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God is Setting All Things Right. So I am Blogging Through the Bible in a Year.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

April 13 - 1 Samuel 18-20; Psalms 11 and 59: Saul and David's Relationship Heads South

Today’s Reading: 1 Samuel 18-20; Psalm 11 and 59

The Message 

English Standard Version 

We have reached the section where reading the Bible in chronological order comes in handy. Since many of the psalms are attributed to David they will be intermingled with the narrative when they fit the circumstances. We will have days of narrative, days of narrative and psalms, and days of psalms only. Today is a mixture. Having the Psalms interspersed throughout the history helps to put them into context and heighten the understanding we can have of God setting things right.

Thought to Guide Your Reading

David impresses everyone—much to Saul's consternation.

Summary in 100 Words or Less

Jonathan and David were soul mates. David excelled at everything. The women sang his praises more than Saul's. Furious, Saul tried to kill David twice. Hoping David would die, Saul gave David his daughter Michal if he killed one hundred Philistines. David and his men killed two hundred. Michal loved David and helped him escape during one of Saul's fits. God embarrassed a naked, babbling Saul when he chased David to Naioth.
When Saul told his servants to kill David, Jonathan tried to intercede for his friend. Saul almost killed his own son. Jonathan and David cried when they parted.

Psalm (P)Synopsis

Psalm 11

This short psalm by David sets the record straight—God is not moved, so why should I run?

Psalm 59

David writes in response to Saul's command to kill him. He cries out to God to rescue him and defeat his enemies. He requests a slow punishment on the wicked to prevent any confusion as to the source of their comeuppance. While they do their evil works at night he sings by night and day the wonderful nature of God.

How Today’s Reading Contributes to the Gospel: God is Setting All Things Right

God's Spirit causes David to gain allies on all sides—which infuriates Saul.

David has now earned the love and respect of Saul's children, his army, his servants, and the general public. The women now sing David's praises more than Saul's. When we allow God's Spirit to move us, the whole world works for us.
However, one person does not like David's new popularity—Saul. Saul sees in David what he once was and wanted to become. Because he rejected God and took control over God he no longer had the love and respect of his people. Instead of repenting and joining David in serving God Saul tries to kill him in fits of rage and hatred. When we allow God's Spirit to depart from us, nothing can replace our joy.

Jonathan becomes a peacemaker.

Jonathan wants to set things right between his father and David. He campaigns for David twice, succeeding to suede his father once. He even allows David to hide while Saul has a death sentence against him. In the end, Jonathan's friendship comes between him and his father, with Saul throwing a spear at him in public. God can set things right when people make peace between enemies.

God's business is setting things right and we can be as straight as God if we join Him.

David's psalm is absolutely brilliant:
God’s business is putting things right;
   he loves getting the lines straight,
Setting us straight. Once we’re standing tall,
   we can look him straight in the eye. (Psalm 11:7, The Message)

David calls on God to set things right by punishing the wicked slowly.

David's psalm against Saul's men seeking to kill him shows God's purpose of punishment. The call is not for God to slowly wipe them out so they would die horrible, painful deaths. The purpose for their punishment is to bring justice upon them and contrasts the difference in God's treatment of the wicked and righteous. God's Chosen People can call for the punishment of others—when we want God's justice to reign on Earth and others to learn from their mistakes.

What prevents you from standing upright to see God eye-to-eye?

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