look for a mask that they are hiding behind? Beware of charm and deception.
The same way God forgives us, we are to forgive others. So David should have forgiven his son for murdering Amnon. However, Absalom did not have a change of heart. He plotted to overthrow David as king of Israel.


After 4 years of being in the public eye, Absalom had a plot that involved a lie. He told King David that he made a vow to the Lord while back in Hebron those 3 years-he would make a sacrifice to the LORD in Hebron if he would bring Ab back to Jerusalem. David gave his approval without knowing the real reason for this.

  • While he was there, Absalom sent secret messengers to all the tribes of Israel to stir up a rebellion against the king.
  • His message said that as soon as they heard a ram's horn, the people would say, "Absalom has been crowned king in Hebron."
  • He took 200 men with him as guests, but did not inform them of his rebellious plans.
  • While Absalom was offering the sacrifices, he sent for Ahithophel, one of David's counselors who lived in Giloh.
  • Soon many others also joined Absaslom and the conspiracy gained momentum. (verses 1-12)
Absalom's request was unusual, in that he wanted to go south to Hebron to pay a vow he made in exile, yet he was actually in Syria in the north while in exile. (J. V. McGee )

He went to Hebron because it was his hometown and David's first capital. He could expect to find loyal friends there.. The man mentioned, Ahithophel, was Bathsheba's grandfather. (McGee says that Ahithophel was a partner to all of this.)

Things are not looking too good for David with this secret conspiracy and revolt.


Always be aware of what folks are doing.

Ask the Lord for discernment because not all things are as they appear.

Forgive others.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Sincere or Sincerely a User?

O. T. #719  "Sincere or Sincerely a User?"
March 22, 2016
2 Samuel 14-Part 2
...Why did your servants set my field on fire?  2 Samuel 14:31 NLT


Have you ever seen people being sweet in order to get their way? Children learn that technique and tactics to use so they get their way. Adults use it, too. So we need to be able to look beyond their appearance and how things appear and into the deeper reasons behind actions or words-discernment. Are they being sincere in their sweetness and kind deeds or are they sincerely a user? Absalom is one. See if you can determine which one he is.

Daddy's home. Previously, we read where Joab tricked King David into allowing Absalom to return home after being 3 years away at his grandfather's. The stipulation was that David would never see his son.
Absalom licked his wounds and set up his plan later on, to lead a revolt against his daddy. (Swindoll)

What do we learn about Absalom?
  • He was the most handsome man in all Israel. (verse 25)
  • He had long hair, since Absalom only cut it once a year. The reason he cut it then was because it was so heavy (5 lbs. cut off). (verse 26)
  • He had 3 sons and one daughter name Tamar, who was very beautiful. (verse 27)
  • Absalom lived in Jerusalem 2 years and never saw his father, King David. (verse 28)
John MacArthur suggests that David's restraint in staying apart from Absalom was to lead his son through a time of repentance and a real restoration. Rather than produce repentance in Absalom, however, his non-access to the royal court and all its amenities, frustrated him so that he sent for Joab to intercede.

I wonder if Absalom was a very spoiled firstborn and got what he wanted (before the killing of Amnon). Perhaps his good looks got him his way in the world, also. We aren't told either way, but his handsomeness is mentioned.

We should take as a warning of doing such by God when he told the Prophet Samuel, looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart. (1 Samuel 16:7)

Are we careful to not favor people because of their outward appearance or their money?


After the two years had passed, Absalom sent for Joab to intercede for him to the king, so he could see David. However, Joab refused to go, not once, but twice. Well, that onery Absalom told his servants to set fire to Joab's field of barley. He got Joab's attention alright. What a self-centered guy.
Joab went to Absalom's house and asked him why he did such a thing.

Verse 32 is Absalom's answer to Joab:
  • I wanted you to ask the king why he brought me back from Geshur if he didn't intend to see me.
  • I might as well have stayed there.
  • Let me see the king.
  • If the king finds me guilty of anything, then let him kill me.
So Absalom got his way. Joab told King David what Absalom said. Then at last, David summoned Absalom. He bowed low before the king, and the king kissed him. Probably on the head.

The kiss signified David's forgiveness and Absalom's reconciliation with the family. (MacArthur)

I say, Absalom was a sly dude. He didn't want to be in favor with the king for segmental reasons, for he already had a plan of his rebellion. (Falwell brought that up in Liberty Bible Commentary.)

Folks, we need to always have discernment. People are users and have learned the technique  of appearing sweet just to get their way in a situation. I call them wolves in sheep's clothing. So observe their actions and try to find their motive for their smiles, words, or actions. Are they sincere or sincerely users?


Watch and observe people for hidden motives when they are unusually kind or sweet.

Ask the Lord for discernment of the truth.

Do not be a user, myself.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Sweet, Honey Dripping Words

O. T. #718  "Sweet, Honey Dripping Words"
March 21, 2016
2 Samuel 14
I know you are like an angel of God...  2 Samuel 14:20


There are people who try to get their way using the technique of sweet, honey dripping words being said. Complements insincere. Words with hidden agendas. Schemes devised. Oh how we need to be on our toes these days. Ask the Lord for discernment. David saw through Joab's scheme.

For three years Absalom lived with the king of Geshur, his grandfather. Joab realized how much King David longed to see Absalom, so he devised a scheme for his return.
How did he do it?
  • Joab persuaded a woman from Tekoa to pretend to be a widow who had two sons. One of her sons killed the other. She asked for David's help because her family demanded her son be killed for his murder.
  • King David promised to help her.
  • Oh, by the way... Then the woman asked David why he did not do as much for the people of God as he promised to do for her. David had convicted himself in his decision, refusing to bring home his own banished son.
  • The woman also said some profound statements-All of us must die eventually; Our lives are like water spilled out on the ground, which cannot be gathered up again. But God does not sweep life away, instead, He devises ways too bring us back when we have been separated from Him.
  • She says David is like an angel of God in discerning good from evil. May the LORD your God be with you.
In other words, the fear of the public opinion was causing David to hesitate pardoning his son Absalom of murder. Joab realized the struggle David was having between parental and royal duty and devised such a scheme of a wise woman to tell a story to the king. By allowing Absalom to remain in exile, David had jeopardized the future welfare of Israel. If he would be so generous to a son he did not know in a family he did not know, would he not forgive his own son.  (MacArthur)

Would David cut off his own heir, thus his inheritance among God's people?
Do family members, friends, or neighbors refuse to forgive each other and cause a division and unforgiveness to carry on to the next generation?

Did you hear the woman speaking about God's mercy? Would David show mercy to his son as he was shown mercy from God? Do we show mercy to others when we have received it our self?


The application of the whole scheme was made crystal clear to David. The diplomatic words in a spoonful of  honey, calling David an angel of God, was a method to make the medicine taste good. Dripping with sweet words and compliments can sometimes be an effort to get ones way that otherwise might be denied.

Ding! The bell went off in David's head and he saw the scheme of Joab being carried out here. (Actually, Joab wanted Absalom brought home so he could kill this next man in line for the kingship, not that Joab was concerned with the king's happiness.)

In verse 23, we read of David's order-Absalom is allowed to return to his own house, but never come into David's presence.


Forgive and let go of past hurts.

Show mercy to those who do not deserve it, as Jesus does to me.

Have discernment when sweet words come my way with a scheme.


Friday, March 18, 2016


When your friend calls at 6 am crying, you know it is serious. Her mentally and physically handicapped son died but they got his breath and heart beat going, I sat up in bed facing the reality of death a second time this week. At the hospital they stabilized him then air vaced him to Children's Hospital. She went home and grabbed her essentials for an expected long stay.
The first reality of death was the funeral of my husband's aunt. Now I knew her 44 years.

God is with us even when we don't feel His presence. He is in control of all things. Even when we question.
So I wait by the phone to hear any updates. Faith is trusting God even when you can't see your next step or breath. He has our days numbered. We may not know when the last one will be. So live it loving God and others so we have no regrets.

I will try to write tomorrow friends. The joy of the Lord is our strength.


Thursday, March 17, 2016

When Bitterness is Allowed to Grow

O. T. #717  "When Bitterness is Allowed to Grow"
March 17, 2016
2 Samuel 13-Part 2
So at Absalom's signal they (his servants) murdered Amnon. 2 Samuel 13:29


Like mold allowed to grow on a loaf of bread, bitterness can take over. Do we realize how strong bitterness can grow into hatred, and worse, murder? It can destroy. Absalom did not resolve his toward his brother Amnon, who had raped his sister, and his bitterness grew into murder.

All right now, in David's time there were no cell phones nor test messaging. So I wonder how David found out what happened at the Absalom's feast-all the king's sons were killed and not one is left alive. In shock, David got up, tore his robe, and threw himself on the ground in shock and sorrow. Talk about getting your wires crossed. Only Amnon was killed, so Jonadab set everyone straight with the correct information, adding that Absalom plotted it and escaped.

As a confirmation of this information, the watchman on the Jerusalem wall told David that he saw a group of people coming down the road along the hill. They were the king's sons. Soon they arrived, weeping, and sobbing. Then the King David and his servants wept bitterly with them. David mourned many days for his son Amnon.

Did David realize that God's predictions were coming true?


Absalom fled to Geshur, east of the Sea of Galilee, because King Talmai was his grandfather (1 Chronicles 3:2), and he would be welcomed. The stayed there 3 years. The cities of refuge would not allow him protection there since his was premeditated murder.

By most casual evaluations, Absalom would have made an excellent king, and the people love him. but he lacked the inner character and control needed in a good leader. His appearance, skill, and position did not make up for his lack of personal integrity. David repented of his sins, but Absalom's sins kept on sinning. He was not wise enough to evaluate the counsel he received.  (Life Application Study Bible)

Notice that David took no action to bring Absalom back For 2 years Absalom allowed his bitterness to fester and grow into revenge. Rape was punishable by death in Israel, but not through personal revenge. An then death was to be the punishment for murder in Numbers 35:21, so Absalom knew what was due him in Israel an fled. Absalom blew it. He was next in line to be king of Israel after David. What a mess he made of his life.

Do we know of folks on a fast track toward self-destruction?
God offers forgiveness, but we have to sincerely admit our sins and confess them to God.
Are we careful to consider that often the sins of parents are repeated and amplified in their children?


Forgive others before it turns into bitterness and hatred.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

A Feast Fit for a King

O. T. #716  "A Feast Fit for a King"
March 13, 2016
2 Samuel 13-Part 2
So Absalom prepared a feast fit for a king. 2 Samuel 13:7 NLT


We have attended many fancy parties, banquets, and weddings in our years of life. Some of the uptown business dinners had alcohol available at a bar. Various foods were available on several tables. Yes, we have attended a feast fit for a king. We asked the bartender for a soda without any liquor added at those. They were amazed and confused as to why we would refuse free liquor. The first few years it was intimidating, but now we expect being different and see others as the ones with the problem, not us. Absalom prepared a feast fit for a king, but the king did not attend. Let's walk around in the party atmosphere and observe what happens at this particular feast.

Even though David was angry with Amnon for raping Tamar, his half sister. David did not punish him. Maybe he did not want to cross his firstborn or it was because David was guilty of committing adultery, also. Whatever the reason, David did not take care of the situation. David was a skillful military leader and king, but he lacked the skill of being an effective father and husband. He failed to teach his children to obey the Lord and lead them by example. Can you imagine a palace with umpteen wives and children? Absalom was David's third son by his third wife.
Swindoll calls it  paternal preoccupation. His head had been somewhere else for a long time. His kids raised themselves, without proper parental authority and discipline.

Tamar lived with her brother Absalom (they had the same parents). She kept out of circulation because of her seduction of Amnon.Because this situation was not dealt with, Absalom hated Amnon deeply because of what he did to Absalom's sister. (verse 22)
Now we pick up another event in this chapter-Abaslom takes revenge in his own hands. How does this come about?
  • Absalom planned it out, the way he would get even with Amnon. He waited for two years before making his move.
  • It was sheep shearing time and Absalom invited the king's sons, King David, and his servants to a festival.
  • David declined the invitation, saying, "Let us not all now go." (verse 25) Not everything that comes our way is God's will for us, so we need discernment.
  • Absalom then said, "If you can't come, how about sending my brother Amnon with us?"
  • Now Absalom kept on at his father and David let all of his sons attend the festival. (verse 27)
  • So Absalom prepared a feast fit for a king.
David's children manipulated and intimidated him and see what happened. When fathers are absent, it becomes a extremely demanding role for the mother to be the sole disciplinarian of the children. When some dads are present, they are sometimes addicted to television and neglect their children.

Are we helping our children raise their children up in the admonition of the Lord Jesus?
Are parents aware of who will be attending the parties their child attends? Will there be alcohol, drugs, or sex available there? We need to protect our children. Love may need to say no sometimes.


So we have all of David's son attending the party after the sheep are sheered, the work is done. I found a chart that named all 19 sons of David, from his 8 named wives, but included other nameless wives and concubines. Oh, David, we can see your weakness is women. Polygamy is not what God had intended for His children.

With David's denial of the invitation, Absalom requested that Ammon go as his representative. Although David had reservations about Absalom's intent, he allowed all his sons to go. (MacArthur)

What happened at the party, the festival?
  • Absalom carried out his plan-when Amnon got drunk, he gave the signal, and Absalom's men killed Amnon. 
  • Here comes the funny part. Then the other sons of the king jumped on their mules and fled.
Mules don't run as fast as horses, but they were ridden by the royal family. However, those brothers did not wait around for their life to be taken. They may have even skipped dessert. Oh, Absalom, you did just like your father David, who had Uriah killed.

Though rape was punishable by death, personal vengeance such as this was unacceptable to God. The due course of law was to be carried out. (MacArthur)

The sword did not depart from David's household. Now David had lost two sons. More is to come. I don't like to leave on a sad note here. Do we see how one sin can lead to another hen cover up is present?


Be discerning about opportunities.

It's acceptable to refuse invitations, a no is okay.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

When the Chickens Come Home to Roost

O. T. #715 "When the Chickens come Home to Roost"
March 15, 2016
2 Samuel 13


If the events in chapter 13 were a movie, I would turn it off so I didn't have to watch such things. but, it is not, and it is written in the Scriptures, so we will discuss it instead of skipping it. Sadly, numerous times these things have and are happening in our nation.

People won't get by with their sinful acts. There are consequences that are paybacks. We can be thankful to God for His grace and mercy and He doesn't give up on us. However, the chickens do come home to roost.

There are two main events in this chapter-David's daughter Tamar is raped by his son Amnon; Absalom, their brother, takes revenge and kills Amnon. Whew! And some say the Bible is boring.

Who was whom?
David had many sons by various mothers and at least one daughter named Tamar. Absalom, David's firstborn, and Tamar were brother and sisters by the same parents. Now Amnon was only their half brother by a different mother, making the 3 half siblings. The other person involved in this mess was Amnon's cousin, Jonadab.

So, with those straight, we can continue the story:
  • Amnon thought he was deeply in love with Tamar. Cousin Jonadab helped him devise a scheme to get Amnon alone with her so he could have his way with her. In other words, Amnon was encouraged to commit sexual sin.
  • Amnon pretended to be sick and Tamar brought him his favorite food to eat, with her feeding him. The conniving guys' plan worked.
  • When Amnon demanded Tamar to lie with him, but she refused, reminding him that it (fornication) was forbidden  in Israel (Deut.22:28-29). Amnon's love was actually lust wanting to be satisfied. 
  • Tamar knew it would bring shame upon her and warned Amnon that he would be called one of the greatest fools in Israel. She proposed that Amnon speak to the king about them getting married instead.
  • Tamar's words did not stop Amnon and he raped her by force.
  • Amnon's so called love, actually lust, turned to hate and he made Tamar leave the room afterwards.
There is a difference between love and lust.

Life Application Study Bible explains:
Although he claimed to be in love, Amnon was actually overcome with lust.
Love is patient; lust is harsh.
Love does not demand its own way; lust does. Read 1 Corinthians 13.
Lust may feel like love at first, but when physically expressed, it results in self-disgust and hatred of the other person. If you just can't wait, what you feel is not true love.

That is good advice for our young people today.


By throwing Tamar out, it looked like she made the shameful proposition, seduced him. There were no witnesses. His crime destroyed her chances of marriage in Israel.

