Prospering in the midst of evil plots

I Samuel 18:7: And the women answered one another as they played, and said, Saul hath slain his thousands, and David his ten thousands.
8: And Saul was very wroth, and the saying displeased him; and he said, They have ascribed unto David ten thousands, and to me they have ascribed but thousands: and what can he have more but the kingdom?
9: And Saul eyed David from that day and forward.
10: And it came to pass on the morrow, that the evil spirit from God came upon Saul, and he prophesied in the midst of the house: and David played with his hand, as at other times: and there was a javelin in Saul’s hand.
11: And Saul cast the javelin; for he said, I will smite David even to the wall with it. And David avoided out of his presence twice.
12: And Saul was afraid of David, because the LORD was with him, and was departed from Saul.
13: Therefore Saul removed him from him, and made him his captain over a thousand; and he went out and came in before the people.
14: And David behaved himself wisely in all his ways; and the LORD was with him.
15: Wherefore when Saul saw that he behaved himself very wisely, he was afraid of him.
16: But all Israel and Judah loved David, because he went out and came in before them. …

20: And Michal Saul’s daughter loved David: and they told Saul, and the thing pleased him.
21: And Saul said, I will give him her, that she may be a snare to him, and that the hand of the Philistines may be against him. …

22: And Saul commanded his servants, saying, Commune with David secretly, and say, Behold, the king hath delight in thee, and all his servants love thee: now therefore be the king’s son in law. …

25: And Saul said, Thus shall ye say to David, The king desireth not any dowry, but an hundred foreskins of the Philistines, to be avenged of the king’s enemies. But Saul thought to make David fall by the hand of the Philistines.
26: And when his servants told David these words, it pleased David well to be the king’s son in law: and the days were not expired.
27: Wherefore David arose and went, he and his men, and slew of the Philistines two hundred men; and David brought their foreskins, and they gave them in full tale to the king, that he might be the king’s son in law. And Saul gave him Michal his daughter to wife.
28: And Saul saw and knew that the LORD was with David, and that Michal Saul’s daughter loved him.
29: And Saul was yet the more afraid of David; and Saul became David’s enemy continually.

As followers of Christ, God has called us to fulfill certain things while we are here on earth.  Every believer has a purpose, whether the purpose may be considered small or great.  But in the midst of us taking steps to fulfill that calling, we should not be surprised if everyone is not cheering for us.  It is human for us to want to be liked by everyone, but when we have determined that pleasing God is the most important thing to desire, it is inevitable that we will face opposition of some kind.  This is how it was with David.  Because he had a heart to please God and was a humble young man, God caused him to prosper at whatever he did.

As his success grew, so did admiration for him among the people.  But King Saul’s heart was full of jealousy against David and he took it upon himself to destroy David in whatever way he could.  After his attempt to kill David failed, Saul demoted David.  God still caused David to prosper so Saul tried to use his own daughter as a tool to destroy David.  Ultimately, all of Saul’s schemes failed.

Here’s what we as Christians can learn from this scripture:

  • In fulfilling your godly purpose, there will be powerful people who are hoping you will fail.  They will try to set traps for you to ruin your reputation and to highlight what they think may be your weaknesses or in extreme cases they will try to end your life.
  • Even in the midst of your enemies setting traps for you, remaining humble and displaying integrity is an excellent defense against their wicked schemes.  “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: Having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation in Christ.” (1 Peter 3:15-16)
  • People who oppose your godliness are really afraid of you.  Many times these people realize that God has favored you to accomplish something they wish they could do to bring glory to themselves.  They may see you as the one who is stealing their thunder.
  • Those who oppose you may be under Satanic influences.  Evil spirits are still active today, for we wrestle not against flesh and blood but against spiritual wickedness in high places.  This is why spiritual discernment is so important.
  • Since God has a purpose for you, he will be faithful in protecting you against all of your enemy’s wicked plots.  This doesn’t mean you won’t have some adversity or inconveniences.  David suffered a demotion and had to flee for his life for several years without a place to call home.  Nevertheless, his life was preserved and he reached the goal God had for him.  “Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all.” (Psalm 34:19)
  • Devotion to God will help you prosper in secular affairs.  It is often assumed that Christians cannot prosper in professions like politics, law, or science because we are thought of as having too many morals or boundaries set up in our minds.  However, in the same way godliness made David a good king, our godliness can help us become better in our professions because in honoring God, he grants us wisdom to make the right decisions and guides our steps, which in turn causes us to prosper.

–posted by Harry A. Gaylord–

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