As your soul prospers – I Samuel 18 / (February 23, 2020)

   Last week we looked at the incredible relationship Jonathan and David had. Especially on Jonathan’s part, he was the kings son! Yet he SURRENDERED his position and power to David. He SPOKE UP not only to his father but to an unstable king. And he SYMPATHIZED. The closest relationship we find in scripture to sympathy is empathy, which Jesus did. He emptied Himself, taking on the very form of a man. (v.3) Jonathan made a covenant with David. Having an intimate friend helps us face the unknown. A source of encouragement and support.

   Today we’ll look at another relationship David gained after killing Goliath. David was elevated by Saul, (v.5)…this pleased all the people and Saul’s officers and of course the woman, they sang (v.7). Verse 16 all Israel and Judah loved David…and Saul’s daughter Michal was in love with David. (20, 28) “Everybody loves David!”. David who had never served in the army held an official role as a leader and yet… Here he was commanding the troops. Young! Inexperienced! And until a few days ago unknown. How did he know how to handle himself? A little insight may come from a word that appears four times in this chapter. David “PROSPERED in all his ways for the LORD was with him!” (Footnote: (5) so successfully; “wisely” (14) great success; “very wise” (15) how successful; “wise” (30) met with more success; “acted more wisely.” Each time the same Hebrew word is used. Here are a couple of examples of that word used in other Scripture. Proverbs (10:19; 21:11). In other words…David was a man who guarded his lips, kept quiet so he could hear God (James 1:19). (Two ears, one mouth). Even when Eliab was trash-talking him, “you only come to watch the battle…” more likely, “you only come to be seen at the battle.” (a photo-op) to be recognized as being a part of something you’re not really a part of. How many times have we looked at the outwardly, visible?

   Sometimes churches would rather fight with their brothers than the real enemy. But David… he just kept on prospering…it would have been easy to retaliate, after all, Eliab heard Samuel say…and saw the oil flow…and…what built up in his heart was more like Saul. (Next week we’ll look at James 3:13-18 as Saul’s evil spirit, ENVY takes over, an earthly and unspiritual wisdom, of the world and of the devil. The word that best describes Saul appears here twice, “selfish ambition” Saul does whatever he wants because he has the power. Self-serving Saul! 3 John 2 John prays that we, like David, may prosper in all things, enjoy good health; prosper, even as our souls prosper.  Again James 3, at peace, considerate, (Jonathan like) submissive, full of mercy, and good fruit, impartial and sincere… raising a harvest of righteousness.