070422 David Eulogy For A Tragedy 1 Samuel 31 & 2 Samuel 1 Dale Wells

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A sermon on 1 Samuel 31 & 2 Samuel 1 delivered at Palm Desert Church of Christ by Dale Wells on April 22, 2007.

A sermon on 1 Samuel 31 & 2 Samuel 1 delivered at Palm Desert Church of Christ by Dale Wells on April 22, 2007.

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  • 1. David: Shaping a Godly Heart Eulogy for a Tragedy 1 Samuel 31 & 2 Samuel 1
  • 2.  
  • 3. “ When you wish to pawn a star, it makes no difference who you are”
  • 4. A question – or a name?
  • 5. Life is portrayed on a headstone by a dash between two dates
  • 6.  
  • 7.  
  • 8.  
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  • 15.  
  • 16.  
  • 17. David – among God’s enemies
  • 18. Saul – learns he will die in battle
  • 19. 1 Samuel 28:1-6 NIV
    • In those days the Philistines gathered their forces to fight against Israel … (4) The Philistines assembled and came and set up camp at Shunem, while Saul gathered all the Israelites and set up camp at Gilboa. (5) When Saul saw the Philistine army, he was afraid; terror filled his heart. (6) He inquired of the LORD, but the LORD did not answer him by dreams or Urim or prophets.
  • 20. The Lord will not answer Saul
    • No answer through priests
    • No answer through prophets
    • He turns to the occult
  • 21. 1 Samuel 28:7-25 NIV
    • Saul then said to his attendants, "Find me a woman who is a medium, so I may go and inquire of her." "There is one in Endor," they said. (8) So Saul disguised himself, putting on other clothes, and at night he and two men went to the woman. "Consult a spirit for me," he said, "and bring up for me the one I name."
  • 22. 1 Samuel 28:7-25 NIV
    • (9) But the woman said to him, "Surely you know what Saul has done. He has cut off the mediums and spiritists from the land. Why have you set a trap for my life to bring about my death?" (10) Saul swore to her by the LORD, "As surely as the LORD lives, you will not be punished for this." (11) Then the woman asked, "Whom shall I bring up for you?" "Bring up Samuel," he said.
  • 23. 1 Samuel 28:7-25 NIV
    • (12) When the woman saw Samuel, she cried out at the top of her voice and said to Saul, "Why have you deceived me? You are Saul!" (13) The king said to her, "Don't be afraid. What do you see?" The woman said, "I see a spirit coming up out of the ground." (14) "What does he look like?" he asked. "An old man wearing a robe is coming up," she said. Then Saul knew it was Samuel …
  • 24. 1 Samuel 28:7-25 NIV
    • (15) Samuel said to Saul, "Why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?" "I am in great distress," Saul said. "The Philistines are fighting against me, and God has turned away from me. He no longer answers me, either by prophets or by dreams. So I have called on you to tell me what to do."
  • 25. 1 Samuel 28:7-25 NIV
    • (16) Samuel said, "Why do you consult me, now that the LORD has turned away from you and become your enemy? (17) The LORD has done what he predicted through me. The LORD has torn the kingdom out of your hands and given it to one of your neighbors--to David. (18) Because you did not obey the LORD or carry out his fierce wrath against the Amalekites, the LORD has done this to you today.
  • 26. 1 Samuel 28:7-25 NIV
    • (19) The LORD will hand over both Israel and you to the Philistines, and tomorrow you and your sons will be with me. The LORD will also hand over the army of Israel to the Philistines." (20) Immediately Saul fell full length on the ground, filled with fear because of Samuel's words. His strength was gone, for he had eaten nothing all that day and night.
  • 27. 1 Samuel 28:7-25 NIV
    • (21) When the woman came to Saul and saw that he was greatly shaken, she said, "Look, your maidservant has obeyed you. I took my life in my hands and did what you told me to do. (22) Now please listen to your servant and let me give you some food so you may eat and have the strength to go on your way."
  • 28. 1 Samuel 28:7-25 NIV
    • (23) He refused and said, "I will not eat." But his men joined the woman in urging him, and he listened to them. He got up from the ground and sat on the couch. (24) The woman had a fattened calf at the house, which she butchered at once. She took some flour, kneaded it and baked bread without yeast. (25) Then she set it before Saul and his men, and they ate. That same night they got up and left.
  • 29. Thoughts on the Witch of Endor
    • Why doesn’t she see through Saul’s disguise?
    • Why was she so surprised to see Samuel?
    • She doesn’t reveal anything – Samuel does!
