1 Sam 18
David’s early experiences were marked by wise behavior. This chapter starts off just moments after he is called before the king, and explains to Saul just who he is, while holding the dripping head of Goliath in his hand. Before he defeated the Philistine, he had heard of the things offered to the victor, (1 Sam 17:25), the king would “enrich him with great riches, and give him his daughter, and make his father’s house free in Israel”. David at this point in life was but “a stripling” or a young man. From this point in chapter 18 he is about to experience things that most young men (and old men) are never able to survive. But David on the other hand was able to thrive at this time in his life. He was a young man, yet he showed such wisdom in his actions, and these two (youth and wisdom) rarely coexist.
David experienced Privilege and behaved himself wisely (verse 5,14)
Loved by Jonathan (verses 1,3-4)
David was privileged to have a very loyal friend, Jonathan. Friendship on this level is rarely found in young men today. Jonathan was a giving friend. Young men today seem more interested in what they can get out of a friendship than what they can give. David behaved himself wisely in never forsaking, nor taking advantage of this friendship.We as Christians also have the same privilege that was afforded David. The most precious friendships I have are with Christian men. I too must never forsake, nor take advantage of these friendships.
Favored by the King (verse 2)
David was privileged to have the king take him into his personal care, and give him a job in the kingdom. The saying “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know” fits, because David at this point had no years of experience to justify his status. Many young men when promoted to a position of authority don’t respond as David did. David behaved himself wisely and “went withersoever Saul sent him” (verse 5). Our pastor at times past has given young men in our church authority beyond their experience. It has never turned out well.But when we get saved we become a child of the King, and we are privileged to be taken into his personal care and given a job in His kingdom. We too must behave ourselves wisely and remember that it is His kingdom not ours.
Trusted by People (verse 5)
David was privileged to be accepted (trusted) by all the people and by Saul’s servants. Being a young man with really only one victory under his belt and placed in a position of authority must have been an unusual situation. People normally don’t accept a younger man in a position of authority and the men that already were working for the king (his servants) surely were not ready to trust a young David. But the scripture says that he was “accepted” in the sight of both. David must have behaved himself wisely to have taken this position and so quickly gained the trust of all. He was able to work under authority.
We as Christians must be able to work under authority if we ever expect God to give us a position of authority. Being a father is a basic position of authority. I personally have seen couples unable to start a family until the man behaved himself wisely and fell under the authority of his pastor or the Lord. We all desire a position of authority; we will only do well with it when we remember that it is a privilege.
David experienced Praise and behaved himself very wisely (verse15)
Praised by the women of Israel (verses 6-7)
It appears that David first received praise from women. At this point he needed to behave himself very wisely. Young men and the praise of women is the perfect combination for failure. David did not to fall for it. He must have received the praise and passed it on straight to God. The Bible is full of illustrations (Sampson, Solomon) of the deceitful praise of women and the horrible fall of men. David behaved himself very wisely to avoid the snare of the praise of women.
Praised by all Israel and Judah (verse 16)
Later David increased in popularity to the point that “all Israel and Judah loved David” David remained humble when all of Israel and Judah praised him, WOW. Look at today’s professional or college athletes and the success they have with large amounts of popularity and praise. How is it that David could not fall to the same temptations? The scripture says he behaved himself very wisely. The fear of God is the beginning of wisdom, and the only way to avoid such a snare is by having a fear of God.
David experienced Persecution and behaved himself more wisely (verse 30)
Throughout this chapter David had done everything right. There is a great lesson to be learned through David’s experiences, 2 Tim.3:12 “Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution”. David suffered persecution throughout this chapter and yet nowhere is it mentioned that he had any problem with it, even though it came from the ones closest to him. It really had no effect on his behavior. He simply had to behave himself more wisely
He was Envied (verse 8)
Saul was very wroth about David being ascribed “ten thousand”. The Bible says, “who can stand before envy?” David did and so did our Lord Jesus Christ. And both did it to the glory of God. We can only hope that in our service to the Lord, when envy shows its wicked head that we will behave more wisely, as David did.
He was Feared (verse 12, 29)
Saul was afraid of David. Here is the king of Israel afraid a “stripling”. How strange! Verse 12 shows us why, “because the Lord was with him”. We can only hope that the lost see the Lord in our lives. David behaved himself more wisely than all of the servants of Saul, and it showed.
He was Deceived (17,21)
David was promised the elder daughter to wife, and it didn’t happen. He then was promised Michal, but only as a snare to him, and later when David fled for his life she was given to Phaltiel the son of Laish. As every promise, by a man, in the Bible, these promises of Saul were worthless. David was deceived by a man of authority near to him and yet did not quit or put up a fight. He behaved himself more wisely and did not depend on the promises of men.
He was Threaten with his life (verses 10-11)
David withstood not only one javelin attack but hung around for another! David here shows the devotion to God that the men and women in closed countries like North Korea do today. Being willing to put your life on the line for God’s work is a concept that few if any young men today understand. David had a wisdom that was far beyond his youth.
We as Christians, young and old are going to experience some of these same things in our walk with the Lord. How are you going to behave? David ended up his walk being called a man after God’s own heart. Will God be able to say the same about you?