Daily Bible Studies
|Series Theme: Studies in 1 Samuel 16- (David on the Run)|
Chapter: 1 Sam 22
Passage: 1 Sam 22:1-5
A. Find Out:
1. To where did David escape? v.1a (look it up on a map if possible)
2. Who first joined him there? v.1b
3. Who also came to him there? v.2
4. Where did he go next and why? v.3
5. Who was advising David? v.5a
6. Where did David go to next? v.5b
We now move into stage 1 of the build up of David as a man of power. So far he has been alone but that all changes. The word obviously gets out where he is and first of all his family come to him. It would seem that they are probably aware of the threat to them from Saul by simply being his family, and so they come to him. There is a sense of family unity and “pride in our son” about this. This creates some form of relational stability for David at this time.
Then come those who are in various kinds of trouble. Again perhaps it is the pressures on their lives that encourage them to gather to him, but they obviously feel he will welcome them. This gives David purpose (looking after and training these men) and eventually strength and power with an army.
Finally there is reference to the prophet Gad advising him. That a man who hears from God comes and joins himself to David is a good sign, for such a man must have a sense of the will and purpose of God and if he is with David, it indicates that that is where he considers the future of Israel will be. This gives David greater depth of relationship with the Lord.
The way ahead is not easy, for he is still on the run, but at least he is not alone. He has a stronger relational base with his family there. This rag-bag of men coming to him will be turned into an efficient fighting force and so David has much to do with them. Gad brings him greater confidence with the Lord. The future is looking brighter!
Chapter: 1 Sam 22
Passage: 1 Sam 22:6-23
A. Find Out:
1. Of what does Saul accuse the people around him? v.8
2. Who replied to him? v.9
3. How did Ahimelech describe David? v.14
4. How did Saul respond to him? v.16
5. What was the guards' response to Saul's command? v.17
6. How did David respond when he heard of Ahimelech's death? v.22
How would you summarise in your own words, through their words and actions, the characters of :
a) Saul b) Doeg c) Ahimelech d) David
The word comes to Saul that David is gathering men and he automatically sees this as a conspiracy to overthrow him. When he accuses all around him of being involved, Doeg the Edomite speaks up and tells of David having gone to the priests. Saul sends for the priest, ignores his words and orders him to be killed. Only the foreigner, Doeg, was willing to raise his hand against priests. When David hears of this through Ahimilech's son who flees, he takes the responsibility.
In this passage we see two powers drawn up against each other, the dominion of darkness and the kingdom of God.
In the dominion of darkness is paranoid Saul, who abuses his authority by an unjust act and abuses God by his destruction of the priests. There is also the ungodly Doeg who is not afraid to raise his hand against the Lord's chosen ones.
In the kingdom of God there is first of all Ahimilech the priest who has done nothing wrong and when he is challenged about it, merely speaks the truth with no rancour. There is also David who faces his part in it all and takes responsibility for it and the consequences of it.
When trying circumstances arise we can act as either children of darkness or children of the light. What will it be?
Chapter: 1 Sam 23
Passage: 1 Sam 23:1-6
A. Find Out:
1. What was happening to Keilah? v.1
2. What did David first do? v.2
3. How did his men feel about it? v.3
4. So what did David do? v.4
5. So what did David do and with what result? v.5
6. What had David got with him? v.6
Keilah was a town of Judah which, at this time, was behind enemy lines. Because of that it was vulnerable to attacks from the Philistines. It should have been Saul who was defending the towns of Judah but it is the Lord's anointed, David, who rises to the task.
His approach is to first enquire of the Lord, quite probably via Abiathar who had the ephod with him, which was used for seeking the guidance of God. The Lord gave them the go ahead and so David presumably told his men in preparation.
Now they have obviously been getting trained by David but they have not yet put it into practice, and so they are somewhat nervous about the prospect. Instead of pushing them, David simply turns back to the Lord for confirmation of the guidance - and gets it! When they then attack Keilah they are completely successful and save the town from the Philistines.
Two things should be noted here: first that David has created a successful fighting force out of a rag-bag of discontents. No mean task! Do we see the potential in others?
Second, David sought the Lord constantly for guidance for this venture. The example of this man in this respect is so clear that it hardly needs further comment.
Chapter: 1 Sam 23
Passage: 1 Sam 23:7-14
A. Find Out:
1. What did Saul believe and so do? v.7,8
2. To who did David turn for help? v.9,10
3. What did he ask? v.11
4. What did he then ask? v.12
5. How many men did David now have with him? v.13
6. Who was protecting David? v.14
Presumably David and his men are taking the opportunity to rest up at Keilah. The word gets back to Saul and he makes preparation to come to capture David. David in turn hears of this and seeks the Lord. Whatever else we may say of those days, communications across the land seemed good, possibly with both men having informers working for them.
David sought God and received His guidance again and acts upon it and escapes before Saul can arrive. The guidance seems to have come through the use of the Urim and Thummin which were kept in a pouch fastened to the ephod worn by the priest. It appears to have been a form of casting lots for guidance, but whatever it is, the Lord obviously honours it and four times in the first 12 verses of this chapter David receives correct guidance from this priest.
