What is your relationship with God like?
- Do you know of any Christians who were once on-fire for God, but today are spiritually cold?
- Do you know of any believers who were once zealous and enthusiastic in serving the Lord, but are now lukewarm, indifferent, or apathetic spiritually?
- Or, do you know of any people who were once being trained in full-time ministry and evangelizing the lost, but today couldn’t care less about the Great Commission of making disciples of all the nations, seeking and saving the lost, or building up believers into Christlikeness?
- Do you know of any Christians whose goal was to win the world for Christ, but today are only giving some token service to Him?
- What do you think happened to them? Why are they where they are at?
- And how about you? Where do you think you’ll be at spiritually and ministry-wise 2 or 5 or 10 years from now? Like one of them?
- Or, will you, by the grace of God, be a spiritually-hot finisher, building up other Christians spiritually and evangelizing the lost till the day you die?
If you want to be a fruitful, spiritual finisher, then you need to have a consistently close relationship with God. But how can we experience such a personal, life-long relationship with the Almighty?
Let’s learn from someone who had one.
In 1 Sam. 13:14, it states, “The Lord sought out for Himself a man after His own heart, and the Lord has appointed him as ruler over His people…” Then, in Acts 13:22, God says, “I have found David, the son of Jesse, a man after My heart…” Could God say this about you? Are you the kind of person God really likes (not just loves) and wants to use as a tool for furthering His kingdom? Why do you think David was a man after God’s own heart? Let’s find out how this intimate relationship developed.
First, a close relationship developed through David getting to know God.
As a shepherd boy, David experientially knew both the power and protection of God when he killed both a lion and a bear (which had taken a lamb from David’s flock). This was the basis of David’s confidence in defeating the giant Goliath, as David knew God to be “the living God” in his experience (1 Sam. 17:26, 32-37).
In all likelihood, David also learned about God from his godly Hebrew ancestry, as godly Boaz (Ruth’s husband) was David’s great grandfather (Ruth 4:21-22; 2 Sam. 7:22-23).
David also got to know God through the high priest’s ephod (apronlike garment which contained the Urim and Thummim, sacred stones used to discern the will of God – 1 Sam. 30:7, 8; Ex. 28:30, 31).
In addition, David got to know God through personal revelations from Him through God’s other prophets (1 Chron. 28:19; 2 Sam. 5:23; 7:4-17; 12:1, 7-12; 24:11-13).
And David got to know God through meditating on His written Word/Law (Psa. 19:7-11; 119:148). Whether by personal experience, the written Scriptures, or religious instructions from others, David got to know God as:
Creator (Psa. 145:3), faithful (Psa. 36:5), all-wise and all-knowing (Psa. 139:2-4), all-powerful (1 Sam. 17:35-37, 47-50; Psa. 139:13; 65:6), present everywhere (Psa. 139:7-12), good (Psa. 25:8; 86:5), just and righteous (Psa. 7:9, 11; 9:4, 8), merciful (Psa. 86:15; 2 Sam. 24:14), having lovingkindness (Psa. 36:5; 103:17), holy (Psa. 22:3; 5:4), sovereign (Psa. 86:10; 1 Chron. 29:11-12), truth (Psa. 40:10; 86:15), wrathful/having holy anger (Psa. 7:11), patient (Psa. 86:15), forgiving (Psa. 86:5), kind (Psa. 18:25; 147:17), compassionate (Psa. 103:8), and gracious (Psa. 86:15).
How about you? Are you getting to know God more intimately by reading for yourself and meditating upon His word, the Bible? And through the Bible teachings from others? And through your own personal experiences of God in your life’s circumstances? Does it drive you into reading the Bible?
Another factor that played a part in the development of an intimate relationship between David and God was David’s wanting this kind of a close relationship.
In Psalm 63:1, 8 David says, “O God, You are my God; I shall seek you earnestly; my soul thirsts for You, my flesh yearns for You… my soul clings to You…” In Psa. 25:4-5 David says, “Make me know Your ways, O Lord; teach me Your paths… for You I wait all the day.” And in Psa. 143:6 David says, “My soul longs for You, as a parched land.”
