Order of Worship
Sunday Service 3.10.2019
      • Ephesians 1:3–9aESV

      • Ephesians 1:13–14ESV

  • Living Hope
  • Grace Unmeasured
  • Unbounded Grace
  • Through The Precious Blood
  • Good morning. Grace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
    [Scripture reading = Eph. 1:3-9a, 13-14]

    Intervening Grace - 1 Samuel 25

    PRAY: Father, you are the God of all glory, abounding in grace to those whom you are redeeming for the praise of your glorious grace by the riches of your goodness. Shape us to be people who are grounded in this grace and abounding in the overflow of grace in our lives... to the glory of your matchless name, Amen.
    INTRO:
    Abigail's wise discernment rescues David from taking revenge on Nabal. - We can all learn something today from the grace of godly intervention.
    First in the text, note the setting and characters (for what takes place)…
    1 Samuel 25:1–3 ESV
    Now Samuel died. And all Israel assembled and mourned for him, and they buried him in his house at Ramah. Then David rose and went down to the wilderness of Paran. And there was a man in Maon whose business was in Carmel. The man was very rich; he had three thousand sheep and a thousand goats. He was shearing his sheep in Carmel. Now the name of the man was Nabal, and the name of his wife Abigail. The woman was discerning and beautiful, but the man was harsh and badly behaved; he was a Calebite.
    Samuel’s death marks the end of an era and undoubtedly has a profound impact on David.
    David’s sadness will turn to frustration momentarily.
    Introducing the two other characters: (v. 3) - The text reverses the order after listing them for effect in the comparison.
    Nabal - harsh and evil/bad/worthless in his deeds
    Abigail - discerning: “good insight/understanding/prudence”
    The situation…
    1 Samuel 25:4–12 ESV
    David heard in the wilderness that Nabal was shearing his sheep. So David sent ten young men. And David said to the young men, “Go up to Carmel, and go to Nabal and greet him in my name. And thus you shall greet him: ‘Peace be to you, and peace be to your house, and peace be to all that you have. I hear that you have shearers. Now your shepherds have been with us, and we did them no harm, and they missed nothing all the time they were in Carmel. Ask your young men, and they will tell you. Therefore let my young men find favor in your eyes, for we come on a feast day. Please give whatever you have at hand to your servants and to your son David.’ ” When David’s young men came, they said all this to Nabal in the name of David, and then they waited. And Nabal answered David’s servants, “Who is David? Who is the son of Jesse? There are many servants these days who are breaking away from their masters. Shall I take my bread and my water and my meat that I have killed for my shearers and give it to men who come from I do not know where?” So David’s young men turned away and came back and told him all this.

    Nabal - A Fool’s Contempt

    David is respectful in his request.
    Nabal shows contempt for Kindness - for the kindness shown him, as well as contempt for doing good to others
    By the way, it does not seem to be the case that Nabal doesn’t ACTUALLY know who David is, this is an expression of contempt.
    David’s reaction…
    1 Samuel 25:13 ESV
    And David said to his men, “Every man strap on his sword!” And every man of them strapped on his sword. David also strapped on his sword. And about four hundred men went up after David, while two hundred remained with the baggage.
    1 Samuel 25:21–22 ESV
    Now David had said, “Surely in vain have I guarded all that this fellow has in the wilderness, so that nothing was missed of all that belonged to him, and he has returned me evil for good. God do so to the enemies of David and more also, if by morning I leave so much as one male of all who belong to him.”