Tamar's reaction was one of sorrow and shame. She tore her virgin's robe and put ashes on her head, crying. When her brother Absalom saw her, he told her to keep quiet about the matter and live in his house. It was as if it was a family matter and he would take care of it later (2 years later). David heard about the matter, but he was angered but did not confront Amnon about it. Absalom deeply hated Amnon for this.

We will leave the story there. Oh, it does continue. David, your chickens did come home to roost. Your sin was duplicated, only worse, it was in the family.

Do we see an example of how our sin can continue on in our family?


Always keep my guard up so lust does not enter my life.

Be sure that my love is always for my husband.

Warn others when signs of danger are lurking around them.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Another Baby Came Along

O. T. #714  "Another Baby Came Along"
March 14, 2016
2 Samuel 12-Part 8


David did not continue to dwell on his sin. He returned to God, and God forgave him, opening the way to begin life anew, a fresh start-God's grace. Who doesn't need that every morning?
Scripture does not dwell on the death of the first child of David and Bathsheba. We do not read about the effect it had on the mother-the emptiness of her arms, the longing to cuddle the baby, watch it grow and develop, wandering what it would be like as an adult. I do not want to make light of the pain in having a child pass away. We have experienced it in our own family. Babies in heaven will make it even sweeter, though. David moved on in his life, keeping love for the baby in his heart, I am sure.

Perhaps the most bitter experience in life is the death of one's child. For comfort in such difficult circumstances, see Psalms 16:9-11; 17:15; 139; Isaiah 40:11. (Life Application Study Bible)

David gave Bathsheba comfort, as verse 24 says. Then time passed, and the couple had three more sons. The names  are listed in 1 Chronicles 3:5. Then another baby came along. Their fourth born son is a familiar name to us-Solomon. (New info to me) Look at the end of verse 24: The LORD loved the child...
What a little bundle of joy came into this family. (David had 9 other sons besides Solomon born while he was in Jerusalem, and one daughter, Tamar.)

In verse 25, God sent word by Nathan to David that they should name the baby Jedidiah, which means beloved of the LORD. Solomon means peace. Little did the parents know, but God had plans for this child-he would be the next king of Israel. God turned a curse into a blessing, fulfillment of the promise given to David in 1 Chronicles 22:9.

I am taking a sigh of relief, good has come in our reading. It has been a long time coming.
Do we have the faith to continue walking with God, even amidst the hard times?
Will we take this event in David's life as a warning to "take heed lest we fall" from 1 Corinthians 10:12? In verse 13, God promises us a way of escape when faced with temptation. Be careful not to allow our desires or flesh over take us. We are to die to self and live for Christ.


Guess I spoke too soon. In verses 26-31 we read of a battle that occurred in the city of Rabbah, among the villages of Amman. It was known as the royal city, the city of waters, a city famous for its beautiful waters. Joab sent messengers to David to challenge David to bring the rest of the army and have the credit for the victory, else Joab would.
David just that, lead the Israelites to victory. He removed the crown off the king's head and placed it upon his own head. What a crown it was-75 pounds of gold and gems. He made slaves of the people captured, forcing them to work with saws, iron picks, iron axes, and brick kilns.

What is so significant about this victory? We find the answer as we look back in 1 Samuel 11. That was when Nahash the Ammonite conquered the city of Jabesh under Saul's reign. Nahash refused to surrender except for the gory condition-all right eyes be gashed out in the city.
Does it come back to you now? Yeah David for getting revenge for your men in Jabesh.

"What comes around goes around," my mother used to say. We see it here, revenge for the right eye.

Well, finally, we finished that chapter. So glad you stuck with me. It was quite an eventful one. Keep in mind, David was a "Man after God's own heart," which God called him.


Forgive and let go and let God take the revenge.

Trust Him, even when I don't understand the whys.

Look for the good to come.

Friday, March 11, 2016

Joy Restored

O. T. #713  "Joy Restored"
March 10, 2016
2 Samuel 1-Part 7
Oh, what joy for those whose disobedience is forgiven, whose sin is put out of sight!
2 Samuel 32:1


I don't know about you friends, but I have had an extremely difficult week. I am always in need of your prayers. conflicts, struggles, trials are always bombarding us. I am empty and in need of being filled with the Joy of Jesus. Come with me and let's go down to pray at the River of Life, Jesus, and get washed and cleansed with the blood of Jesus. His amazing grace is available 24/7. David found his joy restored and so can we. How did he find it? Look with me.

David was confronted with his sins, confessed his sins, and was forgiven by God. Next comes the consequences of his sins. Before we get into that, let's look at his deeper confessions found in Psalm 32. (In Psalm 51:12, David asked the Lord to restore the joy of His salvation and make him willing to obey.) I wonder if David wrote Psalms 32 and 51 immediately after Nathan left him. Turn there with me as we rejoice with David.
What has David learned through this saga in his life?
  • There is joy for those whose disobedience is forgiven and sin is put out of sight. (verse 1)
  • There is joy for those whose record of guilt the Lord has cleared, for those who live in complete honesty. (verse 2)
  • David describes the misery he went through before he confessed and stopped trying to hide his sins to God. (verses 3-4)
  • David proclaims that he confessed his rebellion to the Lord and was forgiven, with all his guilt removed.(verse 5)
  • Let all the godly pray to God while there is still time, so they don't drown in floodwaters of judgment. (verse 6)
  • God is his hiding place, the preserver from trouble, giver of songs of victory. (verse 7)
  • The LORD says, I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye. (verse 8)
  • Do not be like a senseless horse or mule that needs a bit and bridle to keep it under control. (verse 90
  • Unfailing love surrounds those who trust the LORD. (verse 10)
  • Rejoice in the LORD and be glad, all you who obey Him. (verse 11)
  • Shout for joy, all you whose hearts are pure.  (verse 11) [Resource: New Living Translation]

Such beautiful words from the heart. How can you keep from smiling with David? Is he up dancing for joy? David found out that the joy of the Lord is our strength, as did Nehemiah in 8:10.