A third factor in David’s having a close relationship with God was his meditating upon God.
In Psalm 145:5 David says, “On the glorious splendor of Your majesty, and on Your wonderful works, I will meditate.” Again in Psa. 63:6 David says, “When I remember You on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches…” How about you? Do you often think about God, about His majesty, attributes, and wonderful works? Is that what you think about when you’re lying in bed at night? Or, do you meditate on selfish dreams or lustful thoughts? If you’re serious about a close relation with God, you’ll think on Him.
A fourth factor in building an intimate relationship with God is sharing your thoughts and feelings, and questions with Him.
In Psalm 62:8, David says, “…Pour out your heart before Him…” And David certainly did just that. Let’s see several examples.
In 2 Sam. 7:18-29, David, king of Israel, expresses his thoughts and feelings with God when he says, “…You are great, O Lord God; for there is none like You, and there is no God besides You, according to all that we have heard with our ears… the word that You have spoken concerning Your servant and his house, confirm it forever… that Your name may be magnified forever… Your words are truth.” In 2 Sam. 22:1-51, David shares a song with God, “The Lord is my rock and fortress and my deliverer… (2 Sam. 22:2), I cried to my God, and from His temple He heard my voice (2 Sam. 22:7)…the Lord was my support…(2 Sam. 22:19), He rescued me because He delighted in me (2 Sam. 22:20)…You are my lamp, O Lord, illuminating my darkness (2 Sam. 22:29)…By my God I can leap over a wall (2 Sam. 22:30)…As for God, His way is blameless (2 Sam. 22:31)…He trains my hand for battle (2 Sam. 22:35)…You have girded me with strength for battle (2 Sam. 22:40)…You have kept me as head of the nations (2 Sam. 22:44)…I will give thanks to You…and I will sing praises to Your name (2 Sam. 22:50).” Do you magnify the Lord for Who He is? Do you credit Him for the position you’re in or the successes you have? Do you thank Him for protecting and delivering you from dangers and harm?
In 2 Sam. 24:10, 17, David said to the Lord, “I have sinned greatly in what I have done. But now, O Lord, please take away the iniquity of Your servant, for I have acted very foolishly.” “Behold, it is I who have sinned, and it is I who have done wrong; but these sheep, what have they done? Please let Your hand be against me and against my father’s house.” Are you that honest and open with God about your sins? Do you humbly confess them and take full responsibility for them, so that no one else suffers from God because of them?
Again in Psalm 51, we find David pouring out his heart before God because of his adulterous sin, ”Be gracious to me, O God, according to Your lovingkindness; according to the greatness of Your compassion blot out my transgression. Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. For I know my transgression, and my sin is ever before me. Against You, You only, I have sinned, and done what is evil in Your sight, so that You are justified when You speak, and blameless when You judge…Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me…restore to me the joy of Your salvation, and sustain me with a willing spirit…You do not delight in sacrifice, otherwise I would give it; You are not pleased with burnt offering. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart…” Is this your attitude toward the sins you commit, which are always against God ultimately?
David continues to pour out his heart in Psalm 5, “…Consider my groaning. Heed the sound of my cry for help, my king and my God, for to You I pray…In the morning, I will order my prayer to You and eagerly watch…No evil dwells with You…You hate all who do iniquity…O Lord, lead me in Your righteousness…There is nothing reliable in what they say; their inward part is destruction…They flatter with their tongue…thrust them out for they are rebellious against You…” Do you ever talk with God like this? If not, it may indicate that you don’t have a close relationship with God.
In Psalm 4, David says, “Answer me when I call, O God of my righteousness! You have relieved me in my distress; be gracious to me and hear my prayer…The Lord hears when I call to Him…You have put gladness in my heart…In peace I will both lie down and sleep, for You alone, O Lord, do make me to dwell in safety.” Have you ever said anything like this to God? If not, what’s keeping you from doing so?
