17 So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations, from David until the captivity in Babylon are fourteen generations, and from the captivity in Babylon until the Christ are fourteen generations. Matthew 1:17 NKJV
David died somewhere around the age of seventy, having reigned as king of Israel for forty years. He suffered much in his final years. An illness that left him unable to get warm or comfortable might have contributed to his premature aging.
By biblical standards, seventy is not a long life for such a pillar of faith so approved by God. For instance, Moses lived to be 120. In fact, Moses was not even called by the Lord to free the Israelites from Egypt until he was already eighty years old.
David’s son and Israel’s next king, Solomon, also live a short life. This man, gifted with riches and wisdom beyond that of any other, only lived to be sixty years old.
Like everything about David’s life that is recorded in scripture, there is a message in it for us. Here, it is that our time on earth is limited, so use it wisely.
Though he is a bedrock in the eternal annals of God, David struggled in many areas, especially with his family life. Having so many wives and children competing for his attentions did not make life any easier. There was much strife, conflict, and tension within the family, and this spilled over into his public life. His ill-advised episode with Bathsheba and Uriah did not help with these matters, either.
Like Moses before him, David faced many difficult challenges as he led God’s people. Some problems were of his own making and some were not. But the Lord loved David, and comforted and supported him through each trial, building up his faith along the way. It was his faith that ultimately pleased the Lord and gave David his great strength.
6 Now David was greatly distressed, for the people spoke of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and his daughters. But David strengthened himself in the Lord his God. 1 Samuel 30:6 NKJV
David’s faith was also the bedrock upon which the Lord would place the eternal throne of His Messiah, Jesus Christ, as recorded in Psalm 89:
3 “I have made a covenant with My chosen, I have sworn to My servant David: 4 ‘Your seed I will establish forever, and build up your throne to all generations.’” Psalm 89:3-4 NKJV
At the end of the day, God sees our faith, and the times that we choose to walk alongside Him in love and service to others. Each new day we awake is another opportunity seek His face and to savor the good gifts He provides.
Are you surprised David’s life was not longer than seventy years? How would life be different if we knew our time allotted by God to be on this earth?
The richest returns on the investment of our time and energy come from serving the Lord, as He leads the way. What step can I take today to make use of His precious gift of time?