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  • Writer's pictureBro. Caleb Taft

Morning Manna | 2 Samuel 19:14 | And he bowed the heart of all the men

2 Samuel 19:14

14 And he bowed the heart of all the men of Judah, even as the heart of one man; so that they sent this word unto the king, Return thou, and all thy servants.

I would encourage you to read the entire chapter that our verse is taken from today. It is after Absalom has been killed and now Israel must face the king they had spurned. We read in verses 8-10 that all of Israel had "fled to their tents," and they were whispering of their sins against King David. How he had hazarded his life to save theirs and how he had brought peace to Israel like never before and now there was a fear and hesitation among the nation to face the man who had loved them, served them, and been a true king to them because they had rebelled against this man, and for what? A pretty boy with an inflated ego. A self-man. They rebelled against King David, a type of Christ, for Absalom, a type of the fleshly nature. What a common story this is! How often have we joined our sinful hearts in rebellion against the king who loved us and died for us, and brought peace that passes understanding? And for what? A few hours of pleasure? A few moments of glory that all came crashing down on our heads? Now we hide in our tents ashamed to face our Lord again. He deserved better than that! He saved us, how can we ever face him after we have sinned against him? Our verse today answers that question. 

Verse 14 reveals how this coldness between the rebels of Isreal and their kind King was resolved,  and in type how our coldness toward Christ is resolved and brought back into a loving relationship where Christ once again is our revered King. Mark the words "He bowed the hearts." First of all, note that it was their hearts that he bowed. He had the military might to bow their knees, to make them confess that he was King. Had he so desired he could have ridden back into Jerusalem with swords drawn and if you didn't bow the knee and confess him king, then off with your head. King David, Like our Lord, is not interested in bowed knees that are not connected to bowed hearts, he is not interested in confessing tongues that are not the outpouring of a heart that holds him as King. Dear reader Jesus is only interested in your service it is from a place of love! Have we crowned him king of our life with a cold confession, not coming from a warm heart of love? He wants your heart! He wants you to love him and therefore crown him! Ephesus had labored, worked, and even had patience but Jesus told them in Revelation 2 that he had something against them, they had left their first love. He wants our hearts before our knees.

Then how did he win their hearts? The previous verses reveals that he does not win their hearts by his might and strength but by his gentleness and forgiveness toward them in their rebellion. That was the chords that brought them captive before the King. Their hearts were drawn out of their rebellion and hiding with chords of love. Read over the verses before this one and you'll find David does not bring up their rebellion but their kinship, "Ye are my brethren", to Amasa, a leader in Absalom's rebellion, He not only offered pardon but his same position would be restored.  This is the work of our heavenly King Jesus, it is the Goodness of God that leads us to repentance. When we have sinned he bids us come, "When we sin we have an advocate with the Father." He reminds us of our kinship to him, he suffered as we suffer, he was tempted as we were tempted, he can succor the tempted, forgive the rebellious and he reminds us that it was for sinners that he came! He was made in likeness of man, we are bone of his bone and flesh of his flesh! Look at the relationship he has to you, he is your head, how could a man hate his own body? Christ loves you as a man loves the members of his body. Look to the pardon and restoration he offers, verses like 1 John 1:9 echo with the same tune as David's words to Amasa, "If we confess our sins he is faithful and Just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness."

What was their response to the Kings bidding them to return? "So they sent this word to the king, return thou, and all thy servants." They begin now to bid him return. Return to your rightful throne, be our King again. Not just you but all your servants. This is the response of a heart that has been drawn by chords of love to the Saviour. So often we have rebelled but he has won our hearts again and again! If you are far away this morning, hiding from the face of the King you have spurned, ashamed to turn to him, hear his tender calling today, "Come unto me," "Where sin did abound, grace does much more abound." Heed his tender offers today and may your heart be bowed once again to the King of kings. Come out of your tents and bid him return to the throne of your heart. Shemei who was cursing David in chapter 16 is one of the first to come across the Jordan to confess his sins and bid David to the throne. Won't you do the Same? Will you come to him to today with all your sins, confess them, forsake them, and usher Christ to the throne of your heart? Come to Jesus, he bids you.  

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