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A King Who Gives

Text: I Samuel 30
Speaker: Jim Newheiser
Outline: PDF
Date: January 25, 2009

In chapters 27 and 29 we saw how David sought refuge from Saul among the Philistines. My interpretation was that David was guilty of leaning on his own understanding rather than seeking God’s will (27:1 Pr. 3:5-6). He was living by sight and not by faith. He seemed to forget about God’s character, God’s past faithfulness, and God’s particular promises to him. While at first his scheme seemed to work (27:4), it caused trouble when David was expected to march out into battle with the Philistines against Israel (28:1-2 29:1ff). The LORD, however, delivered him through those among the Philistine rulers who sent him back to his base in Ziklag.

As we come to chapter 30 David’s trials intensify. He and his men return only to find their city burned to the ground and all of their families taken captive by the Amalekites. David’s men are ready to mutiny. David, in his distress, turns to the LORD (v. 6ff). The LORD directs David, gives him victory, and enables David and his men to recover all that was lost. David then shares the spoils with all of his men, even those who were too tired to join the battle, and with his countrymen in Judah.

David’s actions remind us of Christ who fought the LORD’s enemy so that we could be recovered. Jesus also, as a result of His victory over sin and death, gives gifts to His people. David’s example reminds us of how we can turn to God, even when we have backslidden. David also exemplifies the kind of leader God’s people need.

David’s Sojourn with the Philistines

Text: I Samuel 27:1-28:2; 29:1-11
Speaker: Jim Newheiser
Outline: PDF
Date: January 18, 2009

This week we begin the final major section in I Samuel. David is so tired of being chased by Saul that he decides to become a refugee in exile in the land of the Philistines. At the same time the Philistines are getting ready for a decisive battle against Saul and his armies which will result in the death of Saul and Jonathan, paving the way for David to be king.

There are many interpretive challenges in this part of I Samuel. Events are reported without much evaluation or explanation. Was David right to go to the Philistines? Was his deceit of the Philistine ruler, Achish justified? What about David’s slaughter of the tribal peoples? What is God doing in these chapters? (We are skipping, for this week, chapter 28 in which Saul uses a medium (witch) to bring back Samuel from the dead).

What are we to gain from such texts? My interpretation is that David in his weariness of the fugitive lifestyle looks to his own fleshly understanding rather than trusting the LORD (Prov. 3:5-6) which results in various dilemmas and trials. In spite of David’s weakness of faith the LORD is still with him and delivers him so that he can reign over the people of God.

We who feel weary of the trials of our lives face the same temptation David faced – to lean on our own understanding rather than trusting the LORD. We must turn to him. Some of us may have already gone over to the Philistines. We can take comfort that even then the LORD will deliver us by His great mercy.

Wage the Good Warfare

Text: I Timothy 1:18-20
Speaker: Curt Arend
Date: January 11, 2009

I Timothy 1:18-20 – “This command I entrust to you, Timothy, my son, in accordance with the prophecies previously made concerning you, that by them you fight the good fight, keeping faith and a good conscience, which some have rejected and suffered shipwreck in regard to their faith. Among these are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have handed over to Satan, so that they will be taught not to blaspheme.”

How to be Worry-Free in the New Year

Text: Matthew 6:25-34
Speaker: Jim Newheiser
Outline: PDF
Date: January 4, 2009

Most of us have never experienced a new year in which there would appear to be so much cause for worry.
The economy has been in a tailspin and no-one is sure how bad it will get. Many have lost their jobs and many others may follow. Businesses are going bankrupt. Many are at risk of losing their homes to foreclosure. Many of us are also concerned about the political direction our nation may take in the new year, especially on issues of family and morality. Not to mention that fact that our military is at war, and we face the constant threat of terrorism.

We respond to circumstances like these in different ways. Some people seem to be a bit irresponsible – not taking problems and responsibilities seriously enough. Others of us can be consumed by anxiety. Perhaps some weren’t anxious until you read the preceding paragraph.

Jesus not only tells us not to worry, He tells us why we shouldn’t worry and how we can overcome our worries. His teaching is also wonderfully balanced as He reminds us that being worry free is no excuse for irresponsibility.

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