THE NEW START
2 Sam. 11:1-27 - Phil. 3:12-16
by Cooper Abrams
INTRODUCTION: It it not wonderful to know that we can all start afresh? However far we get from God, however far we have fallen it is always possible to make a new start.
I believe Paul had this in mind when he wrote this Scripture to the Philippians.
I. DAVID'S FAILURE.
A. David failed at this stage of his life.
1.He should have been doing the job GOD had called him to do....but he wasn't.
2. Next, because he was idle he was tempted. He should have resisted but he didn't. He yielded to the temptation and that lead to gross sin.
3. After committing the sin, he thought it over and hide. No one knew about it. But then Bathsheba found herself with a child. Her husband was with the army of Israel fighting. Her adultery would mean her death. Also the death of the man involved.
Sin may not seem to be a private thing effecting only the one or two involved yet David found that was not so. He was the king. His sin would effect the nation.
4. David then tried to cover up the matter. This ended in Uriah's murder and the several other men fighting with him.
5. David was not a mean and ugly person. He was a hero, a wise man, and man God had used. But he learned a great lesson, and hard lesson....we all but for the Grace of God would be adulterers and murderers.
B. David was a saved man.....a sinner yes, but a saved sinner. And God sought after him. God loved him. He belonged to God. He was God's child.
1. God sends Nathan, and confronts David with his sin.
2. Thank God, David repented. The effects of his sin could not be erased. It would haunt him the rest of his life. Yet, God forgave him.....and God used him. Many of the greatest of David's psalms were written after this.
3. David was allowed to gather the materials to build the Temple. He was allowed to past the task on to his son Solomon. On David's foundation, much of it done after he sinned....Israel entered it's golden years.
4. David began anew. He made a new start.
I. WHAT DOES A NEW START INVOLVE?
A. Forgetting the things which are past. Phil 3:10-16. Looking at verse 13. "forgetting those things which are behind."
1. Paul was also a murderer. He turned Christians over to the Jews to be executed in prison. Paul did this as a lost man. He was very religious....yet lost. Very zealous for God...he thought...yet lost. Being religious does not make one a child of God.
2. Paul met Christ on the Damascus Road and repented of his sin. He entered into a new life of forgiveness and cleaning from sin.
3. The past was over! Now before him lay a new start. A new life. A life of purpose, of serving the Lord.
B. His past failures were put behind....and also his past successes.
1. Paul used the language of the stages of a race. He must not waste time surveying his progress, only one thing is important that is, running now so as to win the race. The last lap is over, the present lap is the only important one now.
2. The devil would destroy us if he could. One device is to bring up the past.
a. One...our past failures to discourage us.
b. Two...our past successes to take our eyes off what must now be done.
C. Winston Churchill visited the USA during the war. He said, "if the past quarrels with the past, there can be no future."
1. The point is this: We had got to accept the past as unalterable and move on from there.
2. To stay and quarrel with it or preoccupied with it is to ruin the future.
II. A NEW START INVOLVES FORESEEING THING THINGS WHICH ARE BEFORE US.
A. Vs. 13-14. Paul had two important objectives in mind.
1. ONE, the eventualities of life. V13. "reaching forth unto those things which are before."
We do not know the future! But God does. We must have a vision to know that what lies ahead can be to the glory of God. God can use us. We must seek to find where we fit into God's divine plan.
2. TWO: The responsibilities of life.
V14. I press on. You can not make a success of life, without a goal. Living daily, without purpose....just making it though is a poor life.
Many, have no goal for today...or the future. They do not have a vision of God use them. Thus, they are mostly unavailable to the Lord. They are rarely if ever used. To have no goal, no vision is a sure way to failure.
B. 2 Tim. 4:7-8. Paul fought all his life to glorify God. It was a struggle....yes....difficult, BUT he fought for the prize...the promise of God. And he won it.
1. No one wins who does not want to win.
2. No one wins who does not try to win.
3. No one is used of the Lord who will not allow the Lord to use them.
III. A NEW START INVOLVES: RIGHTEOUS LIVING IN THE PRESENT DAY.
A. It begins with confession...and from confession comes righteousness and that begins service.
1. We are called to a "high calling." It is not enough to live as the world. It is not enough to live in complacency. Apathy, and laziness has no part in the Believer's life....his race.
2. 2 Tim. 1:9, calls this a "holy calling."
It means living a consecrated life for Christ. It means to be dedicated to course God sets for you. Through thick and thin, what ever the cost.
B. Sanctified. Dedicated to God's will for your life. In the Old Testament when something was sanctified unto the Lord it meant it was to be used totally for the Lord and nothing else. The items that made the Tabernacle were ordinary, word, animals skins, gold, silver, brass, etc. Most of the valuable metals came from Egypt and were given to the Jews when they left by the Egyptians. Yet, once they given to the Lord, put in His service they were never used for anything else. They were wholly consecrated to the Lord.
IV. A NEW START MEANS: A REWARD NOW AND IN A FUTURE DAY.
A. V14. "I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus."
1. There is a prize. How we live will determine our status and reward in a coming day, in eternity.
2. "If we suffer, we shall also reign with Him: if we deny Him He will also deny us." 2 Tim. 2:12.
3. At the Rapture the twenty four elders according to Revelation 4:10-11 cast their crowns before the Lord Jesus. The Bible speaks of crowns given to believers:
The Incorruptible Crown - 1 Cor 9:25 And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.
The Crown of Righteousness - 2 Tim 4:8 Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.
The Crown of Life - James 1:12 Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.
The Crown of Glory - 1 Peter 5:4 And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.
Revelation 2:10 Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.
To be Guarded - Rev 3:11 Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown.
This was written to the church in Philadelphia. This was the church of the open door. This I believe represents the period in which we live. We have a great open door....they are commended for keeping the word of God, but the Lord warns...let no man take thy crown.
Our reward...brings honor to our Savior, the One who in His own body bore our sins.
B. To not to live for Christ...is to deny Him.
1. To have no vision that God has a purpose for your life and a plan to use you....is to deny Christ.
2. God has a will for you life.
First, to save you, forgive your sins.
Second, to cleanse you from sin...mature you into a godly person.
Third, to use you to carry on His work, and to reward you, for what He does with you.
1. NOTE VERSE 12. "Not as though I had already attained."
2. Mountaineer climbs practice their dangerous sport, also being challenged to conqueror some new peak or mountain.
In 1953, Mallory and a friend, made a final dash for the summit of Mt. Everest and failed. They tried as hard as they could. They died and are now buried somewhere on the mountain known only but to God.
They failed in spite of their determination, intrepid courage, and discipline of long training and personal sacrifice of money and life to reach the highest peak in the world.
On of their party returned to London, telling of the experience, was standing in front of a large picture of the summit of Mt. Everest. He concluded his address and he turned around and personalizing the mountain said: "We have tried to conquer you and failed; we tried again and you beat us, but we shall beat you, and for you cannot grow bigger, but we can."
2. So it is with faith, we may be defeated. Sometimes more that
once....but by faith in God we can GROW IN CHRIST....WE CAN
GET BIGGER AS CHRIST BECOME GREATER IN OUR LIVES!
GROW IN CHRIST....WE CAN GET BIGGER AS CHRIST BECOME GREATER IN OUR LIVES!
3. My good friends are there failures in your life? Would you start down the right road and admit them?!
Then you would confess them to God at 1 John 1:9 says and let the Lord forgive and cleanse you. Would you pray for forgiveness and a cleansing that will remove all the quilt of the past and so that you might proceed toward the future unhindered.