Lesson 12 Samuel 1:1-7 and 1 Chronicles 10:1-12
As we begin our study, it will be good for us to remember that it was during the days of Saul's reign, when the Philistines were arrayed against them and Goliath had laid down the challenge to fight, that David was first brought to the forefront of Jewish history. A gallant and brave shepherd who had slain a bear and a lion with his bare hands, he was also a young man who believed completely in God's provision and that ultimate victory that was assured through God. His quick defeat of Goliath with his sling shot began the bitter jealousy that would haunt Saul all of his days. Yet, despite numerous attempts on David's life, David remained true to God and refused to lift a hand in anger, or in any way to harm God's anointed, no matter the situation. David's devotion to God, his respect and fear of God, and his dependence on God are all models that we should follow today.
Today's reading, encompassing passages in both 2 Samuel as well as 1 Chronicles, jumps us in time from those early days of David to the end of Saul's reign forty years later, in 1010 BC, and the beginning of David's forty year reign.
For this lesson, read 1 Chronicles 10:1-12 and 2 Samuel 1:1-7 then consider the following:
- What is the difference in the stories about Saulís death between the armor-bearer in 1 Chronicles, and the Amalekite in 2 Samuel?
- What is the significance of the Amalekite?
- Who had David just finished defeating in verse 1?
- From where did the Amalekite say he had just come?
- How was it he saw Saulís predicament?
- If the Amalekites were enemies of David and the Jews why do you suppose the Amalekite took the clothing and news of Saul directly to David, and lied particularly to David telling him that he, the Amalekite, had finished off Saul?
- What was the difference between Davidís reaction to the news (the lie) that the Amalekite brought (2 Samuel 1:14-15), and the news that he received from Jabesh Gilead (2 Samuel 2:4-6)?
- In examining the two accounts, we have two different people reacting to Saul differently Ė the armor-bearer and the Amalekite. What can we see in both? How did they differ, what were their motivations, and how did their actions reflect their inner most feelings?
- What can we specifically learn about David from his reactions in these two readings? What sort of character and behavior traits is David exhibiting as a man of God and as their new leader?
Today, I think that this lesson talks to the leadership void many of us see around us, and in our own lives. In particular it speaks to a lack of respect for our appointed leaders Ė even those God didnít necessarily choose, and a lack of fear and respect for God himself. David and the people of Israel were all equally appalled at the death of Saul, the anointed of God, in spite of his own personal shortcomings and sins. They recognized the sovereignty of God and they had a healthy respect and fear (or regard) for God that I donít believe we see today.
David shows us that both our leaders and ourselves need to regain that awe and respect for our God, our Redeemer and King, and for our leaders. Life is something that is to be respected, and the death or misfortune of one of Godís anointed is never to be seen as an opportunity for gain. As you study Davidís life, you will see that he was given numerous opportunities to easily defeat and even kill Saul, but he steadfastly refused. Instead, he chose to wait on Godís leadership and guidance Ė this is what made David a great king for the majority of his reign.
I pray that all of us will become more accountable for our actions, more respectful of others, particularly those in leadership or authority positions, and that weíll regain our sense of awe about God.
Our God is an awesome God.
Have a great week everyone!
Yours in Christ,