The Sweet Psalmist of Israel

King David- A Man After God’s Own Heart

The Sweet Psalmist of Israel

Sunday, January 10th, 2021

 

Welcome!  Happy New Year again if you missed us the first Sunday of the year! It is GOOD to be in the house of the Lord and worshiping our God! 

 

I long for the days when this place is FILLED once again with all who God calls and we can hear the volume magnify tenfold as we all lift up voices of praise and worship to God! I imagine those moments in my mind and hear the sounds in my ears. It will be glorious! I know we’ll experience that again! 

But you know we are all worshiping every day, even if we’re not gathering collectively in person. Worship is singing out to our King, but more so it’s a song in our heart. It’s a melody that carries us throughout our days that brings our heart near our God. It’s our thoughts that speak praises and glorify the wonders of His nature and His mighty deeds. It’s the love we express to Him in prayer. It’s the love and kindness we show to others in our words of encouragement, strength, prayer and in our deeds of service and help. Worship of God is a constant awareness of God’s presence, absolute love for us, and great desire to be our helper in every situation. Worship is remembering and knowing God is sovereign, He is all-powerful and all-knowing and He is always good

Let’s pray and invite the Holy Spirit here as we worship God. Father God we welcome You in Your Spirit to move in and through us, to change us and shape us to become more like You. We want to draw near You today Father, so draw near to us. Reveal Your heart to us today and show us through David, how we make and maintain a lifestyle of worshiping You. Show us how we keep You Lord as our greatest treasure and remain confident in who You are at all times. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen. 

 

There is a reason we are called to worship our God daily-because too quickly and you know this- our fleshly nature wants to control our circumstances, looks at only what we can see right in front of us, assumes the worst-case scenario and goes into panic mode or worry and we become unsettled, agitated, afraid and maybe even paralyzed from any positive action. God knows our frail state and our tendencies. 

We have to remember we are vessels created by God, to be filled by God Himself.

He pours Himself into us through His Spirit and fills us with His power, wisdom, strength, peace, courage, hope and joy. He calls us to worship because when we truly come to a place of meditating upon Him and His greatness, we are no longer thinking about ourselves, our weaknesses, our circumstances and what we’re afraid of or worried about. We are brought into another realm of looking up to the heavens, seeing what is eternal and not temporary, and remembering how mighty and big our God is. We are brought to a place of peace and hope.  

 

I am so excited to begin this new series that will have us look at a lifestyle of worship to God and having a heart that aligns with the heart of God. What it means to vigilantly pursue God throughout our lifetime. We’re going to do that through the eyes of King David-referred to by God, “As a man after My own heart.” 

Long before David donned the crown as king of Israel, he could be found out in nature, in pastureland, watching over his father’s sheep, making music, staring up at the sky in wonder and having conversations with God.

He was a worshiper of God from the very start and always came up with a melody to sing out loud where no one else was around but him, God and the sheep. He learned how to freely worship God out in nature, and he carried that personal connection forward as he began his long journey of becoming king and throughout his reign. David became for the people of Israel what King Saul could never be, a mentor king because his heart was aligned with God. This series will be created from a book a missionary friend of mine wrote called, The Mentor King. Author, Ron Bishop, did a tremendous job of diving into the life of David and he shares with his readers many distinctly heart-revealing days over the course of David’s life. 

 

David became a mentor king that the people needed, to show by example, how to worship God with all your heart, mind and soul. He lived a life of worship as a young boy tending sheep, as a man on the hunt as Saul was trying to kill him, as king of an entire nation and on the battlefield. He truly was a man after God’s own heart.  He wasn’t perfect, as none of us are, and he sinned plenty-we’ll look at that. But what we’ll find as we look closely at David is a man who truly loved God, revered God as Almighty in every aspect and made His relationship with God his greatest treasure. 

 

In 2 Samuel, David is referred to as the “Sweet Psalmist of Israel”.  David was musically gifted and before he was hated and hunted down by King Saul, he was actually very close to Saul and called upon to skillfully play his harp-which calmed the king when he was distressed. The tides changed later as David also fought in battle as one of Saul’s men and he helped bring them to victory. Jealousy arose in Saul as the people started chanting songs of praise to David much more than they did their own king. We’ll talk more about these times later in the series. 

 

David also had a gift for putting into words (anointed by the Spirit of God) what many of us feel, but could never express as meaningfully. We know these as the psalms that bring us so much comfort and hope. The psalms speak from the depths of our being and cry out to the heart of God. There are 150 psalms and 73 have been credited back to David as having penned them. 

 

King David became a mighty leader for Israel but was not ego driven.

David only boasted of the divine strength of God after every victory in battle and as the nation of Israel grew in power. Too often leaders are not worshippers but are too self-focused on trying to maintain their position and power, their place in the spotlight-so they neglect any acknowledgement of a higher power.

Author Ron Bishop said, “It’s quite a wonderful attribute when we see leaders give honor to God, acknowledging without any help from God, they may not have successfully come to their present victory.”

 This was the kind of leader David was. This is what he sang about to lift his own spirit in times of trial and to raise up the spirit of the people of Israel. This is how he taught his army to prepare for battle and ride out the storms in the midst of battle; it all begins and ends with a heart of worship to God.

As we begin this series, let’s learn from David the great power we draw from when we keep a song of praise to our God in our hearts; when we make the pursuit of knowing God deeply our greatest treasure and joy. There is nothing that will sustain and nurture us more than developing a heart of continual worship to our God.

