Wednesday, September 14, 2016

King David - A Blueprint for Salvation

In studying the book of 2 Samuel, I have found myself stuck in chapters 11 and specifically 12. However, I do not see this as being a bad thing because I am convinced that there was something that the Lord wanted me to see and today I get to share that with you as well.  Rather than do a normal blog entry, I am going to provide some notes in the form of commentary.  I hope that it all still makes sense as I attempt to lay out some logical flow. 

So, to give some background the main focus of this study will be on 2 Samuel 11-12 and Psalm 51 along with other supporting scriptures. In the first part, we will look at the account of King David and how he laid with Bathsheba, got her pregnant, and plotted to have her husband killed.  The second part will focus on the displeasure of Yahweh and the punishment. Lastly, we’ll take a look at David’s prayer and how the Lord responds to his prayer.

The Sins

  1. He took a wife that wasn’t his to take; one from another man.

    2 Sam 11:1-5,26-27 - (1) It happened in the spring of the year, at the time when kings go out to battle, that David sent Joab and his servants with him, and all Israel; and they destroyed the people of Ammon and besieged Rabbah. But David remained at Jerusalem. (2) Then it happened one evening that David arose from his bed and walked on the roof of the king’s house. And from the roof he saw a woman bathing, and the woman was very beautiful to behold. (3) So David sent and inquired about the woman. And someone said, “Is this not Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?” (4) Then David sent messengers, and took her; and she came to him, and he lay with her, for she was cleansed from her impurity; and she returned to her house. (5) And the woman conceived; so she sent and told David, and said, “I am with child”...(26) When the wife of Uriah heard that Uriah her husband was dead, she mourned for her husband. (27) And when her mourning was over, David sent and brought her to his house, and she became his wife and bore him a son. But the thing that David had done displeased the Lord.

    Commentary:  It is ok to for a widow woman to remarry, but in the manner that Uriah’s death occurred, this was not approved via the law.  In Romans 7:1-3 it says: “(1) Or do you not know, brethren (for I speak to those who know the law), that the law has dominion over a man as long as he lives? (2) For the woman who has a husband is bound by the law to her husband as long as he lives. But if the husband dies, she is released from the law of her husband. (3) So then if, while her husband lives, she marries another man, she will be called an adulteress; but if her husband dies, she is free from that law, so that she is no adulteress, though she has married another man.”
  2. David broke the law making him an adulterer as well as causing Bathsheba to become an adulteress.

    Exodus 20:14 - You shall not commit adultery.

    Leviticus 20:10 - ‘The man who commits adultery with another man’s wife, he who commits adultery with his neighbor’s wife, the adulterer and the adulteress, shall surely be put to death.

    Deuteronomy 22:22-24 -  (22) “If a man is found lying with a woman married to a husband, then both of them shall die—the man that lay with the woman, and the woman; so you shall put away the evil from Israel. (23) “If a young woman who is a virgin is betrothed to a husband, and a man finds her in the city and lies with her, (24) then you shall bring them both out to the gate of that city, and you shall stone them to death with stones, the young woman because she did not cry out in the city, and the man because he humbled his neighbor’s wife; so you shall put away the evil from among you.
  3. David committed premeditated murder

    2 Samuel 11:14-17  - (14) In the morning it happened that David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it by the hand of Uriah. (15) And he wrote in the letter, saying, “Set Uriah in the forefront of the hottest battle, and retreat from him, that he may be struck down and die.” (16) So it was, while Joab besieged the city, that he assigned Uriah to a place where he knew there were valiant men. (17) Then the men of the city came out and fought with Joab. And some of the people of the servants of David fell; and Uriah the Hittite died also.

    Commentary: The law that forbid premeditated murder can be found in Exodus 21:14 where it states, “But if a man acts with premeditation against his neighbor, to kill him by treachery, you shall take him from My altar, that he may die.”

The Conviction and Punishment

Commentary:  One thing to note in this section, we specifically talk about Yahweh’s conviction which is odd under the old Mosaic Law.  Breaking the law while under the law was a cause for condemnation instead of conviction (see Romans 8:1-4 for no condemnation).

