1 Samuel 23:15-29

Saul Pursues David

15 Now David [e]became aware that Saul had come out to seek his life while David was in the wilderness of Ziph at Horesh. 16 And Jonathan, Saul’s son, arose and went to David at Horesh, and [f]encouraged him in God. 17 Thus he said to him, “Do not be afraid, because the hand of Saul my father will not find you, and you will be king over Israel and I will be next to you; and Saul my father knows that also.” 18 So the two of them made a covenant before the Lord; and David stayed at Horesh while Jonathan went to his house.

19 Then Ziphites came up to Saul at Gibeah, saying, “Is David not hiding with us in the strongholds at Horesh, on the hill of Hachilah, which is on the [g]south of [h]Jeshimon? 20 Now then, O king, come down according to all the desire of your soul to [i]do so; and our part shall be to surrender him into the king’s hand.” 21 Saul said, “May you be blessed of the Lord, for you have had compassion on me. 22 Go now, make more sure, and investigate and see his place where his [j]haunt is, and who has seen him there; for I am told that he is very cunning. 23 So look, and learn about all the hiding places where he hides himself and return to me with certainty, and I will go with you; and if he is in the land, I will search him out among all the thousands of Judah.”

24 Then they arose and went to Ziph before Saul. Now David and his men were in the wilderness of Maon, in the Arabah to the [k]south of [l]Jeshimon. 25 When Saul and his men went to seek him, they told David, and he came down to the rock and stayed in the wilderness of Maon. And when Saul heard it, he pursued David in the wilderness of Maon. 26 Saul went on one side of the mountain, and David and his men on the other side of the mountain; and David was hurrying to get away from Saul, for Saul and his men were surrounding David and his men to seize them. 27 But a messenger came to Saul, saying, “Hurry and come, for the Philistines have made a raid on the land.” 28 So Saul returned from pursuing David and went to meet the Philistines; therefore they called that place [m]the Rock of Escape. 29 [n]David went up from there and stayed in the strongholds of Engedi.

Jonathan and David show again their trust in God’s plan. Jonathan himself tells David not to be afraid, that his father won’t find David, because David will be the next king of Israel. And why? Because God said so, years earlier through Samuel the prophet.

When God makes a promise, He keeps it. There is no second-guessing His word, no doubting that He knows what is to come, and that He is working things out to fulfill His promises.

Now, that doesn’t necessarily mean David could have just stayed right where he was and been safe. God works through us, and asks us to do our part, not because it all depends on us, but because God delights to have our participation in His plan.

So don’t just sit on your hands and wait for God, do what He asks of you, and seek His face in all you do, and you’ll one day wake up and go, “hey, He did it!” Of course! God always keeps His word, but we are a part of that plan too!

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