Saul Persecutes David

Saul Persecutes David

Saul was the source of his own troubles. He had rebelled against God. God had chosen him and then rejected him as king, not because of David, but because Saul did not have a heart for God. Saul even had the word of God that the kingdom had been taken from him and his house. Saul was observant enough to see that his replacement would be David, yet even in THIS Saul actively attempts to set aside God's will.

Saul was not David's enemy, but David was Saul's enemy. David was faithful in his service to Saul, yet Saul had determined that David must die. Attempt after attempt is made on David's life. In all of this, David was innocent and remained innocent of any evil towards Saul.

Enter the Psalms. We get to have an insight into the very mind and heart of David through these Psalms. How does an innocent righteous man respond to this situation? He puts his complete faith in God as his protector. This does not mean carelessly putting yourself in harm's way. This does not mean that you flee from obvious danger. David did flee when Saul sent his servants to kill David. David did avoid the presence of Saul when such endangered his life. There is no contradiction here in David's life.

Yet, we also see that, while taking care to protect himself from such danger, David keeps his hope placed upon God.

"In the Lord I take refuge; How can you say to my soul, “Flee as a bird to your mountain;" (Psalm 11:1).

“... For God is my stronghold." (Psalm 59:9).

"My God in His lovingkindness will meet me; God will let me look triumphantly upon my foes." (Psalm 59:10).

David keeps his faith EVEN to rejoice in God while escaping from Saul

"But as for me, I shall sing of Your strength; Yes, I shall joyfully sing of Your lovingkindness in the morning, For You have been my stronghold And a refuge in the day of my distress. O my strength, I will sing praises to You; For God is my stronghold, the God who shows me lovingkindness." (Psalm 59:16–17).

He prays for justice to be done, but is willing for God to be the judge in such matters. Saul is God's king, God will deal with him. Even in his prayer for God to act, it is based upon God's justice and righteousness to be shown, not personal vengeance:

"Destroy them in wrath, destroy them that they may be no more; That men may know that God rules in Jacob To the ends of the earth. Selah." (Psalm 59:13).

Even when evil seems to prevail, David trusts that God is on his throne and that God will bring about a righteous end (Ps. 11). While being persecuted unjustly, David doesn't allow himself to be lowered to the same worldly and ungodly level of action. Saul's misbehavior is not a permit for David to act likewise. It is difficult to fathom David's thinking. He KNEW that he was chosen to be king when Saul is removed, yet he refuses to act against Saul. He is the chosen king yet is willing to live as a fugitive. He is to live in the place of a king but finds himself living in a cave. David rejoices in God, praises God, and walks in righteousness.

David trusts God, not just in good times, do we?  Hugh DeLong