Condemnation (noun) - the act of expressing strong disapproval of; the act of pronouncing judgement against; the act of sentencing
Conviction (noun) - the state of being found or proven guilty


  1. David, through his own judgement, found himself guilty.

    Commentary: Yahweh sent Nathan the prophet after he broke the law.  In this, Nathan had a direct order to tell a parable that would not only arouse David’s anger, but also made him want to fulfill the punishment for the law that was broken.

    2 Samuel 12:1-6  - (1) Then the Lord sent Nathan to David. And he came to him, and said to him: “There were two men in one city, one rich and the other poor. (2) The rich man had exceedingly many flocks and herds. (3) But the poor man had nothing, except one little ewe lamb which he had bought and nourished; and it grew up together with him and with his children. It ate of his own food and drank from his own cup and lay in his bosom; and it was like a daughter to him. (4) And a traveler came to the rich man, who refused to take from his own flock and from his own herd to prepare one for the wayfaring man who had come to him; but he took the poor man’s lamb and prepared it for the man who had come to him.” (5) So David’s anger was greatly aroused against the man, and he said to Nathan, “As the Lord lives, the man who has done this shall surely die! (6) And he shall restore fourfold for the lamb, because he did this thing and because he had no pity.”
  2. David is convicted by the Lord.

    2 Samuel 12:7-15  - (7) Then Nathan said to David, “You are the man! Thus says the Lord God of Israel: ‘I anointed you king over Israel, and I delivered you from the hand of Saul. (8) I gave you your master’s house and your master’s wives into your keeping, and gave you the house of Israel and Judah. And if that had been too little, I also would have given you much more! (9) Why have you despised the commandment of the Lord, to do evil in His sight? You have killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword; you have taken his wife to be your wife, and have killed him with the sword of the people of Ammon. (10) Now therefore, the sword shall never depart from your house, because you have despised Me, and have taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your wife.’ (11) Thus says the Lord: ‘Behold, I will raise up adversity against you from your own house; and I will take your wives before your eyes and give them to your neighbor, and he shall lie with your wives in the sight of this sun. (12) For you did it secretly, but I will do this thing before all Israel, before the sun.’” (13) So David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the Lord.” And Nathan said to David, “The Lord also has put away your sin; you shall not die. (14) However, because by this deed you have given great occasion to the enemies of the Lord to blaspheme, the child also who is born to you shall surely die.” (15) Then Nathan departed to his house. And the Lord struck the child that Uriah’s wife bore to David, and it became ill.

    Commentary:  Notice in verse 13, after David verbally admits to sinning against the Lord, Nathan immediately says to David, “The Lord also has put away your sin; you shall not die.”  Remember, the punishment for adultery and premeditated murder was death.  This is very important because we see an instance of conviction instead of condemnation.  The sentence was death, instead David was given grace and mercy to live.  However, his sin was not without consequence.
  3. The death of David’s first son by Bathsheba

    2 Samuel 12:16-19 - (16) David therefore pleaded with God for the child, and David fasted and went in and lay all night on the ground. (17) So the elders of his house arose and went to him, to raise him up from the ground. But he would not, nor did he eat food with them. (18) Then on the seventh day it came to pass that the child died. And the servants of David were afraid to tell him that the child was dead. For they said, “Indeed, while the child was alive, we spoke to him, and he would not heed our voice. How can we tell him that the child is dead? He may do some harm!”  (19) When David saw that his servants were whispering, David perceived that the child was dead. Therefore David said to his servants, “Is the child dead?” And they said, “He is dead.”

    Commentary:  David saw Yahweh’s punishment come to fruition. Despite being told his son would die, he continued to pray that the Lord would not harm his child,  He fasted and laid on the ground all night in hopes that the Lord would reverse his punishment, but it would not be so.  
  4. The maturity to know when to move on.

    Commentary:  This is slightly off topic, but in the next few verses we find another life lesson which we all can learn.  Many can attest that prayer is a powerful thing and we all should be doing it, but sometimes we continue praying for an answer or solution where one has already been provided. David was well aware of the Lord's decision, and he recognized it was time to move on. We too need to recognize the same things and know when to move on.