    David - A Spurned Leader’s Temptation

    … especially when he considers himself to be in the right, is to think “I’ll show that fool who I am.” … and to take action accordingly.
    But this reaction from David is not a godly response, particularly the extremity of the ‘retribution.’ (Did all the male’s in Nabal’s household deserve to die for Nabal’s foolish contempt for David?) - Although not uncommon, unfortunately, we know this kind of reaction is not what comes from the model of our Savior. How did he treat those who treated him with contempt?
    1 Peter 2:23–24 ESV
    When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly. He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.
    David had done a much better job of responding in a godly manner when he had opportunity to take Saul’s life and did not. (see. ch. 24) - Why is this different? I believe the temptation is different for David here because he’s now in a position of power (though not officially).
    To lead like Jesus is even harder than respecting those in authority over you. - Chief servants!
    (Deffinbaugh) How many of us minister to others with a measuring stick in our hands? We are willing to love and serve others sacrificially, but with a certain set of expectations. We expect that sacrificial love and service should be reciprocated. When in return for our doing good, our neighbor gives us evil, like David, we get hot under the collar and look for some way to retaliate. We forget that, like Christ, our words and deeds may bring about persecution and suffering, rather than approval and gratitude. Our reward in heaven will be great, but there may be no such rewards on earth. Let us be careful to do our good works as to the Lord, looking to Him for our reward, and not the recipients of our sacrificial service.
    (But David is not yet aware of his wrong in this matter. He’s hot, and he’s going after Nabal. Unless someone else intervenes…)
    Abigail’s response:
    1 Samuel 25:14–31 ESV
    But one of the young men told Abigail, Nabal’s wife, “Behold, David sent messengers out of the wilderness to greet our master, and he railed at them. Yet the men were very good to us, and we suffered no harm, and we did not miss anything when we were in the fields, as long as we went with them. They were a wall to us both by night and by day, all the while we were with them keeping the sheep. Now therefore know this and consider what you should do, for harm is determined against our master and against all his house, and he is such a worthless man that one cannot speak to him.” Then Abigail made haste and took two hundred loaves and two skins of wine and five sheep already prepared and five seahs of parched grain and a hundred clusters of raisins and two hundred cakes of figs, and laid them on donkeys. And she said to her young men, “Go on before me; behold, I come after you.” But she did not tell her husband Nabal. And as she rode on the donkey and came down under cover of the mountain, behold, David and his men came down toward her, and she met them. Now David had said, “Surely in vain have I guarded all that this fellow has in the wilderness, so that nothing was missed of all that belonged to him, and he has returned me evil for good. God do so to the enemies of David and more also, if by morning I leave so much as one male of all who belong to him.” When Abigail saw David, she hurried and got down from the donkey and fell before David on her face and bowed to the ground. She fell at his feet and said, “On me alone, my lord, be the guilt. Please let your servant speak in your ears, and hear the words of your servant. Let not my lord regard this worthless fellow, Nabal, for as his name is, so is he. Nabal is his name, and folly is with him. But I your servant did not see the young men of my lord, whom you sent. Now then, my lord, as the Lord lives, and as your soul lives, because the Lord has restrained you from bloodguilt and from saving with your own hand, now then let your enemies and those who seek to do evil to my lord be as Nabal. And now let this present that your servant has brought to my lord be given to the young men who follow my lord. Please forgive the trespass of your servant. For the Lord will certainly make my lord a sure house, because my lord is fighting the battles of the Lord, and evil shall not be found in you so long as you live. If men rise up to pursue you and to seek your life, the life of my lord shall be bound in the bundle of the living in the care of the Lord your God. And the lives of your enemies he shall sling out as from the hollow of a sling. And when the Lord has done to my lord according to all the good that he has spoken concerning you and has appointed you prince over Israel, my lord shall have no cause of grief or pangs of conscience for having shed blood without cause or for my lord working salvation himself. And when the Lord has dealt well with my lord, then remember your servant.”

