Monday, July 12, 2010

1 Samuel: David - A Many of Many Mysteries

When we think of David, we think of vignettes that tell a story:

  • David and Goliath -  Little children learn to sing about "Only a boy named David" who, against all odds, beats the giant using only his slingshot.
  • David the mighty warrior, fighting and defeating the Philistines
  • David the mighty king
  • David, a man after God's own heart, who writes most of the Psalms
  • David, the righteous man who won't kill Saul, the Lord's anointed
  • David and Bathsheba - sure, David commits adultery and kills Uriah, but he repents and God forgives him
The really awesome thing about reading through Samuel is that we get to see a more complete picture.  

David the Raider:  Really, this is his day job.  He and his men go off in the day and raid other villages, mostly enemies of God, take their livestock and other stuff.  

And speaking of his men, chapter 22 tells us they are a mishmash of debtors, the discontented, and the distressed.  Chapter 30 tells us there is a smattering of evil men and troublemakers in their midst.

David, the warrior who fought the Philistines also fought FOR the Philistines until King Achish sent him away. 

David is not a civilized king, as we think of civilized kings.  If we met him today, I'm not sure we would like him very much.  He's pretty much a barbarian, driven by his passions, his lusts, his desires.  

And by God.   

Yes, David is a man of mysteries.  Like the rest of us, David is a complex character, not all good, not all bad.  Not easily defined unless we limit his life to a few short vignettes taken from Scripture.

But we know he loved God.  Throughout his life, sometimes more often and sometimes less often, David sought the Lord and sought to please him.

May we do the same.

No comments: