“A man after God’s own heart” is what David is called in I Samuel 13:14. So, it is very helpful to discover that he is not sinless but a man of great passions and driven by great desires.
He has a violent temper and is a vicious, cruel killer. However, when the Lord puts the finger on him, he is also completely repentant. He has the whole spectrum of emotions that you and I have, yet God calls him a “man after His own heart,” because, even though he fails God many times, he loves God wholeheartedly.
God Chooses David to be King- King Saul, though a talented king, had stopped obeying God early in his career, and had begun turning selfish and evil. So God told the prophet Samuel he would remove Saul from being king, and replace him with “a man after his own heart”.
The Battle with Goliath- David approached Goliath on the run, sling in hand. His first shot penetrated the giant’s forehead, and he fell facedown, dead.
Saul Turns on David- Saul threw his spear, and David narrowly dodged the spear. Fearing for his life, David finally decides he isn’t safe and left town that night.
David in Exile- David wandered the wilderness, living in caves. Many other fugitives sought him out, and soon he had a community of 400 families in his care.
David Spares King Saul- David passed up a chanced to kill Saul, out of respect for the LORD, and he displayed the hem of Saul’s robe as evidence. He furthermore promised he would never harm the king the LORD had chosen.
King Saul Dies in Battle- Saul was mortally wounded, and fearing that hisenemies would capture and torture him, he takes his own life.
David, King of Judah- under David’s powerful leadership, Judah grew stronger and stronger. Under Ishbosheth’s incompetence, Israel grew weaker and weaker.
David, King of Israel- David’s military prowess became legendary. He converted many nearby nations from aggressors into subdued enemies. By the end of his life, his empire was so powerful that there was peace, and his son Solomon never had to fight a war.
The Ark of the Covenant- Instead of carrying the Ark as prescribed; they followed the example of the Philistines, placing it on a cart. Then at one climactic moment, the oxen stumbled, the cart was upset, and the Ark was in danger of falling to the ground. One of the Levites, named Uzzah, reached out to steady the Ark, ignoring the prohibition against touching it. For this offense, the LORD instantly struck him dead.
Preparations for the Temple -The LORD had different plans. He told Nathan to go back to David and tell him he was not the one to build a temple. Instead, after David’s death his son would be king in his place, and he would build the temple.
Scandal- David sends one of his commanders to die in battle after falling for his wife and getting her pregnant. Later this son dies and God continue to curse him by turning his family against him.
Amnon’s Crime- The prince rapes his sister and King David handling of this crime shows his loss of good judgment since his own similar crime.
Absalom’s Crime- Another one of David’s Sons and the full brother of Tamar, swears revenge and ends up having his brother killed and then becomes exiled to prevent his own death.
Absalom’s Rebellion- Almost as soon as Absalom returned to Jerusalem, he began conspiring to overthrow his father King David and take his throne. Absalom died under Joab’s sword.
Sheba’s Rebellion- One of the leaders in the bickering over the land left by king Absalom, a man named Sheba, declared himself king of Israel, exclusive of Judah. He raised an army, and civil war began once again.
Adonijah’s Rebellion- When King David was old; he lost awareness of much that happened around him. God had chosen Solomon, and David had privately promised that Solomon would succeed him as king. But in his feeble condition he was losing control of his kingdom, and his ability to control who succeeded him was in doubt. At this moment David’s son Adonijah decided to make himself king.
When Bathsheba, Solomon’s mother heard this she went to David and reminded him that God had chosen Solomon as the new king of Israel. David finally had a clear moment and made sure that Solomon took over the Kingdom.
As Solomon took over as king he sent Adonijah home with the warning that if he ever showed the slightest sign of treason again, he would die.
Later, Adonijah schemed to obtain one of now-dead David’s assistant girls for his wife. This seemed innocent enough, but it reminded Solomon vividly of similar schemes Adonijah’s brother Absalom had used in his treasonous bid for the throne.
Solomon interpreted this as the first step in Adonijah’s renewed effort to overthrow Solomon, and ordered him put to death, along with some of the top people in Adonijah’s original conspiracy.