Summary: David and his time in Ziklag. How he moved out of touch with God and then realizes his mistake and leaves the enemy terriroty.
The Price of Disobedience
Once upon a time the devil decided to have a garage sale. He did it because he wanted to clear out some of his old tools to make room for new ones.
After he set up his wares, a fellow dropped by to see what he had. Arrayed on a long table were all the tricks of his infernal trade. Each tool had a price tag. In one corner was a shiny implement labeled “Anger—$250,” next to it a curved tool labeled “Sloth—$380.”
As the man searched, he found “Criticism—$500” and “Jealousy—$630.”
Out of the corner of his eye, the man spotted a beaten-up tool with a price tag of $12,000. Curious, the man asked the devil why he would offer a worn-out piece of junk for such an exorbitant price. The devil said it was expensive because he used it so much. “What is it?,” the man asked. The answer came back, “It is discouragement. It always works when nothing else will.”
Surely all of us can testify to the truth of that little fable. We all know from hard experience how the devil uses discouragement to keep us from moving ahead
. When anger won’t stop us, when lust can do us no harm, when envy finds no foothold, discouragement always works. It is the devil’s number one tool.
The dictionary defines discouragement as “anything that makes us less confident and hopeful.” Another way to look at it is to say that encouragement is the act of putting courage into someone. Therefore, discouragement is anything that takes the courage out.
That’s a dangerous state to be in because a discouraged person makes many mistakes. You won’t be surprised to learn that David’s life offers an excellent example of what discouragement can do to a man of God. The story is told in I Samuel 27-30, a passage little known to most of us but one which is perfectly relevant today.
I. What Discouragement Did to David
The story begins this way: “But David thought to himself, ‘One of these days I will be destroyed by the hand of Saul. The best thing I can do is to escape to the land of the Philistines. Then Saul will give up searching for me anywhere in Israel, and I will slip out of his hand’” (I Samuel 27:1).
In those words you have the x-ray of a discouraged soul. It shows us what discouragement can do to you and me.
A. First, discouragement destroyed his perspective.
1. It all begins when David starts to think about his situation. For nearly ten years he’s been
running from Saul.
a. Ten years is a big chunk out of a man’s life.
b. Maybe he was tired on this particular day.
c. No one could blame him for feeling down. We’ve all been in the same place. But this time
his mind jumps from one negative to another---at last he reaches a hopeless
conclusion: “One of these days Saul is going to get me. I don’t know where or when or
how but I can’t run like this forever. It may not come for a year or it may happen tomorrow
but sure as sunrise, it’s going to happen.”
The future looks bleak because he has decided to focus on the negative instead of the positive.
We can excuse and even understand such thinking except for One things!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
1.God had promised that David would be the next king.
a. That wasn’t a prediction the way political pundits predict the next president.
b. No, it was a rock-solid promise and David could take it to the bank.
c. Meaning that Saul would never kill him no matter how bleak the circumstances might
B. David had just emerged from a string of three remarkable spiritual victories.
1. He had spared Saul’s life once in the cave at En Gedi (I Samuel 24).
2. Then he had spared Nabal’s life when Abigail interceded (I Samuel 25).
3. Then he had very recently spared Saul’s life again when he crept into the camp and found
Saul sleeping (I Samuel 26).
4. We could almost say that when things are going well, watch out because you are set up to
be blindsided by temptation of one kind or another.
David chooses to focus on his own resources instead of God’s promises. As a result, he completely loses his perspective on life.
C. It led him to an impulsive decision.
1. The decision to go live with the Philistines was impulsive.
2. You can also say it was just plain dumb.
a. David thought he has his reasons.
b. The big one is that by going to the Philistines he will make Saul quit chasing him.
c. The other one is a bit more subtle. You may recall this isn’t the first time David has lived