1 Samuel 31

Read 1 Samuel 31 – Saul, his three sons (including David’s best friend, Jonathon) and his troops are conquered by the Philistines. Saul actually sees that there is no escape,  and falls on his own sword, as does his armor bearer.  The Philistines go to barbaric measures in celebration of their victory. Jabesh-gilliad, from the tribe of Benjamin, rallied their warriors, retrieved the bodies of Saul and his sons, and gave them an honorable burial. Then they fasted for seven days and 1 Samuel ends.   Kind of.  The book of Samuel was originally one, but later divided due to its length. 

 We will pick up 2 Samuel tomorrow.  For today though, reflect on what the Lord wants to teach you through the life of king Saul.  He had the Lord’s favor, and rejected Him, and the Lord removed His favor. Saul’s life was a wreck from then on, ego,  paranoia, and pride ruled Saul’s heart.   Is anything standing between you and the Lord?  Are you trying so hard to be king of your world – that you are rejecting the true King, Jesus?  Don’t be like Saul.  Repent and return, Jesus is right there with so much LOVE to pour over you! β˜οΈπŸ™‡β€β™€οΈπŸ™πŸ»β€πŸ™πŸ»πŸ™‡β€β™‚οΈβ˜οΈ


1 Samuel 29

Read 1 Samuel 29 – This is a quick chapter.   The Philistine army is marching out against Israel.  King Achish is behind the troops with David and his men (29:2).  The Philistine commanders do not trust the Hebrews and demand they go back.  The king does not agree,  but he honors the commanders and tells David to return.  David isn’t happy about this,  but he does as king Achish requests.   What do you think would have happened had David gone into battle?  When circumstances in your life don’t go as planned,  do you trust that God is still in control, and has purpose in the roadblock?   The Lord certainly had great purpose in sending David back to Ziklag…. But that’s in our next chapter.  Today has enough troubles of its own. Let’s close with Proverbs 19:21 MANY ARE THE PLANS IN A PERSON’S HEART, BUT IT IS THE LORD’S PURPOSE THAT PREVAILS. πŸ“ŠπŸ“‰β€β˜οΈβ€πŸ“ˆπŸ“Š


1 Samuel 28

Read 1 Samuel 28 – David is called into service by king Achish.  He puts David over his entire security detail, as the kings personal body guard for life.  Saul learns of this impending threat, and makes one more foolish choice.  He continues rejecting the Lord.  Instead of seeking the Lord with repentance, he seeks out a medium to summon Samuel from the dead!  The medium is reluctant and then downright fearful when she realized what she had done.  Samuel is not pleased, but delivers the dismal truth. Have you ever been in trouble and looked everywhere but up? Jesus is RIGHT THERE just waiting to hear from you. β˜οΈπŸ™πŸ»β˜οΈβ€πŸ™πŸ»β˜οΈπŸ™πŸ»


1 Samuel 27

Read 1 Samuel 27 – David understood Saul would never stop hunting him,  so he sought refuge among the Philistines.  David’s relationship with king Achish seems to be a web of mutual respect and deceit.   Achish wants David to be his slave, and believes him to be waging war against the Israeli town’s.   David is actually picking off the Philistine towns, killing everyone so that no one can testify against him.   This is a curious chapter to me.   It seems out of character for a man after God’s own heart to raid towns and lie about it.  Notice God is not mentioned in ch 27.  David seems to be acting on his own accord, and not leaning into the Lord.  Can you recall a season adrift? Were you the master of your universe?   It is a heavy life to live. But take heart because God never gives up on you. πŸŒπŸ°πŸŒ’πŸ‘ŽπŸŒ˜πŸ°πŸŒ


1 Samuel 26

Read 1 Samuel 26 – Can you picture it?  If it was a movie, would the director give it a comedic flare or cue in the dramatic music?  David and Abishai slip into Saul’s enemy camp – through 3,000 sleeping soldiers, to Saul and Abner who were in the center.  This is what God’s favor looks like (26:12).  David and Abishai whisper over what to do next.  David forbids the killing of Saul, again because he is God’s anointed, but instead takes his spear and water jug, and moves a safe distance away, and begins taunting Saul and his troops.  King Saul responds, calling him, β€œDavid, my son” (26:17)  Talk about a dysfunctional relationship!  Saul repents to David, asks him to come home and says he will not harm him (26:21).  This sounds a lot like the cave scene in chapter 24.  Have you ever shown grace to a difficult person?  It will reveal your true heart.  I am awed by David’s lead.  His men did not take matters into their own hands even though their lives were also in jeopardy.  Patience, courage, loyalty and faith are revealed in our chapter.  β³πŸ›‘πŸ¦πŸ“–πŸ¦πŸ›‘β³


1 Samuel 25

Read 1 Samuel 25 – Samuel… the one Hannah prayed for… the one entrusted to the Lord… the one who never lost his way and appointed king Saul and David at the Lord’s direction… Samuel dies (25:1), yet, his legacy continues through the life of King David.Β 

Legacy, who made you the person you are and what about you will live on in your loved ones?