The main lesson yet again must be that of seeking the Lord for our guidance. There are some things where God wants us to use common sense, but there are other things when only the Lord knows the best course to take and it is a wise Christian who seeks the Lord. It also requires faith to respond to the guidance, risking what may be your misunderstanding, but that is always the risk of faith.
A. Find Out:
1. Why did Jonathan come to David? v.16
2. Of what was he sure? v.17
3. What did the Ziphites promise to do? v.19,20
4. What did Saul ask them to do? v.23
5. How close to David did Saul get? v.26
6. What stopped it happening? v.27,28
The ministry of encouragement is a very precious one, and Jonathan proves his friendship with strong and encouraging words. The tragedy is that he ever left David. This was his last contact with David and soon Jonathan would be dead, alongside his father. If he was certain about David's future he should have stayed with him. Perhaps he was still torn in two by his loyalty to his father, but that was really being torn in two between righteousness and unrighteousness, and he should have separated himself to the righteousness.
At the same time there are others who were misguidedly loyal to Saul, the inhabitants of Zip, another town of Judah . Their perception of David is interesting! They obviously see him as a rebel upstart who is a threat to the stability of the kingdom. The important thing to note is that they have no idea that he is the Lord's anointed king to replace Saul. They are the people of God but they have no idea of the purposes of God. There is a strong challenge here! The Lord often does things that appear new to us, things that we don't understand and our temptation, even as the people of God, is to write off what is happening as rebellious dissension instead of part of the purpose of God to bring His rule more fully to the earth.
Chapter: 1 Sam 24
Passage: 1 Sam 24:1-7
A. Find Out:
1. What did Saul set out to do? v.2
2. What did David's men suggest to him? v.4a
3. So what did David do? v.4b
4. What did he feel afterwards? v.5
5. Why? v.6
6. How did he speak to his men? v.7
In this passage we see something of David's greatness coming through and something of his awareness of spiritual realities. For a second time Saul comes out against David with an army and gets very close to where David's men are. When Saul enters the cave for a very human activity David's men see it as a God-sent opportunity to destroy Saul and take over the kingdom. Without any doubt it is. Anybody in their right mind would take this opportunity!
But David is a man after God's heart and he is more concerned with what the Lord would think about it. Saul is still the man that God anointed for kingship, he is still the visible authority in Israel and as such David will not raise his hand against him.
David has a very acute awareness of what is right and wrong before God in respect of Saul. He stands out to us, in our age of lawlessness and rebellion against authority, like a blazing torch. He is an example reaching out to us from down the ages. Saul may be a poor leader but he is still there by God's appointing and until God chooses to change that he, David, will not move against him. In an age of questionable politics and declining or wavering respect for our royal family, we would do well to heed these things.
A. Find Out:
1. How did David speak of Saul? v.8
2. Why had David not killed Saul? v.10
3. Who did David call on to judge between them? v.12
4. How did Saul react when he heard David? v.16
5. What does he say he knows? v.20
6. So what does he make David promise? v.21,22
As Saul goes to leave, David calls across the valley to him. He could have simply left him to depart so that Saul would not have known he had been there. Instead he calls out and risks Saul turning back with his army and taking them. Why?
Well the answer is not certain but surely David is showing all the signs of a peacemaker who trusts the Lord. David wants to take this opportunity to show Saul that it is not his intention to harm Saul. He wants to convince Saul that his attempts to capture this apparent rebel are needless. David is not out to kill Saul. David does this in several ways.
First, there is the respect with which he addresses Saul, he esteems him as king.
Second, he shows how he spared Saul's life.
Third, he gives his theological reasoning: Saul is the Lord's anointed and he will not raise his hand against the man of God's choosing.
Fourth, he appeals to the Lord Himself to judge between them, to see whether he has been speaking the truth.
These things seem to clearly have impact on Saul who acknowledges the truth of them. Saul knows deep in his heart that David will indeed be king of Israel one day.
RECAP - "On the Run (Pt.1)" - 1 Sam 22 - 24
In this third group of 7 studies we have seen :
David is out on his own but soon many discontented people joined him, perhaps because they thought he was raising a rebellion against Saul. The story soon shows that was not his intention, far from it. David simply wants to stay alive and that does not involve killing Saul. Along the way he is willing to help other people, even though it puts him at risk, and in doing it we see the depth of his relationship with the Lord as he relies on His guidance throughout.
1. Discontented people will gather to what they think are other discontented people.
2. God's guidance comes freely to he who relies on the Lord.
3. There will always be those who side with the unrighteous or who misunderstand the
4. Bad authority is still authority and should be respected. Pray for it and leave God to
deal with it.
Ask the Lord to help you be someone who seeks and receives guidance as clearly as David did.
PART 4 : "On the Run (Pt.2)"
In this next Part watch for the opposite reactions of David to those who are against him. How we respond to people is important. Watch also for the excellent example of Abigail, a peacemaker as she prevents David moving into unrighteousness.