In Psalm 6, David prays, “O Lord, for I am pining away; heal me, O Lord, for my bones are dismayed. And my soul is greatly dismayed; but You, O Lord – how long? Return, O Lord, rescue my soul; save me because of Your lovingkindness… I am weary with my sighing; every night I make my bed swim, I dissolve my couch with my tears. My eye has wasted away with grief; it has become old because of all my adversaries.” Do you share with God your burdens and feelings of hurt or injustice done to you? Or, do you bottle them up and let them fester into bitterness, depression, or worry?
In Psalm 8, David continues to share his thoughts and feelings with God, “O Lord, how majestic is Your name in all the earth, Who has displayed Your splendor above the heavens!…When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have ordained; what is man that You take thought of him?…that You care for him?…You make him to rule over the works of Your hands…” Do you feel this way too? If so, are you sharing them with God?
Then, in Psalm 10, David prays, “Why do You stand afar off, O Lord? Why do You hide Yourself in times of trouble? In pride the wicked hotly pursue the afflicted; let them be caught in the plots which they have devised…Break the arm of the wicked and the evildoer…vindicate the orphan and the oppressed, that man who is of the earth may cause terror no more.” Do you share your thoughts with God about the evils of your society, community, or nation? Or, do you only complain to others about the crime, drugs, violence, and corruption in your society?
David continues to share his feelings with God in Psalm 13, “How long, O Lord? Will You forget me forever? How long will You hide Your face from me?…Consider and answer me, O Lord, my God; enlighten my eyes…I have trusted in Your lovingkindness, my heart shall rejoice in Your salvation.” Have you ever humbly questioned God about what He does or doesn’t do? Do you have the kind of close relationship with God that gives you the freedom to? And do you express your trust in Him in spite of unanswered questions?
In Psalm 16:11, David says to God, “In Your presence is fullness of joy; in Your right hand are pleasures forever.” Do you share with God your looking forward to being in heaven with Him and that you anticipate complete joy in His presence, or do you love this world so much that you don’t want to be with Him in heaven right now? Or, do you think heaven is going to be boring?
David goes on to say in Psalm 17, “Give ear to my prayer, which is not from deceitful lips…You have tried my heart…You have tested me and found no evil device…my steps have held fast to Your paths…Wondrously show Your lovingkindness…Hide me in the shadow of Your wings from the wicked…they have closed their unfeeling heart…they set their eyes to cast us down…Deliver my soul…I will be satisfied with Your likeness when I awake” (in heaven). Do you ever try to fake God out in prayer by telling Him lies about others or about yourself? Could you honestly say to God that He’s tested you and found no evil plans or thoughts toward others? Have you ever told God that you’ll be satisfied in heaven simply because you’ll be righteous like Him? Or, does that thought bore you?
Again David shares his feelings in Psalm 18:1, “I love you, O Lord, my strength…” When was the last time you told God that you loved Him? Do you tell Him that very often? Why?
In Psalm 19:13-14, David asks God to “keep back His servant from presumptuous sins; let them not rule over me…Let the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.” Do you ask God to help you from committing willful sins? And do you share with God that you want your words and thoughts to be acceptable to Him? If not, will you?
Again David pours out his heart to God in Psalm 22, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? …O my God, I cry by day, but You don’t answer; and by night, but I have no rest. Yet You are holy, You who are enthroned upon the praises of Israel…But I am a worm, and not a man, a reproach of man, and despised by the people. All who see me sneer at me…be not far from me, for trouble is near; for there is none to help…I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint; my heart is like wax; it is melted within me. My strength is dried up…dogs have surrounded me…save me from the lion’s mouth…In the midst of the assembly I will praise Your name…” Have you noticed that though David questions God, he also reveres God, calling Him holy and praising Him? Do you share with God your feelings of worthlessness or inferiority, or how other people view you? Do you share your feelings of hurt, weariness, and fear? Do you ever get mad at God when He doesn’t answer your prayer the way you want or as quickly as you’d like? Do you stop talking to Him because of this?
