"A man after God's own heart"

When anybody says, "King David, you call him a man after God's own heart??", they are fulfilling the prediction of God who said about 3000 years ago, "... you have made the enemies of the LORD show utter contempt." (2 Sam 12:14)

This is a clear warning to everybody that:

  1. To fall into the same wicked conduct into which David fell gives rise to blasphemy against God.
  2. To abuse the repentant King David or question the LORD for accepting him is blasphemy, and makes one an enemy of the LORD.

Having said that, what can we learn from the life of David and from God's dealings with him?

One plain fact is from the time that David chose to please himself, rather than God, by taking Bathsheba, he scarcely if ever knew pleasures in this life again. The moral is that we cannot cheat God and be happy. David's sins were very serious and the horrific results in his own life were correspondingly serious. He was forgiven but did not escape discipline. Whenever we are tempted to think sin will make us happy, think about David, and think again.

"Sure blessings"

The next plain fact is that God had made a promise to David (2 Sam 7:11-17) and now more than ever before, this hope was his comfort and his joy. (2 Sam 23:1-5) Had David posted this hope in front of his eyes when he was tempted, victory might have been his, but he had to learn his lesson the hard way. Now the mercy and blessing of God (called in Acts 13:34, the "sure blessings promised to David") was alone the purpose for living and the light of his eyes. By being related to Christ the "sure blessings" of David become our hope also -- let us post them before our eyes and let them be our purpose for living before we have to learn a hard lesson.

David was a man chosen by God (Act 13:22) and God promised him a son who would reign for ever on David's throne and in David's presence (2 Samuel 7:16) The angel Gabriel explained to Mary that this would be fulfilled in her son Jesus, and Paul speaks of the same truth in Acts 13:23. So we may confidently look forward to a time when the Lord Jesus shall possess the throne of his father David and reign over the house of David for ever and there will be no end to his kingdom (Luke 1:32-33) and this in the presence of David himself (2 Sam 7:16).

The training of a shepherd

David began life as a shepherd, learning many lessons of caring leadership. This training stood him in good stead when God made him King of the kingdom of God over Israel (Psalm 78:70-72 and 1 Chronicles 28:5). He learned first hand what it is like to be on the receiving end of bad government though the years where King Saul falsely accused him and hunted him. When at last he came to the throne he ruled wisely and well till in the latter part of his life he fell into several sins of which he sincerely and deeply repented. His working life ended as it had begun in service dedicated to God without distraction by human desires.

The godly people take pleasure in remembering his godliness and the wicked people take pleasure in remembering his wickedness.