(Read 2 Samuel 7:1-10)
Today I will continue with “Faith and Patience Volume 5 – Greater is Coming!” We have been studying David’s life for 15 weeks (3.5 months), and we have seen him endure a great deal in the space between receiving the promise to become King of Israel and the actual manifestation of it. We are at a point in his life where things are looking good. By 2 Samuel 7, David is seemingly settled as the King of Israel. He is no longer fighting his own men or foreign attackers, and he is at peace. At this point, the king summoned Nathan, the prophet, to come to him. David said to Nathan, “Look, I am living in a beautiful cedar palace, but the Ark of God is out there in a tent!” Nathan knew where David was going with this, and he replied, “Go ahead and do whatever you have in mind, for the LORD is with you.”
As is sometimes the case with those of us who are asked to provide or confirm a “word” from God, Nathan spoke too soon. He never actually asked God about it. So that same night, the LORD spoke to Nathan and said, “Go and tell my servant David, ‘This is what the LORD has declared: Are you the one to build a house for me to live in? I have never lived in a house, from the day I brought the Israelites out of Egypt until this very day. I have always moved from one place to another with a tent and a Tabernacle as my dwelling. Yet no matter where I have gone with the Israelites, I have never once complained to Israel’s tribal leaders, the shepherds of my people Israel. I have never asked them, “Why haven’t you built me a beautiful cedar house?”’ The Lord knew what was on David’s mind. He knows our thoughts before we think them.
The Lord went on to say to Nathan, “Now go and say to my servant David, ‘This is what the LORD of Heaven’s Armies has declared: I took you from tending sheep in the pasture and selected you to be the leader of my people Israel. I have been with you wherever you have gone, and I have destroyed all your enemies before your eyes. Now I will make your name as famous as anyone who has ever lived on the earth! And I will provide a homeland for my people Israel, planting them in a secure place where they will never be disturbed.” I had to stop at verse 10 for the sake of time. I will pick it up from here tomorrow, and we will see more of what God said about building him a house and about settling the nation of Israel.
So what does this mean for you today? I will share something about Nathan’s mistake and then seek to glean some nuggets from what God said about David.
1. Never assume something is “of God” if you have not asked God about it.
When the prophet Nathan was summoned by David, before the king could even finish his question, Nathan said, “Go ahead and do whatever you have in mind, for the LORD is with you.” That night the Lord visited Nathan and told him what to say to David. The instructions that were given to David THROUGH the prophet, but actually BY God this time, overruled what the prophet had previously spoken. The mistake Nathan made was in assuming that since David wanted to do a “good thing” (build God a house), that God was okay with it. Here are some things we can learn about this:
— Just because something is good, it does not mean God wants YOU to do it.
— Don’t assume that you know what God wants you to do if you have never asked Him about it.
— If we are not careful, in our zeal for wanting to please God, we can actually wind up doing things from our heart that we never asked God about. Sometimes these things work out, but other times God has to correct us because we never took the time to simply ask Him if it was okay.
— If you are not careful, you can become a man/woman of God who is so comfortable with God and His ways that you wind up doing things in your humanity. Living this way will eventually cost you because you will inevitably do things on your own, without God’s leading or approval, and you will have to deal with the consequences.
— While the goal is to be intimate with God, never get so comfortable with God that you don’t even inquire of Him!
2. The Lord took credit for selecting David for his purpose.
The Lord said, “I took you from tending sheep in the pasture.” David was minding his own business, living an ordinary life, tending his father’s sheep in the fields, when he was called out of the field to be called into the throne. This was the Lord’s doing. David did not earn this assignment. It was given to him by the grace of God.
— Like David, the Lord selected you for His specific purpose before the foundations of the world, and He did it by His grace.
— You are not a mistake. You were born when you were and where you were, because of a “WHY” God purposed in His heart before the world began!
