Sabbatical 2017

Sabbatical 2017
Arc de Triumph

Friday, March 31, 2017

Canonical Reading Plan for Apr 2, 1 Sam 21-24

Today's readings are 1 Sam 21-24.

David has his own struggles. He lies to Ahimelech, saying he is on an errand for the king and manages to acquire food and Goliath's sword (1 Sam 21:1-9). Ahimelech has no idea David is a fugitive. David flees to Gath, the hometown of the deceased Goliath and Philistine territory, where he acts insane to protect himself. David eventually ends up in the country of Moab, another enemy of Israel, where he assembles a ragtag group of men to make an army (1 Sam 22:1-2). He leaves his father and mother in the hands of the Moabite king (1 Sam 22:3-5).

Because of David’s negligence, many priests and an entire town, Nob, dies at the hands of Saul, who has become irrational over finding and killing David (1 Sam 22:11-19). David runs to the Philistines to hide. Things do not go well for him there either. He ends up in the wilderness, hiding in fear, united with a band of outcasts, leaving his parents in the hands of the pagans in Moab. David is turning everywhere but to the Lord.

When he realizes his error and the destruction that has been caused by his deception in Nob, David turns to the Lord, asking for God's wisdom in what to do by seeking the counsel of a priest, Abiathar at Keilah. David leaves Keilah before Saul gets there and the city is spared (1 Sam 23:1-14). As far as the text reveals, David had not prayed about his situation until now. When he does and is obedient to what God tells him, the people of Keilah are spared, unlike the people of Nob. David is learning valuable lessons about prayer and trust in God. David hides out in the caves of En Gedi, a mammoth limestone wadi that is home to hundreds of caves.

At En Gedi, David has an opportunity to take Saul’s life and declines (1 Sam 24:1-15). Regardless of the harsh treatment, David has received at the hands of Saul, David respects him and refuses to touch “Lord’s anointed.” Again, we see the contrast between David and Saul. David refuses to take things into his own hands, respects the leadership God has put in place and is willing to humble himself. Saul can’t resist acting apart from and frequently against God.

Saul has become so desperate to get David, he has resorted to killing his own people (Nob and the priests). David, when he is listening to God, is doing all he can to spare them. Saul is a killer. David is a redeemer. God always provides a redeemer for His people.

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