In Psalm 25, David says, “To You, O Lord, I lift up my soul. O my God, in You I trust… Teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth… For You I wait all the day… Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions; according to Your lovingkindness remember me, for Your goodness’ sake, O Lord… Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted. The troubles of my heart are enlarged; bring me out of my distresses. Look upon my affliction and my trouble, and forgive all my sins… Let integrity and uprightness preserve me, for I wait for You.” Do you tell God you trust Him in spite of the troubles you have? Do you ask Him to teach you His will and ways more clearly? Do you let him know that at times you’re lonely? And do you wait upon Him through all of this, even if His timetable is different and slower than what you’d like?
In Psalm 30:11-12, David says, “You have turned my mourning into dancing… that my soul may sing praise to You, and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give thanks to You forever.” How about your prayer life? How often and how much of your communication with God is filled with thanks? Or, do you spend most of your conversation with God just asking for things on a list?
In Psalm 35:4, 19, 28, David says, “Let those be ashamed and dishonored who seek my life; let those be turned back and humiliated who devise evil against me… Do not let those who are wrongfully my enemies rejoice over me; neither let those who hate me without cause wink maliciously… My tongue shall declare Your righteousness and Your praise all day long.” Wow! Would you declare God’s righteousness and praise Him all day long if people were out to kill you? Do you pour out your fears, worries, and desires to the Lord, yet praise Him too?
In Psalm 36:5-7, David says, “Your lovingkindness, O Lord, extends to the heavens, Your faithfulness reaches to the skies, Your righteousness is like the mountains of God; Your judgments are like a great deep. O Lord, You preserve man and beast. How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God.” Do you take the time to share with God your recognition of His attributes? And do you compliment Him for them? Why?
In Psalm 38, David says, “There is no health in my bones because of my sin… Lord, all my desire is before You; and my sighing is not hidden from You. My heart throbs, my strength fails me; and the light in my eyes, even that has gone from me. My loved ones and my friends stand aloof from my plague; and my kinsmen stand afar off. Those who seek my life lay snares for me… I hope in You, O Lord; You will answer… Make haste to help me, O Lord, my salvation.” Do you pour out your heart like this to God? If not, what will it take for you to be able to?
In Psalm 39, David says, “Lord, make me to know my end, and what is the extent of my days, let me know how transient I am. Behold, You have made my days as handbreadths, and my lifetime as nothing in Your sight. Surely, every man at his best is a mere breath… He amasses riches, and does not know who will gather them… And now, Lord, for what do I wait? My hope is in you… Remove Your plague from me; because of the opposition of Your hand, I am perishing… Do not be silent to my tears.” Have you ever asked God to remind you of how short your life is, so that you don’t waste your life pursuing riches? And have you recently told God that it’s for Him that you wait, who you’re living for, that He’s your hope?
In Psalm 40:8, David shares, “I delight to do Your will, O my God; Your law is within my heart.” Do you share with God that you delight to do His will, to obey His commands? To evangelize and build up believers into Christ-like maturity? If not, will you, if it’s true?
In Psalm 56, David says, “When I am afraid, I will put my trust in You.” Have you ever shared this with God? Can you talk with God as a close friend?
In Psalm 65, David says, “How blessed is the one whom You choose and bring near to You to dwell in Your courts… You establish the mountain by Your strength, being girded with might; You still the roaring of the seas… and the tumult of the peoples. You make the dawn and the sunset shout for joy. You visit the earth and cause it to overflow; You greatly enrich it.” Do you express to God your recognition of His creating and sustaining the earth? Of His power and care?
Again, in Psalm 69, David pours out his heart, “Those who hate me without a cause are more than the hairs of my head; those who would destroy me are powerful… May those who seek You not be dishonored through me… Those who sit in the gate talk about me. Answer me, O Lord, for Your lovingkindness is good… Reproach has broken my heart, and I am so sick. And I looked for sympathy, but there was none, and for comforters, but I found none… I am afflicted and in pain; May Your salvation, O God, set me securely on high. I will praise the name of God with song, and magnify Him with thanks.” Have you ever shared with God your broken heart, your inner sickness of soul, your need yet lack of human comfort and sympathy, your pain, and yet your praise of God in spite of all these things?
In Psalm 71, David says, “You are my confidence from my youth. By You I have been sustained from my birth… Do not cast me off in time of old age; do not forsake me when my strength fails.” Do you share with God your concerns and fears, such as what will happen to you when you get old? And do you tell Him that He is your confidence?
