1 Sam 22:1-5 – David in the Cave of Adullam

Christian Mölk1 Samuel Leave a Comment

1Sam 22:1

  1. David went from being a celebrated hero to having to flee in haste and hide in a cave. He has recently been anointed the future king of Israel, killed Goliath, become commander of Israel’s army, defeated the Philistines, married the king’s daughter and made a covenant with the king’s son Jonathan. But now he has fallen out of favour with King Saul and is forced to flee for his life.
  2. When David has to hide, he goes to Adullam’s cave.
    1. The cave of Adullam was an underground cave system of limestone that was probably located about a mile from Bethlehem, near the border with Philistia at the beginning of the mountains of Judea. The cave is located on a hill with a long view of the landscape, ideal for seeing if enemies begin to approach.
    2. The word “Adullam” means “refuge”. Perhaps David found these caves when he was herding sheep as a young boy, and thought he could hide there if he ever found himself in danger. Now these caves come in handy!
    3. When David went from the city of Gath to the cave of Adullam, he had to pass by the place where he had defeated Goliath. Surely David thought about how quickly he had gone from being a celebrated hero to having to flee for his life.
  3. When David hid in Adullam’s cave, he wrote Ps 34, Ps 57, and Ps 142.
    1. When David found himself in a life-threatening and very vulnerable situation, he began his prayer by crying out to the Lord. David opens his heart to the Lord and tells of all his troubles, that his enemies are pursuing him and that there is no longer any refuge for him anywhere, but that he trusts God to be his refuge. Finally, David asks God to deliver him from his enemies.
      1. There is much to learn from David’s prayer in a difficult situation. When you and I are surrounded by enemies and have to retreat, where do we go? We can learn from David that we can “hide” with the Lord and pray for his help and deliverance.
      2. Running to God when you are in a difficult situation is like when a child hits himself and runs straight to his mother or father. No matter what happens, it’s always safest with mom or dad. In the same way, we should run to God when we find ourselves in trouble or difficulty.
    1. When David is on the run and hiding in Adullam’s cave, it seems that God is working on David’s heart. In this song, we see David humbling himself, praying to God, trusting in the Lord’s protection and singing praises boldly.
      1. It is often when we find ourselves in difficult situations that we humble ourselves before the Lord and grow in our faith. Therefore, difficult situations are not necessarily negative, at least not for our spiritual well-being.
  4. When David was little, his father and brothers didn’t care much for him. So it must have been a very good feeling for David that now, when he is in dire straits, his family comes to him. It’s when life gets hard that you find out who your real friends are.
    1. Maybe his family can’t do much to save him from King Saul, but they can be by his side now that David is in a very difficult and vulnerable situation.
    2. In the same way a congregation can function. When life gets difficult, we need to be there for each other and support each other. Even if the church cannot free you from your pain, the church can be there for you, pray for you and support you.

1Sam 22:2

  1. David must have been very surprised when different kinds of disgruntled people started coming to him. If David himself had been given 400 men to choose from, he might not have chosen these people, but now it seems that God sent them to him.
    1. These people “in distress”. They had their own problems and worries.
    2. These people were “in debt”. They had failed in life and got into financial trouble.
    3. These people were “bitter in soul”. Their lives were difficult and they saw no possibility of a better life unless they left it and followed David instead.
    4. Even today, people in difficulty, with financial worries and dissatisfied with life, come to the Church and ask God to be their refuge and deliverance.
  2. David becomes the leader of these 400 people. David could certainly have turned these 400 into a band of robbers, but instead he turned them into brave heroes and warriors (2 Sam 23:8-39).
    1. In the same way, you and I can come to church and appeal to God for deliverance from a difficult situation. At first we are in difficulty and discontent, but gradually God changes our situation and makes us heroes and warriors for the kingdom of God.
    2. As church leaders, it is our task to lead people from a difficult and vulnerable situation to become heroes for God.
    3. These 400 men came to David not when he was rich and celebrated, but when he was in the most difficult time of his life. These men remained loyal to David for the rest of his life.
    4. One of these brave heroes was Eleazar (2Sam 23:9-10).
      1. When the men of Israel withdrew from the battle against the Philistines, Eleazar was left to fight alone until his hand became so tired that he could not let go of the sword.
        1. In the same way, God’s heroes today need to fight for God’s kingdom, standing firm on the Bible, for example, when God’s word is attacked by enemies. Even if faithful Christians back out of the fight, heroes need to keep fighting the good fight with the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God (Ephesians 6:17).
        2. When the battle of one is won, the others come back to partake of the sweetness of victory. But only the one who has fought the battle is remembered as a hero.
    5. Anyone who wants to be a “hero of God” today and do great deeds for the Lord, needs to be as loyal to Jesus as David’s heroes were to David. A hero of God needs to come to God when life is difficult, let God be his refuge and be transformed from a miserable refugee to a hero of God.
  3. When God is going to do his great works on earth, he usually first calls a leader after his heart, whom he anoints with his Holy Spirit, and then secondly also makes him a leader for people who want to follow God.
    1. But in the process of forming a leader after God’s heart, one must sometimes pause the life of success to retreat to the cave of Adullam and spend time alone with the Lord.
Share & Print

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *