David was a man that trusted in the Lord. He was a shepherd and he knew the Lord as his Shepherd. He was a man acquainted with hardship and danger but he knew how to be at peace in the care of the Lord. His 23rd Psalm declares this –
“The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me All the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the LORD Forever.” – Ps. 23:1-6
All of us will face similar hardships in life but not all of us will have learned how to trust in the Lord as David did. David was not a perfect man but he knew the forgiveness of the Lord –
“Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, Whose sin is covered.” – Ps. 32:1
How good it is that we can have our transgressions forgiven and our sins covered with the blood of Jesus Christ. His blood was sprinkled on the Mercy seat so that when God looks down on the Law of Moses in the Ark all God sees is Jesus’ blood sprinkled there as payment for our sins. But, that payment is only good if we endeavor to keep His words –
“Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him. He who does not love Me does not keep My words; and the word which you hear is not Mine but the Father’s who sent Me.” – John 14:23,24
The Communist Chinese government has not learned this as they persecute those in their country who try to keep the words of Jesus. They now pay up to $1500 to snitch on Christians. Paying people to snitch “will compress the survival space of house churches,” says Ying Fuk-tsang, a divinity professor in Hong Kong. “Not only will [Christians] have to deal with the official crackdown but now also the threat from their neighbors.” And now the Chinese government is trying to crack down on the freedom to worship enjoyed by Hong Cong residents. China, which once knew the Gospel, under communism, has tried to stamp out the Christian religion. I pray they will learn the folly of this before it is too late for them.
“Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know Him who said, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. And again, “The LORD will judge His people.” It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” – Heb. 10:29-31
While David knew what persecution was like, he also knew the ‘green pastures’ of the Lord. Over 45 years ago I too experienced God’s call to these green pastures as I opened the door to my heart and invited Him in –
“Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me.” – Rev. 3:20
If you open your heart to Him, I can guarantee He will come in and prepare a table before you in the presence of your enemies and lead you into green pastures.