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a man after God’s own heart…
a theology of suffering (pt. 1 of 3)

Scripture for today’s sermon:
1 Samuel

David’s “Wonderful” Life!
•Annointed king by Samuel (16:13)
•Killed Goliath and saved Israel (17:49-51)
•Fought successfully alongside King Saul (18:5-7)

What happened to “Wonderful”?
•Hated by King Saul (18:9)
•Saul tries to kill David (the first time)… (18:11)
•Saul plots to kill David (19:1)
•Saul tries to kill David (19:9-10)
•Saul sends men to watch David’s house so that he could kill him (19:11)
•David flees for his life (19:12)

This isn’t funny anymore…
•It’s starting to sink in for David (20:3)
•Falls into the hands of a foreign king (21:10-15)
•…taste and see that the LORD is good… (Psalm 34)
•Snitches come out of the woodwork (22:9; 23:19)

WoW!
•David works in a little do-gooding… at great risk to himself (23:1-13)

He reached out to defend the weak and helpless.
•David spares Saul’s life (24:3-7)
•…Again! (26:6-12)

David’s suffering and afflictions don’t end when Saul dies; he suffers throughout his life. But David is a man after God’s own heart.
•Don’t WoW! at David…. WoW! at God.

Suffering is not unique to David
•150,000 people die every day.
•Over 100 people die every minute.
•Most people die young and/or in agony.

A theology of suffering
Two questions often raised:
1.IF God is so loving, then why is there suffering in the world?
2.Why do bad things happen to good people?

Should we differentiate between “Christian” suffering (persecution, etc.) and “Common” suffering (sickness, natural disaster, etc.)?
■No – Paul didn’t differentiate. (2 Corinthians 11:23b-28, 12:10)
■ALL suffering has the potential to make Christ look valuable or valueless; worthy or worthless.
■Suffering is an essential part of the Christian life. (Acts 14:21-22, 1 Thessalonians 3:2-4, 2 Timothy 3:12-13, Romans 8:15-17, Matthew 10:25, John 15:20)

If your life’s ambition is to avoid suffering – to be happy and comfortable by worldly standards – then you will perish and suffer forever. (Luke 6:24-26, Luke 14:33, Mark 8:34-37)

Next Week…
For the Christian, all suffering is suffering with Christ and for Christ.
Doesn’t Satan cause us to suffer?
■I thought God wanted us to have joy?
■Why suffering? What does it accomplish?