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  4. King David Invites You To Come & Listen To His Biography – Part 6: David The Fugitive
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  3. King David Invites You To Come & Listen To His Biography – Part 6: David The Fugitive

King David Invites You To Come & Listen To His Biography – Part 6: David The Fugitive

Let us recap.

The Israelites pursued them as far as Gath and won a great victory (vs 28–53). David kept the giant’s armour as a souvenir, and later put his sword in the Lord’s tabernacle (v 54; ch 21:9). The fact that Saul asked Abner whose son David was (ch 17:55–58) does not mean that the king did not know David—though he might have forgotten the name of David’s father.

He was apparently interested as to whether this boy came from a family of heroes and warriors. When the question was placed before David, the humble youth simply answered that he was the son of Jesse of Bethlehem—he could not point to any spectacular ancestry.

David remained humble and made no demand that the king should fulfill his promise of making the victor over Goliath a wealthy man, the king’s son-in-law, and tax exempt (1 Sa 17:25).

David’s behaviour, his forthrightness, modesty, bravery, and piety won for him the admiration of Jonathan, the crown prince, and the two became fast friends (ch 18:1, 3). This friendship survived great odds, and never died. Their devotion and loyalty to each other has seldom been duplicated and has probably never been surpassed.

After the slaying of Goliath, Saul kept me with him, and would not permit me to return to my father’s house.


1Sa 18:1  Now when he had finished speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul. 

1Sa 18:2  Saul took him that day, and would not let him go home to his father’s house anymore. 

1Sa 18:3  Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul. 

1Sa 18:4  And Jonathan took off the robe that was on him and gave it to David, with his armor, even to his sword and his bow and his belt. 

1Sa 18:5  So David went out wherever Saul sent him, and behaved wisely. And Saul set him over the men of war, and he was accepted in the sight of all the people and also in the sight of Saul’s servants. 

1Sa 18:6  Now it had happened as they were coming home, when David was returning from the slaughter of the Philistine, that the women had come out of all the cities of Israel, singing and dancing, to meet King Saul, with tambourines, with joy, and with musical instruments. 

1Sa 18:7  So the women sang as they danced, and said: “Saul has slain his thousands, And David his ten thousands.” 

1Sa 18:8  Then Saul was very angry, and the saying displeased him; and he said, “They have ascribed to David ten thousands, and to me they have ascribed only thousands. Now what more can he have but the kingdom?” 

1Sa 18:9  So Saul eyed David from that day forward. 

 And it came to pass that “the soul of Jonathan was knit with my soul, and Jonathan loved me as his own soul.”

We made a covenant to be united as brothers. Jonathan took off the robe he was wearing and gave it to me, along with his tunic, and even his sword, his bow and his belt. 

I was entrusted with important responsibilities, yet I preserved my modesty, and won the affection of the people as well as the royal household.

Whatever mission Saul sent me on, I was so successful that Saul gave me a high rank in the army. This pleased all the troops, and Saul’s officers as well. 

I was prudent and faithful, and it was evident that the blessing of God was with me. Saul at times realized his own unfitness for the government of Israel, and he felt that the kingdom would be more secure if there could relate to him one who received instruction from the Lord.

Saul hoped also that his connection with me would be a safeguard to himself. Since I was favoured and shielded by the Lord, my presence might be a protection to Saul when I went out with him to war.

It was the providence of God that had connected me with Saul. My position at court would give him a knowledge of affairs, in preparation for his future greatness. It would enable to gain the confidence of the nation.

The vicissitudes and hardships which befell me, through the enmity of Saul, would lead me to feel my dependence upon God, and to put my whole trust in Him. And the friendship of Jonathan for me was also of God’s providence, to preserve my life as the future ruler of Israel. In all these things God was working out His gracious purposes, both for me and for the people of Israel.

Saul, however, did not long remain friendly to me. When Saul and I were returning from battle with the Philistines, “the women came out of all cities of Israel, singing and dancing, to meet King Saul, with tabrets, with joy, and with instruments of music.”

 One company sang, “Saul has slain his thousands,” while another company took up the strain, and responded, “And David his ten thousands.” The demon of jealousy entered the heart of the king. He was angry because I was exalted above himself in the song of the women of Israel.

