Royal Outcast / 07. Royal Outcast Wk7 Mortified

07. Royal Outcast Wk7 Mortified

Originally recorded on Sunday 27th May 2018. Visit www.weareemmanuel.com for more content.

Speaker: Joel Virgo

Key scriptures: 2 Samuel 18:19 - 19:8


In this story Absalom has set himself as the replacement king of David and plans to have David killed. When the time comes for the battle of David’s side and Absalom’s side, David, asks them to be gentle with Absalom. However, the result is that Joab, the leader of David’s army, kills Absalom. When David found out this news his responded ‘O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! Would I had died instead of you’ – (2 Samuel 18:33.) Here David is reduced to a wreck. Here, he felt grief at the news of his son’s death. In this talk we will be looking into how God brings pain into our life sometimes and try to understand better why He does this and some of the things we can learn from this so that we can grow and stronger by God’s grace and help.

Sometimes the success or safety of people is only possible through something tragic. Absalom was not innocent, he was a rebel. He was guilty of atrocious sin. Joab understood one thing- that Absalom deserved to die. Our current culture tends to want to reduce goodness into trivial shallow versions of forgiveness. We tend to reduce what the Bible teaches on dealing with justice to just letting everybody off- this is sweeping sin under the rug. We have to deal with justice for the sake of our nation. The problem is that although we long for justice, when it gets followed through on we might find that it massively affects us more than we thought it would. We like the idea of justice but want to try to avoid the pain. This example is shown in David, asking his army to spare Absalom. However, if justice is going to be dealt with it is going to have to be dealt with in our hearts- which is usually a painful process. We have to face the reality of how deep the poison has come. In this story, the Bible doesn’t pick a side with David with his grief over Absalom and Joab with his frustration over David’s sadness at the justice done. In a sense they’re both right- because within the heart of God you get both. God is passionate about justice in a way we cannot understand but at the same time a God who is so giving, so compassionate for the unjust and ungodly.

1. We should expect some pain in mortification- In Colossians 3:5 Paul speaks of putting sin to death. Mortification is putting sin to death. We see the sin in our hearts, but God sees it much more clearly. God wants this sin gone. He is for us and against our sin and so He will put it to death. Why should we expect that process to always be comfortable? We shouldn’t be surprised or shocked we should instead expect to go through some pain. The atmosphere of the Bible is to kill sin because the stakes are so high. ‘Be killing sin or sin will be killing you’- John Owen quote. In this story, the only way for the nation of Israel to be delivered was for there to be a death- the death of Absalom. What are the things you need to cut yourself free from? The Bible talks about dying daily to sin.

2. Our Every Death Points Towards a Darker Agony and a Fuller Victory- David has this time of waiting for news about his son. However, you have to understand the whole Bible tells the story of a Father giving his son completely. There was a time in the garden of Gethsemane where Jesus had to wait on the Father’s will- he prayed ‘your will not my will be down’. Jesus waited for news and was a sense given the worse news. David’s terrible moment of grief and mourning over his son, even though it was for God’s deliverance of a nation, was a pre-shadowing of God giving of his only son to death on the cross, so that we could be truly delivered. Sometimes the battle of sin may feel agonising but we must remember it is almost a privilege to share in the far greater agony that Christ went through. Sin had to be dealt with sin and Jesus done this so that whoever you are today, you can find your way back to God.

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