Most Christians know this about the Biblical King David: "he was a man after God's own heart." What most cannot tell you is why. What does that all mean anyway?
Two of the best explanations I've heard is that David was that way because 1) he totally annihilated the enemy, and 2) he repented when he messed up.
To totally annihilate the enemy simply means to clean house. If you've just moved up as head honcho somewhere, clean house. Get rid of the old ways of doing things that you know don't work, and usher in the new. Got some staff members that like to butt heads with you, the boss? Say good-bye! Clean house. That's a simple truth, and King David did just that when God demanded it from him. He cleaned house. He annihilated the enemy, took no prisoners nor booty. (Photo from Pixabay.com).
King Saul, his predecessor, on the other hand, refused to clean house so his kingdom was taken from him and given to David.
The second reason David was a man after God's own heart was because he repented. He wasn’t always quick to repent, but eventually he did so. Saul, on the other hand, would not repent.
I know you’re asking why, when you compare these two lives, was David in good with God. David, after all, committed adultery with the wife of Uriah, one of the mighty men in his own army, then set Uriah up to be killed. Saul's crime was that he wouldn't totally annihilate the enemy and instead, spared Agag, king of the Amalekites, and some of the livestock. What gives?
Cleaning house was an act of obedience from David. Saul was told to clean house, but would not. That act of obedience earned David the moniker of being a man after God's own heart. Saul’s disobedience cost him his kingdom.
What about murder and adultery, you ask, and why didn’t that cost David his kingdom? David repented. Saul never repented.
We all make mistakes, that's life, but when we make mistakes we need to know enough to repent. To repent means to have a change of heart and mind. Quite simple, I know, but murder? Come on?
Hey, I didn’t make the rules, but keep in mind that repenting doesn’t mean you’re free from the consequences of your actions. It means that you finally get it. You get that you did something you shouldn’t have done, and now you know better. Don't make excuses, tell people you’re sorry. Ponder your actions and if you don't want to be treated the way you've treated others, repent quickly and move on.
Life is being a man or woman after God’s own heart. Do your best to be obedient, but when you don’t, ponder your actions then change your heart and mind. Humble yourself and, if warranted, apologize. Be men and women of excellence and integrity ... always and in every arena in life. I promise that you will prosper greatly when you do so!