Morning Light – May 27th, 2015
Today: [1 Samuel Chapter Twenty-Two]: Finding David at the Cave Adullam. In this chapter David continues in flight from Saul. He takes refuge in the cave Adullum with his family and several hundred followers. King Saul pursues and slays everyone who gives aid to David. He finds that Ahimelech the High Priest met with David and gave him Shewbread to eat. As a result Saul orders his servant Doeg to slaughter 85 priests leaving only one survivor of the line of Aaron to serve as High Priest. In all of this David continues to walk into his destiny with the prophet Gad by his side giving counsel from the word of the Lord.
[1Sa 22:1-23 KJV] 1 David therefore departed thence, and escaped to the cave Adullam: and when his brethren and all his father’s house heard [it], they went down thither to him. 2 And every one [that was] in distress, and every one that [was] in debt, and every one [that was] discontented, gathered themselves unto him; and he became a captain over them: and there were with him about four hundred men. 3 And David went thence to Mizpeh of Moab: and he said unto the king of Moab, Let my father and my mother, I pray thee, come forth, [and be] with you, till I know what God will do for me. 4 And he brought them before the king of Moab: and they dwelt with him all the while that David was in the hold. 5 And the prophet Gad said unto David, Abide not in the hold; depart, and get thee into the land of Judah. Then David departed, and came into the forest of Hareth.
David is fleeing from the wrath of Saul and in the previous chapter meets with Ahimelech the High Priest who gives David and his men of the sacred bread that only the priests were allowed to eat. David sees Doeg, Saul’s herdman in Nob and removes himself to the cave Abdullam where his family and many other people disenfranchised under Saul’s reign gather to him. I am always reminded that Jesus Himself would have read these passages and be very familiar with them. Perhaps He had the cave Abullam in mind in Matt. 11:28-30 when He cried:
Matt. 11:28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart:and ye shall find rest unto your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
These discontented and distress people remained with David from this time on and eventually became David’s mighty men. The prophet Gad also joined himself to David and counseled him by the word of the Lord. Notice that when the prophet Gad told him not to remain in Moab that David listened. We are told in modern day prophetic teaching not to ever prophesy a geographical move. If that was the training that the prophet Gad received David would never have returned to Judah to become king. God often moves through the prophetic to tell people to do things with certain levels of risk. Prophets see through a glass darkly. They hear in part and know in part. The prophet Agabus in the New Testament and other prophets gave similar life changing prophecies to individuals and groups. There will be times that a prophet will miss it and other times that the person receiving the word will assume something that the word does not say. In all of this Paul said in 1 Thess. 5:7 “despise not prophesying…” There is a strong attitude of despising the prophetic even among the so-called prophetic movement today. Ultimately you are the only person who an place any value on the prophetic word you receive. Prophecy must be judged and the final judgment rests with you and what God tells you and confirms to you regarding what God says in the prophetic about your life and plans.
The word Abdullam means “Justice of the People”. Saul was unjustly persecuting David but he found justice among the people. In four instances in the Gospels the Pharisees wanted to harm Jesus but would not because they feared the people. This was true of John the Baptist as well. They would not speak against John because they knew the people considered John a prophet of God. You may have times in your life when prevailing leadership may not understand or accept you. Have the wisdom to resort to the people and find your support and strength there in times of difficulty.
6 When Saul heard that David was discovered, and the men that [were] with him, (now Saul abode in Gibeah under a tree in Ramah, having his spear in his hand, and all his servants [were] standing about him;) 7 Then Saul said unto his servants that stood about him, Hear now, ye Benjamites; will the son of Jesse give every one of you fields and vineyards, [and] make you all captains of thousands, and captains of hundreds; 8 That all of you have conspired against me, and [there is] none that sheweth me that my son hath made a league with the son of Jesse, and [there is] none of you that is sorry for me, or sheweth unto me that my son hath stirred up my servant against me, to lie in wait, as at this day?