    2 Samuel 12:20-23 - (20) So David arose from the ground, washed and anointed himself, and changed his clothes; and he went into the house of the Lord and worshiped. Then he went to his own house; and when he requested, they set food before him, and he ate. (21) Then his servants said to him, “What is this that you have done? You fasted and wept for the child while he was alive, but when the child died, you arose and ate food.” (22) And he said, “While the child was alive, I fasted and wept; for I said, ‘Who can tell whether the Lord[a] will be gracious to me, that the child may live?’ (23) But now he is dead; why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I shall go to him, but he shall not return to me.”

Repentance & Forgiveness

  1. David Repents

    Commentary: One thing that we as believers have been blessed to have is the book of Psalms.  The majority of the psalms within it have been accredited to King David and as such we have the pleasure of knowing how David responded to his convictions.  In Psalm 51, we are blessed to observe just how he went before the Lord.  This Psalm was written when Nathan the prophet came to David to give him a message from Yahweh. Although, I am talking about repentance and forgiveness now, Psalm 51 actually occurs during the time around Nathan’s visit and before the birth and death of his first son by Bathsheba.
    1. David first pleads for Mercy

      Psalm 51:1-2  - (1) Have mercy upon me, O God,
      According to Your lovingkindness;
      According to the multitude of Your tender mercies,
      Blot out my transgressions.
      (2) Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,
      And cleanse me from my sin.
    2. David acknowledges his Transgressions

      Psalm 51:3-4 - (3) For I acknowledge my transgressions,
      And my sin is always before me.
      (4) Against You, You only, have I sinned,
      And done this evil in Your sight—
      That You may be found just when You speak,
      And blameless when You judge.

      Commentary:  This also coincides with 2 Samuel 12:13 where David says to Nathan, “I have sinned against the Lord.”
    3. David wishes to be cleansed of his sins

      Psalm 51:7-12 - (7) Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
      Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
      (8) Make me hear joy and gladness,
      That the bones You have broken may rejoice.
      (9) Hide Your face from my sins,
      And blot out all my iniquities.
      (10) Create in me a clean heart, O God,
      And renew a steadfast spirit within me.
      (11) Do not cast me away from Your presence,
      And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.
      (12) Restore to me the joy of Your salvation,
      And uphold me by Your generous Spirit.
    4. David asks Yahweh for forgiveness

      Psalm 51:14 - Deliver me from the guilt of bloodshed, O God,
      The God of my salvation,
    5. David acknowledges what the Lord desires from us.

      Psalm 51:16-17 - (16) For You do not desire sacrifice, or else I would give it;
      You do not delight in burnt offering.
      (17) The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit,
      A broken and a contrite heart—
      These, O God, You will not despise.

      Commentary:  The recognition by David to understand what Yahweh desires from us is really important.  It is a foreshadowing of what He desires from us after Christ fulfills the law.  David understands that the Lord does not desire sacrifice, but what He really wants is a changed heart.  In Hebrews 10, we see that sacrifices under the law could not cleanse us from our sins.  We needed Yeshua to do this for us.

      Hebrews 10:1-4 - (1) For the law, having a shadow of the good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with these same sacrifices, which they offer continually year by year, make those who approach perfect. (2) For then would they not have ceased to be offered? For the worshipers, once purified, would have had no more consciousness of sins. (3) But in those sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year. (4) For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins.

  2. The Lord Forgives David

    Commentary:  We have seen David sin, be convicted of his sins, and repent.  Everything that David did should have resulted in death, but this surprisingly does not happen.  Recall, that in 2 Samuel 12:13, Nathan informs him that “The Lord also has put away your sin; you shall not die…”  Again, one could wonder why this happened, but if you study David, you’ll understand that he really had a relationship with Yahweh. He went to Him in prayer for everything.  He was truly a man after God’s own heart.  We see again a foreshadowing of things to come with the gift of Christ.

    Romans 6:23 - For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

  3. Solomon is Born

    Commentary:  At this point we have to realize a couple of things:
    1. David has been forgiven.
    2. Bathsheba has also been forgiven because she was not put to death either.
    3. Since both have been forgiven and Bathsheba has been widowed, the normal laws for marriage would apply.
    4. Therefore he could “legally” have Bathsheba.
This makes the birth of Solomon, the second son of David and Bathsheba, very special.  The first son was born out of sinful actions, which is ironic because after the fall of Adam, all men are born into sin.  However, Solomon was not born due to sinful actions, but rather from the fruit of David’s repentance, the turning away from his sins, and the grace and mercy of Yahweh.

