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sions, instead of intreating the LORD to continue to direct him in the right way; it therefore appears a very just punishment, that he should be deprived of the gift he had rejected, which would have enabled him to overcome all base inclinations and evil suggestions, and would have restored his mind to peace and serenity.
The power of music to compose the passions is very great, and that of David must have been particularly efficacious, as we may sủppose he accompanied his harp with his voice, and sang some of those sublime Psalms, the bare reading of which, at this distance of time, will sooth affliction, banish despair, and animate the heart to aspire after heavenly joys: no wonder, therefore, that such Divine accents should drive away the evil spirit, to whom the praises of God must have been hateful: or that Saul's mind should be composed by.such a remedy, especially as the Loru directed David in the application of it.
David was represented to Saul not only as a skilful musician, but as a man of valour, this being the greatest recommendation to his favour ; for when Saul saw any strong man or any valiant man, he took him unto him *. David's exploits in killing the lion and the bear had doubtless raised his fame; and being of so extraordinary a nature, they were attributed by those who knew them to the assistance of the LORD ; especially, as the great endowments which David possessed could no otherwise be accounted for, than by supposing that the Lord was with him.
The present wliich Jesse sent was a token of loyalty; and perhaps it might be at David's desire, to testify that it was his wish to pay allegiance to his sovereign.
* See page 334.
Saul must have felt himself greatly indebted to the kind hand that was instrumental to his relief; and to do David honour he might appoint him his ar. mour-bearer, which was at that time a merely nominal place, as there was no war.
Princes and generals in those days had a number of such persons attending on thern; some bore the shield, some the target and spear, others bucklers and swords; of these armour-bearers Saul seems to have had 2000, and his son Jonathan 1000.
When the purpose which David was sent for was answered, he was glad to return to his humble station, and leave a corrupt court for that blest retreat, where, free from temptation, he could meditate on Divine subjects, and prepare his mind for the future government of the kingdom.
From the Lord's reproof to Samuel, we learn that: it is wrong to grieve beyond measure for the misfor-tunes that fall upon wicked people. We
may pray for them, and use our utmost endeavours to reclaim them; but we should acquiesce without repining, in the dis-pensations of Providence towards them.
This section also teaches us the necessity of guarding our minds from
since our most secret thoughts: are not hidden from the Lord, and He values people according to the goodness of their hearts. It likewise admonishes us not to esteem our fellow creatures merely for their beauty or outward accomplishment, or to de. spise any one for want of these superficial advantages..
GOLIATH THE CHAMPION OF THE PHILISTINES DE
FIETH THE ARMIES OF ISRAEL-DAVID SLAYETH
From 1 Samuel, Chap. xvii. Now the Philistines gathered together their armies to battle, and were gathered together at Shochoh, which belongeth to Judah, and pitched between Shochoh and Azekah, in Ephes-dammim.
And Saul and the men of Israel were gathered together, and pitched by the valley of Elah, and set the battle in array against the Philistines.
And the Philistines stood on a mountain on the one side, and Israel stood on a mountain on the other side: and there was a valley between them.
And there went out a champion out of the camp of the Philistines, named Goliath of Gath, whose height was six cubits and a span.
And he had an helmet of brass upon his head, and he was armed with a coat of mail; and the weight of the coat was five thousand shekels of brass.
And he had greaves of brass upon his legs, and a target of brass between his shoulders.
And the staff of his spear was like a weaver's beam ; and his spear's head weighed six hundred shekels of iron : and one bearing a shield went before him.
And he stood and cried unto the armies of Israel, and said unto them, Why are ye come out to set your battle in array? am not I a Philistine, and you servants to Saul ? choose you a man for you, and let him come down to me. If he be able to fight with me, and to kill me, then will we be your servants; but if I prevail
against him, and kill him, then shall ye be our servants, and serve us.
And the Philistines said, I defy the armies of Israel this day: give me a man that we may fight together.
When Saul and all Israel heard those words of the Philistine, they were dismayed and greatly afraid.
Now David was the son of that Ephrathite of Bethlehem-Judah, whose name was Jesse, and he had eight sons; and the man went among men for an old man in the days of Saul.
And the three eldest sons of Jesse went and followed Saul to the battle: and the names of his three sons that went to the battle, were Eliab the first born; and next unto him, Abinadab: and the third Shammah.
And David was the youngest : and the three eldest followed Saul.
But David went and returned from Saul, to feed his father's sheep, at Beth-lehem.
And the Philistine drew near morning and evening, and presented himself forty days.
And Jesse said unto David his son, Take now for thy brethren an ephah of this parched corn, and these ten loaves, and run to the camp to thy brethren; and carry these ten cheeses unto the captain of their thousand, and look how thy rethren fare, and take their pledge,
Now Saul, and they, and all the men of Israel, were in the valley of Elah, fighting with the Philistines.
And David rose up early in the morning, and left the sheep with the keeper, and took, and went as Jesse had commanded him; and he came to the trench as the host was going forth to the fight, and shouted for the båttle; for Israel and the Philistines had put the bat:le in array, army against army. And David left his carriage in the hand of the keeper
of the carriage, and ran into the army, and came and saluted his brethren.
And as he talked with them, behold there came up the champion, the Philistine of Gath, Goliath by name, out of the armies of the Philistines, and spake according to the same words: and David heard them.
And all the men of Israel, when they saw the man, fled from him, and were sore afraid.
And the men of Israel said, Have ye seen this man that is come up? surely to defy Israel is he come up. And it shall be that the man who killeth him, the king will enrich him with great riches, and will give him his daughter, and make his father's house free in Israel.
And David spake to the men that stood by him, saying, What shall be done to the man that killeth this Philistine, and taketh away the reproach from Israel? for who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God? And the people answered him after this manner, saying, So shall it be done to the man that killeth him.
And Eliab his eldest brother heard when he spake unto the men; and Eliab's anger was kindled against David, and he said, Why camest thou down hither? and with whom hast thou left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know thy pride and the naughtiness of thine heart, for thou art come down that thou mightest see the battle.
And David said, What have I now done? is there not a cause? And he turned from him towards another, and spake after the same manner. And the people answered him again after the former manner.
And when the words were heard which David spake, they rehearsed them before Saul. And he sent for him. And David said unto Saul, Let no man's heart fail