Summary: There is much that we can learn from the way David reacts to his circumstances in the cave of Adullam.


A. I thought we would start with a little humor from some cartoons I came across this week.

1. “Peter finds his faith much stronger in the winter.” Walking on the water is nothing if the water is frozen!

2. “Another Eskimo baptism gone bad.” The preacher should have kept his pre-baptismal comments much shorter.

3. “Things eased up on guardian angels after airbags were invented.” Praise God for airbags and guardian angels!

4. One more – Dad, “How come the waitress gets 15% and God only gets 10%?” Good question!

B. Now let’s turn our attention to the story of David, as we continue our series on David that we are calling “Cultivating A Heart For God.”

1. Last week when we left David, he was dribbling saliva down his beard and scratching on the gate of the enemy like a madman.

2. Realizing that his identity was known by the Philistines, David feigned insanity and then slipped out of the city of Gath.

3. Once more he was a man on the run.


A. The Bible says, “David left Gath and escaped to the cave of Adullam.” (1 Sam. 22:1a)

1. David has now left the land of the Philistines and has returned to his native area of Judah.

2. The exact location of this rock cave has been disputed by scholars, but it may very well have been one of the desert hideouts not far from Bethlehem with which David was familiar from his days as a lonely shepherd boy.

3. You can see in this picture how rough and rocky that region is and what a good hideout it would make.

4. But this is certainly the lowest moment of David’s life to date.

5. He is hiding in a cave all alone without security and without food.

6. He is away from everything and everyone he loved – that is everyone except God.

B. And if we want to know how he really felt, all we have to do is read the Psalms he composed during this period.

1. Look again at the verses from Psalm 142,

“I cry aloud to the LORD; I lift up my voice to the LORD for mercy.

I pour out my complaint before him; before him I tell my trouble.

When my spirit grows faint within me, it is you who know my way.

In the path where I walk men have hidden a snare for me.

Look to my right and see; no one is concerned for me.

I have no refuge; no one cares for my life.

I cry to you, O LORD; I say, ‘You are my refuge, my portion in the land of the living.’

Listen to my cry, for I am in desperate need;

rescue me from those who pursue me, for they are too strong for me.

Set me free from my prison, that I may praise your name.

Then the righteous will gather about me because of your goodness to me.”

2. That’s how David felt as a cave dweller – “I don’t know of a soul on earth who cares for my soul. I am brought very low. Deliver me, Lord.”

3. Can you feel the loneliness of that desolate spot?

4. Can you feel the darkness and dampness of that cave?

5. Can you feel David’s despair?

C. Yet in the midst of all this, David has not lost sight of his God.

1. He cries out to the Lord for deliverance, so that he might praise the Lord and be a leader of the righteous.

2. It is this part of David that God knew that caused God to choose him and call him a man after God’s own heart.

3. David has been brought to this place where God can truly begin to shape him and use him.

4. When the sovereign God brings us to the bottom, to a place of nothing, it is not to destroy us, but to rebuild us.

D. Look at what happens next – look who God brings to David.

1. The Bible says, “When his brothers and his father’s household heard about it, they went down to him there.” (1 Sam. 22:1b)

2. This is the same family that had not been all that good to David along the way.

3. His dad had almost forgotten that he existed when Samuel came to the house looking for candidates for the next king.

4. And later when his father sent him to the battlefield to check on his brothers, they reacted very negatively toward him and accused him of having a wicked and selfish heart.

5. I don’t know if David wanted to see his family at that point or not, but here they were anyhow.

E. So what did David do? He rose to the occasion.

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