When last we saw you, we were talking about King David and, shall we say, his past that could have possibly put him in various cities on the most wanted posters in local post offices and Walmart bathrooms. More of that little story continues here:
Psalm 129:23 & 24 (KJV)–23 Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: 24 And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.
(NIV)–23 Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. 24 See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.
When I found a sermon an Episcopal priest in Maryland that gave about the story of David and Mephibosheth from a very unique angle, I began to see a little more insight on why even at those times when David might act (as myself and the rest of us can tend to do at times) as a despicable rascal the very God of the Universe still decided to regard such favor on him.
Before I delve in depth into that particular story, there’s an overall concept I wish to establish first–in a place called Numbers 30:1 & 2 in the New International Version: “…30 [a]Moses said to the heads of the tribes of Israel: “This is what the Lord commands: 2 When a man makes a vow to the Lord or takes an oath to obligate himself by a pledge, he must not break his word but must do everything he said…”
In case you’ve never read this chapter before, it’s when God tells Moses and the children of Israel what they might need to specifically do concerning vows and oaths they may make to both themselves and also to others around them. In the commentary on these two verses in the Jewish Tanakh, it tells us this: “…A person is given the power to invoke a “neder”–i.e., a vow or oath, thereby
placing on himself [herself] or others, or upon objects of his [her] choice, a status equivalent to a commandment of the Torah…The second topic of this passage is “shevuah”, “an oath”, one may either prohibit oneself or require oneself to perform an act.”
David might have had his moments in his life where he acted like the total fool and rascal–but when it was all said and done, here was our God’s overall verdict on this particular king of Israel:
1 Kings 2:10-12 (The Message): 10-12 Then David joined his ancestors. He was buried in the City of David. David ruled Israel for forty years—seven years in Hebron and another thirty-three in Jerusalem. Solomon took over on the throne of his father David; he had a firm grip on the kingdom.
How did David make his own closing arguments before the Lord that assured David’s passing the kingship of Israel to Solomon? I submit that we should go back to Mephibosheth to see one of the ways David presented his compelling case before Him. That Maryland Episcopal priest I heard online asserts that one way David tried to make things right with both the family and also the entire house of his ex-father-in-law, King Saul, was by making a lame Mephibosheth the equivalent of one of his own sons as a part of his obligation he had made years ago with his best friend Jonathan (who, FYI, ironically was the son of the very one seeking to take David’s life). I could go into other examples similar to this–but time and space right now don’t permit me to do so.
FYI for you New Testament fans–-there’s (believe it or not) an appropriate NT application to all of this as well. We’ll go into that, campers (sadly…) next week! Until next time (as He allows, of course), see ya at the CROSSroads–
CoyRH at the Crossroads