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LESSONS FROM DAVID’S FALL, PART 16: David’s PASSIVITY

by | Oct 18, 2014 | Forgiveness, Lessons From David's Fall (A Mini-Series)

Just one last lesson we can learn from this powerful story.

It’s interesting to note that throughout all of the trouble that David went through, this king and mighty warrior didn’t even put up a fight. When Absalom took over the palace, David just passively packed his bags and left.

Doesn’t this seem strange to you? I mean, wouldn’t you or I have tried to hang on, to stop the rebellion, to protect our homes and families and all that is precious to us?

But David simply turned away.

Why would David react in this manner?

There are many theories. Some would say that it was because David’s response was rooted in the fact that the perpetrator was his own son.

An interesting theory, but David’s passivity extended beyond Absalom. As he left Jerusalem, he was accosted by a man named Shimei who threw stones at David and cursed him:

“Come out! Come out! You bloodthirsty man, you rogue! The Lord has brought upon you all the blood of the house of Saul, in whose place you have reigned . . . So now you are caught in your own evil, because you are a bloodthirsty man!” (2 Sam 16:7-8 NKJV)

David’s men were aghast at Shimei’s audacity: “Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king? Please, let me go over and take off his head!” (2 Sam 16:9)

Well said!

But this wasn’t David’s response: “So let him curse, because the Lord has said to him, ‘Curse David.’ Who then shall say, ‘Why have you done so?'” (2 Sam 16:10)

No, David’s passivity was not rooted in the fact that Absalom was his son. It went far deeper than that!

Another theory to David’s indifferent response is that he was keenly aware that it was his own sin that had spearheaded this particular chain of events. From the rape of Tamar to the ensuing murder of Amnon, the exile of Absalom and his cool homecoming, and finally, to the revenge of Absalom, it all traced back to that one fateful night with Bathsheba!

But when you read David’s writings, you see clearly that he was a man who knew he was forgiven: “As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us. (Ps 103:12 NKJV)

Let’s look at the petition he made to God after his great sin: “Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.” (Ps 51:7 NKJV)

Note that when David asked for cleansing, he didn’t say, “So I will be cleaner”, and he didn’t say, “so that maybe I’ll be clean.” He said, ” . . . and I shall be clean . . . I shall be whiter than snow.”

In David’s song, recorded in 2 Samuel 22, we also see clearly that David understood that despite all the wrong he had done, God had forgiven him, and he stood blameless before God: “For I have kept the ways of the Lord, And have not wickedly departed from my God . . . And as for His statutes, I did not depart from them. I was also blameless before Him, And I kept myself from my iniquity. (2 Sam 22:22-25 NKJV)

No, we can clearly say David’s apparent passivity had anything to do with guilt. He understood that once he was forgiven, his sin was as if it had never happened!

So why was David so apathetic in his flight?

I believe that David’s response to his men, when they wanted to kill Shimei for his insolence, sums it up nicely: “Let him alone, and let him curse; for so the Lord has ordered him. It may be that the Lord will look on my affliction, and that the Lord will repay me with good for his cursing this day.” (2 Sam 16:11-12 NKJV)

Friends, David understood two all-important truths:

1. God is in control: “You comprehend my path and my lying down, And are acquainted with all my ways.” (Ps 139:3 NKJV) God knows when people are out to get us, when we are falsely accused, and he even knows we will go through the trials of life. He is in control!

2. Good will come out of trouble: “My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.” (James 1:2,3 NKJV); and “And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. (Rom 5:3,4 NKJV).

Friends, David understood that good CAN and WILL come out of trouble. He simply accepted it as God’s will, knowing that somehow, in the end, “the Lord will repay me with good . . .”

What about us, friends? Can we face trials of the calibre David faced with the same passivity, the same apparent apathy?

Not only can we, but we are called to do so: “. . . count it all joy when you fall into various trials . . .” ever knowing that when it’s all said and done, “the Lord will repay me with good . . .”

This is the conclusion of LESSONS FROM DAVID’S FALL. My hope and prayer is that through these lessons you have come to a complete understanding of the following:

1. Our sin has consequences.
2. Grief has its place and time. But we must move on.
3. When we do sin, God forgives. Completely. We do not need to continue to carry our guilt!
4. God will use the bad times as occasions to shape our character and to repay us with good.
5. Passivity in time of trouble is the key
6. The wicked will not always prosper.
7. Pride goes before a fall.
8. We need to follow the direction of the Holy Spirit
9. And finally, our first and number one priority must be, to worship our King!

In His love,

Lyn

Lyn Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two teens, Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, and Scriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, www.scripturalnuggets.org, with Answers2Prayer Ministries, www.Answers2Prayer.org.

(To access the entire “Lessons From David’s Fall” mini-series, please click here.)

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