Who Was King David’s Mother?(Part 1)

I found the following on the web and thought it was interesting. It is adapted from its original post, which you can read by clicking here

David Was Conceived in Sin?

Psalm 51:5 (KJV) – “Behold, I was shapen in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.”

This is a Hebrew poetic parallelism where the second line of the verse says the same thing as the first line but in a slightly different way.

The subject of Psalm 51:5 does not seem to be dealing with the condition of David’s nature as a sinner at, or before, his birth. Although it is true that he was born in sin (into the nature of sin) just like all other people, they did not understand this concept as we do today. As a matter of fact, this concept was not understood fully until it was written about by Paul in Romans 7.

This is where Paul discusses that he could not do the things he wanted to do, and yet would find himself doing the things he doesn’t want to do. He ultimately comes to the understanding, through revelation from God, Romans 7:17; 21  Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. (21)  I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. This has come to be known as the law of sin, or the sin nature.

Even in John 3, when Jesus told Nicodemus in John 3:3  Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God., the Lord did not tell him why nor did Nicodemus ask why this was the case. He asked how to be born again, but he did not ask why. Again, the revelation of being born into the sin nature wasn’t revealed until Romans 7. This is why we must be born again.

In our original text of Psalm 51:5, David was not referring to being born into the sin nature because they didn’t understand that concept yet. They understood the requirement to keep the commandments of the Old Testament law. Furthermore, the Hebrew word for “sin” in Psalm 51:5 is chata which indicates a sinful action rather than a sinful location (i.e. being born into (location) the sin nature) as stated in Romans 7.

In the next post, we’ll look at why David was such an outcast among his family!

Zealously Affected…but not Well

Galatians 4:16-17 (KJV)  Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the truth?  (17)  They zealously affect you, but not well…

The letter to the Galatians was written by Paul to prove that justification is not obtained through rites or laws and that they are not essential to obtain salvation. During this time of Paul’s ministry, there were religious teachers who were trying to get these new Christians in Galatia to believe that they could only be accepted by God if they kept the commandments of the Old Testament. The Old Testament Law was intended by God to constantly remind people of how sinful they were and how much in need of a Savior they were. This knowledge was intended by God to lead people to Christ for their salvation.

Paul is pointing out that those who would focus more on the Law for their spiritual justification minimize the power of Christ as their Mediator and Justifier because they are depending on their religious works rather than upon the saving grace of Jesus Christ.

In this particular area of Galatians, Paul is drawing the reader’s attention to the fact that these false teachers were zealous about their influence on others and were apparently having some form of an effect on the believers there. Paul, just like all ministers who are called of God, did his part by stepping in and heading off the devil’s attempts to destroy these believers.

The main approach the devil was using was trying to get these Christians to depend upon their own ability to keep a religious law rather than depend upon Christ’s ability to save them and set them free from the power of their sin.

“One approach the enemy of our souls uses to influence Christians in a negative way is by using the ways and fashions of this world.”

In this post, we’re going to take this concept of being zealously affected in a negative way and show how that we as Christians, no matter how long we’ve served God, must always be vigilant against the influences that this present evil world has on us and to ensure we are not effected by those influences in a negative way.

One approach the enemy of our souls uses to influence Christians in a negative way is by using the ways and fashions of this world. When we speak of “fashions of this world” negatively affecting the Christian, this doesn’t mean that a Christian cannot have any sense of fashion about their clothing, hairstyle, vehicle, etc. It simply means that we do not allow the trends of the current social system (“the world”) to have so much influence on those decisions that we start to look and act like those who don’t even know God.

We are reminded by Paul in 1st Corinthians 7:31 for the fashion of this world passeth away. The original word for “fashion” used in this verse is the Greek word schema, from which we get the English word “scheme” or design. While the Christian lifestyle is one of living according to the guidelines set by God in His word, those who don’t know God are not going to do this. Therefore, their fashions, schemes, and designs are meant to accentuate, show, and exalt qualities about themselves.

The child of God, however, while aware of looking relevant and pleasant, is also aware of the guidelines in God’s word about things such as outward modesty and holiness. In other words, our goal is not to lift ourselves up to garner everyone’s attention nor is it to lower ourselves down so as to be like everyone around us.

With this said, there are some kinds of clothing that, though they may be trendy and popular, the born again Christian just isn’t going to wear them. Again, looking relevant and pleasant are still possible but not at the cost of properly representing Christ in this world!

Video Teaching: “The Development of Emerging Leaders in the Kingdom of God”

The Apostle Paul poured into Titus as an emerging leader in the kingdom of God. Pastor Fulmer explains how that this wasn’t just something for Paul to do, but this same thing should be done in the church today!