Saul is threatened by David. It is a rare leader who will accommodate those God raises up to take the people beyond his or her influence. The Saul attitude often rears it’s head in an insecure leader who is unwilling or incapable of leading people on in God’s purposes. At this point Saul is never seen without a weapon literally in his hand. He prefers a spear because it can wound at a distance. He is of the tribe of Benjamin and he mocks his own family and is insecure even of the loyalty of those closest to him. He appeals to people around him to feel sorry for him and tries to use guilt to hold the people to him because of his past victories. When everything else fails there will be accusations of rebellion and of being “out of alignment” with God. When a leader steps out of his anointing he or she will use all of these tactics to hold the people to themselves.
9 Then answered Doeg the Edomite, which was set over the servants of Saul, and said, I saw the son of Jesse coming to Nob, to Ahimelech the son of Ahitub. 10 And he enquired of the LORD for him, and gave him victuals, and gave him the sword of Goliath the Philistine. 11 Then the king sent to call Ahimelech the priest, the son of Ahitub, and all his father’s house, the priests that [were] in Nob: and they came all of them to the king. 12 And Saul said, Hear now, thou son of Ahitub. And he answered, Here I [am], my lord. 13 And Saul said unto him, Why have ye conspired against me, thou and the son of Jesse, in that thou hast given him bread, and a sword, and hast enquired of God for him, that he should rise against me, to lie in wait, as at this day? 14 Then Ahimelech answered the king, and said, And who [is so] faithful among all thy servants as David, which is the king’s son in law, and goeth at thy bidding, and is honourable in thine house? 15 Did I then begin to enquire of God for him? be it far from me: let not the king impute [any] thing unto his servant, [nor] to all the house of my father: for thy servant knew nothing of all this, less or more. 16 And the king said, Thou shalt surely die, Ahimelech, thou, and all thy father’s house. 17 And the king said unto the footmen that stood about him, Turn, and slay the priests of the LORD; because their hand also [is] with David, and because they knew when he fled, and did not shew it to me. But the servants of the king would not put forth their hand to fall upon the priests of the LORD. 18 And the king said to Doeg, Turn thou, and fall upon the priests. And Doeg the Edomite turned, and he fell upon the priests, and slew on that day fourscore and five persons that did wear a linen ephod. 19 And Nob, the city of the priests, smote he with the edge of the sword, both men and women, children and sucklings, and oxen, and asses, and sheep, with the edge of the sword.
Here we see the consequences of David hiding from Ahimelech that he was on the run from Saul when he came to Nob. David tells Ahimelech he was on an errand for the king. David convinces Ahimelech to give them of the showbread and to give him Goliath’s sword which was kept there. When Saul finds this out he commands his Edomite servant Doeg to slay the priests of the Lord and 85 people are brutally murdered. This is the remnant of the house of Eli descended from Ichabod whose name meant that the glory was departed.
20 And one of the sons of Ahimelech the son of Ahitub, named Abiathar, escaped, and fled after David. 21 And Abiathar shewed David that Saul had slain the LORD’S priests. 22 And David said unto Abiathar, I knew [it] that day, when Doeg the Edomite [was] there, that he would surely tell Saul: I have occasioned [the death] of all the persons of thy father’s house. 23 Abide thou with me, fear not: for he that seeketh my life seeketh thy life: but with me thou [shalt be] in safeguard.
David realizes that he was responsible in part for what happened to the house of Eli. With the exception of Abiathar the ordained lineage of Aaron the first high priest was totally exterminated. Abiathar alone remains to even provide the children of Israel with a High Priestly line to stand before the Ark of the Covenant. Notice that David doesn’t make any excuses. Neither does he resign his post or reject his destiny because he lied and cheated and inadvertently brought about the death of 85 people in doing so. Yet he does act in good faith and restitution by offering Abiathar protection under his sword.
Thus in this chapter the enmity between Saul and David is fully developed. Several hundred men and their families resort to David including the lone survivor of the High Priestly family who is wiped out by Doeg the Edomite at the command of Saul himself. At this point God rules Israel through King and Priest and Prophet. Saul in a brazen act of self preservation thinks nothing of negating the priest’s office in order to maintain his own authority. Today in the New Testament era Jesus has given us five ministries of apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor and teacher. However the spirit of Saul is very present in our culture that accepts pastor and perhaps evangelists but rejects the other leaders for the same reasons Saul rejected the prophets and the priests. We should learn by this an identify the Saul attitude when we are exposed to it in ourselves or others.
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