Bible In One Year-Day 160 (Monday, June 09, 2014)
Commentary: 1Chronicles17-19. David’s heart towards God was unfathomable; the depth was quite unsearchable and full of unrivaled love. When he thought of the majesty of God, he concluded that it was too demeaning for him to be living in a beautifully built house while the Ark of God remained in a tent;
1 Chronicles 17:1 “Now it came to pass, as David sat in his house, that David said to Nathan the prophet, Lo, I dwell in an house of cedars, but the ark of the covenant of the LORD remaineth under curtains.”
This touched God dearly. It was like when Abraham offered the angels food on their way to destroy Sodom which provoked the prophecy that broke the backbone of barrenness in Sarah’s life (Gen18). Surely what won God’s heart for David was his heart towards God, how he appreciated God’s word and little things. The faith he had in God was sound because he believed the words that ever came to him through the mouth of the prophets were of God. That gesture of building a place for the Ark of God provoked the prophecy that shook David to his bones;
1 Chronicles 17:16 “And David the king came and sat before the LORD, and said, Who am I, O LORD God, and what is mine house, that thou hast brought me hitherto?”
The heart may be silent to man; its contents might be unknown to man according to Jer17:9, but it is loudest to God. Bishop’s cassocks, pastor’s collars and the priest’s robes could succeed in speaking deceit to man, the heart is what God listens to. For instance, out of many places in the gospel, Jesus revealed the heart of men on many occasions.
Matthew 12:25 “And Jesus knew their thoughts, and said to them …”
Mark 8:17 “And when Jesus knew it, he saith to them, Why reason ye …”
Inability to read the heart of man makes us to judge wrongly. You will be able to understand this better if you take time to read Luke7:36-50. The Pharisee thought he had done the utmost by asking Jesus to come into his house to eat. His heart was saying something different from what he portrayed on inviting Jesus to dine with him. He was disappointed to see Jesus receiving a sinner that came in at the dinner. Let’s start by looking at the state of the heart of the woman, the sinner;
Luke 7:38 “And stood at his feet behind him weeping, ..”
This was the state of the heart (a contrite heart) of the woman which resulted in the following actions “and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment.”
The definition of contrite is “feeling remorse for a sin” To weep is not a sign of weakness but that such has a good and compassionate heart. Without such heart, the gift of God cannot be used in love. The Pharisee thought he had given all, but failed in showing love because he had not the required heart which God could not despise. You could give the whole of your house, if love is not the basis, it amounts to nothing. The measure of your love for God is seen in your relationship with people around you. What you give is not what matters, but the spirit behind the gift. God stands by whoever has a broken and contrite heart;
Psalms 34:18 “The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit.”
Both the Pharisee and the woman were sinners according to Jesus’ parable, Luke7:40-43.The Pharisee was an unconscious sinner, who was well dressed, but the woman was a conscious sinner who could not cover her sin before the Lord with any “good work” The woman was conscious of her sins and therefore broke down at the feet of Jesus. She received forgiveness of sin but there was no justification for the Pharisee even though Jesus ate in his house. The tears of the woman was an expression of a humble, broken and contrite heart and spirit, her hair was a sign of total submission, the kissing was an outward show of her deep love for Jesus and the fragrance oil is just to keep the fire burning (i.e. refreshing). All these couldn’t be achieved without a crushed heart.
David had a contrite heart towards God; i.e. a crushed spirit and heart, broken and ground. God wants this type of heart from you and if you have it, He cannot despise you;
Psalms 51:17 “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.”
When you realize that you aren’t complete again due to an act of sin and that you need God’s help in this wise, which is a broken spirit. This pain in the spirit, leading to repentance and confession of your weaknesses and failures is as a result of a broken and contrite spirit which God desires from us.
The blood is available for this type of heart. Repentance is feeling sorry for the act (not for being caught) and forsaking (i.e. not to get involved any longer) it. David was not caught in the same sin twice, but repented and forsook each sin he realized.
John 4:23 “But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.”
In order to have this type of heart, you will be tried and tested by God. David went through hard times before he eventually became the king. He lived in caves and as a fugitive in Jerusalem. His life was exposed to series of death threats but because he trusted in God, he overcame all.
Many are using good works to cover their sins. Beloved, God cannot be bribed; whatever a man sows, so shall he reap. A broken relationship with God must be restored on God’s terms and not of man’s wisdom. The Pharisee tried to use good works to cover up sinful heart, but Jesus listened to the unrighteousness of his heart. His thinking, perhaps, was that if he offered Jesus good food, he has become righteous automatically. Whatever we do, God will do the final marking and give praise to the one who deserved it; note that actions are weight by God Himself.
1 Corinthians 4:5 “Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God.”
1 Samuel 2:3 “Talk no more so exceeding proudly; let not arrogancy come out of your mouth: for the LORD is a God of knowledge, and by him actions are weighed.”
The blood of Jesus is for cleansing and not for hiding to perpetrate sin. We cannot hide in it and continue sinning. After cleansing, a Christian heart must react to any form of sin in a remorseful manner (not as a formula, though); it is like finding a stain of ink on a white three piece suit. When we are talking about a broken and a contrite heart, we are talking about openness to God, sorrowfulness to the stain and humbleness for help; it is not the religious way of asking for forgiveness but the steps taken to be re-united with God in our spirit, i.e. restoring a broken relationship.
Let us seek for the old path where we could find rest. Let us listen to the trumpet’s sound, wherewith we could escape the calamity to come. Our reading for today is 1Chronicles20-22. Keep the fire burning and alive
Isaiah 57:15 “For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.”