We find Saul at GIBEAH.
Gibeah is Saul’s hometown.
1Samuel 10:26 [NLT] When Saul returned to his home at Gibeah, a band of men whose hearts God had touched became his constant companions.
Amazing to look back and see at one time Saul had a group of men that were committed to GOD and to him.
· How the tide of selfish pride has erroded any trace within Saul or around Saul of hearts that have been touched by God.
· The WORLD and all its influences has a way of destroying ones faith if given into its temptations.
· 1John 2:15-17 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. (16) For all that is in the world––the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life––is not of the Father but is of the world. (17) And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.
It appears that Saul had taken a break from hunting David.
(v1) Tells us that the Ziphites came to Saul at Gibeah.
The last time we read about the Ziphites is back in chapter 23
We have already seen a similiar account of their allegiance to Saul and expressing their desire to RID the land of David.
Notice this scene
Turn to 1Samuel 23:16-20 [ESV] And Jonathan, Saul’s son, rose and went to David at Horesh, and strengthened his hand in God. (17) And he said to him, “Do not fear, for the hand of Saul my father shall not find you. You shall be king over Israel, and I shall be next to you. Saul my father also knows this.” (18) And the two of them made a covenant before the Lord. David remained at Horesh, and Jonathan went home. (19) Then the Ziphites went up to Saul at Gibeah, saying, “Is not David hiding among us in the strongholds at Horesh, on the hill of Hachilah, which is south of Jeshimon? (20) "Now therefore, O king, come down according to all the desire of your soul to come down; and our part shall be to deliver him into the king’s hand."
Looking at chapter 26 we see them again seeking to excite Saul to engage in pursuing David.
The Ziphites seek to stir Saul up, to eliminate David.
Notice when the Ziphites appear on the scene:
· Chapter 23 After Jonathan encourages David
· Chapter 26 After Abigail councils David.
Both scenes are HIGH WATER MARKS in David’s life, moments where GOD intervenes and supplies the necessary person to ASSIST David.
The Ziphites are right on the heels of both of those experiences in David’s life....as wonderful as each of those experiences are, they are brief and then it is back into the fires of opportunity.
Ÿ Opportunity - For GROWTH, to EXPERIENCE more of GOD.
It can be the case in our lives too that after a
· Retreat or Conference
· Bible Study
· A great day in the Lord
It seems like the Ziphites appear and seek to stir up the flesh and to disrupt ones walk with God.
But like with David and in our lives too, GOD will use these opportunities to Prove and to Teach.
In this case it is to PROVE DAVID’s Heart and to TEACH ABISHAI.
(v3) We read that Saul sets up his camp with his 3000 trained military forces to trap David.
David is hangs back in the wilderness.
(v4) This time David sends out SPIES.
Back in chapter 24 we read that David and his men were hiding out in a cave, this time David is out looking for Saul.
(v6) David’s Plan
· David was acting strong in his faith.
· David was going into the enemy’s camp.
David asked, “Who will go down with me to Saul in the camp?”
· Only ABISHAI responds to the invite to go with David to Saul’s Camp.
When the going gets tough the tough get going.
Abishai was one tough dude.
Ø 2Samuel 16:9 Then Abishai the son of Zeruiah said to the king, "Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king? Please, let me go over and take off his head!"
Ø 2Samuel 19:21 But Abishai the son of Zeruiah answered and said, "Shall not Shimei be put to death for this, because he cursed the LORD’S anointed?"
I can imagine the scene as David and Abishai get ready to head to the camp of Saul........
What incredible odds that they face.....but when God is in the equation....
“One Plus God is the Majority”
(v7) As they make their way into and throughout the camp everyone......everywhere is asleep.
Ø What an incredible scene Saul asleep in the middle and Abner and the 3000 men encircling Saul.
Ø They could not wake these men up.
Verse 12 tells us that God had caused them all to fall into a deep sleep.
· This “deep sleep” also occurs with Adam when he looses a rib, but gains a wife.
· It also occurs with Abram as he receives a vision regarding his heirs.
(v8) Then Abishai said to David, "God has delivered your enemy into your hand this day. Now therefore, please, let me strike him at once with the spear, right to the earth; and I will not have to strike him a second time!"
David let me take ACTION, you have been a little squeemish in the past and NOT AGGRESSIVE enough...let me handle it for you. No one will be able to blame you. Besides you and me WHO knows?
How tempting for David (1) Everyone is asleep (2) Abishai is willing (3) No one will know, but Abishai & David
DAVID has Learned
(v9) And David said to Abishai, "Do not destroy him; for who can stretch out his hand against the LORD’S anointed, and be guiltless?"
David had been in a similar situation before.......
Saul goes into the cave where David is hiding with his men......they tell David “God has delivered your enemy into your hand...”, so as Saul is in the cave David does not kill Saul, 1Samuel 24:6 David says "The LORD forbid that I should do this thing to my master, the LORD’S anointed, to stretch out my hand against him, seeing he is the anointed of the LORD." But David cuts off a piece of his garment, David is totally convicted of this Seeming Simple ACTION and ATTITUDE
David learned from dealing with Nabal that if you ACT upon those feelings of revenge then you will face punishment.
To be careless and self-serving in the immediate will invite disaster in the future.
Understanding that CHOICES you make TODAY/TOMORROW will have consequences.
Rest of your life
· Divorce is a choice that has long term impact.
· Pornography has its long term impact as well as other deep rooted issues.
· We know the problems associated with drugs, alcohol.
(v10) David said furthermore, "As the LORD lives, the LORD shall strike him, or his day shall come to die, or he shall go out to battle and perish.
David has learned that GOD will defend him and take care of his adversaries.
David saw how GOD dealt with NABAL.
David saw how GOD brought Abigail along to PREVENT him from taking the lives of NABAL, All the males and his family.
David LEARNED how GOD was in CHARGE and HIS WAYS and TIMING are ALWAYS PERFECT.
David here understands that Saul could go ONE of THREE ways:
· God will strike him.
· Old age will over take him.
· The Battlefield will claim his life.
An overall observation found in verse 4
[ESV] David therefore sent out spies, and understood that Saul had indeed come.
BEING PROACTIVE IN OUR FAITH
Ephesians 6:12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.
Ø 1Peter 5:8,9 [ESV] Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. (9) Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world.
[NKJV] Be Vigilant
[NLT] Watch Out For
That is a PRO-ACTIVE position to be in. One that is on the LOOKOUT. A POSITION of being READY.
Taking a firm stand against the devil - against his devices the flesh, the world.
Be strong in your faith - Dig deep into the Word of God, TRUSTING HIM.
NOT FALLING ASLEEP on the WATCH.
Ø David did not raise a hand against Saul...the FALLEN Leader..... 2Chronicles 7:14 if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.
May we be WIDE AWAKE.....BEING as WISE as SERPENTS and as GENTLE as DOVES.
This week PRAYING for our NATION, SEEKING GOD’s WILL for our lives, CALLING UPON the HOLY SPIRIT for BOLDNESS and STRENGTH to WITNESS....and ALL that we DO WILL Bring GLORY and HONOR to JESUS.