1.What characteristics that made David a good king (humanly speaking) do we still look for in political leaders today? Which of these characteristics are good and which are bad from a spiritual perspective? Defend your answer. David had many characteristics of a typical human king. These included an appetite for war and a tendency to use his power to get women.(Sound familiar?) But David also was strategic in his planning, loved his nation, and worked with wisdom, energy, and integrity.
The fact that David’s early life was that of a shepherd rather than royalty may intrigue us. Aren’t we still drawn toward leaders with humble origins? David’s accomplishments as poet and musician may catch us by surprise. Also, we don’t expect modern politicians to dance with abandon, weep publicly, or show personal weakness before God and his subjects as did David. Nonetheless, these characteristics came together to make David a man after God’s own heart.
2.How were David’s early years as a shepherd a preparation for him to be king? What was a time when hindsight revealed that God was preparing you for a future task?
Working on the family farm undoubtedly in-stilled an important work ethic in David. Life in the fields resulted in a skill that enabled him to slay Goliath. There is much about David’s earliest life that we would like to know but don’t! Many folks get their start toward adulthood by working in low-paying jobs as teenagers. Often this involves work in a fast food restaurant. Yet skills learned here—teamwork, customer service, scheduling, cleanliness, etc.—can last a lifetime. These lessons can carry over into volunteer and vocational work in the church. God expects our faithfulness no matter what our life situation. What He is preparing us for in the future through our work today may come as quite a surprise!
3. What are some dangers of a man becoming king? What can we learn from the example of David that will help us curb these dangers in leaders today?
It is trite but true: power tends to corrupt. David. unfortunately, succumbed to the power of
his position by committing adultery, murder, and taking a census of his troops (2 Samuel 11:1-24; 24:1). At the same time, however, David had the prophet Nathan to hold him accountable when Ile crossed the line.
This can lead us to ask about the accountability systems we have in place today. Are there certain people in your congregation who know they can speak frankly to the church’s leaders about the appropriateness of the leaders’ actions?
4.Which of God’s promises to David are we able to claim for the church? Which are we not able to claim? How will we get into trouble if we don’t sort this out properly?
David was promised that his lineage would be the royal lineage of Israel. He was promised that there would always be one of his descendants on the throne. God assured hint that his son Solomon would build a temple.
After the destruction and exile of 586 BC, it may look as though God made good on none of the promises. But look to Jesus! He is David’s descendant (Matthew 1:1-16). By divine power He rebuilt the temple of His crucified body (John 2:19). He is the enduring King of kings (Revelation 19:16).God does not fail, even when people do.
5.Following question #4, what difference does it make in your day-to-day life to know that Jesus is the fulfillment of ancient promises made to David?
To know that God keeps His promises after hundreds and hundreds of years should be a marvelous source of daily comfort! Jesus is the Messiah, the permanent King of kings. Jesus fulfilled God’s prophecies about David’s house better than David himself did or could have. The God who brought His Son through crucifixion to resurrection is able to meet all our needs. Jesus is the ultimate man after God’s own heart.
Sits is what separates as from God; Jesus is the one who closes the gap. As a result, God is not far from any of us (compare Acts 17:27). God’s record of promises kept helps us to look forward with confidence that we are always under His watchful and caring eye. We are His most important project!