In place of subduing these envious feelings, he displayed the weakness of his character, and exclaimed. “They have ascribed unto David ten thousand, and to me they have ascribed but thousands: and what can he have more but the kingdom?”

One great defect in the character of Saul was his love of approbation. And maybe my dear friend, we too may suffer from the same mental sickness. We must have the approbation, the compliments of people to behave decently.

This trait had had a controlling influence over his actions and thoughts; everything was marked by his desire for praise and self-exaltation. His standard of right and wrong was the low standard of popular applause. No man is safe who lives that he may please men, and does not seek first for the approbation of God.

It was the ambition of Saul to be first in the estimation of men; and when this song of praise was sung, a settled conviction entered the mind of the king that I would obtain the hearts of the people and reign in his stead.

Saul opened his heart to the spirit of jealousy by which his soul was poisoned. Notwithstanding the lessons which he had received from the prophet Samuel, instructing him that God would accomplish whatsoever He chose, and that no one could hinder it, the king made it evident that he had no true knowledge of the plans or power of God.

The monarch of Israel was opposing his will to the will of the Infinite One. Saul had not learned, while ruling the kingdom of Israel, that he should rule his own spirit. He allowed his impulses to control his judgment, until he was plunged into a fury of passion.

He had paroxysms, sudden explosions of rage, when he was ready to take the life of any who dared oppose his will. From this frenzy he would pass into a state of despondency and self-contempt, and remorse would take possession of his soul.

He loved to hear me play upon my harp, and the evil spirit seemed to be charmed away for the time; but one day when I was playing for him, and bringing sweet music from my instrument, accompanying my voice as I sang the  praises of God, Saul suddenly threw his spear at me in oder to kill me. I was preserved by the interposition of God, and without injury fled from the rage of the maddened king.

As Saul’s hatred of me increased, he became more and more watchful to find an opportunity to take my life. But none of his plans against me, the anointed of the Lord were successful. Saul gave himself up to the control of the wicked spirit that ruled over him; while I trusted in Him who is mighty in counsel, and strong to deliver.

“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom” (Proverbs 9:10), and my prayer was continually directed to God, that I might walk before Him in a perfect way.

Desiring to be freed from the presence of me, the rival, the king removed me from him, and made me his captain over a thousand…. But all Israel and Judah loved me. The people were not slow to see that I was a competent person, and that the affairs entrusted to my hands were managed with wisdom and skill.

My counsels were of a wise and discreet character, and proved to be safe to follow; while the judgment of Saul was at times unreliable, and his decisions were not wise.

Though Saul was ever on the alert for an opportunity to destroy me, he was afraid of me, since it was evident that the Lord was with me. My blameless character aroused the wrath of the king; he deemed that the very life and presence of me cast a reproach upon him, since by contrast it presented his own character to disadvantage.

It was envy that made Saul miserable and put the humble subject of his throne in jeopardy. What untold mischief has this evil trait of character worked in our world! The same enmity existed in the heart of Saul that stirred the heart of Cain against his brother Abel. Why? Because Abel’s works were righteous, and God honoured him, and his own works were evil, and the Lord could not bless him.

Envy is the offspring of pride, and if it is entertained in the heart, it will lead to hatred, and eventually to revenge and murder. Satan displayed his own character in exciting the fury of Saul against him who had never done him harm.

May God protect us from this dangerous poison called envy.

The king kept a strict watch upon me, hoping to find some occasion of indiscretion or rashness that might serve as an excuse to bring me into disgrace. He felt that he could not be satisfied until he could take me, the young man’s life, and still be justified before the nation for killing me.

He laid a snare for my feet, urging me to conduct the war against the Philistines with still greater vigour, and promising, as a reward of my valour, an alliance with the eldest daughter of the royal house.

To this proposal my modest answer was, “Who am I? and what is my life, or my father’s family in Israel, that I should be son-in-law to the king?” The monarch manifested his insincerity by wedding the princess to another.

My dear friend as I was pondering on the life of this young man David and king Saul, I was reminded of my own fallen human nature.

Jer 17:9  “The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; Who can know it? 

I don’t want to be like King Saul who envied David and wanted to kill him. May your heart and my heart be free from jealousy and negative thoughts of our not so friendly friends.

David wants to tell us a little more of his road less traveled.

Updated on 22nd Nov 2022

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