This week we approach the fourth message of the King David Series at Lord of Life. It is hard to believe we are coming up on one month into our study. The first reading for this week is from 1 Samuel 29-30.
In this reading David is faced with an awkward situation. He must choose to fight against his own people or betray those who had protected him for the past year and a half. Think of a time where you faced a dilemma where there seemed no easy answer.
There are a few examples I can think of where there seemed to be no right answer or no right way. There is no option that seems like a good option. These are the times when we get on our knees and we pray that God would make a way where there seems to be no way. We go to him to pray that he will provide a way out.
I do want to offer word of caution here. Make sure that when there seems to be no way, that it is not just because the right thing is the hard thing to do. There are times we don’t take action because the right thing to do is the hard thing to do and we perceive it as too difficult and wait for an easier answer. The right thing will often be the more difficult thing.
How did God provided to deliver an alternative response to David’s dilemma (29:6-7)? Do you believe God provides answers to our dilemmas and possibilities we never thought of or imagined? If so, how do we discover them?
The Philistine leaders did not want David to go with them. They send David back to Ziklag. This essentially solved the dilemma that David faced at this time. Of course we need to remember that the only reason David found himself in this dilemma was because he failed to consult the Lord about his decision to go to Philistia. I am not so sure if he had asked the Lord about that decision that he would have found himself in this situation.
Why did the Amalekites raid Ziklag (see 1 Samuel 27:6-9)? Why did the men want to stone David (30:6)? How might you have felt in this moment towards these men you had gone to battle with and now wanted to stone you? What was David’s response (30:6)?
The Amalekites had raided Ziklag because David had been raiding their towns. After the Amalekites had captured the town they took the people away as prisoners. The men wanted to stone David because they felt that it was David’s fault that this happened. When something bad happens to us, we often want revenge. We want someone to pay. In this case, they felt like David was the one to blame.
If I had been David, my first instinct might have been to run. But it says David found his strength in the Lord. I find it interesting that the thing David does in the face of such opposition is to stand up and lead. He doesn’t condemn the men. He simply takes action and waits for the men to follow.
In this moment of distress, what is the first thing David does (30:7-8)?
After having failed to consult the Lord previously when he moved to Philistia, David now eagerly does so. It is never too late. We mess up once, we mess up twice, we mess up three times, we can still go back to God. He will help us out of the difficult situations we put ourselves in if we turn to him.
Some of the men did not carry their fair share of the burden through the battle (30:9-10), after the battle is over, there were some in the army who did not want to allow these men to receive their share of the spoils (30:21-22). What reward did these men desire to receive? What was David’s response (30:23-25)? What was David’s reward?
I am sure at this point in time all they cared about was their wives and children. That was what they wanted more than anything else. At this point in time they probably could have cared less about the other spoils that had been taken from the Amalekites.
David however says that everyone will receive their fair share. It was a matter of grace. It was not based upon works. The person fighting the battle was given as much as the person guarding the equipment.
As a result David gained a loyal following. They were thankful to him for his kindness. These men had not done anything, but David still offered a blessing to them. It is a great picture of how God will reward us on the last day. There are many different roles we all play. Some are more prominent that others, but each role is recognized as being just as important as the next.