Today’s Reading: 1 Sam 24:1–25:44, 1 Pet 1:20–25, Ps 125:1–127:5
Today’s Theme: Godly Character
Today’s theme is about us having godly character as Christians. As Pastor Dennis always says, “we must not let our gift take us where our character cannot keep us”.
1 Samuel 24:1–25:44
Godly character and leadership
Behold, this day your eyes have seen how the LORD gave you today into my hand in the cave. And some told me to kill you, but I spared you. I said, ‘I will not put out my hand against my lord, for he is the LORD’s anointed.’ 1 Samuel 24:10 (ESV)
David showed true leadership by not listening to the wrong advice of those around him, as opposed to Saul whom, as we have read, listened to those around him saying that David is against him. David’s heart was to honour God and His ways.
We need to listen to God and His word, we should obey God’s word rather than the ways of the world around us or the advice of those closest to us.
The first commandment is to put God first. Like David, let us determine to do things in God’s way, according to God’s word. See Romans 12:2
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! 1 Samuel 25:32–33 (ESV)
Abigail was a wise woman, full of faith and discretion. Through her intervention, David was saved from making a big mistake.
‘Discretion’ which simply means that someone “knows how to act in particular situations”, has diminished in our times. In today’s world, people are so self-centred that discretion has very little significance, instead people now say and do whatever they want, whenever they want.
As Christians we should exercise discretion like Abigail. Paul comments on us using discretion in Colossians 4:5, “Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time.” Also see Ephesians 5:15-17.
Discretion is a mark of maturity and godly Christian character.
1 Peter 1:20–25
Foreknown by God
He was foreknown before the foundation of the world but was made manifest in the last times for the sake of you 1 Peter 1:20 (ESV)
When we read the word ‘foreknow’, we may start to think about knowing something ahead of time, which is true, but in this context the word is really more to do with prior relationship and intimacy.
The following definitions are from the Bible Sense Lexicon (these are all from root words which are verbs):
- To foreknow (personally): to befriend or be acquainted with someone in a familiar way ahead of time or before meeting; implying an exclusivity of choice relative to those not befriended.
- To be foreknown (personally): to be or become friendly or acquainted with someone in a familiar way ahead of time or before meeting; implying an exclusivity of choice relative to those not befriended.
- To foreknow: to have (experiential) knowledge of some event before the occurrence.
- To know formerly: to have (experiential) knowledge of someone or something from the past.
This word is used in context to Jesus who has been in an eternal, loving relationship with His Father and is used when the bible is talking about us, who God in His heart, knew intimately before the world began.
Obedience to the truth
Having purified your souls by your obedience to the truth for a sincere brotherly love, love one another earnestly from a pure heart, 1 Peter 1:22 (ESV)
Our faith and hope are in God, and because our faith is genuine, we use our faith to obey the truth of God’s word, which in turn purifies our souls.
Obedience to the truth of God’s word, shows godly character and maturity in the faith.
When we get the fundaments of faith in God and obedience to God, laid as a foundation in our lives, then we can build on that with acts of sincere love for our brothers and sisters in Christ.
We need to make an effort to show love, that is why Peter says we should show it earnestly.
A sure salvation
since you have been born again, not of perishable seed but of imperishable, through the living and abiding word of God; 1 Peter 1:23 (ESV)
The Gospel we have heard, which we have believed and obeyed, is sure and eternal. God foreknew us and Jesus our saviour. God’s own character means His word is eternal.
We can have confidence that God has saved us eternally, we can trust God and His word, through which we have been born again.
God surrounds us
As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the LORD surrounds his people, from this time forth and forevermore. Psalm 125:2 (ESV)
God gives us security like the hills around Jerusalem give the city security in times of war. We can have full assurance in the salvation that God provides.
Do good, receive good
Do good, O LORD, to those who are good, and to those who are upright in their hearts! Psalm 125:4 (ESV)
As we walk in the goodness of godly Christian character, we receive good things from God.
Sleep and Children
It is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest, eating the bread of anxious toil; for he gives to his beloved sleep. Psalm 127:2 (ESV)
Both good sleep and children come from the Lord, although children may affect your sleep! (smile)
Rest in God today.
Most of the above post is a copy of the original notes from the same date in 2014.
The Gospel Coalition on 1 Peter 1