Sermon & Small Group Resources
This is the eighth sermon in our series on 1 Samuel ‘In Search of a King’. Preacher: The Rev’d Adam Lowe. Bible Reading: 1 Samuel 21-26
Next Steps this Week
BIBLE READING: 1 Samuel 26:1-12
The Ziphites went to Saul at Gibeah and said, “Is not David hiding on the hill of Hakilah, which faces Jeshimon?”
So Saul went down to the Desert of Ziph, with his three thousand select Israelite troops, to search there for David. Saul made his camp beside the road on the hill of Hakilah facing Jeshimon, but David stayed in the wilderness. When he saw that Saul had followed him there, he sent out scouts and learned that Saul had definitely arrived.
Then David set out and went to the place where Saul had camped. He saw where Saul and Abner son of Ner, the commander of the army, had lain down. Saul was lying inside the camp, with the army encamped around him.
David then asked Ahimelek the Hittite and Abishai son of Zeruiah, Joab’s brother, “Who will go down into the camp with me to Saul?”
“I’ll go with you,” said Abishai.
So David and Abishai went to the army by night, and there was Saul, lying asleep inside the camp with his spear stuck in the ground near his head. Abner and the soldiers were lying around him.
Abishai said to David, “Today God has delivered your enemy into your hands. Now let me pin him to the ground with one thrust of the spear; I won’t strike him twice.”
But David said to Abishai, “Don’t destroy him! Who can lay a hand on the LORD’S anointed and be guiltless? As surely as the LORD lives,” he said, “the LORD himself will strike him, or his time will come and he will die, or he will go into battle and perish. But the LORD forbid that I should lay a hand on the LORD’S anointed. Now get the spear and water jug that are near his head, and let’s go.”
So David took the spear and water jug near Saul’s head, and they left. No one saw or knew about it, nor did anyone wake up. They were all sleeping, because the LORD had put them into a deep sleep.
SMALL GROUP QUESTIONS
CONNECT: What is one aspect of self-importance that you can hand over to Jesus?
Can you give a summary of everything that has happened up to this point in 1 Samuel so far?
Have you ever felt frustrated by the speed at which God seems to be (apparently) working? Is our frustration misplaced? What do you think is really behind how we feel in this situation?
READ 1 Samuel 24:1-12 & 26:1-13
How are these two scenarios really similar? How are they different?
In worldly terms, how does it seem that Saul has the advantage? How does the Lord turn this around?
If David knows that he is God’s new anointed king, why doesn’t he take Saul’s life?
Have you ever been tempted to ‘rush ahead’ of God? How so?
What helped David patiently wait for God’s timing? How might that help us as we also await God’s purposes and promises to be fully realised?
If you had to name one main difference between Saul and David, what would you say? With regards to this ‘one thing’, do you identify more with Saul or with David?
READ 1 Samuel 26:17-24
How difficult had the life been for David in recent years? Why do you think he can’t understand why Saul wants him dead?
How might God have used David’s suffering to prepare him for his future as king? Do you think God can ever use our suffering for his purposes? Can you think of an example?
As Christians, should we expect to suffer for Jesus? How should we act amidst suffering?
How is David strengthened to continue trusting the Lord amidst suffering? How can we be strengthened
to keep on following Jesus amidst suffering?
What is David’s ultimate source of hope? How do we have even more reason to hope?
Does it make any difference to you that you can be certain of future glory? Under what conditions?
Why wouldn't Saul bow his knee to David? What prevents us from bowing our knee to Jesus?
APPLY: As you trust in the Lord, how can you grow this week in either patience, endurance, or hope?
Gracious God we thank you that we can confidently put our trust in you. Please help us to grow in patience, endurance, and hope - that we might never rush ahead of you, trust in your justice even amidst suffering, and be secure in our hope. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
On Your Frontline This Week: How does following Jesus transform how you care and engage with others on your front line What might be the next step you can take?
Audio and Video
“1 Samuel For You” by Tim Chester is an excellent introduction to 1 Samuel that will be suitable for people reading at a range of levels. The guide includes helpful discussion of the content of 1 Samuel, along with plenty of practical and devotional application. Watch an introduction to the book by Tim Chester.
Other Helpful Books, Articles, and Courses