Lifelong

In these times, it is crucial for us to know who we truly are. When uncertainty comes, when fear is present and when all that we thought was sure is stripped away from us, our identity is tested. God has always been deeply concerned that we should know who we are in Him. In this series, we will look through the life of David, learning from his story the truth of who we are in God and ultimately through the person of Jesus.

1. We are chosen

 1 Samuel 16:1-13

Andy Harding - 10 May 2020

David was chosen and we are chosen too, but not on our own merit; we are chosen because of Jesus. We learn here that God does not see as man does, he does not measure character by charisma, but his desire is for us to be after his own heart. David was not the expected choice, but he was God’s choice. The fields from which he had been called were the same fields from which over a 1000 years later the skies would burst with angelic songs of praise and declaration ‘today in the city of David a saviour has been born, Christ the Lord’ (Luke 2). David’s life points to Jesus and so do ours. Where we have been overlooked, we are seen by God. Where we have become preoccupied with the external, God wants to refocus us on the internal. Our identity is founded on Jesus and through the life of David we see how that was planned from long ago.

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2. We are not afraid

 1 Sam 17:20-23, 32-37, 45-50

Odele Harding - 17 May 2020

Saul was hiding, the Israelites were quaking, Goliath was prowling. So often we can feel powerless before the frightening things we face, we feel intimidated and paralysed. That’s what this army was like, God’s people here were afraid. But David lived by a different score, he knew who his God was, he believed in the victory of his God and he stepped up to the plate, he was courageous and defeated Goliath in the strength of his God not in the strength of man. Sometimes we're afraid and battle with insecurities about our identity, sometimes we hide, often we feel small in the face of our enemies; but in David here we see a reflection of the victory won for us by Jesus, he fought and defeated our many Goliaths. We can at times be like the Israelites when they were scared and fearful. The Israelites stayed in a place of fear whereas we, through Jesus, can learn to look different and not stay in a place of fear but instead be strong and courageous in Jesus.

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3. We have a refuge

 Psalm 31

Naomi Black - 24 May 2020

David was in the wilderness. Saul was bent upon destroying him and David was on the run, forced to live in seclusion for the sake of his life. We can spend a good portion of our lives running out of fear, rejection, opposition. Too often, we gloss over our pain, but that's not what scripture does. In the psalms which David wrote, he does not run away from feelings of rejection and being downcast. He stares the wilderness in the face and sees what God is doing there, declaring God as his refuge in the wilderness. This is an encouragement to be real about where we are and see what God is doing. But we learn something more from David here. He does not wallow. There is a difference between being real about your wilderness and believing it and only it defines you. David still knew who he was and he still knew who his God was. Knowing that our identity is secure in Jesus does not mean we won’t experience suffering or periods of wilderness and when we do we don’t need to be blinkered about our experiences. We are not defined by those times, they are not our identity - our identity is in Jesus.

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4. We are worshippers

 2 Samuel 6:2-22

Zak Robb - 31 May 2020

David is a worshipper pre and post kingship, his status does not change his approach to God. In his early life, David plays his harp for King Saul when he is deeply troubled and because the Lord was with David, Saul’s soul was calmed by his worship (1 Sam 16:14-23). David as King restores the ark to Jerusalem – it doesn’t go to plan at the beginning but in the end the place where God’s presence dwelt was brought in with never before seen celebration. David blessed the people and danced undignified before the Lord to bring him glory, his worship is totally free and delightful. Part of our identity is that we are worshippers. We are free, undignified worshippers. Do we worship in all seasons and situations?

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5. We are sorry

 Psalm 51

Andy Harding - 14 Jun 2020

David’s life is a roller-coaster, we see the whole arc of it throughout this story. He messed up and so do we. David saw what he wanted in Bathsheba and he did whatever he could to get what he wanted and then we see the spiral. Sin has a way of working its way into our lives so we end up doing things we never thought we’d be capable of. The fact is, sin is real and we have to take it seriously. We often underestimate the hold of sin in our lives but even more than that we underestimate the sheer magnitude of God’s grace and his ability and desire to forgive. Because of Jesus our sins are forgotten, completely atoned for once and for all. David lived under a system of sacrifice and so he had to go through a lot more than we do to be forgiven, Jesus atoned for our sins, he has won for us what we could never win for ourselves. There is a call for us to be real about our sin, a call to be real about saying sorry but over it all, a call to stand in awe of God’s grace and complete forgiveness of us.

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6. We are forgiven

 2 Samuel 12

James Cant - 21 Jun 2020

Under the law of the Torah, David deserved to die, yet God spared him. God forgave him and restored him. There were still terrible consequences for him because sin scars and it doesn’t just affect us, but David did not get what he knew he deserved. He was forgiven. So are we! We have died to our sins and we are made alive in Christ which totally changes things for us. Restoration in Christ is not just the precarious rebuilding of the things we’ve broken in our lives, restoration in Christ is an overhaul, a new and much better building in us than we could ever have imagined.

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7. We are secure

 2 Samuel 22:17-31

Naomi Black - 28 Jun 2020

David was secure in his identity as one loved by God. In 2 Sam 22 David sings a song he wrote much earlier in his life - Psalm 18. This song was written in his early youth, before his later public failings. In it he speaks of his innocence but we know and he knew how he had sinned against God and yet he still sings this song, these words don’t stop being true for David and more importantly true about God. It wasn’t because of his innocence that David was secure, it was because of his identity as one loved by God. Identity is not just about us feeling good about ourselves, but about us being secure in ourselves as children of God. Where are the places of insecurity in our lives, what are we standing on, what or who has become our refuge, our rock, the place we run to – is it a person, a relationship, a calling, a place, our possessions, our savings, or is it truly God. How can we live in this security as children of God? (1 John 3:1)

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8. We have a legacy

 Psalm 131, Philippians 2:5-8

Eddie Backler - 5 Jul 2020

As David comes to the end of his life, the legacy he leaves is one of great humility - it influenced his perspective, it drew him to solitude with God and it was a foreshadowing of the perfect humility we see displayed for us in Christ.

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