In Psalm 86, David says, “For You, Lord, are good and ready to forgive… There is no one like You among the gods, O Lord… You are great… You alone are God… Unite my heart to fear Your name… You are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness and truth.” Do you share with God your recognition of His many marvelous attributes? If not, will you?
In Psalm 101, David says, “I will set no worthless thing before my eyes. No one who has an arrogant heart will I endure… He who walks in a blameless way is the one who will minister to me… He who practices deceit shall not dwell within my house.” Do you share with God the kind of people you do and don’t want to keep company with? Why do you think David bothered to share this with God? What’s the purpose of personal communication?
Again, in Psalm 109, David shares, “They have spoken against me with a lying tongue… with words of hatred… In return for my love they act as accusers; but I am in prayer… Let his days be few… Let his children be fatherless, and his wife a widow… Deal kindly with me for Your name’s sake… for I am afflicted and needy, and my heart is wounded within me… My knees are weak from fasting… With my mouth I will give thanks abundantly to the Lord.” When people do bad things to you unfairly, do you worry or get revenge, or do you share with God your situation, and let Him deal with the people? Do you ever admit to God your neediness and/or wounded heart, or do you feel that you shouldn’t bother God with such issues? Do you ever get mad at God and so choose to not talk with Him because He isn’t doing anything about your circumstances? Or, do you give abundant thanks to the Lord for who He is in spite of your situation?
In Psalm 139, David says, “You are intimately acquainted with all my ways. Even before there is a word on my tongue, behold, O Lord, You know it all. You have enclosed me behind and before and laid Your hand upon me… If I ascend to heaven, You are there; if I make my bed in Sheol, behold, You are there… Darkness and light are alike to You… For You did form my inward parts; You did weave me in my mother’s womb. I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made… How precious are your thoughts to me, O God… Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me and know my anxious thoughts; and see if there be any hurtful/wicked way in me, and lead me in the everlasting way.” Do you acknowledge to God His omniscience, protection, omnipresence, and wonderful creation of you? And are you inviting God to see if there’s any bad attitudes in you that you want Him to make you aware of? Also, are you asking God to lead you in life, or are you simply doing what you want in life?
Finally, in Psalm 141, David says, “Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; keep watch over the door of my lips… Let the righteous smite me in kindness and reprove me…” How about you? Are you asking God to help you think before you speak? Are you asking God for godly/spiritual people to correct you when you’re in sin, error, or making bad decisions?
By now, have you seen the intimate relationship David developed through sharing his thoughts, feelings and questions with God? Will you be as well?
A fifth factor in establishing a close relationship with God is through having a Spirit-controlled or influenced life.
In 1 Samuel 16:13, it says, “…and the Spirit of the Lord came mightily upon David from that day forward” (That day was when David was still a shepherd boy, and he was anointed by Samuel to be the next king.). Having a life controlled or influenced by God’s Spirit while still a youth, aided in David’s close relationship with God. How about you? Are you consistently controlled by the Holy Spirit? If you want a close relation with God, then choose to have God’s Spirit control your entire life. Ask Him to do so.
A sixth factor in establishing a close relationship with God is through pleasing actions done in love.
First, David did this by trusting God.
In fact, in Psalm 9:10, David says, “And those who know your name will put their trust in You.” Truly knowing God naturally leads to trusting God. If you have a hard time trusting God, it’s because you don’t know Him well. David repeatedly expresses his trust in God in Psalms 13:5; 21:7; 25:2; 26:1; 28:7; 31:6, 14; 52:8; 55:23; 86:2; 143:8.
David trusted God for his future as to where he should go. After king Saul’s death, God told David to got to Hebron in Judah, and David trusted God with that decision (2 Sam. 2:1-2) even though the people of Israel had previously been seeking David’s death (1 Sam. 27:1). David also trusted God for his future as to what he should do. In 1 Sam. 26:8ff, we see that David had the opportunity of killing his enemy Saul (or having him killed by his soldiers), but David didn’t because he trusted that God would deal with Saul and then make David king (1 Sam. 24:4-7, 20-22). How about you? Are you trusting God with your future as to where you should go/live and what you should do in life, and when? Or, are you trying to run ahead of God, making your own self-centered decisions about where you’re going to move, or what you’re going to do?
