October 8 2013 by
Troy Rust, writer, Hurdle Mills
Focal Passage: 1 Samuel 24:1-15
When my older sister and I were young, we would often sing bits and pieces of songs we heard on the radio. Those were the days of songs like “Coward of the County,” a Kenny Rogers ballad about Old West style revenge. While the Bible calls believers to defend the cause of the helpless, we are never called to take revenge. Paul wrote, “Never take your own revenge, beloved, but leave room for the wrath of God, for it is written, ‘Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord’” (Romans 12:19).
Most people would not have blamed David had he killed Saul that day in the cave in the wilderness of Engedi. Why didn’t he end all the looking over his shoulder by snuffing out his unstable enemy? David wanted to glorify God more than himself.
He chose to honor God’s anointed king even while the king acted dishonorably. Saul had been jealous and hateful, creating an increased level of incompetency in his leadership.
Even after Samuel told him that he would be replaced by someone better than him, Saul chose to do worse instead of better.
However, David focused on his God instead of his enemy. He knew that God had sent Samuel to anoint him, and that God would enthrone him according to His divine timing.
He also knew that God did not appoint him king only to have him die before taking the throne. Had David become obsessed with avenging his own honor, the honor of God would have been overshadowed by his personal agenda. David, a man after God’s own heart, knew that God could be trusted to order even the most difficult steps in life for His glory and the good of His servant. Saul chose his honor to the dishonor of God.
Personal conflict will either strengthen or weaken us spiritually, as we choose to fight either for God’s glory or our own. Which one will you chose? As citizens of Christ’s Kingdom, let us regularly remind ourselves, “It’s not about me!”