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had saved his kingdom, removed the reproach from Israel, and fought under the banners of the living God. The result was, that Saul's dependance was an evil Spirit, and not God, whom he would neither serve nor obey. But I must defer the account of David and the second Adam till another opportunity. May the Lord keep you as he did David, my beloved child, and may your little heart be given to the Lord, as David's was, then you will also be the Lord's anointed.
HISTORY OF DAVID RESUMED.
"Mamma, I was thinking it must be a misfortune to be Gold's anointed, and experience so many troubles."
Your's is an error into which all are likely to fall, my love; but the Lord's anointed are the only people who experience true happiness on earth, as well as in heaven. They walk in the ways of pleasantness and peace, which surpasses all understanding; they are subject to disappointments and trials like the rest of the world; but the worldly are driven to despair by them, while the godly are resigned and cheerful, knowing that God will, in due time, deliver them, which was the case with David. After his last interview with Saul, he went to Gath, among the heathen and idolaters, which was the greatest of all poor David's trials; and had not the Holy Spirit which was in him animated him with a lively hope, that one day God's promise would be fulfilled, he would have been driven to despair.—But, Mamma, you mentioned that his wife Michal told a story, saying that David was sick in bed, when he had actually departed. Does God, Mamma, permit a story to be told for good purposes ?—No, my love, God can do all things without the intervention of wickedness and untruth, and there was no occasion for the falsehood that Michal told, for God had delivered David by the window, before the messengers arrived. Michal was the daughter of Saul, and given in marriage to David for killing the Philistine giant; but she had not the Spirit of God. This was not the only time she sinned. On one occasion, when David had humbled himself before God, she despised him because it made him look low in the eyes of her maid servants. God punished her for her pride and her sins, for she was never blessed with any dear little children, but was sentenced to be childless all her life.—But to return to the history of David: While he was at Ziklag, a man arrived from the camp of Saul, with his clothes rent, and earth upon bis head, who hastening to David, fell to the earth and made obeisance. David, seeing a stranger, enquired, "Whence comest thou?" "Out of the camp of Israel am I escaped," he replied. Finding he had come from the field of battle, "How went the matter? I pray thee, tell me," enquired David. He answered, that the people were fled from the battle, and many of the people also were fallen and dead; and Saul and Jonathan his son were dead also. David, distressed and panicstruck at the intelligence: "How knowest thou that Saul and Jonathan his son be dead?" he enquired with earnestness. "As I happened by chance upon mount Gilboa," the young man continued, " behold, Saul leaned upon his spear; and, lo, the chariots and horsemen followed hard after him. And when he looked behind him, he saw me, and called unto' me. And I answered, Here am I. And he said unto me, Who art thou? And I answered him, I am an Amalekite. He said unto me again, Stand, I pray thee, upon me, and slay me: for anguish is come upon me, because my life is yet whole in me. So I stood upon him, and slew him, because I was sure that he could not live after that he was fallen: and I took the crown that was upon his head, and the bracelet that was on his arm, and have brought them hither unto my lord." David could restrain himself no longer, but gave vent to his grief, and rent his clothes : all that were with him sympathized in his sorrow, and they mourned and wept for the fallen Saul and the beloved Jonathan, and the reproach which had come upon the house of Israel. ** Whence art thou ?" enquired the weeping David of the young man, who had all along supposed he had been the messenger of joyful intelligence, and that the act of killing the enemy of David would have been rewarded with honours; indeed,he was a stranger to the Spirit of God, which even blesses our enemies, and is longsuffering and kind. In reply to David, he said he was a stranger, and an Amalekite. "How wast thou not afraid to stretch forth the hand to destroy the Lord's anointed ?" exclaims David, who in the agony of his sorrow, and in the fulfilment of a duty he owed his sovereign, and to the anointed of God, commanded one of the young men, and said, "Go near and fall upon him." And he smote him that he died.
What, did David kill him, Mamma?
Yes, my love.
Why, Saul surely begged his death as a favour of the young man.
But, my dear child, it was conferring a greater favour on this wicked Amalekite, who hastened to obey in the hope of being himself rewarded by David. Had he been swayed by the grace of God, he would not have been the instrument of Saul's suicide. He would have consoled the afflicted monarch, healed his wounds, entreated him to be pacified, and gently restored him to reason and hope; but the base assassin had his own covetous heart to satiate; and the blood of Saul, and of the house of Israel, was justly atoned for.
But, my dear Mamma, what a good man David must have been, so to love even his bitterest enemy!