David also trusted God for his provisions, his necessities in life. As David says in Psalm 23:1, “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want” (or lack any necessity, like food and water). David reiterates this idea in Psa. 34:9-10. Are you trusting God to provide your necessities, especially if you’re seeking Him and fearing/obeying (Prov. 8:13) Him?
David also trusted God for his protection: from the giant Goliath (1 Sam. 17:36-37, 45-49), from the Amalekites (1 Sam. 30:8, 17-19, 23), from the Philistines (2 Sam. 5:17-25), from his rebellious son Absalom (Psa. 3:1-6), and from his enemies in general (Psa. 13:3-5; 27:1-3; 56:3-4, 11; 4:8). Are you trusting God to protect you, especially if you’re doing His will, being where He wants you?
Second, David expressed his pleasing actions by obeying God.
As God Himself said in Acts 13:22, “I have found David a man after My heart, who will do all My will.” Could God say this about you, that you will do all His will?
To obey God is to experientially know God, and to obey God is to love God, and to love God is to obey Him, and to please God is to trust Him, and to trust Him is to obey Him, and to obey God is to be a man after God’s heart, as 1 Jn. 2:3, 5; 5:3; Heb. 11:6; James 2:26; and Acts 13:22 say. David obeyed God by walking in God’s truth (Psa. 26:3), by seeking God (Psa. 27:8), by not wanting to know, through experience, any evil (Psa. 101:3-5), by doing God’s will (Psa. 40:8), by fighting against the Philistines even though his army didn’t want to (1 Sam. 23:2-5), by fighting the Amalekites even though he was greatly outnumbered (1 Sam. 30:8, 10, 16-17), by going to Hebron as God said (2 Sam. 2:1-2), by fighting the Philistines as God directed (2 Sam. 5:19-20, 23-25), by keeping the Lord’s ways (2 Sam. 22:22-24), and by erecting an altar to the Lord as God directed (2 Sam. 24:19, 25).
Are you obeying everything that you know God wants you to do or not do as found in the Bible? If you want to be a man or woman after God’s heart, then you’ll obey Him and even enjoy it (1 Jn. 5:3). And those who maintain an intimate relationship with God will be the ones who stay in the ministry of evangelism and building up other Christians into Christ-likeness for a lifetime since they know it’s the will and purpose of God for every Christian (Matt. 28:19-20; Eph. 4:11-13; Phil. 2:2 with Phil. 1:27; 2 Tim. 2:2; 4:5; Phil. 4:9 with Phil. 1:12-18 and Acts 13:47; Lk. 19:10; 1 Thes. 5:11; Rom. 14:19), and they want to obey God because they love Him. Can you say along with David in Psa. 40:8, “I delight to do Your will, O My God; Your Law (God’s Word/Bible) is within my heart”? Remember, God is intimate with the upright (Prov. 3:32) and loves those who pursue righteousness (Prov. 15:9).
Third, David expressed his pleasing actions to God by being humble.
And humility helps in establishing a close relationship with God, as the Lord Himself says in Isa. 66:2, “…But to this one I will look (find favor), to him who is humble and contrite of spirit, and who trembles at My word.”
And David certainly found favor in God’s sight (2 Sam. 5:10) as God blessed him greatly. We see David’s humility in 1 Sam. 7:18, when he says to God, “Who am I, and what is my house, that You have brought me thus far?” Then, in 1 Sam. 18:18, David says to Saul, “Who am I, and what is my life or my father’s family in Israel, that I should be the king’s son-in-law?” David also shows his humility in not killing his enemy Saul when he could have and when he knew that he (David) was God’s choice to be the next king (1 Sam. 24:4-7; 26:7-11). David’s humility was also demonstrated by his public display of joy, affection, and devotion to God when he danced and leaped before the ark of the Lord in 2 Sam. 6:16-22. And his humble attitude is seen in his prayers to God, as David admits what a great sinner he is (2 Sam. 7:18; 24:10, 17; Psa. 16:2; 25:11; 35:13). Finally, David shows his humility by not killing a man who constantly cursed him and threw stones and dust at David, even though David was king of Israel, because David recognized God’s sovereignty in this circumstance (2 Sam. 16:5-13). Are you a humble person? Or, do you think you’re better than or more important than other people because of your race, intelligence, looks, position, job, money, education, clothes, family, possessions, car, athletic or musical abilities, or any other reason? Pride or arrogance will result, in both God and people opposing you, while humility will give you God’s favor (James 4:6).