  • 30. 1 Samuel 31:1-13 NIV
    • Now the Philistines fought against Israel; the Israelites fled before them, and many fell slain on Mount Gilboa. (2) The Philistines pressed hard after Saul and his sons, and they killed his sons Jonathan, Abinadab and Malki-Shua. (3) The fighting grew fierce around Saul, and when the archers overtook him, they wounded him critically.
  • 31. 1 Samuel 31:1-13 NIV
    • (4) Saul said to his armor-bearer, "Draw your sword and run me through, or these uncircumcised fellows will come and run me through and abuse me." But his armor-bearer was terrified and would not do it; so Saul took his own sword and fell on it. (5) When the armor-bearer saw that Saul was dead, he too fell on his sword and died with him.
  • 32. 1 Samuel 31:1-13 NIV
    • (6) So Saul and his three sons and his armor-bearer and all his men died together that same day. (7) When the Israelites along the valley and those across the Jordan saw that the Israelite army had fled and that Saul and his sons had died, they abandoned their towns and fled. And the Philistines came and occupied them.
  • 33. 1 Samuel 31:1-13 NIV
    • (8) The next day, when the Philistines came to strip the dead, they found Saul and his three sons fallen on Mount Gilboa. (9) They cut off his head and stripped off his armor, and they sent messengers throughout the land of the Philistines to proclaim the news in the temple of their idols and among their people.
  • 34. 1 Samuel 31:1-13 NIV
    • (10) They put his armor in the temple of the Ashtoreths and fastened his body to the wall of Beth Shan. (11) When the people of Jabesh Gilead heard of what the Philistines had done to Saul, (12) all their valiant men journeyed through the night to Beth Shan.
  • 35. 1 Samuel 31:1-13 NIV
    • They took down the bodies of Saul and his sons from the wall of Beth Shan and went to Jabesh, where they burned them. (13) Then they took their bones and buried them under a tamarisk tree at Jabesh, and they fasted seven days.
  • 36. Saul’s suicide
    • Other Bible suicides
      • Ahithopel
      • Zimri
      • Judas
      • Saul’s armor bearer
    • Even in death, Saul is more concerned about himself than God
  • 37.
    • Hears of Saul’s death
    David …
  • 38. 2 Samuel 1:1-10 NIV
    • After the death of Saul, David returned from defeating the Amalekites and stayed in Ziklag two days. (2) On the third day a man arrived from Saul's camp, with his clothes torn and with dust on his head. When he came to David, he fell to the ground to pay him honor. (3) "Where have you come from?" David asked him. He answered, "I have escaped from the Israelite camp."
  • 39. 2 Samuel 1:1-10 NIV
    • (4) "What happened?" David asked. "Tell me." He said, "The men fled from the battle. Many of them fell and died. And Saul and his son Jonathan are dead." (5) Then David said to the young man who brought him the report, "How do you know that Saul and his son Jonathan are dead?"
  • 40. 2 Samuel 1:1-10 NIV
    • (6) "I happened to be on Mount Gilboa," the young man said, "and there was Saul, leaning on his spear, with the chariots and riders almost upon him. (7) When he turned around and saw me, he called out to me, and I said, 'What can I do?' (8) "He asked me, 'Who are you?' "'An Amalekite,' I answered.
  • 41. 2 Samuel 1:1-10 NIV
    • (9) "Then he said to me, 'Stand over me and kill me! I am in the throes of death, but I'm still alive.' (10) "So I stood over him and killed him, because I knew that after he had fallen he could not survive. And I took the crown that was on his head and the band on his arm and have brought them here to my lord."
  • 42.
    • Hears of Saul’s death
    • Mourns Saul’s death
    David …
  • 43. 2 Samuel 1:11-12 NIV
    • Then David and all the men with him took hold of their clothes and tore them. (12) They mourned and wept and fasted till evening for Saul and his son Jonathan, and for the army of the LORD and the house of Israel, because they had fallen by the sword.
  • 44.
    • Hears of Saul’s death
    • Mourns Saul’s death
    • Avenges Saul’s death
    David …
  • 45. 2 Samuel 1:13-16 NIV
    • David said to the young man who brought him the report, "Where are you from?" "I am the son of an alien, an Amalekite," he answered. (14) David asked him, "Why were you not afraid to lift your hand to destroy the Lord's anointed?"
  • 46. 2 Samuel 1:13-16 NIV
    • (15) Then David called one of his men and said, "Go, strike him down!" So he struck him down, and he died. (16) For David had said to him, "Your blood be on your own head. Your own mouth testified against you when you said, 'I killed the Lord's anointed.'"
  • 47. Apparent contradiction:
    • Did Saul commit suicide?
