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Trip 318: Attack of the Amalekites; David’s Revenge against the Amalekites

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THE TIME SEQUENCE BIBLE

1095 Devotional “Trips”!

Rix W. Tillman, D. Min.

Reading assignment:  1 Samuel 30:1-30

Focal verse(s):  1 Samuel 30:3-6:  “When David and his men came to the city, behold, it was burned with fire, and their wives and their sons and their daughters had been taken captive. 4 Then David and the people who were with him lifted their voices and wept until there was no strength in them to weep.  5 Now David’s two wives had been taken captive…6 Moreover David was greatly distressed because the people spoke of stoning him, for all the people were embittered, each one because of his sons and his daughters But David strengthened himself in the LORD his God. ”

When David got back to Ziklag he found that some Amalekite raiding parties had burned the town and taken away his family and all other survivors as prisoners.  After a great amount of sorrow, David asked the Lord concerning His will, using Abiathar the priest as an intercessor. The priest used the ephod, which was the high priest’s apron-like garment containing the Urim and Thummin, sacred stones used to discover God’s will.  The answer came:  David would have victory, so he took his men and chased the Amalekites to the Besor Ravine, about 20 miles south of Ziklag.  David defeated the Amalekites, but about 400 of them escaped on camels.  However, he was able to get all of his family and property back totally intact.  The normal chances of David getting any of his family back alive in a situation like that would be “slim to none”, but when God intervenes the chances for victory are one hundred percent! 

 

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Trip 317: The Philistines’ Suspicion of David

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THE TIME SEQUENCE BIBLE

1095 Devotional “Trips”!

Rix W. Tillman, D. Min.

Reading assignment:  __1 Samuel 29

Focal verse(s):  1 Samuel 29:4-5:  “But the commanders of the Philistines were angry with him, and the commanders of the Philistines said to him, ‘Make the man go back, that he may return to his place where you have assigned him, and do not let him go down to battle with us, or in the battle he may become an adversary to us.  For with what could this man make himself acceptable to his lord?  Would it not be with the heads of these men?  5 Is this not David, of whom they sing in the dances, saying, ‘Saul has slain his thousands and David his ten thousands’?”

The night before the Philistines were to attack Israel, they assembled at Aphek, where 90 years earlier they had defeated Israel and captured the ark.  Israel took up positions by the spring in Jezreel about 40 miles to the northeast.  David and his men were among the troops of the Philistine leader Achish.  Although Achish and his men showed confidence in David, other Philistine leaders were suspicious of him, fearing that in the heat of the battle he might defect to Israel.  Achish was outvoted, so David was discharged and returned to Ziklag, obviously greatly relieved to not have to fight for the Philistines against his own people.  David was obviously out of God’s will when he went to be with the Philistines!  God intervened and made things so difficult for him he had to get back on track!  The Bible tells us in John 10:28-29 that once we give our lives to Jesus we shall never perish and no one is able to take us out of God’s hands. However, like David, Christians can get “off the path”, backslide, and start doing things that are clearly out of God’s will.  Because we are his children, God will at that point discipline us to help us get back on the right path, just as a loving parent does with their child.  What “path” are you on spiritually right now?  If necessary, adjust your direction before God has to step in and make a painful correction! 

 

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Trip 316: David’s Army—Part 2; the Deception of Achish; the War with Philistia (1011/1010 B.C.)

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THE TIME SEQUENCE BIBLE

1095 Devotional “Trips”!

Rix W. Tillman, D. Min.

Reading assignment:  __1 Chronicles 12:8-18    __1 Samuel 27:8-12    __1 Samuel 28:1-2

Focal verse(s):  1 Chronicles 12:8:  “From the Gadites there came over to David in the stronghold in the wilderness, mighty men of valor, men trained for war, who could handle shield and spear, and whose faces were like the faces of lions, and they were as swift as the gazelles on the mountains.

The next men to join David’s desert army in exile were eleven Gadites from the east side of the Jordan River.  Crossing the Jordan during the flood season, these men were strong, fierce, and very capable warriors, known for their quickness.  Because of the great reputation of these men, many other people from the tribes of Benjamin and Judah joined David because they also felt the anointing of God on his life.  1 Samuel 27 is a contrast between David’s godly side and his sinful nature.  The Bible tells us that David was a man after God’s own heart and this is demonstrated in this chapter as he took care of the safety of his family and fought Israel’s battles against the Canaanites.  However, his sinful nature also came out and he dishonored God by leaving his own country and living with the Philistines.  He also deceived the Philistine ruler into thinking there was a pact between them.  The Lord found a way to make David take a stand through the Philistines’ plans to make a massive attack on Israel.  David had led the Philistines to believe he was on their side and against Saul, but he would have to decide where to place his loyalty because the Lord doesn’t want any secret or fake soldiers of the cross!  As Joshua said so eloquently in Joshua 24:15, “…choose for yourselves today whom you will serve: whether the gods which your fathers served which were beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living; but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.”  Jesus had to take a stand in order to die for our sins…as His disciples, can we do anything less? 

 

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Trip 315: David’s Second Kindness to Saul—Part 2; Refuge in Philistia (1011/1010 B.C.); David’s Army

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THE TIME SEQUENCE BIBLE

1095 Devotional “Trips”!

Rix W. Tillman, D. Min.

Reading assignment:  __1 Samuel 26:21-25    __1 Samuel 27:1-7    __1 Chronicles 12:1-7

Focal verse(s):  1 Samuel 26:25:  “Then Saul said to David, “Blessed are you, my son David; you will both accomplish much and surely prevail”, so David went on his way, and Saul returned to his place.

