Read: 1 Samuel 18:1-31
“Saul was then afraid of David, for the Lord was with David and had turned away from Saul.” 1 Samuel 18:12
Is it just me or does Saul sound like a 5-year-old girl?! “It’s not fair!” I swear my daughter has been taking her cues from King Saul…just in a less violent way…most of the time. Anyway. King Saul is really throwing a bit of a tantrum, don’t you think? Here is young David — warrior extraordinaire just back from slaying the giant, Goliath. The women are singing his song and the people are celebrating. Saul, instead of celebrating with them, is sulking in self-pity, kicking the dirt, and giving David the stink eye. (I know what you’re thinking…this guy should write a translation of the Bible. Unlikely.) Moving along. As jealousy stews within him he utters this ironic phrase, “Next they’ll be making him their king!”
What Saul doesn’t know is that he’s right. David will become king. He should’ve read chapter 16. That would’ve saved him a lot of embarrassment. Nevertheless, Saul continues in his jealous rage, tries to kill David (a couple times) but is unsuccessful. Why is he unsuccessful? It wasn’t because Saul was a terrible shot. And it wasn’t because David was an Israelite ninja, cunning and swift in his defensive techniques. It was simply because,
“…the Lord was with David…” (verse 12)
We often think that we have somehow earned our successes. And in some ways we have. I don’t want to discount hard work. But if we really get down to the nitty gritty, we HAVE because the Lord has GIVEN. David’s success seems to always come back to that phrase, “the Lord was with David.” Saul’s lack of success was for exactly the opposite reason,
“[the Lord] turned away from Saul.”
Now, we know that the Lord turned away from Saul and rejected him as king because of his disobedience (15:24-26), but regardless of his disobedience, his successes were over because,
“victory comes from the Lord.” (Proverbs 21:31)
And without the Lord, there is no victory.
Lord, thank You for the victory. Thank You for Your unfailing faithfulness. May I never turn away from You nor disobey You. Help me to depend on You…to rely on You…to stand firm in Your abilities. It is only through You that I have victory. I praise You for it. In Jesus’ name. Amen.