Dealing with Diotrephes

3rd John 1:9-10  I wrote unto the church: but Diotrephes, who loveth to have the preeminence among them, receiveth us not.  (10)  Wherefore, if I come, I will remember his deeds which he doeth, prating against us with malicious words: and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and forbiddeth them that would, and casteth them out of the church.

I recently posted a blog entitled A Gift to Gaius. It was meant to be a Biblical illustration of servant-leadership in which I brought out the value of giving positive feedback and how it no doubt served Gaius in a way that only positive feedback from a respected person can. There is also another form of servant-leadership I’d like to address in this post.

Pastors are known as shepherds when it comes to leading God’s people, and the Apostle John was no exception to this. Just as shepherds have to love their sheep, so also are Pastors expected to love the people they lead. We see John’s loving side of this role in his opening address to Gaius. We see how much Gaius and his efforts for the kingdom of God meant to John and the great Apostle showed immense excitement for the fact that there was a man in that church who could be counted on to take on substantive and important roles! This would bless any Pastor!

There is another side of shepherding that, although it’s often recognized among those leading actual sheep, it is often overlooked, completely ignored, or even despised when it comes to spiritual shepherds. The side of which I’m speaking is the protective side of shepherding.

We see an example of this in the ever famous account of David and Goliath, where David tells King Saul in 1st Samuel 17:34-36  And David said unto Saul, Thy servant kept his father’s sheep, and there came a lion, and a bear, and took a lamb out of the flock:  (35)  And I went out after him, and smote him, and delivered it out of his mouth: and when he arose against me, I caught him by his beard, and smote him, and slew him.  (36)  Thy servant slew both the lion and the bear…

This part stands out to me as it pertains to the protecting side of servant-leadership because, as I alluded to earlier, it seems that when we think of leading God’s people as a shepherd, we think of it as only being in a loving, soft, or caring way. While there is certainly a place for this, it is as if that’s the only side of leadership there is or that we should acknowledge.

That’s not even the only side of actual shepherding, as we see from the words of David who was a young shepherd at the time he spoke these words. So, if we are going to use shepherding as an illustration of servant-leadership, then let’s make sure we get both sides of the illustration involved.

When David told King Saul that he killed the lion and the bear, it was for the sole intent of protecting those sheep. He didn’t allow the lion and bear to be around the sheep because “The bear just has a few anger issues that need to get worked out, but one day he’ll repent” or “The lion just likes to play a little rough with the sheep, but he means well” or “One day the lion will lay down with the lamb and he will understand the error of his ways. I just need to keep loving and teaching him and the bear until they finally understand and repent”. And yet, this is how shepherding God’s people is viewed!

As a shepherd, David did not view it that way. He viewed it as “I need to serve these sheep and serve my father, to whom these precious sheep belong, by protecting them against these predators who obviously have ill intent against the sheep.” David recognized “Both are predators and that’s what predators do. So, I need to take the proper steps to ensure these predators don’t do to my sheep what predators like to do to sheep…kill and eat them!”

THIS is what the Apostle John was doing when he told Gaius about Diotrephes in 3rd John 1:10  Wherefore, if I come, I will remember his deeds which he doeth, prating against us with malicious words: and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and forbiddeth them that would, and casteth them out of the church.

In other words, “I’m dealing with this, not because I don’t care for Diotrephes, but as a service to those whom he is destroying by his evil works.” Just like David, John was protecting the sheep from the predator that obviously had ill intent. He didn’t say, “Well, Diotrephes just needs to pray and hear the Gospel a little more and he’ll eventually get it”. John was willing to deal with the situation, knowing that the temporary friction it caused would create heat for a while, but he also knew he could take the heat and that the long lasting benefits would be worth the investment of time and energy.

Just as in our last post, there is a caring and loving side of servant-leadership, but there is also a protecting side of servant-leadership. John understood this and, rather than letting the innocent get slaughtered for the sake of keeping one person or not offending anyone (good luck with that), John was willing to accept the responsibility of his role as an Apostle and deal with the one who wasn’t doing right in order to preserve and protect those who were doing right. That is a side of shepherding we don’t hear much about, but it is definitely Biblical and it ends up serving everyone better!

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A Gift to Gaius

3 John 1:5-7  Beloved, thou doest faithfully whatsoever thou doest to the brethren, and to strangers;  (6)  Which have borne witness of thy charity before the church: whom if thou bring forward on their journey after a godly sort, thou shalt do well:  (7)  Because that for his name’s sake they went forth, taking nothing of the Gentiles.