Joy is a word in the Hebrew language that means cheerfulness, gladness, in Ps. 51:8,12.
In Ps. 32:11 refers to joy as a shout, proclamation, shrill sound, cry, triumph.

Take time to pray before walking further with me down this road of faith.
I am feeling better already.


David needed his joy restored because he was about to face a very faith-challenging week ahead. When David go home that day, he found out his son, whose mother was Bathsheba, was deadly ill.
What did David do?
  • He begged God to spare the child.
  • He went without food.
  • He lay all night on the bare ground.
  • He refused when his elders of his household pleaded with him to get up and eat with them. (verses 15-17)
  • When David's child died 7 days later, he got up from the ground, washed himself, put on lotions, and changed his clothes.
  • He went to the Tabernacle and worshiped the LORD.
  • After that, he returned to the palace and ate food.
David's advisers were amazed at his actions. They had been afraid to tell David about the death of the child, in fear of what drastic thing he might do, since David would not listen to reason during the illness of the child.

Read David's response in verse 22 with me: I fasted and wept while the child was alive, for I said, "Perhaps the LORD will be gracious to me and let the child live." But why should I fast when he is dead? Can I bring him back again? I will go to him one day, but he cannot return to me.

While the baby was alive, David had hope in the God who could heal him. When that was gone, David knew it was all over. There was no use in interceding for the child after he died. David released the baby to God. David's hope was that he would go to the baby one day. In other words, they would both be in heaven together.

Note that not all sicknesses or deaths are a result of our sins. Only God knows the reasons He has for such and we must trust Him in that department. Why's are sometimes never answered here on earth. Faith trusts in our merciful and loving Father.

Are you down today since your prayers were not answered like you hoped? God did not choose your way, yet He holds the answer that is best. Let Him hold onto you and restore your joy, sweet one. He can help you pick up the pieces and get back on the path of faith and joy. Let it come in time, if need be. God loves you and me. That is certain.


Thursday, March 10, 2016

Crushed and Broken

O. T. #712  "Crushed and Broken"
March 10, 2016
2 Samuel 12-Part 5, Psalm 51


 After David confessed that he had sinned against the LORD, Nathan assured him that the LORD forgives. Nevertheless, because David showed contempt to the LORD, his child would die.

Nathan had a very difficult task of confrontation. What can we learn about his technique of effectiveness?

Charles Swindoll, in his book David, advises us how to equip ourselves before we confront someone: We need to confront in absolute truth, right timing, wise wording, and fearless courage.

Now, take a look at Psalm 51 with me. It is said of this psalm that David wrote it after Nathan confronted him about his sin of adultery with Bathsheba.
What can we learn from David's experience?
  • David asks for mercy from God, who has unfailing love and great compassion. (verse 1)
  • He desires to be washed clean and purified from his guilt and sin. (verse 2)
  • David recognizes his rebellion. (verse 3)
  • He admits that it was against only God that he sinned and did evil in his sight. (verse 4)
  • David admits that God's words are true and His judgment is just. (verse 4)
  • In his brokenness, David asks God: Wash me and I will be whiter than snow. (verse 7)
  • Create in me a clean heart, O God. (verse 10)
  • Restore unto me the joy of Thy salvation; and uphold me with Thy free Spirit. (verse 12)
  • The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and a contrite heart, O God, Thou wilt not despise. (verse 17)
Have we been there, whether it is due to our sin or another's sin?
Is our spirit crushed and broken, as well as in need of healing?
Do any of us need restoration of the joy of Jesus' salvation?


How can we know repentance is genuine?
  • There will be open, unguarded admission, without holding back the truth.
  • There is a desire to make a complete break from sin. Repentance is a complete turning around.
  • The spirit is broken and humble, with grief over what was done.
  • True repentance is a claiming of God's forgiveness and reinstatement. God's grace was available and David was allowed to live on. (Swindoll)
1 John 1:9 says: If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

He restores; He gives light to darkness. Its His breath in our lungs, so we pour out our praise to You, holy God. Great are You Lord!


Confess and repent and turn from the sin.

Trust Jesus' cleansing and forgiveness.

Never give up.

God loves us.

Praise God for His forgiveness and cleansing.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

When Life Shatters in Pieces

O. T. #711  "When Life Shatters in Pieces"
March 9, 2016
2 Samuel 12-Part 5
Then David confessed to Nathan, "I have sinned against the LORD."  2 Samuel 12:13


Words can stab you in the heart and cut it/you up into pieces. A bomb shell of words can be dropped on you and shatter your life. Whether they are the truth or not, intentional or not intentional, they can still be said causing you to drop to your knees, cutting your heart pieces and a life shattered because of another's sins. If it is something you have done, repentance is needful. If it is something another person has done, when your life has shattered into pieces, lift up your head to the One who can put those shattered pieces back together again. Offer your broken, bleeding pieces to Him. Jesus' love and grace can put it back together. Poor David experienced his life shattered into pieces due to his sins.

The prophet Nathan was given a message from God to give to King David. It was a very difficult one to deliver to his friend. He started off with a story about a rich man taking the poor man's one and only lamb to kill and eat with a guest. Then Nathan told David that he was the man. Those words were like an arrow that shot him in the heart.

