Thoughts and Reflection
Today in the readings we see that when David arrives in Ziklag, he discovers that Amalekites have raided his city and taken the people away. He then shows his wisdom in three ways. First, he asks God if he and his men should pursue the Amalekites to retrieve their families and belongings. In his time of need, the first thing David does is ask for direction from the Lord. He has learned that he should always pray first.
Of his six hundred men, two hundred stop at the brook Besor to rest guarding their possessions. Some of those who go on to battle do not want to share any of the spoils with the ones who stay behind. David will share the spoils because all six hundred men served – four hundred by fighting and two hundred by guarding the baggage. This keeps his people united, aware that everyone serves a purpose.
When he returns with the spoils, he sends presents to the elders of Judah. Saul was killed and David will soon be the next king of Israel. This shows the elders that he will be taking care of them.
David has the heart of a king. He prays before he acts and he gives justly. He unites the tribes of Israel as one kingdom.
About This Project
For the year 2022, I decided that my New Year’s Resolution was to read the whole Bible following the Bible in the Year plan presented by Fr. Mike Schmitz. It is a big and bold undertaking. You can follow along by subscribing. Feel free to look at previous day’s post and comment. It’s something we can all learn from together!
1 Samuel 29
3 The Philistine chiefs asked, ‘What are these Hebrews doing?’ Achish replied to them, ‘Why, this is David the servant of Saul, king of Israel, who has been with me for the last year or two. I have had no fault to find with him from the day he gave himself up to me until the present time.’
4 But the Philistine chiefs were angry with him. ‘Send the man back,’ they said, ‘make him go back to the place which you assigned to him. He cannot go into battle with us, in case he turns on us once battle is joined. Would there be a better way for the man to regain his master’s favour than with the heads of these men here?
5 Is not this the David of whom they sang as they danced: Saul has killed his thousands, and David his tens of thousands’?
6 So Achish called David and said, ‘As Yahweh lives, you are loyal, and I am quite content with all your doings in our campaigning together, since I have found no fault with you from the day you came to me until the present time. But you are not acceptable to the chiefs.
8 ‘But what have I done,’ David asked Achish, ‘what fault have you had to find with your servant from the day I entered your service to the present time, for me not to be allowed to go and fight the enemies of my lord the king?’
10 So get up early tomorrow morning, with your master’s servants who came with you, and go to the place which I assigned to you. Do not harbour resentment, since personally I have no fault to find with you. Get up early tomorrow morning and, as soon as it is light, be off.’
11 So David and his men got up early to leave at dawn and go back to Philistine territory. And the Philistines marched on Jezreel.
1 Samuel 30
1 Now by the time David and his men reached Ziklag three days later, the Amalekites had raided the Negeb and Ziklag; they had sacked Ziklag and burnt it down.
5 David’s two wives had been captured: Ahinoam of Jezreel and Abigail widow of Nabal of Carmel.
13 David then said to him, ‘Whose man are you and where do you come from?’ He replied, ‘I am a young Egyptian, the slave of an Amalekite; my master abandoned me because I fell sick three days ago.
14 We raided the Negeb of the Cherethites, and the Negeb of Judah, and the Negeb of Caleb too, and we burnt Ziklag down.’
16 He guided him to them, and there they were, scattered over the whole countryside, eating, drinking and celebrating, on account of the enormous booty which they had brought back from the territory of the Philistines and the territory of Judah.
21 When David reached the two hundred men who had been too exhausted to follow him and whom he had left at the torrent of Besor, they came out to meet David and the party accompanying him; David approached with his party and greeted them.
22 But all the rogues and scoundrels among the men who had gone with David began saying, ‘Since they did not go with us, we shall not give them any of the booty which we have rescued, except that each of them can have his wife and children. Let them take them away and be off.’
23 But David said, ‘Do not behave like this, brothers, with what Yahweh has given us; he has protected us and has handed over to us the raiders who attacked us.
31 to those in Hebron and to all the places which David and his men had frequented.
1 Samuel 31
1 The Philistines gave battle to Israel, and the Israelites, fleeing from the Philistines, fell and were slaughtered on Mount Gilboa.
4 by the archers. Saul then said to his armour-bearer, ‘Draw your sword and run me through with it; I do not want these uncircumcised men to come and make fun of me.’ But his armour-bearer was very much afraid and would not do it. So Saul took his own sword and fell on it.
5 His armour-bearer, seeing that Saul was dead, fell on his sword too and died with him.
7 When the Israelites who were on the other side of the Jordan saw that the Israelites had been routed and that Saul and his sons were dead, they abandoned their towns and fled. The Philistines then came and occupied them.
10 They put his armour in the temple of Astarte; and his body they fastened to the walls of Beth-Shean.
11 When the inhabitants of Jabesh in Gilead heard what the Philistines had done to Saul,
12 the warriors all set out and, having marched all night, took the bodies of Saul and his sons off the walls of Beth-Shean; they brought them to Jabesh and burned them there.
1 [For the choirmaster Of David, the servant of Yahweh, who addressed the words of this song to Yahweh when Yahweh had delivered him from all his enemies and from the clutches of Saul. He said:] I love you, Yahweh, my strength (my Saviour, you have saved me from violence).
3 I call to Yahweh who is worthy of praise, and I am saved from my foes.
5 Sheol’s snares every side of me, Death’s traps lying ahead of me,
18 They assailed me on my day of disaster but Yahweh was there to support me;
24 So Yahweh repaid me for acting uprightly because he could see I was pure.
29 with you I storm the rampart, with my God I can scale any wall.
30 This God, his way is blameless; the word of Yahweh is refined in the furnace, for he alone is the shield of all who take refuge in him.
31 For who is God but Yahweh, who is a rock but our God?
32 This God who girds me with strength, who makes my way free from blame,
35 You give me your invincible shield (your right hand upholds me) you never cease to listen to me,
39 You have girded me with strength for the fight, bent down my assailants beneath me,
46 Life to Yahweh! Blessed be my rock! Exalted be the God of my salvation,
47 the God who gives me vengeance, and subjects whole peoples to me,
48 who rescues me from my raging enemies. You lift me high above those who attack me, you deliver me from the man of violence.
49 For this I will praise you, Yahweh, among the nations, and sing praise to your name.
50 He saves his king time after time, displays his faithful love for his anointed, for David and his heirs for ever.