      • 1 Samuel 31:4 NIV Saul said to his armor-bearer, "Draw your sword and run me through …" But his armor-bearer was terrified and would not do it; so Saul took his own sword and fell on it.
    • Or was he murdered?
      • 2 Samuel 1:6-10 NIV "I happened to be on Mount Gilboa … and there was Saul, leaning on his spear … (9) "Then he said to me, 'Stand over me and kill me! … (10) "So I stood over him and killed him, because I knew that after he had fallen he could not survive …"
  • 48. A possible explanation
    • The Amalekite, trying to get credit and a reward claimed to kill Saul, when he had not done so.
    • David believed the Amalekite killed Saul.
  • 49. Only Bible account of euthanasia
    • Gk: eu “good” + thanatos “death”
      • Passive – no heroic measures (DNR)
        • Body progresses to the conclusion God has ordained
      • Active – deliberately ending life
        • Argument from silence. God could comment, but doesn’t
  • 50. They say “death with dignity”
    • Death is penalty for sin
    • Penalties are not dignified
    • Death with dignity is a contradiction in terms
  • 51. David’s Eulogy
  • 52. 2 Samuel 1:17-27 NIV
    • David took up this lament concerning Saul and his son Jonathan, … (19) "Your glory, O Israel, lies slain on your heights. How the mighty have fallen! (20) "Tell it not in Gath, proclaim it not in the streets of Ashkelon, lest the daughters of the Philistines be glad, lest the daughters of the uncircumcised rejoice.
  • 53. 2 Samuel 1:17-27 NIV
    • (21) "O mountains of Gilboa, may you have neither dew nor rain, nor fields that yield offerings of grain. For there the shield of the mighty was defiled, the shield of Saul--no longer rubbed with oil. (22) From the blood of the slain, from the flesh of the mighty, the bow of Jonathan did not turn back, the sword of Saul did not return unsatisfied.
  • 54. 2 Samuel 1:17-27 NIV
    • (23) "Saul and Jonathan-- in life they were loved and gracious, and in death they were not parted. They were swifter than eagles, they were stronger than lions. (24) "O daughters of Israel, weep for Saul, who clothed you in scarlet and finery, who adorned your garments with ornaments of gold. (25) "How the mighty have fallen in battle! Jonathan lies slain on your heights.
  • 55. 2 Samuel 1:17-27 NIV
    • (26) I grieve for you, Jonathan my brother; you were very dear to me. Your love for me was wonderful, more wonderful than that of women. (27) "How the mighty have fallen! The weapons of war have perished!"
  • 56.  
  • 57.  
  • 58. Real tragedy is not dying wrong, but living wrong
    • Suicide is the final act of a man who defied God.
    • The only man who mourned Saul was David, the man he hated.
    • Remember the dash on the headstone.
      • That is the time of your life.
      • Are you going to live with – or without – God?
  • 59. God is not limited by tragedy
    • This appears to be the end of the national hope.
    • Philistines have overrun Israel.
    • Unknown to everyone at the time, Israel is on the verge of its golden years.
    • Sometimes, it takes a funeral to open the doors to the future.
  • 60. Of Jesus
    • Seemed that Devil had won the final victory.
    • Cross seemed to display foolishness.
    • Yet, Jesus death opened up the throne room of God for you and me.
    • It is incredible what God can do with a tragedy!
  • 61.
    • I read of a man who stood to speak At the funeral of a friend. He referred to the dates on her tombstone, From the beginning...to the end.
    The Dash
  • 62.
    • He noted that first came her date of birth And then spoke of that date with tears, But he said what mattered most of all Was the dash between those years.
    The Dash
  • 63.
    • For that dash represents all the time, That she spent alive on earth. And now only those who loved her, Know what that little line is worth.
    The Dash
  • 64.
    • For it matters not, how much we own; The cars...the house...the cash. What matters is how we live and love And how we spend our dash.
    The Dash
  • 65.
    • So think about this long and hard, Are there things you'd like to change? For you never know how much time is left, That can still be rearranged.
    The Dash
  • 66.
    • If we could just slow down enough To consider what's true and real, And always try to understand The way other people feel.
    The Dash
  • 67.
    • And be less quick to anger, And show appreciation more And love the people in our lives Like we've never loved before.
    The Dash
  • 68.
    • If we treat each other with respect, And more often wear a smile. Remembering that this special dash Might only last a little while.
    The Dash
  • 69.
    • So, when your eulogy's being read With your life's actions to rehash. Would you be proud of the things they say About how you spent your dash?
    The Dash
  • 70.