"Snippets" from David
On Davidís first escape from King Saul (1
Samuel 21), he left empty-handed. As he escaped, he stopped at Nob (a city of
priests) for provisions and a weapon. He escaped so quickly that he took nothing
with him. Since food was prepared from raw ingredients and weapons were
difficult to obtain, David asked Ahimelech [a priest] for both. In a failed
effort, he tried to protect Ahimelech and Nob from King Saulís wrath (1 Samuel
22:20-23). He told Ahimelech that he was on urgent business for the king and
left too quickly to prepare for the trip. Though Ahimelech was suspicious and
nervous (1 Samuel 21:1), he gave David the bread of presence and Goliathís
sword. He gave David the bread of presence because there was no ordinary bread
available. Does a righteous person wish to obey God? Absolutely! Is God indebted to the
righteous person because he or she is obedient? Absolutely not! Saying, ďThank
you!Ē does not create debt.
Leviticus 24:5-9 gave regulations for making and using the bread of presence. It said plainly that only the High Priest and his sons are to eat the bread of presence in the Holy Place. By these regulations, David [or anyone who was not a priest] was excluded from eating the bread.
Of all the illustrations the Lord Jesus Christ had available to him, he used this situation in Matthew 12:3, 4. Jesus used it when the Pharisees accused his disciples of violating the Sabbath when they stripped and ate raw grain on a Sabbath walk. By the Phariseesí definition of work (Mishna, Moed, Shabbath 7:2), this act was an act of work, thus a Sabbath violation. In defense of the disciplesí act, Jesus cited Davidís act.
Jesus concluded two illustrations [stripping the grain was the first] by quoting Hosea 6:6. ďI desire compassion [mercy--KJV], and not a sacrifice.Ē Were not sacrifices commanded of Israel? Certainly! Read Leviticus 1 through 6.
Perhaps the most striking thing about this entire incident with David is this: God never responded to what David or Ahimelech did negatively. God did not condemn Davidís act. God did not express frustration over Davidís act. Godís relationship with David did not change because of Davidís act.
What lessons should we learn?
Does a righteous person wish to obey God? Absolutely! Is God indebted to the righteous person because he or she is obedient? Absolutely not! Saying, ďThank you!Ē does not create debt.
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