Finally, David expressed his pleasing actions to God by seeking God’s advice.
In 1 Sam. 23:2 and 2 Sam. 5:19, 23, David asks God whether he should attack the Philistines. David, who was a mighty warrior (1 Sam. 19:8; 18:7), didn’t just rush into battles in his own strength, rather he sought God’s advice. In 1 Sam. 23:10-12, David asks God whether the people of Keilah would deliver him into the hands of king Saul. David, here, doesn’t assume anything in his own human logic, rather he checks things out with God. Again, in 1 Sam. 30:8, David asks God if he should pursue attacking the Amalekites. Past successes didn’t promote self-dependence on David’s part, rather he continued to seek God’s advice. Then, in 2 Sam. 2:1, David asks God if he should move to one of the cities in Judah, and if so, which one. David continually consulted God for his decisions, as he wanted to do God’s will, not his own. Do you check with God about your choices/decisions in life? Like whether to go to college or not? Whether to get a degree or not? Whether to get a job, and if so, which one and for how long? Whether to move somewhere, and if so, where and when? Whether to get married or stay single? And if to get married, to whom and when? Or, do you just do what you want, when you want and don’t consult God? If that’s your attitude (self-dependence or independence), don’t expect to have a close relationship with God, and don’t expect to be in God’s ministry for a lifetime of service.
David concludes his life still doing the will of God, being a righteous king of Israel, a spiritual leader (Acts 2:30; 2 Sam. 23:2) and teaching his people to be God-like, especially to his son. 1 Kings 2:1, 3 says, “As David’s time to die drew near, he charged Solomon his son saying, ‘keep the charge of the Lord your God, to walk in His ways, to keep His statutes, His commandments, His ordinances, and His testimonies, according to what is written in the Law of Moses, that you may succeed in all that you do and wherever you turn.’”
First Chronicles 28:1, 7-9 says that David assembled all the leaders of Israel and told them the following: God had said that David was still performing His commandments and ordinances (1 Chron. 28:7), that they (Israel’s leaders) should observe and seek after all the commandments of God (1 Chron. 28:8), and that Solomon should know God and serve Him with a whole heart and a willing mind (1 Chron. 28:9). And in 1 Chronicles 29:10-20, David blesses the Lord in the sight of all the assembly and says, “Yours, O Lord, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory and the majesty, indeed everything that is in the heavens and the earth; Yours is the dominion, O Lord, and You exalt Yourself as head over all … we thank You and praise Your glorious name … give to Solomon a perfect heart to keep Your commandments … to do them all…” Then David said to all the assembly, “Now bless the Lord your God.” Then, in 2 Sam. 23:1-7, David gives his last words of which the following is a part, “…the Spirit of the Lord spoke by me, and His word was on my tongue.” And God said to David, you “rule over men righteously, you rule in the fear of God and are as the light of the morning…” God was saying that David had ruled righteously. Then 1 Chron. 29:28 concludes with these words, “then David died in a ripe old age, full of days, riches, and honor…”
Will God be able to say this about your life, that you were keeping His commandments to the end of your life? Will you still be doing the will of God until the day you die – evangelizing, building up believers into Christlikeness and living a holy/godly life? You can, if you develop and maintain a close relationship with God through knowing Him both through Scripture and in life’s experiences, wanting Him, meditating upon Him, being Spirit-controlled, sharing your thoughts and feelings with Him, trusting Him, being humble, seeking His advice and obeying Him.
The question now is, “Will you do these things wholeheartedly, starting now?”