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UPDATES from Pastors/Elders

June 23, 2019

David's New Role

Have you ever been envious or jealous of someone's success? Listen or read to find out how to change these feelings into joy for others.

Mike Gerhardt, 6-23-19, David's Passion, 1 Samuel 18:1-9. David's New Role. Intro: Do well and they will love you. Do exceptionally well and they will hate you. My worst subjects in school were English Composition and English Grammar as if you didn't know already. My first year at Rider college, I had a professor who would have us write pop essays in class. You'd get 20 minutes to write about your favorite sport, a family holiday or the best restaurant in recent memory. There was a girl who could write flawlessly, dotting her I's with hearts, transitioning her thoughts without dangling participles, predicating nominatives, or using run-on sentences. She would receive an A+ and I'd get an F. The red ink on my paper was only on the first third of my essay. The teacher would demand a rewrite. I'd return it, she then would have red ink all over the second third with another F and demand a rewrite. This went on all semester long. The girl would get an A+ and I would get an F. I began to despise that girl. I think you know what I am talking about. No one likes to be outdone. OR most people do not like to be outdone. Have you ever lost a contest, a race, an election, or even a Ping-Pong game to someone you were sure you could beat; instead it was a hand down merciless slaughter and you were the victim. You'd think he cheated, the contest was rigged, or the sun was in your eyes. Rarely we'd think we lost fair and square, the better person won, or they deserved the better grade.

Up to Chapter 15, Saul was the good King filled with the Spirit of God at one time, prophesying and leading his people into victory, with a heart for God's work. But now David comes on the scene. David is NOW the hero. Saul becomes envious and hateful. You may be blessed by God and enjoying His favor until you see someone else who seems to have MORE blessing from God and MORE favor. Watch out for your ego, it can turn you into a King Saul. David, the secret king, continues working for Saul but in a new role. David and Jonathan begin a heartfelt friendship. Jonathan’s covenant may have involved a pledge of loyalty.

Ego and pride can be very destructive. A young gifted minister whose church was growing, receive a comment from a parishioner, you're becoming one of the great expositors of this generation. As he squeezed his head into the car with his wife beside him and the kids' stuff in the back seat, he said: Mrs. Franklin thinks I am one of the great expositors of this generation. No response. Fishing for affirmation he prodded his wife, I wonder how many great expositors there are in this generation. Without missing a beat, she said, one less than you think my dear.

Thank God for wives that keep us humble. If you're tempted by self-aggrandizement and self-promotion, remember what the mother whale said to her baby: when you get to the top and start to blow, that's when you get harpooned.

Thousands versus tens of thousands.

Read 1 Samuel 18:10-16. Saul was afraid of David's success. Erwin Lutzer: Envy is a rebellion against God's leading in the lives of His children. It is saying that God has no right to bless someone else more than you.

Criticism by way is often nothing more than a low-grade form of envy. Billy Graham: Envy can ruin reputations, split churches and cause murders. Envy can shrink our circle of friends, ruin our business and dwarf our souls. I've seen hundreds cursed by it.

Jealousy and envy destroy relationships. What are the differences between the two? Envy is more sophisticated than jealousy. Envy is a painful and resentful awareness of an advantage enjoyed by another. Envy wants to have what someone else possesses. Jealousy wants to completely possess what it thinks it already has Jealousy is coarse and cruel. Envy is sneaky and subtle. Jealously clutches and smothers. Envy is forever reaching, longing, and thinking or saying sinister insinuations to destroy the competition.

How to properly react to someone's success. A good example is John the Baptizer said in John 3:30 when his disciples began following Jesus, He must become greater, I must become less. A bad example is the Pharisees and scribes, who said in John 11:48: If we let Jesus go on… everyone will believe in Him… verse 53 so from that day on they plotted to take His life. Proverbs 14:30 A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones. A godly reaction is needed to face success or tragedy. After he lost his, farm, his fields, his cattle, his sons and daughters, their spouses and their children, instead of saying WHY ME, Job said (Job 1:21): The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away, may the name of the Lord be praised.

Paul in Philippians 1:15: It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill… the important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached and because of this, I rejoice.

1 Samuel 18:30: The Philistine commanders continued to go out to battle, and as often as they did, David met with more success than the rest of Saul's officers, and his name became well known. How to deal with someone's success in four easy steps:

FIRST, define success accurately. Right relationships are the most important things in life beginning with a right relationship with God as your Father and Jesus as your Lord. Ask are you truly honoring your God with your life and passions?

SECOND, rejoice with those whom God shows favor.

THIRD, realize the work of God in your own life. See the little miracles that the Lord performs every day in your life and celebrate them.

FOURTH, remember life is about right relationships. Ask yourself what will be here or even remember about your life 1000 years from now. Only what is done in Christ will last.

Examine the successes that have eluded you or have broken you and confess them to God.

I want to close by reading a story of two men, both seriously ill, in a small hospital room. One as part of his treatment, would sit up for an hour in the afternoon to drain fluid from his lungs and would look out the one small window by his bed. The other man spent his days flat on his back, his bed by the door. There was no television or radio like they have now, so they would talk about their families, former jobs, vacations but when the man by the window was propped up, he would pass the time by describing to the other what was going on outside in the village. The man would describe a park with a lake of swans and sailing model boats, lovers walking through the trees, games of baseball and beautiful girls in their summer dresses. The man on his back listened with anticipation every afternoon as the man by the window describe what was going on outside. But with each passing day, the man on his back would think, why can't I be by the window? Why does he get to look at all the activity? I should be by the window!! He couldn't even sleep thinking how unfair it was. Then one night while staring at the ceiling, he heard the man by the window start coughing and choking, his hands groping for the call button, but the other man watched without using his call button. The coughing suddenly stopped. The man by the door just stared at the ceiling. In the morning the nurse came in with water for their baths and found the man by the window had died. They took away his body quietly. As soon as it seemed decent, the man asked if he could be moved next to the window and they did so. The minute they left, he propped himself up on one elbow and painfully looked out that window. To his surprise, it faced a large blank red brick wall.