Nathan continued to speak as God reminded David of all the things He had done for David and given him. Then David was stabbed in the heart with a sword of the truth with a question, "Why have you despised the word of the LORD and done this horrible deed? You have murdered Uriah the Hittite with the sword of the Ammonites and stolen his wife."

Lastly, the bomb was dropped on David as he heard the punishment for his sins, "From this time on, your family will live by the sword because you have despised me by taking Uriah's wife to be your own."

As if all of that were not enough to drop David's mouth open in utter shock as his secret sins were being told aloud, more was to come. David's household would rebel against him; his wives would be given to another man who would go to be with them in public view.

What David did in secret, God would make this all happen to him openly in the sight of all Israel. As silence filled the room, can you picture King David falling off his throne to his knees in repentance? As he looked up into the prophet's eyes, who had told the truth, David said the long awaited words, "I have sinned against the LORD."

Finally, David got it out, what he had been holding in for close to a year. He was without excuse, cover-up, or blame, pride stripped away, admitting his sin was all he could say, for Nathan knew and God knew the truth. It was humbly spoken in love and compassion. David was a broken man with a broken heart.

When we are confronted with the truth of our sins, do we rebel, denying it, or do we fall down before our Lord Jesus and His cross in repentance, admitting it? If God calls us to be the confronter, then do it with love and compassion as Nathan did. Speak the truth in love.


With that admission, restoration began. Nathan replied, "Yes, but the LORD has forgiven you, and you will not die for this sin."

It was not Nathan who could forgive sin, but the LORD. Both men acknowledged that truth. It was a promise of grace-David would not die for his sins.
Friend, God has already provided for the penalty of our sin when Jesus Christ died on the cross. We do not have to pay for our sins. Have you come to the reality that you are a sinner in need of a Savior? I rejoice with you if you have repented. If you have not, I pray you will ask Him to forgive you of your sins and be your Savior, today, right now.

Before Nathan leaves the room, he pronounces the first of the consequences of David's sins-David's child mothered by Bathsheba would die because David had shown contempt for the LORD. The confrontation was over. Nathan left the room and closed the door behind him, leaving David on his knees before the Lord. Silence.


Repent of my sins and failures.

Reach up for God's grace.

When my life shatters into pieces, turn to Jesus for healing.

Keep the faith in Him.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

From This Time On

O. T. #710  "From This Time On"
March 8, 2016
2 Samuel 12-Part 4
From this time on...   2 Samuel 12:10


Why, then, have you despised the word of the LORD and done this horrible deed? For you have murdered Uriah the Hittite and with the sword of the Ammonites and stolen his wife.

Nathan was delivering the message from God to David. Now comes the punishment for David's sin. From this time on:
  • David's family would live by the sword because he despised the word of the LORD by taking Uriah's wife to be his own; (verse 10)
  • Because of what David did, God would cause his household to rebel against him; (verse 11)
  • God would give David's wives to another man before his very eyes; (verse 11)
  • That man would go to bed with them in public view; (verse 11)
  • David did it secretly, but God will make it happen to David openly in the sight of all Israel. (verse 12)
Do we ever despise the Word of God, especially when it camps on our doorstep?
Are we ever ready to hear or experience our reprimand from God?
Does our household suffer because of our wrong ways, attitudes, actions, and sins?
If our secret sins were viewed on a super huge screen, what would been seen? How would we react?


Those promises from God came true for David, from that time on. There was to be a four-fold restitution according to the law (Exodus 22:1).
Life Application Study Bible informs us:
  1. Murder was a constant threat in David's family. (13:26-29; 18:14-15; 1 Kings 2:23-25)
  2. David's household rebelled against him. (15:13)
  3. His wives were given to another in public. (16:20-23)
  4. David's first child by Bathsheba died.(12:18)
All of this happened as the prophet Nathan had predicted:
  • The baby died; Absalom killed Amnon, who had ruined Tamar; Joab killed Absalom; Adonijah was slain by Benaiah. (four-fold)
  • Absalom lead a rebellion against David.
  • Also, Absalom set up a tent on the roof and slept with 10 of his father's concubines there.
  • Adonijah set himself up as king before David's death; his plot was exposed, and David spared his life, but his half brother Solomon later had him executed.
David is confronted with the truth of his sins and what would happen, and then he lived it. I wonder if the words of Nathan rang in his head every time those events happened. For this time on...

The consequences of sin affect not only us but those we know and love. Let us remember that the next time we are tempted to sin.

Can we see the consequences of sin in our own family, with ancestors and descendants? Perhaps it is not the same sins as David, but other sins that had just as serious effect. From this time on, what will our children and grandchild do because of us?

LET IT GO of whatever secret sin is in my life and your life right now.

Monday, March 7, 2016

Facing the Truth

O. T. #709  "Facing the Truth"
March 7, 2016
2 Samuel 12-Part 3
Why, then, have you despised the word of the LORD and done this horrible deed?
 2 Samuel 12:9


It is not an easy thing to be taken to the woodshed. Disciplining our children is not a pleasant task, but needful. It is because we love them that we make them accountable for their actions and words. We teach them the difference between right and wrong. Neither is it an easy thing to accept when God corrects us. The prophet Nathan had a difficult task, but was successful. David experienced the rebuke, facing the truth. God was not about to let His beloved child David get away with sin.
What David did displeased the Lord. He broke several commandments: the tenth, dealing with coveting (Ex. 20:17), the seventh concerning adultery (Ex. 20:14), and the sixth prohibiting murder (Ex. 20:13).

