May 31, 2017
1 Samuel 29
1 Samuel 29
Shawn Bumpers / General
In the last 2 chapters we learned that David and his 600 men, looking for a safe place away from Saul, had moved to Gath and befriended Achish the king.
But David had not turned against Israel.
1 Samuel 27:8 NKJV
And David and his men went up and raided the Geshurites, the Girzites, and the Amalekites. For those nations were the inhabitants of the land from of old, as you go to Shur, even as far as the land of Egypt.
In chapter 28, we first learned that the Philistines were gathering armies to go to war against Israel.
And Achish had informed David that he expected him and his men to go to battle with them.
1 Samuel 28:2 NIV84
David said, “Then you will see for yourself what your servant can do.” Achish replied, “Very well, I will make you my bodyguard for life.”
Samuel was dead and the LORD was not answering Saul through the Urim, by the prophets, or in dreams.
1 Samuel 28:16–19 NKJV
Then Samuel said: “So why do you ask me, seeing the Lord has departed from you and has become your enemy? And the Lord has done for Himself as He spoke by me. For the Lord has torn the kingdom out of your hand and given it to your neighbor, David. Because you did not obey the voice of the Lord nor execute His fierce wrath upon Amalek, therefore the Lord has done this thing to you this day. Moreover the Lord will also deliver Israel with you into the hand of the Philistines. And tomorrow you and your sons will be with me. The Lord will also deliver the army of Israel into the hand of the Philistines.”
1 Samuel 15:22 NKJV
So Samuel said: “Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, As in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed than the fat of rams.
1 Samuel 15:23 NKJV
For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, And stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, He also has rejected you from being king.”
Aphek means “fortress.”
As a term of differentiation, it points out that this Philistine army has a Hebrew army within it.
When the military commanders of the Philistines (here called Sare (Sar-RYE), meaning princes) saw their king with David and his 600, they protested.
This question must have shocked Achish because he had the utmost confidence in David.
While these commanders couldn’t argue with their king, they could suggest a safety measure.
The king gave the message to David, who made sure to appear deeply hurt by the suggestion he might do such a thing.
Had he not proved himself to Achish?
Well, we know David’s Lord and King was God.
But Achish was certain that he was David’s Lord, and the commanders of his army were sure they didn’t want David with them in battle.
The distance from the Philistines camp to Ziklag is about 50 miles and it took 3 days.
Perhaps David took his time making his way back in case an opportunity presented itself for him to return to battle.
1 Samuel 27:11 NKJV
David would save neither man nor woman alive, to bring news to Gath, saying, “Lest they should inform on us, saying, ‘Thus David did.’ ” And thus was his behavior all the time he dwelt in the country of the Philistines.
David was as alone now as he had been when he first fled from Gibeah.
Psalm 25:16–17 NKJV
Turn Yourself to me, and have mercy on me, For I am desolate and afflicted. The troubles of my heart have enlarged; Bring me out of my distresses!
Psalm 25:20 NKJV
Keep my soul, and deliver me; Let me not be ashamed, for I put my trust in You.
Different people react in different ways to the same circumstances.
And sometimes there’s no predicting how a person will react.
Psalm 119:11 NKJV
Your word I have hidden in my heart, That I might not sin against You.
He ordered Abiathar the priest to bring the ephod and together they sought the will of the Lord.
Psalm 103:2–10 NKJV
Bless the Lord, O my soul, And forget not all His benefits: Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases, Who redeems your life from destruction, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies, Who satisfies your mouth with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s. The Lord executes righteousness And justice for all who are oppressed. He made known His ways to Moses, His acts to the children of Israel. The Lord is merciful and gracious, Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy. He will not always strive with us, Nor will He keep His anger forever. He has not dealt with us according to our sins, Nor punished us according to our iniquities.
Back to our text, the Lord’s answer was positive.
In verse 11, it says they found an Egyptian slave whom his Amalekite master had abandoned because he was ill.
Well, verse 11 actually just says they found a man in the field.
The Amalekites were celebrating a bit too early.
They certainly were not expecting David and his men to show up.
David and his mean rescued all the people who had been kidnapped, and recovered all the belongings that had been taken from Ziklag.
It was a total victory for David, but it was also a profitable victory, because David took the wealth and herds of the Amalekites and claimed it for himself.
2 Corinthians 12:9 NKJV
And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
Psalm 37:5 NKJV
Commit your way to the Lord, Trust also in Him, And He shall bring it to pass.
When David said to his troops, “This is David’s spoil” (v. 20), he wasn’t claiming the wealth of the Amalekites for himself but rather it was under his authority to see to its distribution.
Each of his fighting men received their part of it.
And so did the 200 soldiers who were too weary to continue the pursuit.
In verse 26, we find that even though the town had been burned by the enemy, David returned to Ziklag.
There he would await news of the battle between Israel and the Philistines.
2 Samuel 1:1–2 NKJV
Now it came to pass after the death of Saul, when David had returned from the slaughter of the Amalekites, and David had stayed two days in Ziklag, on the third day, behold, it happened that a man came from Saul’s camp with his clothes torn and dust on his head. So it was, when he came to David, that he fell to the ground and prostrated himself.