Aug 30, 2020. I Samuel 27

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DOUBLE AGENT IN PHILISTIA. I Samuel 27. 8/30/20. #78.

I Samuel 27 [New King James Version]

1 And David said in his heart, “Now I shall perish someday by the hand of Saul. There is nothing better for me than that I should speedily escape to the land of the Philistines; and Saul will [a]despair of me, to seek me anymore in any part of Israel. So I shall escape out of his hand.” 2 Then David arose and went over with the six hundred men who were with him to Achish the son of Maoch, king of Gath. 3 So David dwelt with Achish at Gath, he and his men, each man with his household, and David with his two wives, Ahinoam the Jezreelitess, and Abigail the Carmelitess, Nabal’s widow. 4 And it was told Saul that David had fled to Gath; so he sought him no more. 5 Then David said to Achish, “If I have now found favor in your eyes, let them give me a place in some town in the country, that I may dwell there. For why should your servant dwell in the royal city with you?” 6 So Achish gave him Ziklag that day. Therefore Ziklag has belonged to the kings of Judah to this day. 7 Now [b]the time that David dwelt in the country of the Philistines was one full year and four months. 8 And David and his men went up and raided the Geshurites, the [c]Girzites, and the Amalekites. For those nations were the inhabitants of the land from [d]of old, as you go to Shur, even as far as the land of Egypt. 9 Whenever David [e]attacked the land, he left neither man nor woman alive, but took away the sheep, the oxen, the donkeys, the camels, and the apparel, and returned and came to Achish. 10 Then Achish would say, “Where have you made a raid today?” And David would say, “Against the southern area of Judah, or against the southern area of the Jerahmeelites, or against the southern area of the Kenites.” 11 David would save neither man nor woman alive, to bring news to Gath, saying, “Lest they should inform on us, saying, ‘Thus David did.’ ” And thus was his behavior all the time he dwelt in the country of the Philistines. 12 So Achish believed David, saying, “He has made his people Israel utterly abhor him; therefore he will be my servant forever.”

  • Exit strategy
    • David realizes that as long as he stays in Judah, Saul will pursue him to kill him
      • David also realizes that Saul’s spies are everywhere
      • David decides that he must leave Judah
    • David has only one choice, which is Philistia
      • David wants to stay hear Judah
      • Edom and Moab are trans-Jordan and Egypt is far away
    • David had killed many Philistines
      • David must play the traitor to gain trust
      • Ironically, Gath was home of Goliath
      • King Achish accepts David’s ruse since Saul seeks to kill him, not realizing that Saul and not Israel is David’s enemy
    • By the grace of God, David is accepted by a former enemy
      • David is now out of Saul’s reach and so Saul ceases pursuing him (David is behind a Philistine wall)
      • Saul figures that David can do no harm to him now
  • David, the marauder
    • David asks for a town for his men to call home (Ziklag)
      • Ziklag = on border of Philistia and Judah
      • David moves to Ziklag with his family and men plus their families (approximately 1000 people)
        • It is interested that Ahinoam is mentioned before Abigail
        • David settles in for a long stay
      • David stays for 16 months
      • David’s location 25 miles SW of Gath protects Achish’s southern flank from raiders
    • David ends up raiding non-Philistine villages within Philistine territory
      • He kills all the inhabitants so no one could report of David’s deeds to King Achish
      • David kills men, women, and children and then takes away their livestock and possessions
        • Amazingly, no one catches David
        • Whole villages are wiped out in rural areas
    • Moral issues abound in this action
      • No indication that God directed David to do this
      • David murders people who have done him no harm
      • David uses these raids to support his followers
    • David could have justified his actions several ways
      • Israel was supposed to have destroyed these people when they entered Canaan (Josiah 1)
      • David is eliminating threats to him and Judah
  • Achish is duped
    • David tells Achish that he has been raiding southern Judah
      • Achish is pleased, since Judah would hate David
      • Achish believes that he has made David as servant
    • Several moral puzzles in old testament that we have no answer to:
      • Was God pleased with David’s genocidal actions?
      • Did God condone Ezra commanding Judah to put away their foreign wives (Malachi 2:14)?
      • Why did God use Jacob’s 2 wives and 2 concubines to produce the 12 tribes of Israel (Genesis 2:25)?
      • Why was Solomon chosen to succeed David?
    • There were many acts God allowed fallen man to do (Deuteronomy 24)

If God gives no explanation of immoral acts, we don’t also