Text: 1 Samuel 29-31; Proverbs 29:1-14
Sometimes I find the Word of God obscure and perplexing. Part of today’s text in 1 Samuel has that effect upon me. Back in Chapter 27 we read how David takes refuge from Saul by befriending and serving a Philistine leader, Achish. He then leads raiding parties against various peoples and then lies about it to Achish. Later, (Chapter 29) the Philistine armies gather to wage war against the Israelites. The commanders challenge Achish about the presence of David and his men. Their concern seems wise to me. When Achish dismisses David, he says, “As the Lord lives, you have been honest…” (29:6); and “I know that you are as blameless in my sight as an angel of God” (29:9).
I honestly struggle with what to make of this. Honesty is good, and yet David has deceived. It is creepy how Achish associates David’s honesty with God. God is sovereign, and is clearly working His good plan to protect David and to bring him to the throne. What we are seeing is how our good Lord works in and through people. The Philistine army will bring about Saul’s death. David will indeed ascend to the throne. Questions remain for me. Is it okay to lie? How about when the deceit is toward an enemy? If I lie to an enemy as a Christian, will I bring discredit to the Lord’s name?
While this story does not satisfy me with a clear answer, I am reminded that, “the Word of God is living and active” (Hebrews 4:12), and by making me wrestle with such things, God has indeed spoken. I praise the Lord for how He can use His Word to get us to think!
in Him, Mike