Β  Perhaps David was grieving when he moved down to the wilderness of Maon. The transition of grief is a messy job as a person moves from who they were, walking alongside their loved one, to who they are walking without them.Β 

Here in Maon, we meet Nabal and Abigail. The bible tells us that Nabal means fool, and he certainly is.Β  But I love Abigail!Β  I love how she keeps her wits and does the right thing despite the bad choices of her husband. Β  Her servants trust her in the face of disaster (25:14-17), and she wastes no time in response.Β  She humbly approaches David, taking responsibility and reminding David of who he was.Β  Her actions changed everything; she earned David’s gratitude (25:33), and saved her people from slaughter.Β  Abigail didn’t let her husbands sloppy life ruin hers. In the end, the Lord rescued Abigail from her difficult marriage and she became the wife of King David.Β  πŸ™πŸ»πŸ™πŸ»πŸ™πŸ»β€πŸ™πŸ»πŸ™πŸ»πŸ™πŸ»


1 Samuel 24

Read 1 Samuel 24 – Humility is strength restrained.  Humility is a fear of the Lord God Almighty that comes before ones human responses.  David’s men interpret Sauls selecting the very cave they were hiding in to relieve himself as a sign from God.  It can be tempting to want something so much that you read circumstances as the Lord’s favor, without giving the matter prayerful discernment.  David doesn’t kill Saul out of reverence for God; Saul was chosen by God and to harm him would be to dishonor the Lord.  David did cut a piece of Saul’s robe – which was culturally considered an extension of a ruler’s royal essence, and this simple act gave David great remorse(24:4-5).  After the king was out of the cave, David called out to him and made him aware of his mercy.  Saul seems to experience true remorse and understanding that David will be king after him.  Does your heart align with David?  Will you live humble?πŸ˜ΈπŸ™ŠπŸ’–πŸ™πŸ»πŸ’–πŸ™ŠπŸ˜Έ


1 Samuel 23

Read 1 Samuel 23 – David hears of persecution in Keilah, asks the Lord if he should go, and goes(23:1-2).  Learn. Pray. Move.  It’s a great pattern for life.  David is a fearless protector.  His men feared (23:3), and David did not dismiss their fears, but reconfirmed with the LORD(23:4).  They were successful in rescuing the people of Keilah, and Saul learns of their location and brings his entire army.  Notice Saul says, β€œGod has handed him over to me, for he has trapped him in a walled town.”  Some people are prone to invent what God is thinking or doing to suit their own interests.  Later, in 23:21, Saul offers the Lord’s blessing for the men who betrayed David, adding, β€œAt last someone is concerned about me!”  Pathetic, right?  Have you ever made up what God thinks without actually praying about it?  Be cautious of throwing your own pity party; rather, let gratitude and prayer lead you through life.πŸ™β€β™€οΈπŸ™…β€β™€οΈπŸ™†β€β™€οΈπŸ™ŒπŸ™†β€β™‚οΈπŸ™…β€β™‚οΈπŸ™Žβ€β™‚οΈ


1 Samuel 22 With Bonus

Read 1 Samuel 22 – King Saul is a maniac.   He reminds me of the rock stars of the 70’s, living like they had no one to answer to,  full of abandon, destruction, and ego… except Saul takes his aggressions out on people, not just hotel rooms.   David is still in hiding, and many join him (22:2).  Saul questions the priests and orders his men to slaughter the them, but they refuse (22:15-17).  He orders Doeg, his chief shepherd to do it (we met him in 21:7).  Doeg kills 85 priests,  then seeks out their families and livestock.  Only one escapes, Abiathar, who runs to David and is offered protection(22:20-23).  My blood is boiling with outrage at the atrocities! πŸ’”πŸ˜‘πŸ˜­βœοΈπŸ˜­πŸ˜‘πŸ’” 

Bonus edition:   SHEPHERDS

Jesus refers to himself as the Good Shepherd.   He says the sheep hear His voice and follow Him. See:  Matthew 10, John 10, Revelation 7.

King David was a shepherd.   Those days and nights in the field taught him to fight off attackers,  to rescue, to care for a flock and to ponder the mysteries of God. See 1 Samuel 16:11, 17:34-37, Psalm 23 

Doeg was a shepherd.   The same skills David used for good,  he used for evil when he slaughtered the priests and their families.   Evil will always try to imitate God. See 1 Samuel 21-22


1 Samuel 21

Read 1 Samuel 21 – David is a quick thinker.  David goes to the priest,  Ahimelech, for food and weapons.   He is offered the priests bread… Jesus will refer to this when defending his apostles for eating grain on the sabbath by saying: THE SABBATH WAS MADE FOR MAN, AND NOT MAN FOR THE SABBATH (Mark 2:27).  Human needs rise above legalism. The priest has one weapon to offer, it is the very sword of Goliath.  David moves on to a Philistine community,  ruled by King Achish, whose officers recognize David and know he is the king of the land (21:11).  David tricks them into thinking him insane (21:13) as a means to escape.   Sometimes it’s hard to know where to turn for help, and when you realize you’re in bad company,  it’s time to use every trick in the book. πŸ₯–πŸ—‘πŸ˜›πŸ™πŸ»πŸ˜œπŸ—‘πŸ₯–