Although the poetic warrior-king David was a great leader, he points to Jesus, the ultimate leader, who makes us right with God.
2 Samuel 23:1-7
23 These are the last words of David:
‘The inspired utterance of David son of Jesse,
the utterance of the man exalted by the Most High,
the man anointed by the God of Jacob,
the hero of Israel’s songs:
2 ‘The Spirit of the Lord spoke through me;
his word was on my tongue.
3 The God of Israel spoke,
the Rock of Israel said to me:
“When one rules over people in righteousness,
when he rules in the fear of God,
4 he is like the light of morning at sunrise
on a cloudless morning,
like the brightness after rain
that brings grass from the earth.”
5 ‘If my house were not right with God,
surely he would not have made with me an everlasting covenant,
arranged and secured in every part;
surely he would not bring to fruition my salvation
and grant me my every desire.
6 But evil men are all to be cast aside like thorns,
which are not gathered with the hand.
7 Whoever touches thorns
uses a tool of iron or the shaft of a spear;
they are burned up where they lie.’
David, the poetic warrior-king, colourfully described as the hero of Israel’s songs, ends his written works by acknowledging everything he has written is all God’s inspiration, before leaving a few final gems for us to ponder.
David beautifully describes a good leader as one who rules people fairly (in righteousness) with a healthy respect for what God would have him (or her) do (in fear of God). He likens this right ruling to a bright morning sunrise, or the brightness after rain. There is a sense that all will be well, and everything will work out in the end. George Washington, first president of the United States is a fine example. Someone said of him “it wasn’t his generalship that made him stand out… it was the way he attended to and stuck by his men. His soldiers knew that he respected and cared for them, and that he would share their severe hardships.” Under his leadership the colonists pulled off one of history’s greatest upsets by defeating the preeminent military power of their age with an under-trained, under-resourced militia. Although not overt in his faith, throughout his life, Washington spoke of the value of righteousness, and of seeking and offering thanks for the ‘blessings of heaven.’
David concludes by confiding that the secret to this stunning vision of having an unbreakable covenant with God, being saved from death for eternity with God, is being made right with God.
The good news is that a greater king than David has come, the ultimate hero of Israel’s songs. His name is Jesus, and he both leads us perfectly, and sacrificially, when he died for us, in order to take our sin and brokenness upon himself and bring us back to being made right with God.
Head: Based on David’s inspired description of a good leader as one who leads rightly and reverently, think of the ways Jesus fulfilled this lofty role as an excellent leader.
Heart: As a mere person, how do you feel about this biblical God, who could do anything he likes, yet commits himself to honouring his covenant with us his people, in bringing into fruition our salvation, through the sacrifice of his one and only Son?
Hands: Encourage a Christian friend today with the good news that even as God forgave David for his many sins and described him as a man after his own heart, so he will forgive us for our wrongdoing, honour his covenant with us, and give us the fruit of our salvation, eternal life with him and his son forever.
Lord, in a world where there is a sad lack of leaders, thank you for showing us what a good leader should look like, and then giving us this leader in the gift of your son Jesus. He so beautifully modelled righteousness in his leadership, yet always balanced this with reverence for you God. Grant our leaders wisdom at this time Lord, that they may rule fairly and without prejudice. In Jesus name. Amen
A song to listen to: Ancient of Days
Living Church Creek Road