This morning for my personal devotion I read some chapters in the Bible from the books of Samuel. There is no break between these two books, the events of 2 Samuel chapter 1 being a continuation of the preceding history, without any interruption. David is one of my favorite Bible characters. What an amazing person and what amazing experiences he had!
2 Samuel chapter 1 is about the weeping and utmost sadness in David’s soul on hearing about Saul’s death. At the time of the fatal battle between Saul and the Philistines, David had been engaged in his attack upon the Amalekites. Some time had elapsed before he learned of Saul’s death.
The one who brought the sad news was an Amalekite, of the same race as the people who had attacked the camp of David and whom David had recently smitten. His father was living temporarily in Israel and evidently the messenger was enlisted in Saul’s army. I tried to imagine this interaction. The messenger comes with his clothes rent and earth upon his head, indicating sorrow and giving evidence that Israel had suffered a disastrous defeat. Then David says something like “how did it go?’. I will invite you to read this amazing chapter for yourself, and you will find that the messenger’s story does not agree with the account of Saul’s death found in 1 Samuel 31: 3-6. However he must have been one of the first to come across Saul’s body because he was able to recover the crown and bracelet.
I must share the verses that really moved me: 2 Samuel 1: 19-27. Here David pours out his grief in a touching poem. Verse 23 is a shocker: “Saul and Jonathan were lovely and pleasant in their lives…”. I feel it from Jonathan’s life, but how about Saul’s? Oh, there was goodness and even greatness in some areas of his life, even bravery and might! But wasn’t he the one who hunted David like a wild animal? The man whose life David had twice had the opportunity to destroy? Yes, he was! As he wept, David’s emotions were not even divided; “Saul and Jonathan were lovely and pleasant in their lives”. How could David be so loving? Was it because he understood 1 Samuel 15:22 “… to obey is better than sacrifice…” in a very different way? Amidst all that happened in David’s own life God did call him “a man after my own heart”. Why wouldn’t you want to enjoy reading all about David’s life? I can guarantee a blessing!