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a man after God's own heart

'With my whole heart I have sought you. Oh, let me not wander from your commandments!.'

Psalm 119:10

David LH.jpg

chalk and charcoal on black Canson 160gsm paper

David was known as the shepherd boy who became the 'Shepherd King'. He is portrayed as a young lamb because he compared God's love for us like a shepherd's (in Psalm 23) and as His sheep, David is willing to wholeheartedly follow the voice of the Good Shepherd he knows and loves.  

David was perhaps one of the most famous and most beloved characters of the Old Testament. A young shepherd who was a nobody, he was chosen as the king of Israel and he fearlessly defeated the giant Goliath with nothing but his slingshot and his faith in God. He was known as a godly and humble leader, a loyal friend, and a great musician who worshipped God wholeheartedly. He courageously fought against and defeated Israel’s enemies in God’s name, forgave his enemies when they tried to kill him, always trusted God in adversity, and brought military and political peace, unity and financial stability for God’s kingdom. He was also called a ‘man after God’s own heart’ by God himself because of his obedience to God (Acts 13:22). What an impressive resume!


Yet despite his many strengths, his heart and his obedience, he was also still a man who succumbed to temptations and sin. How could he be praised and loved as such a hero when he also committed grievous sins against God and others (such as adultery and murder)? How can God forgive him and turn a blind eye to his sins just like that? He was ‘a man after God’s own heart’ not because of what he did, but because of the posture of his heart. More than anything else, David loved God wholeheartedly and desired and valued the same things God did. When confronted with the depth of his sins, he falls to his knees and repents wholeheartedly before God (as can be seen in Psalm 51) because he cannot bear to be separated and cut off from God. He asks God for forgiveness even as he faces the consequences of his sin because he knows of God’s character. He knows that He is ‘slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness’ (Ps 86:15) and that ‘His mercies never come to an end’ (Lamentations 3:22).


What is your response when God confronts you with your sins? Do you deflect and point out someone else’s worse behaviour? Are you set in denial? Do you angrily blame someone or something else for your misdeeds because you only acted the way you did in response to the provocation? Or do you fall before God, like David, and repent wholeheartedly, knowing that you can be forgiven because of God’s grace and mercy and love for us; because His justice is fully satisfied by the death of Jesus Christ on our behalf and that ‘by His wounds we are healed’ (Isaiah 53:5)?


If you would like to read more about the story of David please see -

The Bible Project also has lots of great resources on the story of David 

or you can watch two summaries here:

1 Samuel - Rise of David


2 Samuel - Fall of David

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