Monthly Archives: August 2007

Who Do You Trust?

Indeed, none who wait for you shall be put to shame; they shall be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous. Psalm 25:3

Have you ever contemplated the meaning of this verse? Have you ever thought of ways that you have failed to wait on the Lord? Have you recalled times that you have planned ahead of Him, even treacherously, when things were beginning to look bad? How did those plans work out? Did you end up better or worse than when you started?

In 2 Samuel 14, we see a perfect example of the temptation that we all have to be “wantonly treacherous.” The situation is dire, for Absalom has fled to Geshur and has been gone for three years. David is longing to see his son, tensions are high, and Joab takes matters into his own hands. We read that Joab perceived that David’s heart was longing for Absalom. The author again points out that Joab sent for a woman to “pretend” to be someone that she was not. This is almost a mockery of the way God used Nathan to confront David’s sin in 2 Samuel 11. The Lord sent Nathan, but Joab sent the “wise woman of Tekoa.”

Can you see yourself in this story? Do you think Joab’s plan will work out for the best? Do you think Joab sought the Lord for these actions? How do you handle the difficult times in life when it seems God is absent? We might also remember someone else who began to get nervous when things weren’t going their way. Do you remember the instructions Samuel gave to Saul in 1 Samuel 10:8? “You shall wait seven days until I come to you…” Did Saul wait? He waited seven days, and when Samuel did not immediately come he panicked and offered a burnt offering, only to see Samuel approaching as soon as he finished. Samuel rebuked Saul saying “you have acted foolishly and have not kept the command of the Lord!” Can you relate to this?

It’s easy to sing, but may God give us grace to trust and obey!

A Sermon Every Human Being Needs to Hear!

We are all sinners, and we have all sinned. We don’t always think about our sin, especially the consequences. We don’t always think in terms of sinning against God–we think of sinning against others. We don’t always repent. We deceive ourselves.

I say every human being needs to hear this sermon because every human being can relate to David’s sin. We sin, we lie, we try to cover up.

May God use sermons like this one to magnetically bring us to the Cross!

Legalism from the Music Man

To set up this clip, Harold Hill, a con-artist, is trying to convince the town of River City that playing pool is evil. His goal is to get them to focus on something more wholesome, namely a “boy band” that does not really exist. He takes their money but plans to take off without actually getting the instruments, uniforms etc.

Does this sound familiar? Someone trying to get our focus off the real issues in life and on made up rules and regulations to follow? I’m blogging on it because the “trouble in River City” is made up, fabricated, trumpted up nonsense. I think it is interesting how we like to make rules that the Bible never does. We disregard the real “trouble” that we’re in and focus on wholesome moralism.

Enjoy, and by the way–If you ever hear a sermon like this at your church, its time to change churches…Enjoy!

Where Do You Turn When You Sin?

Where do you turn when you sin? I’d be willing to bet that some unbelievers (if not most) have the feeling that Christians are people who a) don’t sin or b) pretend not to sin. So, the Christian message is that we should all stop sinning…and then we’d be more attractive to God, right? Christians, where do you turn when you sin?

Consider chapters 11 and 12 of 2 Samuel. As you’ll see, David achieves the perfect formula for temptation: he’s not where he’s supposed to be, as kings were to go out to battle in the spring (11:1). He stayed home. He’s also apparently spending a lot of time doing nothing: “when evening came he rose from his bed (11:2).” David’s sin that followed was brazen and reviling with terrible and far reaching consequences.

David’s sin with Bathsheba and his attempt to cover himself does not seem that far off from our every day life does it? We all sin and we never like to be caught. So, where do you go? Or, who comes to you? David had a Nathan. Nathan came to David and confronted him in his sin. Do you have a Nathan? Someone who will love you enough to tell you the truth? Someone who will not just let you continue down the pathway of destruction?

The place where this sort of love takes places is the local church. Are you invested in such a way at your church that people know you? Would they even recognize if you did not show up for a week, month, or a year(!)? David was God’s anointed King of Israel, and he was not above accountability. Are you? How do you respond when you are confronted? Do you respond with David and Psalm 51, or are you defensive and blaming?

May we all turn to the One who’s yoke is easy and who’s burden is light!

The Gospel in 2 Samuel

One of the blessings of preaching through books of the Bible (including the Old Testament!) is that we can see the beauty of the gospel reflected from many different angles. In 2 Samuel 9-10, we see David’s gracious dealings with Mephibosheth, Jonathan’s crippled son. Mephibosheth was clearly aware that he was not deserving of David’s mercy. In fact, he comes before him as a “dead dog,” prostrated on the ground (9:8). However, David honors the covenant made between himself and Jonathan that the Lord would be between them and their descendents forever. Not only was Mephibosheth reconciled to David, but was invited to sit at his table!

I hope you can see a picture of the gospel in these verses. How undeserving are we of God’s grace and mercy? We have once been God’s enemy, part of the family of the devil. Yet God honors a promise that he has made and kept in blessing the “seed” of Abraham. We benefit from God’s commitment to keep his promises and to uphold his glory! Not only have we been reconciled, but we have been invited to have an intimate relationship with this mighty God. What a glorious gospel! Do you trust this gracious God? Are you living a “strong and courageous” life because you know that the battle belongs to the Lord?

Click Here to listen to Jim’s sermon!

Piper’s Thoughts on the Bridge Collapse

Click here to read John Piper’s reflections on the collapse of the I 35W bridge in Minneapolis.

(HT: Desiring God)