    Abigail - A Godly Woman’s Wisdom

    She does what Nabal wouldn’t do, and sends ahead a generous gift of food.
    Abigail requests that Nabal’s guilt be transferred to her (24), that she be the guilt-bearer, then later requests forgiveness (v. 28).
    She encourages David to overlook Nabal (“fool, foolish”), who lives up to his name as a worthless fellow who is morally deficient. (We can hardly expect anything different.) - Her suggestion, I believe, is that it is below David to pay any attention to him, to allow this slight to affect him.
    Abigail appeals to David’s spiritual sensitivity, recognizing that he would desire to remain free from bloodshed (implying the guilt of killing innocents along with the offender).
    She tells him how clear it is that he is in the care of the Lord and how plain it is to her that he will be king. - When that happens, he will have no guilty conscience, killing innocents along the way and taking vengeance into his own hands instead of leaving it to the Lord.
    “When God blesses you (as he surely will), remember this kind intervention from your servant.”
    Let me tell you something I believe happens here: Overall, Abigail seems genuinely concerned for David remaining right before the Lord, not simply her own benefit.
    Proverbs 31:30–31 ESV
    Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. Give her of the fruit of her hands, and let her works praise her in the gates.
    To his credit and his benefit, David does listen. (unlike Nabal)
    Here are the Results (of patiently forbearing and leaving it to the Lord)...
    1 Samuel 25:32–44 ESV
    And David said to Abigail, “Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, who sent you this day to meet me! Blessed be your discretion, and blessed be you, who have kept me this day from bloodguilt and from working salvation with my own hand! For as surely as the Lord, the God of Israel, lives, who has restrained me from hurting you, unless you had hurried and come to meet me, truly by morning there had not been left to Nabal so much as one male.” Then David received from her hand what she had brought him. And he said to her, “Go up in peace to your house. See, I have obeyed your voice, and I have granted your petition.” And Abigail came to Nabal, and behold, he was holding a feast in his house, like the feast of a king. And Nabal’s heart was merry within him, for he was very drunk. So she told him nothing at all until the morning light. In the morning, when the wine had gone out of Nabal, his wife told him these things, and his heart died within him, and he became as a stone. And about ten days later the Lord struck Nabal, and he died. When David heard that Nabal was dead, he said, “Blessed be the Lord who has avenged the insult I received at the hand of Nabal, and has kept back his servant from wrongdoing. The Lord has returned the evil of Nabal on his own head.” Then David sent and spoke to Abigail, to take her as his wife. When the servants of David came to Abigail at Carmel, they said to her, “David has sent us to you to take you to him as his wife.” And she rose and bowed with her face to the ground and said, “Behold, your handmaid is a servant to wash the feet of the servants of my lord.” And Abigail hurried and rose and mounted a donkey, and her five young women attended her. She followed the messengers of David and became his wife. David also took Ahinoam of Jezreel, and both of them became his wives. Saul had given Michal his daughter, David’s wife, to Palti the son of Laish, who was of Gallim.
    David is spared. - He praises the Lord for Abigail’s intervention and blesses Abigail herself for her discernment (good judgment, having good sense to act appropriately in a given situation).
    Nabal gets dead. - It sounds like, when he hears the news from her the next day bc he’s no longer drunk, he has a heart attack or stroke and dies 10 days later. (attributed directly to God)
    The Lord blesses Abigail. She becomes David’s wife. - [weak sauce proposal, but she doesn’t mind… ] Seriously though:
    Proverbs 31:10 ESV
    An excellent wife who can find? She is far more precious than jewels.
    (excellent, of noble character = a woman of virtue and valor —> She is of highest value!)
    … speaking of David’s wives… (Ahinoam - What seems to be the case here is that David took Ahinoam to be his wife after Saul gave Michal in marriage to someone else [undoubtedly to his own benefit and out of spite toward David]. She was apparently his wife even before he takes Abigail to be his wife here [in other lists he name always comes first].
    Conclusion: Let’s think for just a couple minutes more about this intervening grace.
    What is grace?
    Defining Grace - (In our own language and broader culture) The term grace is used in its secondary and tertiary definitions: (From Webster Dictionary) “disposition to or an act or instance of kindness, courtesy, or clemency” or “a charming or attractive trait or characteristic” - But even Webster dictionary has the primary meaning of grace right: “unmerited divine assistance given to humans for their regeneration or sanctification; a virtue coming from God; a state of sanctification enjoyed through divine assistance”
    Here’s a brief theological definition: “Grace refers to the condition of being given or shown favor, especially by someone in a position to exercise goodwill by meeting a particular need.” - Jonathan W. Lo, “Grace,” ed. Douglas Mangum et al., Lexham Theological Wordbook, Lexham Bible Reference Series (Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2014).
    Recipients of grace must become people of grace.
    John 1:14 ESV
    And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.
    John 1:16 ESV
    For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace.
    One Another - Be a friend who graciously intervenes.
    This is God’s grace to another, through you…
  • Jesus Messiah

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