Pastor Dave's Thoughts. . .
Read 2 Samuel 12 today
In this chapter we read of Nathan confronting David about his sin. How do we respond when we are confronted by our sin? Do we deny it? Claim someone else made us do it? Seek to justify ourselves?
David owned it. He accepted his responsibility for what he did and the consequences that impacted him and other people.
2 Samuel 12:7-9, 13-14 NLT
Then Nathan said to David, "You are that man! The Lord, the God of Israel, says: I anointed you king of Israel and saved you from the power of Saul.  I gave you your master's house and his wives and the kingdoms of Israel and Judah. And if that had not been enough, I would have given you much, much more.  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.
 Then David confessed to Nathan, "I have sinned against the Lord." Nathan replied, "Yes, but the Lord has forgiven you, and you won't die for this sin.  Nevertheless, because you have shown utter contempt for the Lord by doing this, your child will die."
1 John 1:8-9 NLT
If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth.  But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.Read 2 Samuel 10 today.
This chapter includes the battle between Israel and the Ammonites. What began as simple distrust and misunderstanding escalated into armed conflict. The same thing can easily happen with us. Do we give people the benefit of the doubt, or do we assume their motives are impure? Think of the people with which you have had conflict throughout your life. Have any of those conflicts been blown out of proportion by your assumptions and subsequent actions? Let us assume the best of, and hope for the best for, those we meet today.
2 Samuel 10:4-6 NLT
So Hanun seized David's ambassadors and shaved off half of each man's beard, cut off their robes at the buttocks, and sent them back to David in shame.  When David heard what had happened, he sent messengers to tell the men, "Stay at Jericho until your beards grow out, and then come back." For they felt deep shame because of their appearance.  When the people of Ammon realized how seriously they had angered David, they sent and hired 20,000 Aramean foot soldiers from the lands of Beth-rehob and Zobah, 1,000 from the king of Maacah, and 12,000 from the land of Tob.Read 2 Samuel 9 today.
In contrast to the previous chapter, which demonstrated David's military accomplishments, this chapter relates his kindness to Jonathan's son Mephibosheth because of the covenant relationship between David and Jonathan. Mephibosheth had done nothing to deserve David's positive treatment of him. It was solely David's choice. When he looked at Mephibosheth, he saw Jonathan. He blessed Mephibosheth for Jonathan's sake.
The same is true of God's treatment of us. We have done nothing to deserve any good thing from God. We have been disobedient and stubborn throughout our lives. We ignore God and His blessings, and we blame God for our aches and pains. Yet, because of Jesus Christ, God treats us with continuing love. When He looks upon us, He sees Christ. And He blesses us for Christ's sake.
2 Samuel 9:7 NLT
"Don't be afraid!" David said. "I intend to show kindness to you because of my promise to your father, Jonathan. I will give you all the property that once belonged to your grandfather Saul, and you will eat here with me at the king's table!"Read 2 Samuel 8 today.
This is a chapter that relates many of David's military conquests. David defeated many of Israel's longtime enemies. Our modern sensibilities struggle with the reality that the primary outcome of war is that people die. Advances in technology have not changed our basic nature. What we need is the change of heart that comes from a walk with Christ.
“Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress” James 1:26
Father God, we know that there are so many people in our world that are in distress. Many times the distress is due to the lack of food. Please bless the FMSC organization as they reach the distressed and hungry in Ghana with the food that we help pack and finance here at Asbury UMC. Amen.