1 Samuel 30

* Ziklag spoiled by the Amalekites. (1-6) David overtakes the

Amalekites. (7-15) He recovers what had been lost. (16-20)

David's distribution of the spoil. (21-31)

1-6 When we go abroad in the way of our duty, we may

comfortably hope that God will take care of our families in our

absence, but not otherwise. If, when we come off a journey, we

find our abode in peace, and not laid waste, as David here found

his, let the Lord be praised for it. David's men murmured

against him. Great faith must expect such severe trials. But,

observe, that David was brought thus low, only just before he

was raised to the throne. When things are at the worst with the

church and people of God, then they begin to mend. David

encouraged himself in the Lord his God. His men fretted at their

loss, the soul of the people was bitter; their own discontent

and impatience added to the affliction and misery. But David

bore it better, though he had more reason than any of them to

lament it. They gave liberty to their passions, but he set his

graces to work; and while they dispirited each other, he, by

encouraging himself in God, kept his spirit calm. Those who have

taken the Lord for their God, may take encouragement from him in

the worst times.
7-15 If in all our ways, even when, as in this case, there can

be no doubt they are just, we acknowledge God, we may expect

that he will direct our steps, as he did those of David. David,

in tenderness to his men, would by no means urge them beyond

their strength. The Son of David thus considers the frames of

his followers, who are not all alike strong and vigorous in

their spiritual pursuits and conflicts; but, where we are weak,

there he is kind; nay more, there he is strong, #2Co 12:9,10|. A

poor Egyptian lad, scarcely alive, is made the means of a great

deal of good to David. Justly did Providence make this poor

servant, who was basely used by his master, an instrument in the

destruction of the Amalekites; for God hears the cry of the

oppressed. Those are unworthy the name of true Israelites, who

shut up their compassion from persons in distress. We should

neither do an injury nor deny a kindness to any man; some time

or other it may be in the power of the lowest to return a

kindness or an injury.
16-20 Sinners are nearest to ruin, when they cry, Peace and

safety, and put the evil day far from them. Nor does any thing

give our spiritual enemies more advantage than sensuality and

indulgence. Eating and drinking, and dancing, have been the soft

and pleasant way in which many have gone down to the

congregation of the dead. The spoil was recovered, and brought

off; nothing was lost, but a great deal gained.
21-31 What God gives us, he designs we should do good with. In

distributing the spoil, David was just and kind. Those are men

of Belial indeed, who delight in putting hardships upon their

brethren, and care not who is starved, so that they may be fed

to the full. David was generous and kind to all his friends.

Those who consider the Lord as the Giver of their abundance,

will dispose of it with fairness and liberality.

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