Vv 16-18: At this time David was probably in the stronghold of
Ziklag, which the king of the Philistines had given to him. Here he received a
welcome addition to his band. David was an exile; and it is not every man who
cares to cast in his lot with a banished prince. He was an "outlaw", and his
king would have killed him with his own hand if he could have found opportunity.
The many who were on Saul's side, because of its convenience and ease, spoke
very bitterly of David, and, wishing to curry favor with the king, they
slandered him whenever possible and for the least offence. Few respectable
people care to associate themselves with a person who is in evil repute, no
matter whether he may be on the side of right. Many to whom he had done no harm
were eager to betray David, and sell him into the hand of his enemy. So it has
always been, that men seek their own gain, and do not really care to whom they
"sell out", so long as they get a good price. In these circumstances, it was no
small thing for a band of men to unite themselves with a man with a price on his
head. And there were potential betrayers all around: the men of Keilah plotted
to deliver him up to Saul. The fortunes of David were at a low ebb, and so when
these men came to David they did a very brave thing -- which he would be sure to
remember in the later days of his triumph and glory.
At the present moment our Lord Jesus, the Son of David, is "in
hiding", so to speak. Among the men of this world he is not yet enthroned, and
they care little for him -- if they even give him a passing thought. Though he
is "king" in God's heaven, yet before the eyes of the majority of men he is
still despised and rejected. His people are yet a feeble few, and often in
serious straits themselves; his kingdom is ridiculed, his claims are scoffed at
by the intelligentsia, and his yoke -- though easy and light -- is rejected.
This is an age of blasphemy and of rebuke for our Lord the King. And so they are
the brave and the few, the band of brothers who will stand with Christ in the
day of his exile. Men will be greatly rewarded in the future if they take up his
cause now, and go forth to him outside the camp, bearing his reproach. Blessed
are they who are not ashamed this day to bear the name of Christ, and to profess
him in the sight and hearing of the world. They will be mine, he says, in the
day when he assembles his "jewels".
WHEN MY HANDS ARE FREE FROM VIOLENCE; Given what we know of
David's life, and what we are told of his attitude, we see that the only way
that he can make this statement about himself is by his faith in the grace and
forgiveness of God. When our sins are forgiven by God, they are completely wiped
away. God does not remember and bear a grudge like our fellow man might do. We
can forget our past sins that are forgiven as if they never existed. Let us
remember this and not be borne down by them.
"God's power was at work here. We know because we are told.
But did Amasai know? I suspect not. This is God's way of telling us that he was
ensuring that David had support, even from the brethren of Saul, but also of
showing us that He is behind it, orchestrating the events -- a matter we do well
to remember and always put our lives in His hands: Dan 4:17,25,32; Jer 27:5-7"
The Spirit of God: in Daniel (Dan 5:11); in Joseph (Gen
41:38); clothed Gideon (Jdg 6:34); clothed Amasai (1Ch 12:18); clothed Zechariah
(2Ch 24:20); came upon Balaam (Num 24:2); came upon Saul (1Sa 10:10).