Summary: An Exposition of 1 Sam. 19
Safe and Sound in a Dangerous World
1 Sam. 19
Most young children can tell you that the most dangerous place in the world is in your own home, in your own bed sometime after dad has turned off the light and you are all alone in your room in the dark. That is when the monsters come out. No, I have never actually seen them, but I can distinctly remember hearing the small subtle noises they made as I lay there eyes wide open with covers over my head. I always knew that if I ever did see them, it was all over Monsters do not leave witnesses. I remember explaining to my father about the monsters, and he would tell me how nightmares could make me imagine I heard and saw things that weren’t there. One night he took me outside, walking around the dark house, assuring me there were no monsters. I did not have the heart to tell him that these were not stupid monsters- they knew better than to let him see them. They were hiding, waiting for him to go to his room, and then they would resume toying with me. So I would lie there in my bed, in the dark hiding under the covers. For some reason, the covers served as an impenetrable barrier for these child-eating monsters. They made me feel safe and sound in a dangerous world.
It is only when you grow older that you learn that your room is not all that dangerous. Instead you discover that the whole world is a dangerous place. You find out there are real monsters that fly airplanes into buildings, who kidnap kids from their families, who use and abuse people of all ages. Diseases and death strike when you least expect them, threatening to take away even the people we love the most. Whether it’s drunk driver, or an unseen germ, life is full of dangers, and hiding beneath the covers will not make them go away.
So how do you deal with it? How can you and I honestly face the very real dangers, and yet know that we are safe and sound in a dangerous world? I think I know someone who can help us: a man who once wrote these words:
Ps 59:16 But I will sing of Your power; Yes, I will sing aloud of Your mercy in the morning; For You have been my defense And refuge in the day of my trouble.
When David wrote these words he knew what it was to live in a dangerous world. He was facing a dangerous man named Saul who had made up his mind to kill David. 1 Sam. 19 tells us how David was delivered from danger and gives you and I some clues about how God delivers us safe and sound in a dangerous world.
I. INNOCENCE WILL NOT ALWAYS DELIVER YOU FROM DANGER. (v. 1-7)
Many of us think that just being a good person makes us immune from the trials and tragedies of life. Play by the rules, live and let live, try to treat everybody right, and everything will turn out OK. I know we all think that because the first thing we say when anything really bad happens is what did I do to deserve this? Many times the answer is nothing.
King Saul had it out for David, even though David had never done anything to Saul. It took Saul’s son, Prince Jonathan, to speak up for his friend. Notice what he says in vs. 4-5 (read).
David hasn’t done anything wrong! Why do you want to kill him? Jonathan’s speech seems to change his dad’s mind. Saul and David reconcile and all seems well, until Saul has another of his fits, and once again David has to run for his life. David’s innocence does not deliver him from danger. Innocence will not deliver you from danger, either.
Many of us have the idea that really bad things only happen to really bad people. Ordinary folks like us steer clear of danger as much as possible. We figure the farther away from trouble we live, the harder it is for danger to find us We play by the rules, try to treat other people right, live and let live, and by doing all of this, we hope to stay safe and sound in a dangerous world
Does that really work? Well, yes and no. Nobody would deny that living a good moral life will keep you out of trouble. Living right keeps you away from many dangers that come with doing wrong. At the same time, doing right does not guarantee deliverance from all danger. The Bible tells us that even the righteous can expect this world to be a dangerous place: