Summary: Being a man after God's own heart does not mean totally sinless but one who is trying. Keeping your eyes on the goal is the key.


1. David spent much of his early life alone

a. His best friends were sheep and his enemies wild animals

b. He seems to have been alone much of his early life

2. His training as king seems to have been done in secret

3. It was even a secret ceremony when he was anointed king

4. Samuel came to Jesse’s house and anointed the one no one else thought he would

5. This secrecy helped David in that it:

a. Kept him humble

b. Kept him focused

c. Gave him more appreciation

6. David learned to be a man after God’s own heart

TRANSITION: Secrecy of David’s training:

I. Kept him humble

A. Saul sacrificed his humility

1. 1 Samuel 9:21, “And Saul answered and said, "Am I not a Benjamite, of the smallest of the tribes of Israel, and my family the least of all the families of the tribe of Benjamin? Why then do you speak like this to me?"

a. These were not words of a proud, haughty, arrogant man

b. They are words of a humble man

c. In fact, he hid in the luggage on the day Samuel announced him as king before the Israelites (1 Samuel 10:23)

d. Saul started out humble

2. He made some mistakes

a. He offered a burnt offering which was not allowed by anyone but the priest and he was not one (13:8)

b. He made a selfish vow that should have cost Jonathan’s life (14:24)

c. He spared spoils and king Agag from the Amalekites (15:14)

3. These were sins of forgetfulness

a. He forgot his place of humility

b. Place a crown on someone’s head and they lose their humility

4. Saul was coroneted with fanfare and pageantry and lost himself

B. David kept his humility

1. He was a shepherd from childhood

a. Not the most glamorous job

b. No fame to be had in the meadows with the sheep as an audience

c. His friends were dumb, smelly sheep

2. He is with those same sheep when a messenger comes to him

a. Jesse wants you to come to the house for a minute

b. He obediently followed, likely with little expectations of what would happen

c. Samuel, God’s prophet, approaches him with anointing oil, anoints him, and proclaims he would be the next king of Israel

d. Then it seems David returns to the sheep because this is where he is when summoned to be Saul’s harpist

C. God trained David in secret

1. He trained to be a valiant and mighty warrior fighting bears and lions

2. He trained under Saul to replace him as king unbeknownst to Saul in the early years

a. Unaware of the anointing, Saul sends for him to play the harp to ease his spirit

b. David gets to see what royal life is all about first hand as Saul’s servant

3. David’s battle against Goliath is still a humble fight

a. His bold words to Goliath are not arrogance

b. They are words of faith in God

4. Then he comes to the king’s house as Saul’s armor bearer

a. The secret still not out

b. David is still a servant only now more intimately involved with Saul’s life and struggles as king

D. David was anointed and introduced to his role in a humble fashion and kept his humility

TRANSITION: His humility:

II. Kept him focused

A. Saul lost track of his mission

1. It was about leading God’s people in his ways

2. It became about Saul and his power lust

3. He got his feelings hurt

a. 18:7-9, “So the women sang as they danced, and said: "Saul has slain his thousands and David his ten thousands." Then Saul was very angry, and the saying displeased him; and he said, "They have ascribed to David ten thousands, and to me they have ascribed only thousands. Now what more can he have but the kingdom?" So Saul eyed David from that day forward.”

b. Jealousy and suspicions of his most loyal subject made Saul foolish, vindictive, and distant from God and His people

c. He became self-centered and self-interested in his reign

d. This thinking eventually cost him the kingdom

B. David remained mission-minded

1. His job was to soothe the king, and he did

2. His job was to serve the king, and he did

a. Even after Saul tried to pin him to the wall with a spear

b. Even when Saul was chasing him around the kingdom

c. Even when Saul kills the priests at Nob for aiding David

d. David was serving God therefore he would respect God’s anointed, Saul

3. Even when he could have ended Saul’s pursuits forever

a. In a cave David has Saul dead to rights and proved himself loyal

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