The Apostle John, who wrote five books in the New Testament which include The Gospel of John, 1st John, 2nd John, 3rd John, and Revelation, shows to us in this shortest of New Testament books, a very important attribute of servant-leadership. It is something that, if one is not open to seeing, could be missed completely and probably is missed to the casual Bible reader who is just trying to complete their daily Bible reading and sees the brevity of this letter as an easy task.

As a Pastor, along with teaching Biblical doctrines and practical application of the Bible to my congregation, I often find myself teaching on personal development principles, so certain words and events tend to stand out to me from that perspective as well.

In the scriptures above, Gaius is the recipient of this letter and he apparently would take care of travelling ministers as they passed through his town while preaching the Gospel. There was also a church there because John would later have to deal with some issues in that church, which we’ll talk about in a later post.

Gaius was well known by John as being someone who took care of these travelling ministers and Gaius probably did these things without looking for any kind of emotional payoff from others; no likes on Facebook; just good, old fashioned love for God and appreciation for the ministry of the Gospel!

In this world of social media it seems like people think the smallest thought or deed should be recorded, noticed, and praised and so they post it on their social media accounts and wait for the responses to roll in. There will be people who give those responses even to the smallest and most mundane of things thus creating this never-ending feedback loop among the needy and the needed. While social media can have its place and be a kind of blessing even to the work of God, it is certainly not without its downfalls.

I believe John wanted to send Gaius this letter as a way of not only thanking him for his sacrificial service to the kingdom of God (which would probably have been considered an honor in itself) but by giving him a bigger gift even than that.

What gift is that? The gift to Gaius was feedback. This gave Gaius the “30,000 foot view” of the bigger plan and mission and let him see from way up high (John’s perspective) where Gaius’ efforts fit into that plan and mission down on the ground. As John would put it, verse 8 – …that we might be fellowhelpers to the truth. In other words, “Gaius, your personal efforts are helping to ensure that the truth of God’s word continues to be preached and people are given the chance to be saved! Ultimately we are building God’s kingdom and this is how your efforts fit into that!”.

Additionally, it was not just intellectual information nor an emotional outburst of “Yippy, yippy Gaius is awesome!”, but genuine and practical feedback about how Gaius’ personal efforts fit into and helped the greater mission. This is not something that had to be given all the time, nor should it be expected all the time, but it no doubt helped Gaius realize that his efforts weren’t being taken for granted but that he was serving a bigger purpose.

This approach can be applied in any setting where people are involved and it’s something I’m currently working on implementing at my own level of leadership as I also grow and develop personally. I’m sure it was appreciated by the one receiving it because it not only showed he was having a positive impact, but it also showed him where he stood in the heart of the Apostle; something I’m sure meant a lot to Gaius.

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Faith That Takes a Risk

Hebrews 11:31  By faith the harlot Rahab perished not with them that believed not, when she had received the spies with peace.

You can read about this event in Joshua 2. In this account, as the army of Israel was preparing to conquer the city of Jericho, Joshua, who was the leader of the Israel’s army at that time, sent two spies into the city to secretly gather information. This way they would know more about the city before they launched an attack.

While the spies were in the city, they went into the house of a woman named Rahab, who secretly brought them into her house and kept them safe from the army of Jericho. The spies made a promise to Rahab that, when they came in to conquer the city, they would ensure the safety of any person who was safely inside Rahab’s home during the attack.

After it was safe to leave Rahab’s house, they went back to Joshua and told him all that Rahab had done to help them during their mission. When the army of Israel would later go in and capture the city of Jericho, they made sure to keep this promise and the family of Rahab was not harmed.

When Rahab provided a safehouse for the Jewish spies, she did so at great risk to her life. This is because Israel was a feared enemy of Jericho and the king no doubt would have had her executed for such an act! But, Rahab had Faith that Takes a Risk, specifically the risk of obeying and honoring the God of Heaven even at great danger to herself!

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Rahab states her reason for protecting the spies in Joshua 2:9-11  And she said unto the men, I know that the LORD hath given you the land, and that your terror is fallen upon us, and that all the inhabitants of the land faint because of you.  (10)  For we have heard how the LORD dried up the water of the Red sea for you, when ye came out of Egypt; and what ye did unto the two kings of the Amorites, that were on the other side Jordan, Sihon and Og, whom ye utterly destroyed.  (11)  And as soon as we had heard these things, our hearts did melt, neither did there remain any more courage in any man, because of you: for the LORD your God, he is God in heaven above, and in earth beneath.

