1 Samuel 18:1-30 Saul’s jealousy of David’s popularity led him to seek to kill David. Envy, like other such interior dispositions, may begin as petty sins, but left unchecked they can lead to deeper and graver sins. In the case of Saul, envy and jealousy led to hatred. (CCC 1863, 1876, 2538-2539, 2553)
(And in Anakin Skywalker’s case, Fear led to Anger, Anger led to Hate, and Hate led to SUFFERING 🤓)
Ch 19:1-24 This chapter narrates Saul’s pursuit of David and the latter’s success in avoiding death and gaining support among the people of Israel. Jonathan exacted from his father an oath that he would not have David killed, but Saul forgot his oath and sent his men to kill David, who escaped death with the help of Jonathan. Breaking an oath is a serious matter, particularly when the violation of an oath would result in an evil act such as murder. (CCC 2150-2155)
Psalm 59 Some of the themes and contexts of previous psalms are present in this plaintive hymn. Amid serious danger and pursued by his enemies, the psalmist-given his innocence-appealed with urgency for God’s protection.
Who...will hear us?: The evildoers thought themselves invincible and believed no one would see them or come to the aid of the psalmist, not even God.
Slay them not: Unlike most other psalms that call for striking down the enemy, here there is a call for leniency or at least a delayed sentence. By exiling the evildoers instead, God would make an example of them so others would not follow their path.
(*The Didache Bible RSV-CE Ignatius Edition, 2006)
Saul’s Envy and David’s Patience
David’s victory draws two very different reactions from Saul and his son, Jonathan.
For Saul, David’s popular acclaim after Goliath’s defeat strikes at the heart of Saul’s insecurities and kindles in them the fire of envy, which will soon spread out of control.
For Jonathan, however, it marks the beginning of a profound and lifelong friendship between the two men, who swear a covenant of brotherhood. (1 Sam 18:3) that will later save David’s life and his future as king.
Although Jonathan is the heir to Saul’s throne, he gives his robe, armor, and weapons as a sign of his allegiance to David and his willingness to relinquish the throne to God’s chosen one.
Several times, Jonathan provides the only refuge David has against Saul.
Not only does he help David escape his father, he also encourages David to persevere in a long and dangerous wait for the Lord’s timing.
Moreover, although Saul’s disobedience deprives Jonathan of the kingdom, Jonathan not only accepts the prophetic word of Samuel but also risks his life for the sake of the new heir to the kingdom.
Jonathan’s virtue serves to outline even more clearly the colossal failures of his father.
(*Walking With God: A Journey Through The Bible by Tim Gray and Jeff Cavins)
Well well well, how the turntables...
Saul’s achilles heel is HIS VANITY
Saul cares TOO LITTLE of what God thinks of him
Here we have David and Jonathan who make a covenant with each other
Jonathan sees something in David’s will to fight Goliath that he has in HIMSELF
David sees something in Jonathan’s willingness to battle the Philistines that he has in HIMSELF
This is a great example of BROTHERHOOD and FRIENDSHIP in Scripture
There are different kinds of friendship and they are all good things
Friendship of convenience
Friendship of pleasure
Friendship of utility
They all have goodness to them
But the highest form of friendship is called VIRTUOUS FRIENDSHIP
It’s not necessarily being BOUND TO ONE ANOTHER by similarities in tastes and circumstance
VIrtuous friends are BOUND because THEY HAVE THE SAME GOAL
FILIA is the love of FRIENDSHIP
C.S. Lewis describes it as an individual is so captivated by something bigger than themselves so they chase after it and then notice another person is chasing the same goal
In the early Church, we have many examples of Saints who are thrown together and recognize that their whole life was dedicated to pursuing JESUS and GOD
THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOD
THE STUDY OF GOD
THE SERVICE OF GOD
THE WORSHIP OF GOD
When you are pursuing this thing that is bigger than you and you see another person pursuing the same goal, you are captured not by each other, but BY THE SAME GOAL
That SAME GOAL is worth giving your entire life for
That becomes the SEED of VIRTUOUS FRIENDSHIP
Jonathan and David have that
Jonathan should be jealous of David because Jonathan stands to receive the crown after Saul dies
Jonathan doesn’t care one bit about David because he’s not a threat
God has plans for David
God has plans for Jonathan
Jonathan is not going to lose anything
Yes, Jonathan won’t be king, but that was never the plan
David is going to be the king
Jonathan has such great virtue
Now look at Saul
Saul is angry that the songs the Israelites were singing were praising David more than him
Saul’s envy is now due to his big weakness, the inordinate amount he thought about what people’s opinions were
How do we escape that preoccupation?
We escape by recognizing what really matters
What really matters IS WHAT GOD THINKS
HOW GOD HAS CALLED US
HOW GOD CONTINUES TO KNOW US
HOW GOD CONTINUES TO SEE US
HOW GOD CONTINUES TO LOVE US
Saul has missed all this because he has turned his back on the Lord
Saul tries to kill David several times
Saul isn’t as good at throwing a spear as he is at getting jealous
David will constantly be on the run from King Saul
David will constantly show mercy to Saul
But Saul will show nothing but jealousy, envy, and bitterness towards David
Psalm 59 for deliverance from enemies
David has been elevated but has to constantly watch his back
Even though he is on the run, DAVID GIVES GOD PRAISE
Even in the midst of distress, DAVID GIVES GOD PRAISE
Before the battle is over, DAVID GIVES GOD PRAISE
There is something so POWERFUL about that
We petition the Lord
We pray for each other
We pray for ourselves
We pray for things that are important to us
We bring ourselves before the Lord and ask him for blessings
WE PRAISE HIM
WE PRAISE HIM BEFORE THE BATTLE IS EVEN OVER
WE PRAISE HIM WHEN WE ARE IN THE MIDST OF STRUGGLES
WE PRAISE HIM EVEN WHEN WE ARE ON THE RUN
LET’S PRAISE HIM
PRAY FOR FR. MIKE
PRAY FOR EACH OTHER
Prayer by Fr. Mike: “Father in Heaven, we give you praise and glory. We give you praise for deliverance. We give you praise in the midst of the battle. This is how we love you, by obeying your commandments, of course, by seeking your face, and by striving to be men and women after your own heart, but also by praising you in the midst of the battle, by praising you in the midst of uncertainty, by praising you in giving you thanks even before you have delivered us. Even before you have come to our rescue, Lord God, we lift up your name. So please, in our small way of lifting up our voice and directing our heart to you and our thanksgiving to you, let that be a gift to you today, God. Please, in the name of your Son, please receive our words of praise. Receive our words of thanksgiving and be glorified, for you are Glory itself. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.”