ACCEPTING

| 13 June |

ACCEPTING

TODAY’S SCRIPTURE REFERENCE: 1 Samuel 22

*1 Samuel 22*

New Living Translation (NLT)

*David at the Cave of Adullam*

*22 *So David left Gath and escaped to the cave of Adullam. Soon his
brothers and all his other relatives joined him there. *2 *Then others
began coming—men who were in trouble or in debt or who were just
discontented—until David was the captain of about 400 men.

*3 *Later David went to Mizpeh in Moab, where he asked the king,
“Please allow my father and mother to live here with you until I
know what God is going to do for me.” *4 *So David’s parents
stayed in Moab with the king during the entire time David was living
in his stronghold.

*5 *One day the prophet Gad told David, “Leave the stronghold and
return to the land of Judah.” So David went to the forest of Hereth.

*6 *The news of his arrival in Judah soon reached Saul. At the time,
the king was sitting beneath the tamarisk tree on the hill at Gibeah,
holding his spear and surrounded by his officers.

*7 *“Listen here, you men of Benjamin!” Saul shouted to his
officers when he heard the news. “Has that son of Jesse promised
every one of you fields and vineyards? Has he promised to make you all
generals and captains in his army?*[**a*

*]* *8 *Is that why you have conspired against me? For not one of you
told me when my own son made a solemn pact with the son of Jesse.
You’re not even sorry for me. Think of it! My own son—encouraging
him to kill me, as he is trying to do this very day!”

*9 *Then Doeg the Edomite, who was standing there with Saul’s men,
spoke up. “When I was at Nob,” he said, “I saw the son of Jesse
talking to the priest, Ahimelech son of Ahitub. *10 *Ahimelech
consulted the Lord for him. Then he gave him food and the sword of
Goliath the Philistine.”

*The Slaughter of the Priests*

*11 *King Saul immediately sent for Ahimelech and all his family, who
served as priests at Nob. *12 *When they arrived, Saul shouted at him,
“Listen to me, you son of Ahitub!”

“What is it, my king?” Ahimelech asked.

*13 *“Why have you and the son of Jesse conspired against me?”
Saul demanded. “Why did you give him food and a sword? Why have you
consulted God for him? Why have you encouraged him to kill me, as he
is trying to do this very day?”

*14 *“But sir,” Ahimelech replied, “is anyone among all your
servants as faithful as David, your son-in-law? Why, he is the captain
of your bodyguard and a highly honored member of your household! *15
*This was certainly not the first time I had consulted God for him!
May the king not accuse me and my family in this matter, for I knew
nothing at all of any plot against you.”

*16 *“You will surely die, Ahimelech, along with your entire
family!” the king shouted. *17 *And he ordered his bodyguards,
“Kill these priests of the Lord, for they are allies and
conspirators with David! They knew he was running away from me, but
they didn’t tell me!” But Saul’s men refused to kill theLord’s
priests.

*18 *Then the king said to Doeg, “You do it.” So Doeg the Edomite
turned on them and killed them that day, eighty-five priests in all,
still wearing their priestly garments. *19 *Then he went to Nob, the
town of the priests, and killed the priests’ families—men and
women, children and babies—and all the cattle, donkeys, sheep, and
goats.

*20 *Only Abiathar, one of the sons of Ahimelech, escaped and fled to
David.*21 *When he told David that Saul had killed the priests of the
Lord, *22 *David exclaimed, “I knew it! When I saw Doeg the Edomite
there that day, I knew he was sure to tell Saul. Now I have caused the
death of all your father’s family. *23 *Stay here with me, and
don’t be afraid. I will protect you with my own life, for the same
person wants to kill us both.”

_________________________________________

The plot thickens, as they say, and the story of David becomes even
more intense with the killing of over 85 priests who stood up for what
is right. What really grabs my attention about this passage, however,
is the way it begins:

“Then others began coming—men who were in trouble or in debt or
who were just discontented—until David was the captain of about 400
men.”

What this says is that David was the kind of man that people who were
in trouble, in debt or discontented knew they would be accepted by.
Can that same be said about you?

A CALL TO ACTION

Today’s call to action is simple. Again, it’s a call to examine
yourself against the example David set. People who were in need knew
that they could find refuge and safety with David. Today, that equates
to people who are the outcasts of society, those in need of love,
friendship and attention. Do they find that when they are with you? If
not, you need to confess that to God and ask Him to help you become
someone that those people can feel safe with.

A PRAYER TO PRAY

Father I’m sorry for the times I have not treated those who are
feeling troubled, for whatever reason, well. Please help me to be
welcoming and loving to all kinds of people so that I can reflect your
love. Amen.

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