2 Samuel 12:24-25 - (24) Then David comforted Bathsheba his wife, and went in to her and lay with her. So she bore a son, and he called his name Solomon. Now the Lord loved him, (25) and He sent word by the hand of Nathan the prophet: So he called his name Jedidiah, because of the Lord.

Commentary: One last thing to note, is the name that the Lord gave to Solomon.  The name Jedidiah is only mentioned once throughout the entire bible in reference to Solomon. Although it is not mentioned any more, it is worth noting that the Lord sent a message by giving him this name.  That message was that He loved Solomon and approved of David’s prayer and repentance.

Conclusion

Through David’s sin, Yahweh gives us a glimpse of how Christ would redeem us. We see sin, the repentance of sin, and we see the forgiveness of sin. It almost seems out of place because the true wages of some sins at David’s time was death.  Remember, burnt offerings did not cleanse the people under the Mosaic Law.  It was only a temporary solution until the coming of Yeshua because one can only be cleansed through the blood of Christ!

Salvation is the deliverance from sin and the only way for us to do that today is to confess Christ. We must repent of our sins and believe in our heart that Christ is Lord and Savior.  In Peter’s sermon on the Mount, he tells us this:

Acts 2:36-39 - (36) “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.”  (37) Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?”  (38) Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. (39) For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call.”

David deserved death under the law, but he did not receive it. We deserve death for our sins, but those in Christ will not receive it either. You see, the Old and New Testaments tie together, much more than most imagine. The Old Testament isn’t just a book to be shelved because we live under a new covenant. It too should be used for instruction, teaching, and to gain a better understanding of Yahweh, our Father. We have all 66 books for a reason, so we might as well put them all to the use for which He intended.


Be blessed everyone.


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Friday, September 9, 2016

Please Excuse the Mess

All, I am doing a template upgrade to the sight.  Please excuse the mess.  I hope that I don't mess up the site in the process, but if I do, just know that I will eventually get it working again! 

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Friday, July 15, 2016

The Word, Christ, & Swords

A Sword
Image Courtesy of  FreeImages.com/Brian Hoskins
To someone who reads this title, you may be wondering what these three words have in common.  The cool thing this that the Bible weaves all three together quite nicely.  Although, they are described separately in different chapters throughout, once you start to look at the Bible in it's entirety, the relationships begin to make a lot of sense.  With that being said, the most fitting and proper place to start is at the beginning.  In Genesis 1:26, it says,

Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness;...

I want to draw your attention to the word “Us” in this passage.  Ask yourself:  “Who is the "Us" being referred in this verse?” If we understand that there is Yahweh (God), Yeshua (the Son, Christ), and the Holy Spirit then it starts to makes sense who makes up the "Us". If you have had the opportunity to listen to at least one church sermon, I am sure at some point you've heard a preacher speak on the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.  Again, those three entities make up the “Us”!  Now that we have this established, let’s move forward.   


Christ as the Word


In the book of John, it talks about the Word becoming flesh, but what does this really mean?  Let’s look at John 1:1-5 to see:  

John 1:1-5 (1) In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. (2) He was in the beginning with God. (3) All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. (4) In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. (5) And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.

From John, we see that the Word was with God in the beginning.  That “Word” being referenced was Yahweh's Word!  If you read John 1:6-13, you will see the lead-up of the arrival of Christ, but let's skip down a few more verses to read more about this Word.

John 1:14-16 (14) And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth. (15) John bore witness of Him and cried out, saying, “This was He of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me is preferred before me, for He was before me.’” (16) And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace.

Yahweh's Word in the flesh is Yeshua the Christ!  I hope this is making sense because it is easy to gloss over and miss, yet it is important to understand. I know that I did not fully understand this for a while because I was use to being spoon-fed instead of digging into the Bible for myself.  I never want to pretend that I am perfect and have it all together, but as we grow in knowledge we are responsible for sharing with fellow brothers and sisters in Christ.