— If you make Jesus your Lord, you willingly die to self and your selfish desires, and you open your heart to God’s plans, you will find that God will take credit for you as well. That’s a great place to be. You want God to be able to look down, point at you, and say, “I did that!”
3. The Lord took credit for giving David his assignment in life.
The Lord said, “I selected you to be the leader of my people Israel.” This was a specific assignment, and it was established before the foundations of the world. David discovered his purpose, so he was able to maximize his purpose and potential.
— Have you discovered your divine purpose?
— Life takes on new meaning and clarity once you discover your purpose. But you can’t come up with it because God came up with it before you were born.
— Purpose can’t be decided and developed by you. It must be discovered because God decided before you were born.
— Your goal is to find, follow, and finish your purpose before you die.
4. The Lord took credit for protecting David for his purpose.
David endured many challenging times in the space (about 20 years) between his selection as king and his ascension to the throne. But the Lord said, “I have been with you wherever you have gone, and I have destroyed all your enemies before your eyes.” The Lord made it clear that He kept David for his purpose and He will do the same for you.
— Growing up in Brooklyn, I was shot at several times, I had knives placed to my throat, and I even had a .357 magnum placed to my head when I was just 11yrs. old, but none of the attacks against me were successful because the Lord was protecting me for my purpose, even before I ever acknowledged Him as Lord.
— The Lord placed His purpose inside of David, and He then watched over David to protect him for his life’s assignment. God did the same for me. I am pretty sure that if you spend time with God and allow Him to speak to you, He will reveal how He has done the same for you.
— You don’t know how many times God kept a drunk driver from running into you. You don’t know how many times God thwarted an attack before it could be successful against you. God has been working all your life to get you to the point where you can open your heart to His best. He loves you so much that He deposited His purpose inside of you, and He has been protecting you all these years, so you can live long enough to complete your assignment while you are in the land of the living. That’s something to give God praise for!
5. The Lord took credit, in advance, for what He was going to do in David’s life.
After making it clear that He had been working throughout David’s past, the Lord said, “Now I will make your name as famous as anyone who has ever lived on the earth!” With this statement, the Lord was making it clear to David that He would also be involved in his future. The Lord did not bring him this far to leave him. The same can be said for you.
— The Lord has been good to you, but since you are still alive, God is not done with you yet!
— The Lord still wants to work in your life. When you meditate on how good God HAS been to you, I want you to remember two things:
1) He did not bring you this far to fail now. If you keep walking with God, you will experience victory after victory.
2) God of progression and not regression! He is ready to take you even further! Every day with God gets sweeter than the day before. Forward ever, backward never! The best is yet to come. GREATER IS COMING FOR YOU!
— God is the God of your PAST, your PRESENT, and your FUTURE!
Declaration of Faith:
Father, You are the God of my past, my present, and my future! You are the God of my yesterday, my today, and my tomorrow! You are the God of my already, my right now, and my not yet. You have been, You are now, and You always will be the same. You chose me before the foundations of the world. You called me by name from my mother’s womb. You sanctified me for my purpose. You gave me a specific assignment. Not only that but after revealing Your purpose to me, You have kept me in the space between the promise and the performance. You have called me to arrive at Your desired destination in life, but You have also graced me every step of the way. It has not always been easy, and I know Your purpose will not be realized without opposition, but You have given me the grace to overcome every obstacle, to face every attack and attacker, and to win every battle! You have even kept me from more battles than I know. You have been working IN my life ALL my life, and for that, I will never cease to give You praise! This morning I LOOK BACK and LOOK AROUND, and say, “THANK YOU!” I then look forward and say, “GREATER IS COMING FOR ME!” I can say that because I have not completed my assignment. I am still here because purpose is still locked up inside of me. I am still breathing because Your treasure has yet to be fully unlocked in my life. I am determined to die empty, to get out of me everything You have placed in me before I die! And I will enjoy every season along the way. I declare this by faith. In Jesus’ name, Amen!
This is Today’s Word. Apply it and prosper!