We all know the story, of David and Goliath. That Saul promised one of his daughter's and freedom of taxes to the man who slayed the giant. Well David, more affronted that this giant "defied the armies of the living God", kills the Philistine, gains the friendship of the king's son, the admiration of the king's people, and the love of one of the king's daughters.
Unsurprisingly, Saul becomes jealous or threatened by the boy, tries to kill him personally, fails, then tries to have him killed. His thought is to make David "pay" for the privilege to marry his daughter...which I thought had been taken care of at the beheading of Goliath...by siccing David on the Philistines, a task Saul was certain would get the kid killed. Ever the deceiver, Saul sends his servants to...to what? Trick David into saying something against the king? Into saying something foolish which Saul might use later? Either way or something else, it didn't work:
So Saul proposed a second time to make David his son-in-law, and ordered his courtiers to say to David privately, "The king is well disposed to you and you are dear to us all; now is the time for you to marry into the king's family."
When Saul's people spoke in this way to David, he said to the, "Do you think that marrying the king's daughter is a matter of so little consequence that a poor man of no consequences, like myself, can do it?" 1 Samuel 18:21-23, NEB
This shows me a few things: for one, David respected his king, and of all the kings man had a right to disrespect, Saul nears the top of the list. But David respects the God who put Saul into power; therefore, he respected Saul.
Yet what really struck me is how careful David is in speaking. Unlike Saul, he isn't trying to gain the approval of man and speaks only what would honor God. He doesn't try endearing himself to the servants, or befriend them with what gossip they might love to hear. He doesn't take the opportunity to boast of himself, to declare he has already won the right to marry the king's daughter, or state that, as future king, he can do as he pleases.
I'm not like this. I'm a product of the Texan culture that loves the negative.I'm often all too quick to see the darker side of a situation, too ready to point out the shortcomings of a thing, to eager to share my negative opinion...and in so doing, not following the example of one of the most amazing men in Scripture. I've always admired David: his character, strength, faith... But this passage has shown me that all these facets manifested in David's words. And if I wish to emulate him, and to emulate the Jesus David followed, this is a lesson I really must adopt.
I said: I will keep close watch over myself that all I say may be free from sin. I will keep a muzzle on my mouth, so long as wicked men confront me. In dumb silence I held my peace. Psalm 39:1-2, NEB