The part that stands out to me the most is where she says, “…for the LORD your God, he is God in heaven above, and in earth beneath. She had faith in the God of Israel and He made sure she was protected and blessed because she was willing to take a risk in order to serve Him!

In these last days, are you willing to have Faith that Takes a Risk so that you may be faithful to God, as Rahab was?

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Five Minute Faith Talks: “Faith that Keeps on Walking”

Hebrews 11:30  By faith the walls of Jericho fell down, after they were compassed about seven days.

You can read about this event in Joshua 6. During this time, as Israel was approaching the greatly fortified city of Jericho, Joshua was instructed by God to have the army of Israel walk around the city once every day for six days and then to walk around it seven times on the seventh day. Then, on the seventh day after walking around the city the seventh time, God would cause the walls to fall and Israel was to go in and conquer the city.

When we hear or read of this event, we often focus on the walls falling down flat and the Israelites going in and taking the great city. Of course all of that is great; however, I want to bring out what may be a less attractive but very important part of the story.

It is important because if this part had not been done, we likely would not have read about the walls falling down and Jericho being conquered. If it weren’t for this part being done first, the outcome of this story may be very different.

The part I’m talking about is how Israel walked around the city. Rather than thinking they knew a better way, they exercised faith and obeyed God’s specific commandments and just kept walking. They didn’t walk more or less than they were commanded. They simply obeyed God and walked around the city only once each day for six days and then seven times on the seventh day for a total of 13 times.

Ignoring Natural Tendencies

On the first day they may have thought, “Come on man, we can go another round. Let’s knock out two days’ worth of walking right now!” But that isn’t what God said to do. It may be that as the days went by, they got more and more tired and less and less excited. After six days of this, they may have gotten so familiar with the course around the city that the scenery probably started to get old.

Maybe some got bored and began to let their guard down a little. Then, after six days of walking the same path, God said to go around it seven times in one day! And as if that weren’t enough, they would also have to fight to conquer the city!

Through this account, we learn that we don’t always get to determine how many times we have to do something before getting the desired result. There may be situations into which we go where we expect to achieve great things and for the walls to immediately fall! Then, God says to us: “Just walk. No walls falling. No conquering. Just walk.”

In these situations, when we just keep on walking whether we see the results we want or not, we display true faith. We do this because we want to obey God and we find our fulfillment in our obedience to Him and not in our own accomplishments.

After Joshua and the army of Israel compassed the city seven times on the seventh day, the priests blew the trumpets, Jericho’s walls fell down flat, and they conquered the city just like God said they would! I believe all of this took place because they first obeyed God and had Faith That Keeps On Walking!

It’s been good to be with you in this video, and until next time, let’s lead someone closer to Christ!

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Five Minute Faith Talks – “Faith that Makes the Right Choices”

Hebrews 11:24-26  By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter;  (25)  Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season;  (26)  Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward.

In our last video, we spoke about the faith of Moses’ parents and how they chose God’s way of doing things rather than the way of those who did not honor God. We find in today’s reading that Moses must have also possessed the same kind of faith as his parents. Maybe he possessed this kind of faith because his mother, who was assigned to be his nurse by Pharoah’s daughter, probably taught Moses about faith in God. More importantly though, we know Moses possessed the same kind of faith as his parents not just because they taught him about faith, but also because of the decisions he made in his life.

In Exodus 2:11 – 12, Moses made a crucial decision that would change the trajectory of his life forever. This decision would make it abundantly clear that Moses had chosen to side with the Hebrews rather than the Egyptians.

He decided to protect a Hebrew slave from an Egyptian who was abusing the Hebrew slave. In doing so, Moses killed the Egyptian and hid the body in the sand. Some people today may say Moses was just trying to do a good deed; however, in Egyptian culture, killing an Egyptian citizen to protect a Hebrew slave meant certain death. This is because the Egyptians considered Hebrew slaves to be far less valuable than their own citizens.

Because of this decision, Moses gave up all his rights and future potential status he would have had in Egyptian society. Many Egyptians around him probably thought he was crazy for making this decision! They may have even considered him to be a traitor but Moses understood that the kingdoms of this earth are temporary. He knew that even the Egyptian kingdom, with all its glory, would one day fall and that the kingdom of God would stand forever! He looked beyond what everyone else saw and chose to be part of God’s eternal kingdom even if it meant suffering for a short time in this life. Moses truly had Faith that Makes the Right Choices!

The next time you face a similar situation where you have to make a decision that shows whose side you are on, our prayer for you is that you will choose to be on God’s side even if it means forfeiting the temporary comforts of this life to do so. We pray you’ll learn to develop Faith that Makes the Right Choices!

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