A Man After Godís Own Heart

 

David was said to be a man after Godís own heart. Now that, it seems to me, is a desirable thing to be. We know David had problems in his life. He found himself on the wrong side of a situation more than once. Sherry has given us a lot of insight into David. David the young man, David the shepherd, David the giant slayer, David the friend of Jonathan, David the armor bearer for King Saul, David the King in waiting, David the King, David the conqueror, David the adulterer, David the murderer, David the repentant sinner. And yet scripture says David was also a man after Godís own heart!

*†† (1 Sam 13:14 NIV)But now your kingdom will not endure; the LORD has sought out a man after his own heart and appointed him leader of his people, because you have not kept the Lord's command."

*†† (Acts 13:22 NIV)After removing Saul, he made David their king. He testified concerning him: 'I have found David son of Jesse a man after my own heart; he will do everything I want him to do.'

*†† (1 Ki 15:1-5 NIV)In the eighteenth year of the reign of Jeroboam son of Nebat, Abijah became king of Judah, {2} and he reigned in Jerusalem three years. His mother's name was Maacah daughter of Abishalom. {3} He committed all the sins his father had done before him; his heart was not fully devoted to the LORD his God, as the heart of David his forefather had been. {4} Nevertheless, for David's sake the LORD his God gave him a lamp in Jerusalem by raising up a son to succeed him and by making Jerusalem strong. {5} For David had done what was right in the eyes of the LORD and had not failed to keep any of the Lord's commands all the days of his life--except in the case of Uriah the Hittite.

 

But what was it about David that earned him the accolade, a man after Godís own heart? Perhaps these scriptures can help.

*†† (Psa 16:1-2 NIV)A miktam of David. Keep me safe, O God, for in you I take refuge. {2} I said to the LORD, "You are my Lord; apart from you I have no good thing."

*†† (Psa 4:1-5 NIV)For the director of music. With stringed instruments. A psalm of David. Answer me when I call to you, O my righteous God. Give me relief from my distress; be merciful to me and hear my prayer. {2} How long, O men, will you turn my glory into shame ? How long will you love delusions and seek false gods ? Selah {3} Know that the LORD has set apart the godly for himself; the LORD will hear when I call to him. {4} In your anger do not sin; when you are on your beds, search your hearts and be silent. Selah {5} Offer right sacrifices and trust in the LORD.

David was a man, a sinful man, he was like many of us, and he was like Paul. He wanted to do right but sometimes found himself doing wrong.

*†† (Rom 7:18-25 NIV)I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. {19} For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do--this I keep on doing. {20} Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it. {21} So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. {22} For in my inner being I delight in God's law; {23} but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. {24} What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? {25} Thanks be to God--through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God's law, but in the sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.

Was David really all that different from other men? Was Paul really all that different from other men? I think that essentially they were very much like you and like me and like all mankind. So what made David a man after Godís own heart? And is it possible that other men were or can be men after Godís own heart? The answer is yes. Jesus was a man after Godís own heart and perhaps Peter or James, or perhaps anyone that shares a few of the attributes of David. But those attributes have to be fundamental and inbred. They cannot be fleeting or superficial.

*†† (Jer 3:14-15 NIV)"Return, faithless people," declares the LORD, "for I am your husband. I will choose you--one from a town and two from a clan--and bring you to Zion. {15} Then I will give you shepherds after my own heart, who will lead you with knowledge and understanding.

 

The message I get from David and the scriptures is that I too can be a man after Godís own heart. You too can be a person after Godís own heart.

*†† (Col 3:23-24 NIV)Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, {24} since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.

 

Did you get that part that said, ďWith all your heartĒ? I think that is very important. God never does anythingÖ Half-heartedly! David was a passionate man. He poured himself into whatever was set before him. He was never half-hearted. He was not a double-minded man. He set a course and went boldly on his way. But, when he found he was headed in the wrong direction he was open to correction. And like Paul, he wanted to do right but sometimes found that it eluded him. Arenít we pretty much like that? Donít you want to do right? Donít you want to half a heart like Godís? Are you willing to do whatever it takes? Are you teachable? Can you admit your faults? Can you get up and continue each time you fail? Can you try to love as God loves? For God so loved the worldÖ Well you know what Iím saying. We need to fervently desire to have such a heart! Let me end with just a few thoughts about David

 

David:

*†† Had humility and appreciation

*†† Accepted correction

*†† Loved God and showed reverence

*†† Loved people, was a faithful friend and respected Godís anointed

*†† Knew God was good and cared for him

*†† Cared about his duties

*†† Was repentant when he discovered his errors

*†† Never gave up in his belief in God

*†† Wrote songs about God and his relationship to Him

*†† Didnít care what others thought as much as he cared about what God thought!

*†† Danced before the Lord.