Happy Tuesday, everyone! Today, I am featuring a special blog post from Kori! She blogs at My Ceaseless Praise. I hope you enjoy her post!
What David Taught Me about God’s Promises
An unstable ruler. A young rival. Chases, escapes, battles. That’s what I’ve been reading about.
And no, it’s not an action novel – it’s the book of 1 Samuel. Though I’ve read it a few times before, I’ve never been so gripped by the drama as I have in this reading.
Imagine the plot. Young David spent his days in fields, guarding sheep and exterminating lions and bears – but no one was particularly impressed by him.
One day, the prophet Samuel visited David and anointed him as the next king of Israel. But when the anointing oil dried, David’s life seemed as quiet as ever. He kept herding sheep.
Then David was selected to be the king’s musician. Do you think his hopes rose? Maybe he thought, “So this is how it begins. I’m finally in the court of Israel. God is working!”
David’s reputation flourished as he clobbered a giant and won battles. He earned the adoration of Israel – and of the king’s daughter. The throne looked more attainable than it did when he was socializing with sheep.
Though David didn’t push himself forward to be king, perhaps he was optimistic. “Things couldn’t be better. I’m learning about the court, and I’m really getting along with the king and his son. God has really opened a door for me.”
Then everything shattered. Jealous King Saul tried to kill David, and David went from court favorite to court fugitive.
After months or years in hiding and multiple escapes from Saul, David reached a low point. I don’t have to wonder what he was thinking, because 1 Samuel 27:1 says, Then David said in his heart, “Now I shall perish one day by the hand of Saul.” (ESV)
In other words, “I’m not going to make it.”
Examine his words. Beneath the fear and discouragement, David is saying, God isn’t going to keep His promise. He said I was going to be king, but something has gone wrong. I’m living in the wilderness with ragged ruffians. I know what God said, but from here, kingship looks impossible.
I get this. I’ve never been anointed king or visited by a prophet. But I have doubted God’s promises in His word.
I know that Romans 8:28 says all things work together for good. But in some situations, I don’t see it. How can any good come from this?
Forgiveness like it says in 1 John 1:9? I don’t really feel it.
Loving like 1 Corinthians 13? I don’t have that ability.
Like David, I look at the past. I measure my own present strength and weigh my circumstances. And I say, “Nope. I’m not going to make it.”
Unlike David, however, I hold a complete Bible in my hands. I know God did keep His promises to David. When I feel like the discouraged David, I can encourage myself by listening to the fulfilled David.
The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me; your steadfast love, O Lord, endures forever…. (Psalm 138:8a ESV).
According to John Gill’s Exposition of the Bible, this Psalm was probably written after David became king of Judah and before he became king of all Israel, so David was writing from experience. Though enemies and years stood between him and God’s promise, he was not disappointed in the end.
And when we trust God’s promises in His Word, we also will not be disappointed. Not that everything will happen as we expect – it certainly didn’t for David. But God will be faithful to us.
So, the next time you’re being chased by a king or hiding out in the wilderness – or the next time your circumstances tell you that God is not good or faithful – remember that God always fulfills His promises.
Just ask King David.