Ep. 093: Staying by the Stuff

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Ep. 093: Staying by the Stuff

As the Philistines started making plans to invade Israel, their king said to David, “You’ll march with me. I want you and your men to be my personal bodyguards.”
David said, “Good, now you’ll be able to see what my men and I can do.”
All the military units went to a place where they could present themselves in review as they prepared for war. The Philistine commanders were shocked when they saw David and his men. They said to the king, “You can’t bring those Hebrews to fight with us!”
He said, “David defected from Israel, and has been faithful to me ever since. I have no reason to doubt his loyalty.”
The commanders got mad. “Send him away! He’s the one they sing about. ‘Saul has killed his thousands; David his tens of thousands.’ He might suddenly turn on us in the middle of a battle. That would be a good way for him to regain Saul’s favor.”
The king went to David. “You’re an honorable man, and I personally want you by my side in battle. But the commanders don’t trust you. Therefore I have to send you back to Ziklag.”
David said, “What have I done to deserve this? I’ve been faithful to you from the first day I came here.”
The king said, “I know you have, but my hands are tied. You must leave in the morning.”
So David and his men left. When they got back to Ziklag, they found that foreign raiders had come and burnt down the town. They hadn’t killed anyone, but simply took all the people with them. This included all the wives, sons, and daughters of David and his men.
The men cried until they could cry no more. Some of the men wanted to stone David, but God stood by him. He prayed to the Lord, “Should I chase after these raiders? Will I catch them?
The Lord said, “Go after them. You’ll catch them and get everything back that was taken from you.”
So David took his 600 men and went after the invaders. At one point, they stopped because 200 of his men were too exhausted to go farther. So the 400 left their supplies with the 200 and continued on.
They came upon a slave who had belonged to the raiders, but had been left behind because he had gotten sick. He hadn’t eaten anything for three days. David’s men gave him food and water and helped revive him.
David said, “Will you lead us to the raiders?”
He said, “I’ll lead you to them if you swear you won’t kill me, and you won’t give me back to them.” David agreed.
The slave led David’s men directly to the raiders. They were celebrating how much plunder they had gotten from the Philistines and the Israelites. Without warning, David’s men attacked and quickly killed most of them. Only a few got away. David’s men got everything back they had lost, plus all the plunder the raiders had taken from other cities.
When they got back to the 200 men, some of the 400 said, “They didn’t go with us into battle. So they only get their wives and children back. They don’t get any of the extra plunder we took.”
David said, “No! That’s wrong. God gave us a great victory today. We’ll share equally with those who stayed back with our supplies.” So that became the law of Israel from that day on.
David and his men went back to Ziklag. He then sent some of the plunder back to various cities in Israel.


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