Avoiding Cutting Corners – Worthy Study

Today I’m sharing one of my “Worthy” Bible study notes, so you’ve got an example of what you’ll get if you join my private Facebook group. Takes me less than 5 minutes to read any of my notes and you can also learn from my notes to do the digging on your own as well. If you’re interested in joining the current 1 Samuel study or the upcoming 2 Samuel study “Broken House—Broken Heart” starting Oct. 2, 2016, click here for more details.

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Read: 1 Samuel 24:1-7

Observe what it says: (my summarization of the Scripture)

After Saul finished pursuing the Philistines, he was told that David was in the Desert of En Gedi. So he took three thousand of his chosen men and set out to search for David near the Crags of the Wild Goats. Saul came by the sheep pens along the way and found a cave, so he went in to relieve himself. David and his men were far back in the cave and they said to David, “This is the day the Lord spoke of when he said to you, ‘I will give your enemy into your hands . . .’”

So David crept up unnoticed by Saul and cut off a corner from his robe. After he had done that, he felt guilty for his actions and told his men, “The Lord forbid that I should do such a thing to my master . . . lifting my hand against him; for he is the anointed of the Lord.” After he said that to his men he rebuked them and did not allow them to attack Saul—letting Saul leave the cave unharmed.

Recognize what is noteworthy and true:

It seems that all along the way as I study 1 Samuel, God has positioned and timed every event to occur at just the right time and place for the most God-honoring outcome. So this moment when Saul chose to relieve himself seems no different. Who knew that even the timing of a king’s bladder or bowels could be instrumental to the Lord’s purposes being done?! All kidding aside, I truly see how God is the ultimate Weaver of details in His all-knowing and masterful way.

I have to wonder if there was more than one obvious reason for God to prompt Saul to go into that particular cave and relieve himself. What a humiliating and vulnerable position he was found in by David. Perhaps God wanted Saul to experience being humbled and exposed in this way. And yet David’s choice—once revealed—would only further convince Saul of David’s loyalty to him.

I’m so amazed that David didn’t act upon any self-motivated desires to do what seemed obvious, at least to his men. I know I would’ve justified the choice to finish Saul off in that moment, especially with my comrades-in-arms telling me it was that right point in time. This reminds me of how strong David’s character was, as well as how insightful he was about God’s plans and ways.

I really can’t fathom or understand fully David’s reasoning for not harming Saul. His concern about “lifting a hand against” Saul surely wasn’t about cutting off a piece of his robe. But if he did consider that injurious, then he certainly had a rare and high esteem for the position of God’s anointed king. How easy it would’ve been for him to consider himself “God’s anointed” in that moment and act upon this grand and imminent opportunity. Perhaps he knew the implications of being the one to bring harm to Saul. Likewise, he must’ve believed that God should be the One to end Saul’s reign, which explains why he turned and rebuked his men for their opportunistic attitudes.

I’m sure this demonstration of restraint and integrity taught these men volumes. This was a leader being handed the chance of a lifetime, yet could confidently pass it up for God’s best instead. I know that would inspire me if I had a leader with that kind of clarity of purpose and strength of character.

Thought to take: (application for the day)

I want to be like David was here and not pounce on my enemies, or anyone who might occasionally treat me unfairly or harshly. I want to see those times as opportunities to yield my way for God’s way. I know that having that clarity of purpose comes from studying God’s word continually and applying it even when it hurts to do so. I want that to be my commitment today—to follow God’s word and truths without wavering. I also want to realize the power of my influence in other people’s lives. I want to inspire them spiritually by doing what requires great sacrifice for the sake of God’s purposes and not my own.

Ttt: (condensed thought—two to choose from or come up with one of your own)

1) Know and live out God’s truth  2) Be an example of godly sacrifice and integrity for others

[Tweet “Read my less than 5 minute devotional on David’s response to King Saul. #avoidcuttingcorners”]

[Tweet “Join my “Worthy” online Bible studies through a private Facebook group. Click to find details.”]


Linking up with these fine blogs –  Making Your Home Sing, Moments of Hope, Mondays @ Soul Survival, Word of God Speak, Spiritual Sundays, Sitting Among Friends, Faith ‘n Friends, Family, Friendship and Faith, Fresh Market Friday and DanceWithJesusFriday

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  • Thanks for sharing this, Beth. I’m not on Facebook and it’s times like this that I realize that I’m missing out on some gems.

    Sabbath blessings, rest, peace, and joy to you, friend …

    • There are some good aspects to Facebook, for sure, Linda. I was talking with a friend about that the other day. It’s like a double-edged sword–with really good aspects and really bad ones too, sadly. Thanks for coming by and encouraging me!

  • Mary

    Knowing what I know about you Beth, this will be an amazing study. I will be praying for you as you lead and facilitate this study and for all who sign up and participate. Love you friend!

    • The 1 Samuel one has been that for me. It has really helped me to let go of a longstanding grudge I held with someone in my life. I was so amazed at David’s humility and mercy that it convicted me to my core. I guess you could say that is was “life-changing” for me. Thanks for coming by and encouraging me, Mary. My prayers continue to be with you!

  • Andrew Budek-Schmeisser

    It speaks to me as chivalry; you don’t kill a helpless enemy.

    Mind you, I was taught that a fair fight is one for which one did not adequately prepare, and my raison d’etre was the long-distance elimination of ‘problems’; but in the breast of every dedicated shooter beats the heart of a knight who aspired to the Round Table.

    So, I get this. It’s simply a warrior’s decency.

    http://blessed-are-the-pure-of-heart.blogspot.com/2016/09/your-dying-spouse-205-patient-fail.html

    • Great thought, Andrew. I had never considered how a fellow-warrior might view David’s choices here. Although I saw that chivalry all throughout David’s life as I read 1 Samuel, but never really put it in those terms. Thanks for coming by and adding to the discussion. You always have some unique perspective that brings new insights to life! Praying for you daily, my friend!

  • Hello Beth, I love reading about he story of David from a shepherd boy to the King of Israel what an amazing path that God put him on. Yet like you mentioned it so incredible how God weaves things in our life so that His will is accomplished. David’s respect for His king on earth and in Heaven was evident in those encounters with Saul. It sounds like you are going to have an excellent bible study in Samuel. May God continue to reveal Himself to you as you read His word. I hope you have a wonderful weekend and may God richly bless you and yours!

  • Valerie, I have to tell you I am so glad I discovered your blog! I’m passionate about marriage, the good, the bad and the hard, and I know you are also:) And this message…David is one of my favorite men of the Bible…so many lessons in grace and mercy from his life! So glad also to have you on Fresh Market Friday!

  • Goodness, Beth! I didn’t realize you did a Bible Study! How on earth did I manage to miss that? It looks like a great opportunity – especially for busy lives. Something short, yet powerful! Love it! Thanks so much for sharing this at #MomentsofHope!
    Blessings and smiles,
    Lori