1 Samuel 27:1-3 NLT
“But David kept thinking to himself, “Someday Saul is going to get me. The best thing I can do is escape to the Philistines. Then Saul will stop hunting for me in Israelite territory, and I will finally be safe.” So David took his 600 men and went over and joined Achish son of Maoch, the king of Gath. David and his men and their families settled there with Achish at Gath…”
It looks like David has finally had enough; he is tired of constantly being on the run and having to uproot his family every time King Saul got the itch to pursue him.
Everybody has their breaking point.
Everybody eventually will say, “Enough is enough!”
Everyone has their proverbial “end of the rope.”
David has called it quits. He escapes to Philistine territory again. (See Chapter 21) And once again he goes to Achish King of Gath.
How bad do things have to get to run to the enemy for peace? Isn’t that the most ridiculous thing ever?
Yet David isn’t welcome home in Israel.
But what about the “call?”
What about the “anointing?”
Is David being faithless by running away?
Or is he just…tired?
What would we do if we were in that predicament?
Would we have lasted any longer?
He gave it a valiant effort, he tried to do what he considered to be the righteous and godly thing by sparing Saul from a sure death, not once but twice, and yet somehow he is still considered a traitor and an outlaw.
Putting space between your enemy and assailant isn’t necessarily an act of cowardice. Sometimes you need to regroup and assess the situation. And sometimes you just need to REST.
Even Jesus had to get away from the crowd to rest and eat. Mark 6:31
The time that David and his men spent in Philistine territory proved to be fruitful, they amassed for themselves flocks, land and even had time to work on their families.
Being in enemy territory wasn’t safe by any means, but at least they weren’t running from a enemy that David didn’t allow them to fight against.
It is at this time that some of the men built reputations of being “mighty” men of renown. From their position in Philistine territory, they were able to go out on quick raids, virtually undetected. Then by leaving no survivors, there was no one who could point back to them as the culprits.
Survival sometimes is ruthless. Sometimes I read about these exploits and see that very little pity is shown to the enemy of Israel. I know they were godless, child sacrificing, heathen nations, but I guess we see war from a very U.N. perspective, or in my case through a set of American rose-colored glasses. A perspective where there are rules of engagement and a code of conduct and compassion.
But when you read the Scriptures, the Word of God was very clear about sanctification and separation. God knew even one survivor could corrupt a whole nation. There was no room for compromise.
Jesus himself lived with that kind of discipline. His cross to bear was ruthless. No compassion was shown towards Him; his punishment was executed by the world’s most expert terrorists in his day. There was no equal when it came to torture; the Roman soldier was the epitome of terror. Mercy and compassion were not extended. The cross was meant to be a visual warning and a deterrent to all those who had the unpleasant opportunity to have to walk along a rode where one was erected.
So how do we even begin to wrestle with the fact that our definition and God’s definition of sanctification and separation are two very different things?
David is fighting hard to live out his call and purpose, but it wasn’t until David put distance between himself and his destiny that God blesses and multiplied him.
Abraham put distance between him and his nephew Lot and God multiplied him.
Joseph is sold into slavery, far from anything familiar, and God blesses him and multiplies him.
Naomi and Ruth leave Moab…
Jesus leaves heaven…
Perhaps we need to be stretched to leave the familiar. Perhaps we need to place some distance between ourselves and some people who are hindering our enlargement?
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not developing some kind of doctrine, I’m just making an observation. Perhaps there are some habits, hobbies and homeboys/girls in your life that you need to be separated from. Some ties you need to destroy, or some entanglement you need to let go of.
I pray that you get to the heart of the issue, and deal with it in order to make room for the God-sized dream and anointing on your life.