NEHCC Sermon - 3-30-08 - Expect to Be Victorious
NORTHEAST HOUSTON COMMUNITY CHURCH
Sermon – Expect to Be Victorious
Scripture – 1 Sam 30:1-6
1 Sam 30:1-6
30 Now it happened, when David and his men came to Ziklag, on the third day, that the Amalekites had invaded the South and Ziklag, attacked Ziklag and burned it with fire, 2 and had taken captive the women and those who were there, from small to great; they did not kill anyone, but carried them away and went their way. 3 So David and his men came to the city, and there it was, burned with fire; and their wives, their sons, and their daughters had been taken captive. 4 Then David and the people who were with him lifted up their voices and wept, until they had no more power to weep. 5 And David's two wives, Ahinoam the Jezreelitess, and Abigail the widow of Nabal the Carmelite, had been taken captive. 6 Now David was greatly distressed, for the people spoke of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and his daughters. But David strengthened himself in the Lord his God. NKJV
God is victorious, Jesus is victorious and He wants us to be Victorious. When trouble comes we do not plan to be victorious we either start a pity party or only try to survive. WE must stop being satisfied with just surviving.
David’s Darkest hours
Saul had driven him from his country, A whole city of priest and people were killed in retaliation for helping him, the Philistines had driven him from their camp, the Amalekites had plundered his city, his wives were taken prisoners, and now, to complete his woe, his own familiar friends, in whom he trusted, whom he had sheltered, and who did eat of his bread, instead of sympathizing with him and offering him any relief, lifted up the heel against him and threatened to stone him. Great faith must expect such severe exercises.
4 Then David and the people who were with him lifted up their voices and wept, until they had no more power to weep.
The families of these men were all they had. They were outcast among their people and lived in a tenuous relationship with their enemies. Their only emotional, physical refuge was with their families and now they were gone. This was often the only thing they had to look forward too. This was a great part of their motivation to risk all that they did.
Married couples must take note of this situation. Often men and now women as bread winners are in constant battle emotionally and mentally during the day that the only place they can finds refuge, rest and rejuvenation is with their family. The role of the spouse as a help mate has been grossly underestimated in our society. The changes we live with now require both parties to revive and renew each other. David and his men are in their darkest hour. They too have lost all that was dear to them. The men with David, through their grief, saw as their recourse to stone David.
V6a … the people spoke of stoning him
None of them has lost more than David. David, as their leader had provided for them in the past. But one event not understood will cause men and women to forget the good of the past and react unwisely perhaps unknowingly at the instigation of Satan.
Remember, David was the beginning line of Jesus; Jesus was called the son of David.
We learn a valuable lesson from David in his darkest hour. We can learn to take strength in the Lord.
V6 But David strengthened himself in the Lord his God.
Those that have taken the Lord for their God may take encouragement from their relation to him in the worst of times. It is the duty and interest of all good people, whatever happens, to encourage themselves in God as their Lord and their God, assuring themselves that he can and will bring light out of darkness, peace out of trouble, and good out of evil, to all that love him and are the called according to his purpose, Rom 8:28.
We learn best through repetition so I am going to repeat myself again for your benefit and mine. “nothing happens to us as Gods children that does not first go through the hands of God and our God who loves us so much that He sent His Son to die for us will not let anything happen to us that is not for our good.”
We must, even in the darkest hour, put our trust (faith) in God. We may not understand it but that is where faith excels.
It was David's practice,
Ps 56:3-4 3 Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in You. 4 In God (I will praise His word), In God I have put my trust; I will not fear. What can flesh do to me? NKJV
When he was at his wits' end he was not at his faith's end.
Quote: Man’s extremity becomes God’s opportunity
David did not just sit there and say “this is a bad situation; I will sit here and trust God to fix it.” No he inquired of God.
1 Sam 30:8 8 So David inquired of the Lord, saying, "Shall I pursue this troop? Shall I overtake them?" NKJV
We inquire of God through prayer, scripture and godly people.
There are often things we can do. More than often the way does not show itself until we begin stepping out on His word, doing what He says, believing in His promises.
Although the way or answer may seem obvious, it is still wise to inquire of the Lord if nothing more than to confirm the way. Sometimes He may have a better way. And you know what gets me is that sometimes the answer may be right in front of me and I did not see it until God opens my eyes.
Because He inquired of God first, God gave him more that he requested. He said that He would have victory and not one thing or person would be lost.
David had only 600 men and would definitely be outnumbered. We have to learn to leave the HOW to our solution to God. It can come in any form he chooses.In this case he providentially had them cross the path of an Egyptian that led them to the camp of the Amliakites.
On the way, 200 of David’s men were too weary to continue so David ordered them to stay at Brook Besor.
David continues with now only 400 men being more outnumbered. Does this sound familiar? It is so clear I am tempted not to tell you. But do you remember Gideon? God sent him into battle and along the way he reduced his already outnumbered army down to only 300. I think God did the same thing here so that the victory would bring glory only to Him.
Can you believe God for the victory? Let’s look at verse 17
V17-20 Then David attacked them from twilight until the evening of the next day. Not a man of them escaped, except four hundred young men who rode on camels and fled. 18 So David recovered all that the Amalekites had carried away, and David rescued his two wives. 19 And nothing of theirs was lacking, either small or great, sons or daughters, spoil or anything which they had taken from them; David recovered all. NKJ
If God says it then you believe it. He can give you victory in every part of your life and against any enemy, just leave the how to Him.
I want to call your attention to another very important lesson maybe even two in one.
1 Sam 30:21 21 Now David came to the two hundred men who had been so weary that they could not follow David, whom they also had made to stay at the Brook Besor.
