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In the movie, Castaway, Tom Hanks plays a FedEx worker marooned on an island when his plane crashes.
Over the course of a couple of years he stays on that island suffering all kinds of difficulty from starting his own fire to building the raft that finally takes him to rescue.
One of the most difficult scenes to watch in the whole movie is when Tom has an absessed tooth.
Anybody remember that?
His jaw is swollen and he’s taking this stick or object, reaching it way back in his mouth and literally pounding on that painful tooth to get it out.
Now he’s so adamant about getting that tooth out because it hurts, of course, but he’s also concerned for another reason: he realizes that if he doesn’t get it out the infection may kill him.
Finally, he’s got the rock and the stick and he gathers his courage and gives it one massive blow.
The pain is so great that he passes out, but he succeeds in getting the tooth out.
Going through that terrible pain probably saves his life.
I feel a little bit like Tom Hanks today.
I have walked away from the last couple of messages I’ve preached on Saul and David, feeling like I may have caused you some pain.
It can be very difficult to face our sin, especially when we may have been covering it up.
Dealing with the deception and disobedience of our lives isn’t pleasant, but it is definitely spiritually therapeutic.
There is a lot of pain, perhaps, but the result can be healing and growth.
So, while today’s message may be a bit more of the rock and the stick, I ask you not to give up.
Don’t tune me out.
Listen to what God may want to say to you about your own need of Him.
Last week we talked about David’s sin and his coverup.
Today we want to look at David’s brokenness and especially, what caused it.
Now your first question might be, “What do you mean by ‘brokenness?’”
Well, one pastor defined it like this.
Brokenness means that:
Our wills must be broken to His will.
To be broken is the beginning of revival.
It is painful, it is humiliating, it is the only way.
It is being ‘Not I, but Christ,’ and a ‘C’ is a bent ‘I.’
The Lord Jesus cannot live in us fully and reveal Himself through us until the proud self within us is broken.
This simply means that the hard unyielding self, which justifies itself, wants its own way, stands up for its rights, and seeks its own glory, at last bows its head to God's will, admits it’s wrong, gives up its own way to Jesus, surrenders its rights and discards its own glory – that the Lord Jesus might have all and be all.
In other words, it is dying to self and self-attitudes.
And, I know that some here might be saying today, “Great job, Rusty!
I’ve been waiting for you to preach a message I could relate to and it sounds like this one just might be a homerun!
I am a broken man.
In fact, my life has been shattered into a million pieces and I feel lower than I ever have before.
Maybe you’re in the middle of a financial ruin and you’ve already moved out of your home.
Maybe you’re in the middle of paying for the wild oats you sowed some time ago.
You betrayed your loved ones to buy drugs and now no one trusts you.
Maybe you’re embarrassed by some sexual sin that has been discovered and people are smiling to your face, but you wonder what they are thinking in their hearts.
Maybe you’re broken over some one else’s sin.
Someone in your family has fallen and it has devastated you.
You are broken, and I want you to know today that there is hope to put life back together again God’s way.
If you will obey Him He will restore you.
There are the broken and then there are the ones who need breaking.
You’re walking around in disobedience and rebellion.
You think you’re doing ok and everything is going just fine as you parade your sin.
You can watch filth on DVD and it doesn’t bother you; you can cheat others and justify it; you can rob God in the name of Christian liberty and never feel guilty; you can live your life like a practical atheist, living only for the moment and acting like God doesn’t exist.
But I have to tell you this: If you belong to God, the most gracious thing He can do is haul you to the spiritual woodshed and chasten you until you are broken.
And how some of us need that today.
Others of us need breaking not because we are in the middle of some rebellion in our life, but because we need to be filled with the Holy Spirit.
Did you know that the Holy Spirit only fills spiritually broken people?
That’s why James wrote in chapter four of his book: “Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
9 Lament and mourn and weep!
Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom.
10 Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.”
That old chorus we used to sing goes like this:
Spirit of the Living God fall fresh on me
Spirit of the Living God fall fresh on me
Break me, melt me, mold me, Fill me.
Brokenness always comes before filling.
And yet, we can go on for years unbowed, unbended, unbroken, and yes not filled with the Spirit.
Brokenness always comes before filling, which is exactly why you and I should desire brokenness in our lives.
You need it.
I need it.
Everyone you know needs it.
And David, the king of Israel surely needed it!
You remember we talked last week about how he committed adultery with Bathsheba, then tried to cover it up, first by lying to Uriah, Bathsheba’s husband.
When that didn’t work, he had Uriah killed.
Wait a minute!
This wasn’t some ten-horn dictator or some maniachal monarch.
This was David, the man after God’s own heart.
Which is one reason the last sentence of 2 Samuel rings so loudly through the pages of scripture.
It says, “But the thing that David had done displeased the Lord.”
As you move into chapter 12, you begin to see what God’s going to do about it.
Here, the apple of His eye has really blown it, and God’s getting ready to deal with Him.
Listen to what happens next:
Then the Lord sent Nathan to David.
And he came to him, and said to him: “There were two men in one city, one rich and the other poor. 2 The rich man had exceedingly many flocks and herds.
3 But the poor man had nothing, except one little ewe lamb which he had bought and nourished; and it grew up together with him and with his children.
It ate of his own food and drank from his own cup and lay in his bosom; and it was like a daughter to him.
4 And a traveler came to the rich man, who refused to take from his own flock and from his own herd to prepare one for the wayfaring man who had come to him; but he took the poor man’s lamb and prepared it for the man who had come to him.”
5 So David’s anger was greatly aroused against the man, and he said to Nathan, “As the Lord lives, the man who has done this shall surely die! 6 And he shall restore fourfold for the lamb, because he did this thing and because he had no pity.”
7 Then Nathan said to David, “You are the man!
Thus says the Lord God of Israel: ‘I anointed you king over Israel, and I delivered you from the hand of Saul.
8 I gave you your master’s house and your master’s wives into your keeping, and gave you the house of Israel and Judah.
And if that had been too little, I also would have given you much more!
9 Why have you despised the commandment of the Lord, to do evil in His sight?
You have killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword; you have taken his wife to be your wife, and have killed him with the sword of the people of Ammon. 10 Now therefore, the sword shall never depart from your house, because you have despised Me, and have taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your wife.’
11 Thus says the Lord: ‘Behold, I will raise up adversity against you from your own house; and I will take your wives before your eyes and give them to your neighbor, and he shall lie with your wives in the sight of this sun.
12 For you did it secretly, but I will do this thing before all Israel, before the sun.’ ” So David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the Lord.”
I believe this account tells us that God is looking for one thing out of his reprobate boy-king: Brokenness over his sin that leads him to repentance.
To achieve that in David’s life God does three primary things, and those things are what God uses in our lives to bring about brokenness as well, so if you’re here today with a rebellious heart, listen.
If you’re here today and you need the filling of the Spirit, listen.
God breaks us, first
David’s heart has “crusted over.”
There’s a hardness about him now that used not to be there.
He’s probably justified what he did for so long and lived in cover up that even if you confronted him with the evidence, apart from some powerful working in his life, he’d never admit it.
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