1 Samuel 29

Removal of David from the Army of the Philistines

Vv. 1-5

Whilst Saul derived no comfort from his visit to the witch at Endor, but simply heard from the mouth of Samuel the confirmation of his rejection on the part of God, and an announcement of his approaching fate, David was delivered, through the interposition of God, from the danger of having to fight against his own people. (Keil and Delitzsch.)

Note an application with Saul. There are three "classes" of people here:

1. Saul, and his army.
2. David and his men whom Saul is pursuing.
2. The Philistines.

1. Saul and his army can be compared to those Christians who deny the legitimacy of God's law-word for us today, and try to use the world's methods for victory over the world.

2. David and his men can be compared to those who want to live by God's law-word.

3. The Philistines are simply unsaved pagans who are against both "Saul" and "David."

What do we have? Saul spends more time trying to undermine David than he does fighting against the Philistines. Saul not only denies God's law, but he "attacks" those of God's people who want to try to live by His law. Even if he would spend his time "attacking" the Philistines, he could not have the victory, for he has turned his back on the method of victory—that is, the practical application of God's law-word, particularly the commandments.

It is indeed sad that Saul is so much against David, when Saul is the one who is causing all the problems.

Saul has left God out of the picture by refusing to seek the Lord's guidance as he goes to battle against the Philistines.

Now, David certainly is not perfect as he depended on the world's method for protection by going to the Philistines, Achish. And then he must follow through with his life of lies before a king of the Philistines, Achish.

One lie leads to another. What started out as just seeking safety from Saul in the seemingly best way, now leads to the point where he must agree to fight against his own people.

1 Samuel 22:5, David had been told to go to Judah for his protection, but it seemed better to follow the advice of his heart, v. 1. Now we come to the result of David following his own wisdom, death.

Proverbs 14:12 There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death. (16:25)

Did not Saul think it best to seek a witch?

David had turned for his help and safety to Achish the Philistine in his difficulty with his enemy, Saul. Now he is expected to help the Philistines in their battle against God's people.

As Greg Dixon says, "With shekels come shackles." In other words, when God's people seek safety from the pagan state, there will be unholy obligations placed upon God's people by the pagans.

What was David now going to do? Notice what David said: that I may not go fight against the enemies of my lord the king? V. 8. He did not say, that I may not fight against Israel; rather, David did not define the enemy. A very strong statement that did not make any commitments. Typical politician.

V. 4, The Philistines' concern was that David would reconcile with his former master, Saul, and become an adversary to them.

Interesting observation: Adversary is the same word used to describe Satan, only Satan is used in a spiritual sense as the adversary to any godly work, as he works behind the scenes to undermine those works.

Notice: To the world's crowd (those of the Humanists faith), God's people are considered Satan — that is, the enemy or the adversary who must be removed before there can be "peace on earth." And Christians are quietly sitting back and letting Christianity be removed.

Though the Christian should understand that the warfare is spiritual, 2 Corinthians 10:1-6, the pagans understand the warfare strictly in a physical sense. (The Devil obviously understands it is a spiritual warfare.)

A physical warfare to the pagans means anti-christ laws, physical force, verbal abuse, legal and illegal means, for they consider themselves unbound by any restrictions, for they are at war against the adversary. Christians, generally, fail to understand that words are seen by the pagans as weapons of warfare. Words are tools to obtain their fallen desires.

Being tools and weapons of war, the only true words known by the enemies of Christ are words that are true to their cause of overthrowing their adversary, or the enemy that is preventing their bringing "peace on earth."

However, to the Christian, words spoken in truth is to the truth found in Christ, who is the only Truth.

Sadly, even Christians are gullible, as they seem to believe that sincerely spoken words mean that the words are true to the fact, when actually the words may simply be true to the unrighteous cause; that cause being the overthrow of Christ. In other words, clearly lies, as our adversary will use any means, especially lying words, to accomplish his goal.

The word of God is clear: the only victory is a spiritual victory, obtained as we move against the devil's crowd in the power of the Lord. As God's people submit to God and his law-word, God will move in the fight for us. He is the one who must give the victory. By faith, we live by his law-word in every area. He is the one who will cause the enemy to fall. Psalms 2

However, we are so carnal with our fallen nature that we have fallen victim in believing the battle is physical, carnal; I should say, political. We try to play by the pagans' rules, and God's people are losing, and they cannot understand why. We are trying to fight God's battle for society in Saul's armor and trying to add the power of God to those physical means.

