"Snippets" from David

One Good Turn Deserves Disappointment

King Saulís insecure hatred for David was an uncontained wrath.  When he heard David was in the wilderness area of Engedi, he took 3000 select warriors to hunt David down, capture him, and probably kill him.

As King Saulís force stalked David and his men, Saul was in an area where sheep occasionally were kept for protection.  He needed to relieve himself, so he entered one of the caves.  There he made himself extremely vulnerable.

Unknown to the king, David and his men were hiding in the inner recesses of the cave.  David was able to get so close to the man who wanted to kill him that David could cut off a piece of the kingís robe.

When the king left the cave and moved a significant distance from it, David revealed himself to the king.  He made the king instantly aware that he had a choice opportunity to kill the king.  To humble himself before the king, David bowed face down to the ground, compared himself to a dead dog and a single flea, and declared he was not then and never had been a threat to the king.  David would not dare raise his hand against Godís anointed!

King Saul instantly realized David could have killed him if he wished to do so.  The king was shook!  He cried!  His declaration to David is quite revealing!

When David had finished speaking these words to Saul, Saul said, ďIs this your voice, my son David?Ē Then Saul lifted up his voice and wept. He said to David, ďYou are more righteous than I; for you have dealt well with me, while I have dealt wickedly with you. You have declared today that you have done good to me, that the Lord delivered me into your hand and yet you did not kill me. For if a man finds his enemy, will he let him go away safely? May the Lord therefore reward you with good in return for what you have done to me this day. Now, behold, I know that you will surely be king, and that the kingdom of Israel will be established in your hand. (1Samuel 24:16-20)

Question: Was David just plain stupid, or was he a man of character?  To those who think the certain way to eliminate an enemy is to destroy him or her, David was stupid.  To those who understand that God is the most certain force we can depend on, David was a man of character.  Character is the trait of a person who does what is right when it is inconvenient to do what is right.

The obvious question: what motivated David to spare King Saulís life?  (1) It was an excellent opportunity for David to demonstrate he was no threat to King Saul.  (2) It was an excellent opportunity to put King Saul back in touch with his conscience instead of his hatred.  (3) It was a commitment to God.  When God was finished with King Saul, He would remove Saul from Israelís throne.  God placed him there; God would remove him.

That is faith unlike most of us have!  To appeal to the better side of an enemy while placing total confidence in God is extraordinary faith!

David was a man of character because he dared trust God when he could have eliminated an immediate danger by taking matters into his own hands.  Rare is the person who trusts God more than he or she trusts self! 

In this instance, Davidís character is seen in what he refused to do rather than in what he did.  Sometimes when danger is quite close, inaction takes more courage than action.

Do you have enough faith and courage to be a man or woman of character?

28 March, 2007
David Chadwell

David's Home Page Table of Contents Next Snippet