Fighting and Feasting

We all know Psalm 23; in fact some of us haven’t read it in a while because we know it from memory. We also know the story of David when He was at his palace instead of at war with his men, which led to temptation. Both passages have to do with the calling of David, and really the call of each believer. I’ve never seen this before, but when I looked at these stories side by side, I realized that God was giving me direct instruction and a huge warning.

Most Godly Christians operate this way; we read the story of David in 2 Samuel 11 and see that David should have been at war instead of staring at other rooftops that were not his own. This is a good conclusion, because David obviously should have been at war, God called him and his men to go beat the Ammonites, but David stayed home. Staying home was the first act of disobedience; David was ignoring the call of God on his life to defeat his enemies. This led to the sin of idleness, which led to the sin of murder (Uriah, Bathsheba’s husband) and the sin of adultery with Bathsheba. Now, granted, Bathsheba shouldn’t have been on the roof in a bath. The problem would have been solved if she was just Sheba and if the bath was out of the equation. Nonetheless, David missed God’s call to war, and he fell into sin.

As a man, one of my first responses is then to avoid idleness by always warring. This is equally dangerous, because fighting his enemies wasn’t the call of God on David’s life, obedience was. Fighting his enemies was part of his calling, but not the fullness of his calling.

In Psalm 23 David writes, you prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies, my cup overflows. Timeout, in the presence of whom? “So David, you’re telling me that your enemies are around and you’re going to dine?” This is actually harder than it looks. David doesn’t want to be tending sheep, he wants to be fighting the Philistines. David doesn’t want to be fighting the Ammonites; he wants to chill at home. I would think then that David doesn’t want to dine with God, he wants to be fighting his enemies. I know I would if I were in the presence of my enemies, I would not take it easy and dine. What’s happening here? David wants to do everything other than what God has for him, and God just wants David to learn obedience. Obedience requires faith to trust God.

Not only does God want David to dine in the presence of His enemies, but God is in fact preparing the table. Not only that, but God is making David’s cup overflow. This is a sign of fat, abundance, anointing, and rich blessing. Interestingly enough, God doesn’t just prepare this for His people, but He enjoys it in Luke 7.

Jesus goes to dine with the Pharisees, as he is dining with them a sinful woman comes to Him and weeps at His feet. I can just see the Pharisees faces now, of which display disapproval of Jesus’ interaction with the woman. Their expectation of what is right being shattered with every passing second – their hearts increasingly disapproving of the man with whom they wanted to dine. After tears have been shed, the woman’s hands bring forth a glass jar as she retrieves a fine ointment. (Don’t think: stuff you put on baby butts that you get at walmart. Think:all your mama’s candles and all your grammas perfumes rolled into one, with Hebrew hand crafting). FOCUS!

 Jesus is in the presence of His enemies, with His “cup” running over. How foolish. Meet Jesus there!

We often think that because David didn’t go to war when God called Him to – leading to consequences, that the most Godly thing to do would be war. On the flip side, our human nature leans towards dining when it’s time to war. But what we more commonly miss, is that Jesus wants to dine with us in the presence of our enemies.

Final Thoughts:

1.      The point is not warring, nor is it feasting. The point is obeying.

2.      Don’t just feast to fight, and don’t just fight to feast. Enjoy God in both.

3.      Feasting with God is an expression of His grace extended to you in order to enjoy Him, which brings Him glory.

For the joysetbeforme,

Peter

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