You are the man, David! The prophet Nathan told David a story illustrating his situation of sin.
God's message to David included:
  • God anointed him as king over Israel. This was the highest honor man could have had at that time.
  • God saved, delivered, rescued David from the power of Saul so he might deliver Israel.
  • God gave him his master's house and wives.
  • God gave him the kingdoms of Israel and Judah. 
  • If that had not been enough, God would have given David much more.
First, God focused on all that He had done for David. If it had not been for God, David would not be in the position that he was in, right? He would still be in the fields tending sheep. but God raised up this shepherd to shepherd His people, and he failed to set the example they needed.

David could have had anything his heart desired and yet he betrayed the trust put in him and sinned. (Falwell)

It is always good to stop and acknowledge that all we have and are is from God, not our doing. That changes our pride heart into a humble and thankful heart. God is our provider, El Shaddah.


With that established, God continues into David's personal business (sin).

Why, then, have you despised the word of the LORD and done this horrible deed? For you have murdered Uriah the Hittite with the sword of the Ammonites and stolen his wife. (verse 9)

God knew just the right words to stab David in the heart. What could he say but "Guilty, Lord."
God's word is truth and He always speaks the truth. Sometimes we don't like being confronted with the truth. It can cut our heart out like a two-edged sword. David knows he can't hide anything from God, so there is no use in offering excuses, placing the blame on Bathsheba. David was responsible for David's actions, and so are we.

In Strong's Exhaustive Concordance, despised means to contemn, scorn.
In Webster's Dictionary, despised means to look down on with contempt or aversion; to regard as negligible, worthless, or distasteful; to scorn, disdain.

What a strong accusation! Despised is a strong word. Nathan's message was God's conviction. David despised and regarded god's commandments by breaking them.
Did David's pride and strong will melt away as he heard the truth about him? Did he fall to his knees in repentance? It was not until verse 13 that David confessed. First, he had to listen to the punishment coming. That is next time for us to discuss.

When faced with the truth, we either rebel or repent, I say. We cannot hide anything from God, for He is all-seeing and all-knowing. What we do in secret, in the dark, is seen by God. It is always difficult to face the truth, face up to what we have done wrong, isn't it?

So remember, sweet one, you are loved by God. That is why He takes us to the woodshed to deal with our sin. He knows our sin will only make things worse for us, so we need to confess it.


Prayer time.

Listen to God and repent.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Correction is Difficult

O. T. #708  "Correction is Difficult"
March 4, 2016
2 Samuel 12-Part 2
Then Nathan said to David, "You are that man!"  2 Samuel 12:7


Correction is not pleasant to receive or give, but correction is difficult either way. If we have lived long enough, we have experienced it ourselves, with our children, and with and workers. David experiences it in today's lesson.

There was no one to say, "David, you are in sin." That is until God told the prophet Nathan to go and tell him. That would have been an extremely difficult assignment. He had to stand before the most powerful man in Israel and tell him what he was refusing to admit-the truth.

The Lord must have given Nathan the illustrative story which applied to David's circumstances, for he began his confrontation with it.
What was the story about?
  • It contrasted to men, one rich and one poor.
  • The rich man owned many sheep and cattle.
  • However, the poor man only owned one little lamb he bought.
  • This lamb was raise up with his children, ate from the man's plate and drank from his cup. (verse 2)
  • The poor man cuddled it in his arms like his baby daughter. (verse 3)
  • One day a guest arrived at the home of the rich man, so he needed to kill an animal for their dinner. Instead of killing an animal from his own flock or herd, the rich man took the poor man's lamb, killed it, and prepared it for his guest.
As David intently listened to Nathan, he became furious. Maybe he thought that scenario occurred in Jerusalem. This moved David with compassion for the poor man who lost his lamb.

Are folks so blinded by their pride that they cannot see themselves in Nathan's story? Are they too busy, cold, or heartless to see beyond our own nose to see the needs of others? They take from others what they should not. If these do not apply to you, please do not take offense. It's just that we need to see things as they are, not as they appear. People can have their priorities mixed up, can't they? Lust and temptation win out so many times, tearing apart marriages and families.
Are we treating our own family better or worse than we treat others in the world? They should be treated the best, since they love us the most.


How did David respond to Nathan's story?
  • He said that a man who would do such a thing deserved to die. (verse 5)
  • He said the rich man should repay the poor man with four lambs. (verse 6, NLT)
David sentenced himself with those words! Confrontation is the best solution for a person hiding a secret sin. Although, it takes a loving and caring friend to do it successfully so they admit their sin and not become defensive, resulting in repentance to God.

You are that man David!

Don't you know David's heart sunk to his feet when he heard those words. The truth is, David  stole Uriah's wife and murdered Uriah.
His sense of justice was still alive and well, but he lost the ability to see his on sin. (D. Jeremiah)

In other words, Nathan was saying, "You're the one who said to that stranger called lust, "I'll take someone else's lamb, and I'll satisfy my desires with her." (Swindoll)

According to the Mosaic Law, both adultery (Lev. 20:10) and murder (Lev. 24:17) required punishment by death. In pronouncing this judgment on the rich man in the story, David unwittingly condemned himself to death.  (MacArthur)

What David had done displeased the Lord (11:27). The literal rendering of displeased the LORD is:
"was evil in the eyes of the LORD." (MacArthur)

The Lord's perspective matters the most. It is painful when the Lord takes us to the woodshed. We will see what happens to David as a result of his trip to the woodshed by God. It can be a good lesson for us and others.


Learn from others mistakes.

Listen when I need to be corrected.

