Posted by: Esther | February 27, 2014

David’s Lies

Beginning in 1 Samuel chapter 20, David flees in fear of Saul who clearly wants him dead. Through this chapter and the next, as a result of this fear, we see David resort to lying. David’s first lie takes place through his best friend Jonathan, Saul’s son. David tells Jonathan to lie to his father and say that he was not able to attend the New Moon Feast because of family obligation. This works in David’s eyes, because he and Jonathan find out the truth about Saul’s intentions and David is able to escape with his life. Because of David’s success from the first lie, maybe his second lie was easier to tell, as sin does get easier with practice, but this time David lies to a priest, and this lie ends in absolute tragedy.

When David enters the town of Nob, he tells the priest Ahimelech, who is obviously shaken up by his presence, that he is on a secret mission for King Saul. Perhaps David was thinking that if the priest believes that he is still working for the king, he will honor his wishes, and he does, but if the priest knew that he was running from Saul, maybe he would not cooperate and even give David over to Saul, which we know would be the right thing.

Yet in David’s sinful state, we see the presence of Jesus.

1 Sam 21:6 So the priest gave him holy bread; for there was no bread there but the showbread which had been taken from before the LORD, in order to put hot bread in its place on the day when it was taken away.

John 6:35 And Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst. …

Here David. You will need this bread to sustain you. I care more about your well being then these ceremonial laws. My love will cover all. Take and eat. Remember the mercy I give with my life.

We also see the presence of His word as a sword.

1 Sam 21:9 So the priest said, “The sword of Goliath the Philistine, whom you killed in the Valley of Elah, there it is, wrapped in a cloth behind the ephod. If you will take that, take it. For there is no other except that one here.” And David said, “There is none like it; give it to me.”

Ephesians 6:17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God;

David, remember the faith I gave you to strike a giant with just a sling and a stone. Remember what you did with this sword after I had killed your enemy. You chopped off his head. You decimated his flesh. David, your flesh is carrying you away now. Remember my words, keep my commandments and let this sword be a reminder for you to seek after my heart with the love you had for me then, for my sword is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of your heart.

Each of David’s lies hurt someone he loved. His first lie caused his best friend Jonathan to have to fight in the cursed army of his father Saul and ultimately see him to his doom in his final battle against the Philistines. His second lie caused the death of the faithful priests and their families, and his third lie caused the death of a valiant warrior in the army of God, as well as his own infant son and continual strife and heartbreak for 20 years later.

Romans 5:8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

This love was demonstrated through Ahimelec in chapter 21 when he gives provision of bread and a sword, ultimately giving up his own life for David’s sin. Ahimelec the priest, in contrast to the Pharisees in the time of Jesus, shows God’s heart for His people.

Matt 12:7b ‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice…

The priest is a picture of Jesus, showing mercy and grace by providing bread and a sword to David, even though he is lying. And in the same way Jesus dies for our sins, Ahimelec the priest, along with his entire family, died because of David’s sin  (and yes the sins of Saul and Doeg too).

Romans 5:18 But the free gift is not like the offense. For if by the one man’s offense many died, much more the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, abounded to many.

Yet while living in the madness of these lies, David’s heart is still after God. He writes Psalm 34 and 56, calling for God’s help and praising Him for His deliverance.

God has covered our sins with the blood of His Son. May our hearts ever praise Him!


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