As Saul heard David’s plea to leave him alone, God’s hand of protection on David became so clear to Saul that he himself started to confess his own wickedness.  He seemed at that point to fully and finally recognize that David was destined to become the shepherd of Israel.  Saul became resigned to his fate, and as far as history knows never again tried to interfere with God’s will for Israel’s next anointed leader.  Even though Saul had finally decided not to pursue David, David did not seem to understand this and he left Judah to hide among the Philistines in order to safe from Saul.  He spent almost 1½ years with the Philistines before the death of Saul, developing even more skills in combat and leadership…a time in which God further prepared David to be the next king of Israel.  The “mighty men” of David’s army which are listed in 1 Chronicles 12 were his fellow tribesmen from Judah as well as some defectors who came to David from other tribes.  While David was in exile in Ziklag, 23 of Saul’s own relatives also joined David’s army.  Like David, the Lord often will allow us to have “wilderness experiences” in order to prepare us for a great task.  If you’re going through such a time, stand firm, stay close to God, and wait for the blessings! 

 

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Trip 314: David’s Second Act of Kindness to Saul

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THE TIME SEQUENCE BIBLE

1095 Devotional “Trips”!

Rix W. Tillman, D. Min.

Reading assignment:  __1 Samuel 26:1-20

Focal verse(s):  1 Samuel 26:9:  “But David said to Abishai, “Do not destroy him, for who can stretch out his hand against the LORD’S anointed and be without guilt?”

The Ziphites again told Saul about David’s hiding place, so Saul took 3000 hand-picked men and went to the hill of Hakilah in the Desert of Ziph to hunt down David but the Lord miraculously delivered David yet again!  While King Saul slept in his camp, David and Joab’s brother Abishai (a skilled soldier) sneaked into Saul’s camp and got so close to the sleeping Saul that David stole both his water jug and his spear, which was stuck into the ground next to his head!  David would not harm the Lord’s anointed, period!  As soon as David crossed over to the other side of the ravine between his troops and Saul, he shouted to Abner (Saul’s bodyguard) and chided him about his carelessness in guarding the king, and the fact that he had allowed someone to get so close to Saul they could steal his water jug and spear.  David again pleaded to Saul to let him alone, and said if God were leading Saul to chase him, then he would repent.  However, if men were responsible, they should be cursed by God because they were interfering with God’s will by driving David from his home and his public worship of God.  This scene is reminiscent of church members today who, like Saul, are out of the will of God and allow the use a position of influence in the church to interfere with the Lord’s will! 

 

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Trip 313: David and Abigail—Part 2

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THE TIME SEQUENCE BIBLE

1095 Devotional “Trips”!

Rix W. Tillman, D. Min.

Reading assignment:  __1 Samuel 25:32-44

Focal verse(s):  1 Samuel 25:39:  “When David heard that Nabal was dead, he said, “Blessed be the LORD, who has pleaded the cause of my reproach from the hand of Nabal and has kept back His servant from evil.  The LORD has also returned the evildoing of Nabal on his own head.” Then David sent a proposal to Abigail, to take her as his wife.”

David was so impressed with the wisdom and graciousness of Abigail that his anger toward Nabal was averted and he gladly accepted the provisions from her and departed.  However, that night Nabal decided to have a party, and after he had been out on an all-night drinking binge, he found out how narrowly he had escaped death at the hands of David.  He was so shocked by the news he had a heart attack and died ten days later!  David interpreted this chain of events as a sign from God.  He was obviously greatly taken by the beauty and charm of Nabal’s wife Abigail, so after Nabal’s death David proposed marriage to Abigail and she gladly accepted.  The last two verses of 1 Samuel 25 tell us that David also married Ahinoam, who became his third wife.  His first wife Michal was given by her father Saul to another man, so in essence David had two recognized wives.  There is no place in the Bible where blessings come out of plural marriages.  God created us to have one wife, and to live with that person as our helpmate through sickness and health, riches and poverty, better or worse…period!  Every one of the Bible characters who took more than one wife lived to regret it!  God allows us to do things out of His will because we have the freedom of choice and He will continue to bless us if we have a repentant heart toward these things.  However, our sin will bring problems and leave scars even though God has forgiven us.  In order to avoid all of the problems so many throughout history have brought upon themselves, we need to stay on the spiritual course God has set for us!  Turn to Malachi 2:16 and study this verse as you seek God’s heart on this subject. 

 

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Trip 312: David and Abigail

Book Cover

THE TIME SEQUENCE BIBLE

1095 Devotional “Trips”!

Rix W. Tillman, D. Min.

Reading assignment:  __1 Samuel 25:14-31

Focal verse(s):  1 Samuel 25:28:  “Please forgive the transgression of your maidservant; for the LORD will certainly make for my lord an enduring house, because my lord is fighting the battles of the LORD, and evil will not be found in you all your days.”

David returned with his 400 men to kill Nabal for his rudeness and hostility.  However, Nabal’s wife Abigail intercepted them and gave them the provisions they had originally asked for, begging David not to harm her husband whom she said was a fool, as his name implied.   She told David that God would bless him and eventually make him King, but for him to kill the foolish Nabal would just put a burden on his conscience.  The provisions Abigail brought to David (200 loaves of bread, two bottles of wine, five sheep already dressed, five measures of parched corn, 100 clusters of raisins and 200 fig cakes) showed the considerable wealth of Nabal, especially since his wife could get her servants to assemble that many provisions on such short notice.  In 1 Samuel 25:29, Abigail mentions that “a man is risen to pursue thee”, an obvious reference to Saul, and then she goes on in the same sentence to tell David that his “soul…shall be bound in the bundle of life with the Lord…”  This is exactly the position of the believer in Jesus Christ!  We are “bound in the bundle of life” with Jesus Christ when we give our lives to Him! 

 

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