By Teena Myers
The United Kingdom Rejected Part 5/9
Saul, knowing David was the man Samuel spoke of, tossed aside any pretense of doing right by David. He told Jonathan and all his servants to kill him. Jonathan intervened, and Saul vowed, “As the Lord lives, David shall not be put to death.”[i] Life returned to normal until David won another victory against the Philistines. While David played music to calm him, Saul tried to pin David to the wall with his spear. David fled from his presence.
Much to her father’s displeasure, Michal helped her husband escape. He went to Samuel in Ramah, who said he would be king, but now he is running for his life. Samuel brought him to Naioth for refuge, where he had established a prophetic school.[ii] When Saul arrived in search of Samuel and David, the Spirit of God came upon Saul. He fell in Samuel’s presence prophesying, while David escaped.
David spent the next four years fleeing from Saul. As word of David’s plight spread through the nation, “everyone who was in distress, and everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was discontented gathered to him; and he became captain over them.”[iii] During this time, David asked God for direction frequently, something that was not noted about David until Saul severed their relationship.
God continued to comfort and encourage David during the years he lived as an outcast. The Spirit came upon Amasai, who became the chief of David’s greatest warriors, to assure David God had sent men to help him, saying, “We are yours, David, And are with you, son of Jesse! Peace, peace to you, And peace to him who helps you; Indeed, your God helps you!”[iv] Jonathan came to David in the wilderness of Ziph to tell him, “Do not be afraid, because the hand of Saul my father will not find you, and you will be king over Israel, and I will be second in command to you; and Saul my father knows that as well.”[v]
King Saul confirmed Jonathan’s words were true. When David spared Saul at the cave in Engedi, Saul admitted his maliciousness and agreed God should reward David’s mercy. Then he confirmed Johnathan’s words, saying, “I know that you will certainly be king, and that the kingdom of Israel will be established in your hand.”[vi] The following year, Saul experienced more mercy after his second attempt to kill David in the wilderness of Ziph. This time Saul said, “I have sinned. Return, my son David, for I will not harm you again since my life was precious in your sight this day. Behold, I have played the fool and have made a very great mistake”[vii]
[i] 1 Samuel 19:6
Naioth [N] [H] [S] dwellings, the name given to the prophetical college established by Samuel near Ramah. It consisted of a cluster of separate dwellings, and hence its name. David took refuge here when he fled from Saul ( 1 Samuel 19:18 1 Samuel 19:19 1 Samuel 19:22 1 Samuel 19:23 ), and here he passed a few weeks in peace (Compare Psalms 11 ). It was probably the common residence of the “sons of the prophets.”
[iii] 1 Samuel 22:2
[iv] 1 Chronicles 12:18
[v] 1 Samuel 23:17
[vi] 1 Samuel 24:20
[vii] 1 Samuel 26:21