Can we see David out there in Saul's armor to big for him, and trying to sling a stone? We must wage war according to God's rules, and he will have the victory. We as Christians are bound by the law-word of God, whereas the world, Philistines are not. We cannot use their means and expect the Lord to give us the victory. Remember, God's people were forbidden from war horses and chariots, which would make them depend upon the Lord.

What are His people doing today? They are saying, "it's alright to dwell with the Philistines, Achish, as long as we can still fight against the Philistines. 27:9-12. But the time of exposure is comming when the choice will have to be made.

The answer is still 2 Chronicles 7:14. God's people must get out of the Philistines camp, and get back to the land of Judah.

Certainly, in the camp of the Philistines:

1. The Philistines do not fight against you.
2. Saul (even many of God's people) does not fight against you.
3. Going to Judah, the philistines will gather together against you, and Saul's group will plot against you.

But God's provision, safety and victory is there.

Probably 90% or more of the church today has sought safety in the Philistine's camp for protection from both the Philistines and from Saul. But the days of safety with the Philistines are quickly drawing to a close.

God's people need to get back to fighting, standing where God commands that they stand–in the spiritual power of God. Only there can victory be obtained. Victory, freedom her on this earth is not what counts.

What counts is what we will tell the Lord when we meet him. That is when the kingdom is delivered to the Father, and we stand before him. 1 Corinthians 15:24, 2 Corinthians 5:10.

Having no choice, David, in this chapter, plays his lie to the hilt. How far was he willing to go through with his lie to protect himself? We have no way of knowing. But God intervened in v. 6, and sent David home. How many times has God stepped in in his mercy, and spared us the results of our sins and unwise decisions. I am sure he has intervened in his mercy more times than we know of.

David, through the mercy of God, was spared the immediate results of his lies, but he pays for it over and over. His son, Absalom, lied to his dad to get him to let all of his sons come to a feast which was planned to murder Amnon.

(David's problem with Absalom was because of his adultery and murder.)

What do we think David was thinking of when he cried, O my son Absalom, O Absalom, my son, my son? 2 Samuel 19:4.

Did he remember living this lie, and only the mercy of God preventing him from going further? God spared David, not because he was doing right, but strictly in God's mercy.

Whagt did David think when he and his men left early the next morning? "Boy, that ws close. I almost had to expose my lies. I am sure glad the Lord intervened. Looks like I have escaped the result of my lies." He did for the time being, but no doubt they caught up with him. He could have confessed his association with Achish as sin, and God could have intervened. However, we have no record that he ever admitted to the Lrod or to Achish that he had sinned in the matter.


1. He did not enquire of the Lord about moving to Achish (27:2) or to Ziklag (27:6)
2. He did not enquire of the Lord about going to battle on the side of Achish. Note that while David was gone, Amalek carried off his family, and burned the city.

Where are we looking for our safety? In the land of promise, God's word and law. That is, living in accord with the law-word of God.

Are we compromising in order to retain the Philistines protection, so we will have peace with both Saul and with the Philistines?

Because God intervened, do we think we have avoided the results, and see no need to confess the sin. His mercy is holding back the results, in hope we will repent and turn. Romans 2:1-8.

While we are out fulfilling our obligation to the lay, Amalek will carry off our family.

The only way God can intervene in the results is by confession and change. Proverbs 28:13, 14.

Example: Moses. The people sinned, poses prayed for them, and God forgave. But because of the situation over the spies, the people still had to reap the results.

Vv. 6-9

V. 9. As an angel of God... David was very good at living his lie. 27:9-12 But God knew about the lie.

V. 10. Thy master's servants... Afraid that those who followed David still served Saul and were going to fight Saul, the Philistines could not take the chance.

Do we think we have escaped the results because the results were withheld by God's mercy, giving us a chance to repent. The problem is that the longsuffering of God leads us to believe there are no results, so we do not make things right.

Are we looking for our safety in Judah; that is, hearing and doing God's law-word.

I have mentioned this elsewhere, but I will again.

Achish had his own selfish motives for protecting David, which left him receptive to David's lies. Thus, wrong motives leave even God's people open to frauds and lies of all kinds.

December 5, 2008