August 04, 2017

More Sad Songs

2 Samuel 1:17-27

David took up this lament concerning Saul and his son Jonathan.

—  2 Samuel 1:17

There’s an old song that says, “Sad movies always make me cry.” The effects of sin and evil had the same impact on one of the greatest musicians in the Bible.

Psalm 23, the most well-known of David’s songs, may have been written early in his life. But his first recorded song is this lament in 2 Samuel 1. It is the heart cry of David over King Saul and his son Jonathan, who died in a battle with Israel’s enemy, the Philistines.

In 2 Samuel 3:33-34 we find another sad song of David, a lament over the death of his friend Abner. Such songs help us learn to keep talking with God even though our lives may seem to be falling apart and we feel as if God has abandoned us. They remind us that although our lives are constantly threatened by sickness, pain, and death, nevertheless God has promised victory through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus.

It is good to know that in times of chaos, distress, and sadness, God hears us, and in his time he will set our wrongs right again. Until then, we need to cling to his Word and the many promises it contains. We need to ­listen to his words of assurance: “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5; see Deuteronomy 31:6; Joshua 1:5).

Lord, there are many times in life when we feel as if the bottom has fallen out and we are left gasping. Thank you that you never turn away from our heartfelt cries. Thank you for sending your Spirit to be our constant comfort in distress. Amen.

About the author — John Van Schepen

Dr. John Van Schepen is a retired pastor who served churches in Washington, Wisconsin, Indiana, Oregon and California. He and his wife, Willie, have been blessed with five children and several grandchildren.

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