Moving ahead in tracing God’s grace and favor throughout the pages of the Bible, our next stop along the way is found in 1 Samuel. Samuel is an adult now and serves as a prophet. In our text today, Samuel has already anointed Saul as King of Israel. At the people’s insistence, God had relented and agreed to allow them a king and Saul was chosen to be the first. That, however, has not worked out exactly for the best. In chapter sixteen, God has a talk with Samuel and assigns him to go to the house of Jessie, take a sacrifice with him and anoint the ‘one’ God tells him as the next king of Israel. The Lord was very specific that Samuel not look at Jessie’s sons based on their appearance nor at their physical stature, God was looking at their heart.
One by one, Samuel met Jessie’s sons, seven in all had passed by Samuel. Samuel spoke to Jessie and said, “The Lord has not chosen these; are there any more children?” Jessie sent for his son David who was in the field tending sheep. The Lord said “this is the one” and Samuel anointed David. The Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul and his gradual fall as king began. Initially, Saul seeks David out and is friendly but as time goes by, Saul starts slipping and David begins to grow in power and influence. Our grace text is found in 1 Samuel 27:5. David is fleeing Saul’s attacks and goes into Gath in the land of Philistines. He has sought favor with Achish, son of Maoch, king of Gath so that he could have refuge from Saul. David asks in verse 5, ” If I have now found grace in thine eyes, let them give me a place in some town in the country, that I may dwell there: for why should thy servant dwell in the royal city with thee?”(KJV) Achish granted him Ziklag, where David resided for the next sixteen months. During this time David gained the favor and the respect of Achish.
This story amazes me! David, who conquered the Philistine Goliath, later seeks refuge among these same Philistine people. This is just another example of scripture proving scripture and God’s marvelous grace to those who have a heart for Him. Proverbs 16:7 “When a man’s ways please the Lord, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.” David surely experienced this in his life, at times with Saul and certainly during his stay with the Philistine people.