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David and King Saul

David spares the life of King Saul.
Contributed by Moody Publishers
Story also available on our translated websites: Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, Hindi
In the book of Samuel, in the Old Testament of the Bible, we read of a king who had done a very foolish thing. – Slide 1
King Saul, the ruler of the land of Israel, had turned his back on God and become tormented and very sad. King Saul didn’t want to eat, or sleep. His servants failed to please him. – Slide 2
King Saul became an example of how miserable a man can be when he chooses to leave God out of his life. The people of Israel were quite concerned about their ruler, and some of them felt that music might cheer him up. – Slide 3
Someone suggested David, the son of Jesse, who could play beautiful music on his harp. – Slide 4
David was a shepherd boy, and much of his boyhood life was spent out in the fields, caring for his father’s sheep. – Slide 5
David was brought before the king and sure enough, when David played on his harp, it made King Saul feel more peaceful. – Slide 6
The Bible tells us that Saul was refreshed and was well again. David became a great favourite in the court of the king. – Slide 7
David trusted in God, and sincerely believed if God was with him no man could stand against him. Remember the story of David and Goliath ... – Slide 8
... how the giant from the Philistine army dared anyone from the land of Israel to come out and fight with him? – Slide 9
And how David went out to meet that giant, armed with only a slingshot and his faith in God? The Bible tells us he took five smooth stones from a brook and put one of them in his sling ... – Slide 10
... and sent the stone whirling through the air. – Slide 11
The stone hit the giant right in the middle of the forehead. – Slide 12
And the mighty Goliath, the pride of the Philistine army, fell to the earth and was slain. – Slide 13
The Philistines had been very confident of their victory over the Israelite nation, but now their champion was dead, they no longer wanted to fight. – Slide 14
Yes, David had won a great victory – not in his strength, but in the strength of the Lord. And the people of Israel loved the shepherd boy for the service he had done to his country. – Slide 15
But King Saul was unhappy about David being so highly praised. He was jealous of such popularity, and the more the king thought about it, the more angry he became. – Slide 16
The beautiful music was no longer a source of comfort to the king. His heart was filled with hate. – Slide 17
One day the king decided all of this had gone far enough. He knew of a way to put a stop to it. – Slide 18
And David narrowly escaped death when Saul hurled his spear at him with all of his might. – Slide 19
Realising that King Saul hated him enough to kill him, David knew he must run for his life. – Slide 20
And he fled from the presence of the king before the guards could be told to stop him. But where? – Slide 21
Where could David go to escape the ruler of the land? – Slide 22
The wilderness might not have appealed to some people, but to a shepherd boy that was the place to go. – Slide 23
And together with a few of his loyal friends, David hid from the king in a cave in a hillside. – Slide 24
But King Saul had made up his mind that David would have to be slain, and preparations were soon being made to track the shepherd boy down. – Slide 25
But finding David proved to be more than the king could do, and he returned to the palace empty handed. When the danger of the moment was past, David fell on his knees to thank God for protecting him. And he asked his heavenly Father to guide and direct him in the days that were to follow. God told David to gather a small army. – Slide 26
And David did as God had told him to do. He gathered together 600 men. The men were all sizes and shapes, and dressed in all kinds of armour. No one would ever have guessed that these men could stand against the army of King Saul. – Slide 27
Saul’s army was well equipped and highly trained. And the king’s army far outnumbered David’s 600 men. – Slide 28
And Saul felt sure of victory as he viewed his troops. All the odds were in his favour. This time, David would not get away. – Slide 29
But in order to defeat an enemy, you must find him. And the king was having great difficulty doing that. – Slide 30
After a while the king was tired, and he wanted to rest. And he chose to relax in a cave. – Slide 31
... the very cave in which David and his men were hiding. The king walked right into their hiding place! – Slide 32
The king was very tired, and off his guard. – Slide 33
Little did King Saul realise that David and his men were watching him. – Slide 34
What an opportunity for them! Here was their enemy lying helpless at their feet. – Slide 35
David’s men looked to their leader, who was already drawing his sword. It was only right that the honour of killing Saul would be his. – Slide 36
But to their amazement, instead of killing Saul, David simply cut off the corner of Saul’s robe. David refused to kill Saul, but wanted the king to know that his life had been spared. – Slide 37
On another occasion, David’s men informed him that Saul and his men were sleeping by an open campfire. – Slide 38
And this time, they begged their leader to kill the wicked king. David searched his heart to know what the Lord would have him do. – Slide 39
One of David’s men started to handle the matter himself. He knew what to do, even if his leader didn’t. But David stopped him, saying the king must not be slain. – Slide 40
Instead of killing the king, David wanted Saul to know that once again his life had been spared. – Slide 41
The king’s own spear and his water jug were taken so the king would know someone had been there. – Slide 42
When King Saul and his men awakened from the deep sleep God had caused to fall upon them, they heard the shouts of David’s men. – Slide 43
Across the way, they saw David and his men mocking the king with the king’s own spear and his water jug. – Slide 44
Saul was humiliated. What a soldier he had turned out to be! Once again, David could have killed him but had chosen to obey God and spare his life. – Slide 45
We read in the book of Psalms why David acted as he did: ‘I will lift up my eyes to the hills, from where my help comes. My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth’ (Psalm 121:1-2). – Slide 46
Slide 47