 

Psalm 27: 4-8, 13-14 NIV

One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life,
to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple. For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his sacred tent and set me high upon a rock. Then my head will be exalted above the enemies who surround me; at his sacred tent I will sacrifice with shouts of joy; I will sing and make music to the Lord. Hear my voice when I call, Lord; be merciful to me and answer me. My heart says of you, “Seek his face!” Your face, Lord, I will seek.

13 I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. 14 Wait for the Lord;
    be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.

 

  1. Always a Song in His Heart Throughout his life, David always had a song for God in his heart, that he would sing out loudly or just let the melody play in his head. This was not just in times of celebration. As you read the psalms you will see many are focused of times of great distress, uncertainty, fear, exhaustion and desperation for God to protect and rescue him, and in the midst of those feelings a certainty of hope and absolute faith in His God to rescue him and his people. Let’s look at a few and remember, David made these into songs. Aren’t there songs you go to from bands you have enjoyed over the years depending on how your situation-that speak to what you’re feeling and it brings some sort of comfort to sing out those words from a place of pain or sorrow or confusion? So it was with David. 

 

    Psalm 57: 9-10 I will praise you, Lord, among the nations; I will sing of you among the peoples.
10 For great is your love, reaching to the heavens; your faithfulness reaches to the skies.

This psalm came as David fled to a cave to escape certain death from Saul. These are the words in his heart that he proclaims before God. 

    Psalm 126: 4-6 Restore our fortunes, Lord, like streams in the Negev. Those who sow with tears
    will reap with songs of joy. Those who go out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with them. 

After times of great distress, times of weeping and hardship, David believes as he remained faithful and continued to do what God asked and live in the way He called him to, those seeds of faithfulness planted with tears, will come back to him with songs of joy in God’s timing. He believed God was good all the time and upheld the faithful.

    Psalm 24: 4-6 The one who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not trust in an idol
    or swear by a false god. They will receive blessing from the Lord and vindication from God their Savior. Such is the generation of those who seek him, who seek your face, God of Jacob.

 

Imagine hearing these words from your king and leader. How inspiring and beautiful. How wonderful and encouraging and filled with hope. These are from the mentor king-David, who spoke them over his own heart and then to all the people he was charged to lead. Seek the face of God all you people and keep a pure heart for God will surely bless and vindicate you! Let us hear and receive these words today! 

David made it known he would always praise God publicly to all nations and he would affirm God’s love is faithful. Always a song in his heart to God; always leading by example; the Sweet Psalmist of Israel. 

 

2. Master at Taking Heaven’s Perspective

All his life he pondered the eternal realms and awesomeness of God. The reverence he had for God never dwindled or faded away. He looked at all situations from an eternal view. This is what pleased God so much with David. When Israel cried out to God for a king-they failed to see they already had the King of all kings-God Himself presided as King and Lord over them. He ruled and protected them. There was no better King they could ever have, yet they wanted an earthly king.

“Man’s ideal in a king to rule was Saul. God’s ideal in a king was David.” – Ron Bishop.   

Acts 13:22 22 After removing Saul, he made David their king. God testified concerning him: ‘I have found David son of Jesse, a man after my own heart; he will do everything I want him to do.’

David as the mentor king, a man after God’s own heart and the Sweet Psalmist of Israel- taught the people what God was looking for and what was only right and deserving for the true King of all Kings. This message applies to all of us today.  There is no greater call or purpose anyone of us have in this life then to worship God.

1 Chronicles 16: 28-29 NLT 28 O nations of the world, recognize the Lord, recognize that the Lord is glorious and strong. 29 Give to the Lord the glory he deserves! Bring your offering and come into his presence. Worship the Lord in all his holy splendor.

 

3. Maintained a Vigilant Pursuit of God

        Psalm 27:8  My heart says of you, “Seek his face!” Your face, Lord, I will seek.

Throughout David’s life, even times when he sinned, his heart cry was to seek the face of God and be near to Him. The pursuit of God and knowing Him intimately was David’s greatest treasure and what he clung to above all else. Look back to the key psalm we shared today to sum up what was most important to David,

“One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.”

 

Conclusion:  As a young boy and throughout his life as king, David was constantly aware of God’s love and His desire to deliver David out of every temptation, trial or battle. David upheld his belief in God as all-caring and all-powerful. As king he led the way for all of Israel to come to the feet of God and worship Him. May we also follow the song of the Sweet Psalmist of Israel.

Let’s pray.  Thank You Father for showing us Your great love that is ever present, at all times, during our greatest distresses and darkest days-You O Lord are there. You promise to never leave us or abandon us. Your desire is to rescue and help us Father and we praise You for Your goodness. We praise You for Your faithfulness and strong right hand always going before us. Help us Lord to remember these truths about You and help us to speak these truths over our heart as we find ourselves in troubled waters. Help us to rise up in the strength and hope of the Spirit as David did, knowing You are with us and always for us. Put a new song in our heart today Father and let us praise You always for You are worthy. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen. 

 

Mission Focus: At this time we are honored to have guest, Raquel with River Haven Shelter here with us. She is going to share more about the shelter that serves all of Columbia County and other services they provide to those in need. She will also share specific items they are in need of and ways we can give support. 

River Haven Homeless Shelter

 

This is our mission focus as a local community need, throughout January. Let us pray and give generously in these difficult times so they are equipped and blessed to do the work they are called to do. 

 

Final Blessing: Colossians 3: 16-17 16 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. 17 And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

 

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