Keep a soft heart and repent.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

A Slowly Grinding Wheel

O. T. #707  "A Slowly Grinding Wheel"
March 3, 2016
2 Samuel 12
so the Lord sent Nathan the prophet to tell David...  2 Samuel 12:1


Have you ever seen a water wheel that was used to grind wheat or corn, or gears turning large industrial machines used in past centuries? I have seen a few around our country. These wheels/gears turn slowly and at a steady pace. One would think that speed would be better, but not so. The job is eventually accomplished. David's life is an example.

Ohhh, can we move now? David's plan A and B failed and he devised plan C, which resulted in murder. He took Bathsheba as his wife. Can we close the book on that hideous story? Can we pick up in chapter 12 and move on? Have a battle or Well, months and perhaps a year passed by, some think. This escapade is not over yet. Hang in there with me friends.

The Bible is truthful and trustworthy in all its content. (Falwell)

God could have left out all this bad stuff in David's life, but He didn't. Is its purpose to be a lesson for us to learn, a warning?

Let's think about it. David's secret sin with Bathsheba and then the murdering of her husband was not actually a secret. David's messengers and counselors knew about his adultery; Joab knew about David's order to send Uriah to the front of the battle so he would be killed. And then there was God who was displeased with what David had done. (11:7)

Someone once said, "God's wheels grind slowly, but they grind exceedingly fine."

During this long period of David's cover up and deception, he described his feelings in Psalm32 and 51.

Wiersbe describes David as:
  • weak and sick physically;
  • lost his joy;
  • lost his witness;
  • lost his power;
  • given time to repent by God before his reprimand and judgment.
So many folks pretend all is right with the world when it is not. Do people think they get away with sin when bad things do not result right away in their life?  Paul reminds us in Galatians 6:7 that we reap what we sow.


Well, no one else did any thing about he king's sin but God. In His timing He send Nathan with a very, very difficult message intended to bring David to his knees of repentance. David's life was not filled with delightful nights with his new wife guilt free. His vitality was drained (Ps. 32:3-4).

Swindoll describes David as:
  • David was a miserable husband,
  • an irritable father,
  • a poor leader,
  • a songless composer,
  • living a lie and he couldn't escape the truth;
  • unstable, inferior, and insecure.
God's timing is absolutely incredible. He let the grinding wheels of sin do their full work and then He stepped in. (Swindoll)

Our secret sins are open before God. (McGee)

To be honest, there are times that I think God is so slow in intervening, changing the situation or person, answering my prayers like I think He should.  So by faith I endure, hang in there, continue on as I should. He is still on the throne, in control, a great, loving and merciful God. For reasons known only to Him, He delays it, doing the right thing at the right time. I keep reminding myself that His way is best. Do I hear an amen?

Waiting for a loved one to come to repentance or belief in Jesus' salvation is difficult, I won't deny it. Even trying to make relationships good when the other person is so rebellious-oh the waiting. Take hope, God loves us and always will.


Daily forgive others and not keep a record.

Daily repent of my sins.

Wait on God's timing.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Plan C

O. T. #706  "Plan C"
March 2, 2016
2 Samuel 11-Part 6
So the next morning David wrote a letter to Joab and gave it to Uriah to deliver.
 2 Samuel 11:14 


David's plan A and plan B failed. He could not cover up his sin by getting Uriah to go home to his wife. So David devised plan C:
  • David sent a letter to Joab, his commander of the army, by way of Uriah. Little did he know that he was carrying his death warrant.
  • He deliberately plotted the murder of Uriah, only it was to occur on the battlefront so it looked innocent.
  • Joab's orders from his commander-in-chief was to station Uriah on the front lines where the battle was the fiercest. Then pull back so that he would be killed. (verse 15)
  • So Joab assigned Uriah to a spot close to the city wall where he knew the enemy's strongest men were fighting. (verse 16)
  • When the enemy soldiers came out of the city to fight, Uriah the Hittite was killed along with several other Israelite soldiers. (verse 17)
That was David's plan C, as it was. It is hard to read, that months earlier David was a godly king leading his army to victories. Now he has stooped so low as to plot a murder.

David decided to have the man murdered and then to take his wife. Joab was more than willing to cooperate, since this would give him opportunity later to take advantage of the king. (Wiersbe)

Do we learn from that a small sin of lust, so we think it is small, can blow up into a huge ordeal?

James 1:15 says Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.

How many families have been destroyed (died) because the sin of lust was not stopped, confessed? It was allowed to grow into an affair and adultery. Then the marriage and family was destroyed.

Friends, let us recognize the temptations out there and not take a second look or allow a second thought to stay in our mind.


Bathsheba's husband, Uriah, was killed in the battle. Joab sent a messenger with the news to David. (verses 22-24)

Joab was no fool; he probably put two and two together. The mission was accomplished. Guess who has the information for blackmail later on. One day Joab would rise up and make David regret all of this. Joab had set it up for Uriah to be killed, by the orders of the king of Israel.

David's reply to the message was for Joab to not be discouraged. Fight harder next time and conquer the city. (verse 25) His reaction was not one of grief for Uriah.

David had become callous to his own sin. The only was he could cover up his first sin was to sin again, soon be no longer felt guilty for what he had done.  Deliberate, repeated sinning had dulled David's sensitivity to God's laws and other's rights. Don't become hardened to sin as David did. Confess your wrong actions to God before you forget they are sins. (Life Application Study Bible)

When Bathsheba heard about her husband's death, she mourned for him. When the period of mourning was over, David sent for her and brought her to the palace and she became one of is wives. Then she gave birth to a son. But the Lord was displeased with what David had done. (verse 27)

Our plan C may be displeasing to the Lord. Do we ask Him before we execute it? Are we calloused over so w don't recognize it in our own life?


When there are problems, temptations, sins in my life, stop today and confess them to the Lord.