Sunday, May 29, 2016

May 29, II Samuel 16:1-14

May 29, II Samuel 16:1-14

More intrigue and plotting, Ziba brings gifts to David and a message that Saul's last survivor Mephibosheth, is plotting to retake the crown.  There is no confirming evidence of this but simply on this man's word David makes a rash decision, we should not base decisions on the word of simply one witness.  And we see this strange man Shimei who is following after David and cursing him. David is in such a low state that he believes this is coming from God, there is no indication either way.  I think perhaps David is feeling the weight of his sins, seeing the consequences of things done in his past and feeling guilty, desiring some punishment.  That's a flaw in a lot of us, thinking that we can perform some act, do some work, of receive some punishment to penance.
The penalty for sin is death, nothing else can pay the debt, but for the Christian Christ has paid that debt and there is no need for punishment or suffering.  We do still however suffer consequences of our actions.

Today's workout. legs. 5 sets each 8-12 reps
Hamstring curls, leg extension, leg press, walking lunges.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

May 28, II Samuel 15:13-37

May 28, II Samuel 15:13-37


Something significant has happened to David in the years since Bathsheba. Now with Absolom marching with an army to Jerusalem David flees. There is no account that he sought God before leaving. He has an army of sorts, his standing army under Joab may not be available but he's leaving with nearly a thousand people, certainly that number could defend Jerusalem. Perhaps he's not willing yet to start a civil war but I think it deeper. David as a lad had a deep relationship with God, he could boldly face a giant with just a sling but now that boldness and the relationship is gone. He's behaving more like a politician relying on people than on God. He's left behind concubines, the priests and former advisors partly for the purpose to be spies. The text says that David ascended barefoot with his head covered, it seems more like ritual than real worship. I occasionally hear stories of people doing strange things trying to manipulate God, walking miles barefoot, or on their knees. Shaving their heads or not shaving for months. It's not about ritual, the scriptures plainly tell us what God wants. Obedience is better than sacrifice. Micah puts it best, no-one can walk sinless but we can try, this should be our lives. To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.

Friday, May 27, 2016

May 27, II Samuel 15:1-12

May 27, II Samuel 15:1-12

We're not told exactly why Absolom conspired against David, maybe they never really reconciled.  It also may have been the people Absolom hung around with.  Absolom would have been the embodiment of what every man wanted to be, handsome, wealthy, he had followers, he had influence.  There is a danger in listening to the wrong people, I sometimes wonder if his followers convinced hem that he was greater than he was.  We see similar things today, people listen to attractive idiots, those who are very good looking with little or no common sense but whatever they say the followers think it so wise.
And because so many people fawn over them they are convinced in their own minds of greatness.

Today's workout. 5 sets 8-12 reps. Back biceps traditional.
Pull down, row, total gym breast stroke, dumb bell bicep curl.  

Thursday, May 26, 2016

May 26, II Samuel 14:25-33

May 26, II Samuel 14:25-33

Absolom would be the equivalent of a male supermodel with long flowing hair, so much hasn't changed in the world of men that the attractive people will gather followings based solely on looks. We're given this information now but it will have more meaning later. Absolom has been in Jerusalem for two years and still hasn't seen David, I find it strange that Joab won't answer his call.  Setting fire to the man's field certainly wasn't right but it did get his attention.  In the end Absolom and David are reunited, or so it would seem.

Today's workout.  Chest shoulders intervals.  
High knees, push up, climbers, Y, jump rope, bench dip.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

May 25, II Samuel 14:1-24

May 25, II Samuel 14:1-24

Joab was a good friend to David, he understood how David grieved for the seperation between himself and Absolom so Joab conspired this strange plot to bring them back together.  The method seems a bit extreme to me but the concept is laudable.  Everyone should have a friend like Joab, one who understands your moods and attitude to help when and where needed.  It's a rare gift to have one, if you do then cherish the relationship.  The only problem though is that David stops short of fully reconciling, Absolom can come back to Jerusalem, back home but the separation still exists. Forgiveness is an all or nothing attitude, if I can't forgive fully then I'm not really forgiving at all. One of best examples today are the church members who forgave the man who shot and killed their family members.  It's hard to do and it's not a natural human thing, it comes only from God.  It's been said, and I'm not sure who it was originally, that man can only truly forgive when he understands how God has forgiven him.  

Today's workout. Leg intervals. High knees, step up on bench Left leg, jump rope, step up on bench right leg, climber, glute-ham bridge, windmill, goblet squat.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

May 24, II Samuel 13:23-39

May 24, II Samuel 13:23-39

Absolom holds this grudge for two years, which may seem like a lot but I know people holding grudges for much longer.  These things fester over time and can really become a burden. Absolom is having a grand party, he has a lot of mature sheep and wool to shear and it was the custom to invite the family and neighbors to the celebration.  As we're told about the grudge I wonder if this was a long term plan, to save sheep and cultivate for these two years for just such an occasion.  His persistence to David for the king and all of his brothers to attend could easily be dismissed as he really wants his family to be there, especially Amnon as Amnon was the eldest and most likely the next king. So the plot is laid and Absolom enlists his servants to actually do the killing.  Disturbing on both the asking and the willingness to comply.  So now Absolom is in a self imposed exile in Talmai and his father David mourns the loss of two sons. None of this can ever be actually fixed, there will always be something between David and Absolom but the damage could be stopped here if they would try to reestablish a relationship. This idea still rings true today, so many families are torn by past actions and remain so because neither party is willing to try making peace or restitution.

Today's workout, back-biceps intervals.  Step, total gym or strap pull up, windmill, row, jump rope, biceps curl.

Monday, May 23, 2016

May 23, II Samuel 13:1-22

May 23, II Samuel 13:1-22

We already know that David has a thing for pretty ladies and that weakness also exists in his son Amnon.  His attraction for his half sister is another reason why having multiple wives and children is a bad idea, in all cases, from Abraham down, everyone who has multiple wives or concubines has problems either with them or the siblings. Only Tamar shows any proper morals but even she makes a strange comment, that the king, their father, would allow the union.  According to the Torah it was forbidden so I can't see that happening. Amnon rapes her and as is the case so many times when someone is obsessed with having something, the actual having is not as sweet as expected and that obsession turns sour.  Amnon went from lust to loathing in just moments.  David hears of this and he gets angry but does nothing, these are both his children what could he do?  The rape was punishable by death and I am certain that David knew this, again there would be an issue of two witnesses.  David's house is dividing, it will get worse before it gets better.  

Today's workout. Chest and shoulders 5 sets 8-12 reps.
Push up, dumb bell shrugs, strap hugs, dumb bell shoulder press, lateral raise with resistance band.