Christ as a Sword


Now, we have addressed a couple of things.  We have laid the groundwork that Yeshua was present with the Lord in the beginning.  In addition, we have established that Yahweh’s Word became flesh which was Christ.  Now, given all of this, I suppose at this point you are wondering what a sword has to do with any of this.  I mean Christ is peaceful right?  After all, when Peter sliced off one of the guard’s ears, Yeshua said, “Put your sword into the sheath. Shall I not drink the cup which My Father has given Me?” (see John 18:10-11).  Taking verses 10 and 11 out of context, one might believe that Christ was passive and meek. However, if you understand the part about drinking “the cup which My Father has given Me” it helps you see the reasoning for scolding Peter.  Yeshua was saying that Yahweh had a plan and that plan was to go to the cross.  So, Peter could not get in the way or cause resistance for what the guards had come to do.  The plan must be fulfilled.  

However, the question still remains.  Was Christ so peaceful that He was against the usage of swords?   The answer is a resounding “No”!  In one instance, He specifically instructed the disciples to acquire swords as He sent them out.  

Luke 22:35-38 (35) And He said to them, “When I sent you without money bag, knapsack, and sandals, did you lack anything?” So they said, “Nothing.” (36) Then He said to them, “But now, he who has a money bag, let him take it, and likewise a knapsack; and he who has no sword, let him sell his garment and buy one. (37) For I say to you that this which is written must still be accomplished in Me: ‘And He was numbered with the transgressors.’ For the things concerning Me have an end.” (38) So they said, “Lord, look, here are two swords.” And He said to them, “It is enough.”

Which one is it?  Is the Messiah quiet and peaceful or a sword wielding teacher?  Physically and from the descriptions we have of Him, Christ may appear to be peaceful, however spiritually-speaking, He is not so docile.  The things He did and said are written down for us to learn and grow, however, Yeshua was "sharp".  He arrived in the flesh and His acts were like a two-edged sword!  He said things that upset the apple cart during His time and it brought division to those who did not have ears to hear; to which this still happens today.  

"For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart" (Hebrews 4:12).

We have to agree and understand that there are precepts taught by Yeshua that are hard for people to comprehend.  An example of this is when He told a grieving family member to let the dead bury the dead (see Luke 9:60).  I mean come on now!  Where is the sympathy here? Reactions like these "cut" and may hurt someone who has recently lost a loved one, but it also takes a level of spiritual maturity to understand the purposes of preaching the Kingdom of God, despite the circumstance.  Another example is having the gumption to tell your own mother and brothers "whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother" (see Matthew 12:46-50).  I mean if you heard a sibling or child say this to you, you may think of yourself as chopped liver.  Again, it can hurt if you don’t understand His context.  Those things cut to the core and may cause emotional destruction and injury, but then again our purpose is to serve the will of Yahweh - not our own.  The faster we learn our purpose and His will,  the less severe the Word cuts us.

So, in the beginning we started with Yahweh and the Word.  Now, we get to end with the Word as flesh (Yeshua) carrying a two-edged sword in his mouth.  In Revelations, where Christ has come to John in a vision while on the island of Patmos, it is written:

Revelations 1:9-16 (9) I, John, both your brother and companion in the tribulation and kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was on the island that is called Patmos for the word of God and for the testimony of Jesus Christ. (10) I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s Day, and I heard behind me a loud voice, as of a trumpet, (11) saying, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last,” and, “What you see, write in a book and send it to the seven churches which are in Asia: to Ephesus, to Smyrna, to Pergamos, to Thyatira, to Sardis, to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea.” (12) Then I turned to see the voice that spoke with me. And having turned I saw seven golden lampstands, (13) and in the midst of the seven lampstands One like the Son of Man, clothed with a garment down to the feet and girded about the chest with a golden band. (14) His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and His eyes like a flame of fire; (15) His feet were like fine brass, as if refined in a furnace, and His voice as the sound of many waters; (16) He had in His right hand seven stars, out of His mouth went a sharp two-edged sword, and His countenance was like the sun shining in its strength.

A sword is a weapon that can be used for cutting and slicing.  A two-edged sword can be used for cutting on both edges which increases its capability and impact.  Spiritually, this type of sword is needed, especially in a time where the world has turned its back on God, the very one who created it.  There will come a time when there will no longer be an opportunity to choose Christ.  When this happens, the wrath of Yeshua will be felt and that two-edged sword will exact destruction.  Until then, always remember that while Christ may not physically swing a sword, He is like one, cutting to the heart of man and taking away anything that is not a reflection of Him and His Father.  

Be Blessed,

Antoine E. Hall



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