Through the Word in 2020 – May 18 / The Devised Means of the Cross

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King David is by far the most prominent type and shadow of the coming Christ the Old Testament has to offer.
To be sure, there are others – each in their own way: Adam, Noah, Abraham, Joseph, Daniel – even Solomon. Each in their finest attributes reflects something of the perfections of Jesus – the God/man. And each also fails greatly. This is true for David as well. Scripture is brutally honest with David’s sins. And nowhere do those sins come more to light than in our last look at 2 Samuel and today’s in 12:26-15:12
But we learn by the negative as well as the positives – and today – the essence of the Gospel comes to light even in one of the sorriest accounts in the life of David.
I’m Reid Ferguson, and this, is Through the Word in 2020.
Along with our reading in 2 Samuel today, we also have Mark 11:12-19 and 2 Corinthians 8. But as you’ve no doubt guessed, it is 2 Samuel that is our focus today.
The account of David, his 2 half-brother sons Amnon and Absalom and David’s daughter Tamar is tragic on so many levels. Incest. Rape. Failed justice. Fratricide. Alienation. Betrayal. And the stunning failure of David as a father in his own household – precipitating and aggravating it all.
Amnon has little if any self or impulse control, resulting in his raping his half-sister Tamar. But as 13:21 notes, “When King David heard of all these things, he was very angry.” But he did nothing. Nothing. Not as King. Not as Amnon’s father. Not as Tamar’s father. Nothing.
Absalom waits “two full years” for something to be done. And still nothing. Till at last he takes matters into his own hands and executes Amnon. Still David does nothing. And 3 more years pass with Absalom in a self-imposed exile. Until Joab, David’s general steps in with a plot to reunite David and Absalom.
Joab locates a wise woman and gets her to tell a parable to David that addresses the principles of his estrangement from his son – and at last David sees it, and sends for Absalom to come home. Sort of. For the text tells us David sent to have Absalom come home, but would not let him back into his own presence. He lived nearby, but they had no restoration of their relationship. And here is where we find the key verse and principle in it all.
It comes from the lips of the “wise woman” – and it shows us how Gospel reconciliation in grace through Christ does what David’s pitiful half-forgiveness completely failed to do:
2 Samuel 14:14 ESV “We must all die; we are like water spilled on the ground, which cannot be gathered up again. But God will not take away life, and he devises means so that the banished one will not remain an outcast.”
We all bear our guilt and the sentence of death because of our sin.
And the undoing of our sin is so complete, worse than Humpty-Dumpty – like spilled water, we can never be regathered and restored.
“But God.” But God, will not let that situation remain. “He devises means so that the banished one will not remain an outcast.”
And what is that divinely devised means? Nothing other than the Cross, and the substitutionary death of Jesus Christ. So that all who put their faith in His death for their sins, do not have some half-peace or tenuous reconciliation to God – but no longer remain outcasts. We are brought back into His presence – Christ having led the way for us. Having paid for our sin. His blood cleansing us from every stain of sin. And reconciling us fully to the Father, that we may dwell with Him – in His house – forever.
Such is the good news of the Gospel.
Let that soak into your soul today beloved.
God bless. And God willing, we’ll be back tomorrow.

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