A good role model is so important to have. Someone you can look up to, see their positive qualities, and try to emulate that in your own life. We are starting a series called “Who Dat?!” looking at the life of an amazing role model from the Bible. This role model was the greatest king that Israel ever had, an accomplished warrior in battle, but also a man of many talents that range from being a musician and poet. You probably know by know I am talking about king David. He left an amazing legacy and we have a lot to learn from his life…
God Himself considered David a “man after the Lord’s heart” and hand-picked him to be the king of Israel. There were many people in Israel that followed God and His Word, His law… so why David? Why was David considered by God to be a man after God’s heart and selected to be the highest ranking person in all of Israel? What did David have that others didn’t have? David lived an amazing life and was incredibly blessed by God. If we want to experience that type of joy and blessing, we should want to be considered people after God’s heart too! So what does it take for us to be considered by God someone after His heart?
Israel, God’s chosen people, were not always ruled by kings, but there was a period of time in this nation’s history that they were. Out of about 40 different kings that Israel had, David was the second and undoubtedly the best. Saul was the first king Israel had, and although he started his reign off on the right foot, after a rough patch of denying God and disobeying Him, Saul lost God’s favor and Israel desperately needed a new king — stage set for David to swoop in and be an absolute beast for God’s people.
1 Samuel 16 starts with God sharing with the prophet Samuel that He has chosen the new king in Bethlehem - someone who God HIMSELF had already said was a “man after my own heart” (1 Samuel 13:14). Samuel was a bit freaked out to go anoint this new king because Saul was still king at the time (and was a bit paranoid and crazy at this point), but God had a plan. Samuel goes to Bethlehem to find the new king of Israel, and talks to a man named Jesse, father of eight boys. Samuel is to check out the sons and God will reveal which one is the next king. He sees the first son, Eliab and thought for sure this was the guy - he was taller than the rest, he certainly looked like he could’ve been king, but God importantly states in 1 Samuel 16:7,
“Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
Samuel continues checking out the sons and gets no word from the Lord, until the youngest son David is brought in. When Samuel sees David, he notices that he is “glowing with health and had a fine appearance and handsome features” and it’s at this time the Lord says in verse 12 “rise and anoint him; this is the one.” David has now become the new king of Israel. It wouldn’t happen immediately, as Saul was still king and some crucial events needed play out - but David, a man after God’s heart, was anointed to be the next king. So what did he have for God to hand pick him? Well clearly it has to do with David’s heart… In verse 7, God said He doesn’t look at outward appearances, it’s what’s in the heart that is what truly matters.
If you read about David’s life throughout the Old Testament, you read about someone who is completely 100% passionate about God and what God has done for him. David literally dances in the streets looking like a lunatic because of the pure joy he has in God. Everything he does, whether it’s shepherding, ruling a nation, or writing poems - he does it for God. God said that it’s what in the heart that matters, and it is ultra clear that David’s heart was without a doubt in the right place, with a full passion for God.
So what did David have for God to call him a man after His own heart? What does it take for us to be people after God’s heart? We need to have hearts on fire. David’s heart was completely on fire for God. We’ll see in a couple weeks that he was by all means not perfect and made massive mistakes, but his heart was completely for God. If we want to experience the joy in God that David experienced and leave a godly legacy like what David left, we must have hearts that are on fire for God. Is your heart on fire for God right now? Are you genuinely excited about God, what He has done for you and continues to do for you? Are you exhilarated to live a life for God or is He just a side thing? This is a personal reflection thing. Would God consider you someone after His heart? It’s not always easy and things in life will try and thwart our passion for God - but let’s look at our hearts and gauge where our passions are and if we’re burning for Jesus!