V22 Then all the wicked and worthless men* of those who went with David answered and said, "Because they did not go with us, we will not give them any of the spoil that we have recovered, except for every man's wife and children, that they may lead them away and depart." NKJV
We have here the victorious return of the 400 back to join up with the 200 that were left behind because they were too weak to continue into battle. And with David there were some wicked and worthless men among them. Sometimes as a man or woman of God we may be working with some wicked and worthless people.
Lest just call them none believers.
You or I may be the one that God is using to reveal Himself to these types of people. As a leader of a group of people or congregation, among them may be a wide range of characters. Did not Jesus have within His disciples a wicked and worthless person in the presence of Judas? But as a Godly leader we must always represent God in all our dealings. It is God’s design and purpose for us to change them if possible, not for them to change us.
They wanted to deny them the spoils of the victory and send them and their families away denying them what God had given them. It was not their victory but they could not see that. But the man after God’s own heart did.
V24 23 But David said, "My brethren, you shall not do so with what the Lord has given us, who has preserved us and delivered into our hand the troop that came against us. NKJV
When God blesses this church all members benefit from His blessings. I don’t single out the strong from the weak, the rich from the poor. For the strongest, richest and most spiritual are what we are by the grace of God.
These weaker men did not go into battle but the served by guarding the supplies. Whatever Service God calls us too it is precious in His sight and of value.
As much as it is possible within me, I want to be considered a “man after God’s own heart” taking the lessons from David and avoid that which I should not do and seek to do that which I should do.
We have often heard or even used the phrase. It is always darkest before the dawn.”
This is was a dark period in David’s life but He sought God and God had encouraged Him. And now there is a dawning of a brighter day. This is the last battle that David has to fight before he becomes king. In the next battle between Israel and the Philistines, the one that the Philistines’ sent David away from, in that Battle Saul and Jonathan were killed and David becomes King.
When we are in our darkest hour and we know that God is with us, let us go and inquire of God and look forward to the dawn.
This story of sadness and victory may have prompted David to write.
Ps 30:5 Weeping may endure for a night, But joy comes in the morning. NKJV
I encourage you to be a man or woman after God’s own heart seeking to please Him and placing his will above our own, trusting in Him in the midst of our darkest hour and I assure you that you will see a brighter day ahead.
Remember this story of how for David it was the darkest before the dawn. We all are going to have our Ziglag experience. Do like David and strengthen yourself in the Lord.
As it was with our lord, while on the cross it, was the darkest period of His life for then He cried out “My God, My God why hast thou forsaken me.” Only to find that the dawning of Sunday morning would be the brightest Day in the History of mankind.
1 Cor 15:50-58
50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption.
51 Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed —
52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
54 So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: "Death is swallowed up in victory."*
55 "O Death, where is your sting?* O Hades, where is your victory?"*
56 The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law.
57 But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
58 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord. NKJV
CHRISTIAN LIFE—be consistent
2 Samuel 23:11–12; Acts 17:9
Back to Being Ourselves
The Egyptians scored immense gains in the first few days of the Yom Kippur War in 1973. But on the tenth to twelfth day the initiative shifted to the Israelis when their armor smashed an Egyptian advance and opened the prospect of a swift, punishing Israeli counterattack. The Israeli chief of staff called Premier Golda Meir from the Sinai. His message—simplicity itself—told Golda all she needed to know: “Both the Israelis and the Egyptians are back at being themselves.”
God’s people sometimes fall from grace in setbacks that humiliate them and disgrace him. Caught by surprise, as the Israelis were in the Sinai, we fall before Satan’s sneak attack, our righteousness collapsing before his overwhelming advances. However, we need not worry. The faith that serves as our vanguard serves also as our rearguard. It will stop the panicked chaos of retreat, stabilize our lines, rush reinforcements into the breach, and begin a counterattack! We can be ourselves again, rebounding from sin to righteousness, from defeat to victory. Temporary defeats are expected in any war, even when the enemy is being beaten. What God wants from us is consistent effort and a forward-looking witness.
|Veitch’s Victory||April 22|
It was an upsetting night in 1680 when soldiers burst into the peaceful home of William and Marion Veitch and dragged him off to prison for his faith in Christ. The children were terrified, but Marion, finding strength in the Lord, read to them from Scripture. Then as soon as she could arrange it, she set off to visit her husband. It appeared he would be removed far away and executed, so there was no time to lose.
Marion’s journey took place on a bitterly cold January day. The snow was blinding, and she had to fight the weather on horseback. Night fell, and she trudged on, finally arriving at the prison, half-frozen, about midnight.
The guards wouldn’t disturb her husband until morning, so Marion sat by the fire and waited. The next day, she was given only a moment with him in the presence of guards before being torn away. Marion went to a friend’s house, wept her fill, and opened her Bible. The words of Isaiah 8:12–13 spoke powerfully to her: “ … Nor be afraid of their threats, nor be troubled. The Lord of hosts, Him you shall hallow; Let Him be your fear, and let Him be your dread.” She rested herself in the Lord and cast her burden on Him.
A day or two later, their archenemy, Vicar Thomas Bell, who was responsible for William’s arrest, called on a friend. He lingered until 10 p.m., when he said he must be going home. It was another frigid night, and his host urged him to wait for morning. But Bell had work to do and victims to prosecute. He rode away warmed by alcohol, and his body was found two days later, standing up to his arms in a block of ice in the river.
William was soon freed, and the restored couple worked side-by-side until William’s death forty years later.
Hurley, V. (2000, c1995). Speaker's sourcebook of new illustrations (electronic ed.) (33). Dallas: Word Publishers.
Morgan, R. J. (2000, c1998). From this verse : 365 scriptures that changed the world (electronic ed.) (April 22). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.