“THE SONG OF THE BOW”/ “TELL IT NOT IN GATH . . .” (PART I)
II Samuel 1:20 – “Tell it not in Gath, publish it not in the streets of Askelon; lest the daughters of the Philistines rejoice, lest the daughters of the uncircumcised triumph.”
These were the words of David, which he composed as a song of lament known in Jewish History as, “The Song Of The Bow”. This lament was written on the occasion of David being told of the death of King Saul, of Saul’s son Jonathan, and of the armies of Israel who had been slain on the mountains of Gilboa in a great climactic battle against the Philistine army.
The Bible tells us that God described King David as “...a man after His Own Heart...”and that“ the LORD hath commanded him (David) to be Captain over His People . . .” (I Sam. 13:14 ). I believe we can find great insight into why God chose David and rejected Saul when we see how David reacted to the news of the death of his enemy. I further believe that this is a prophecy of the condition of the “church” and its “leadership” in the last days prior to the second coming of the Lord. We will take our time in this article and examine the profound revelation given to us by God as to what the heart of true Christ centered leadership is to be in this final hour as we focus this and next month on “The Song Of The Bow”.
The life of King David is one of an extraordinary and dramatic example of how God deals with the lives of His anointed and chosen servants. David’s life was marked by both feats of magnificent triumph and yet, also great personal failure. David was thrust to national prominence in Israel on that heroic day when he went down into the Valley of Elah and destroyed the Philistine champion (Goliath of Gath) when David was just a boy of 17. This event would forever alter the course of his life and bring David into the court of King Saul where he would be taken from his father Jesse’s house and be appointed to be a Captain over the armies of Israel at the command of Saul.
The great Prophet Samuel at the direction of God had been sent to the House of Jesse the Beth-lehemite in order to anoint one of Jesse’s sons to be the future King of Israel. David was just a simple shepherd boy. The youngest and eighth of Jesse’s sons he was not recognized as anything special by his father or his elder brothers yet God saw in David not a shepherd boy but a King.
God would have Samuel anoint David in the midst of his brethren with a full horn of oil and in so doing pro- claim over David’s life that it would be David and not his brothers whom God had selected to be the future King of Israel.
The anointing of God upon an individual’s life begins a process that (though not understood by many) brings with it great hardship and trial. Such was the case with David.
How could a young boy such as David ever comprehend what the anointing on his life would cost him? The life of Saul represents that which man chooses and the life of David represents that which God chooses. Saul represents the flesh while David represents the Move of the Holy Spirit . . . more on this later.
David’s ascent to the throne was not a bed of roses. It was the anointing on David’s life that set in motion a series of events that would cause King Saul to grow increasingly jealous of David. God was with David and prospered whatever he set his hand to do. Saul would grow more and more paranoid of the favor that was on David’s life as he knew in his heart of hearts that God had left him and His presence was now resting solely upon David. Saul became a tormented soul; for while Saul had the loyalty of Israel as their King it was David who had the hearts of the people.
THE WILDERNESS OF PREPARATION
Over the course of time, King Saul would grow to resent David’s very presence. Driven by a demonic hatred, Saul would seek to destroy David’s life, for in his eyes, David was an ever-present threat to his power and the legacy of his throne. Determined to eliminate David, Saul would plot to kill him, but David being warned by Jonathan (the King’s son) would flee for his life into the wilderness of Israel.
David would find himself in the deserts of Israel, a man without a home driven into exile by a King whom he had fought for and to whom he had given his allegiance to. This is where, we as believers struggle to understand the way of God when it comes to the preparation of His Servants for Service in the Kingdom of the Lord. What had David done to deserve such treatment? Why did God allow this to come upon His anointed? Surely the Lord could have defended David by striking down King Saul. Why allow David to suffer such humiliation and isolation?
As we study the Scripture we will see that every great Servant of the Lord at one time or another would first pass through a wilderness before coming to their ultimate calling and destiny in God. Moses would spend 40 years in the wilderness being prepared by God to become the deliverer of His People. The great Apostle Paul would spend three years in Arabia and Damascus before going to Jerusalem to confer with the Apostle Peter and then another 14 years before return- ing to Jerusalem to communicate the Gospel which had been revealed to him. John the Baptist was “in the wilderness until the time of his shewing forth unto Israel.” Even the Lord Jesus himself was driven by God into the wilderness to be tested, tried, and tempted of the Devil; a wilderness experience from which He would emerge “. . . in the Power of the Spirit . . . ” (Lk. 4:14) and so it would be with David. King Saul would relentlessly pursue David over the course of the next 10 years yet at every turn God was with David protecting him and forging within the heart of David life lessons that would ultimately thoroughly furnish and prepare him to assume his rightful place upon the throne of Israel. The wilderness is where we must go, for it is there that alone with our self and alone with God, we come to depend upon His Strength and His Strength alone to bring us to that place of His Promise fulfilled in our lives.
“THE SONG OF THE BOW” PART TWO
The account of the death of King Saul and how David reacted to it is not only instructive to us on a personal level, but is also a prophecy of the type of leadership that God will bring forth in this final hour. In Part Two of this article we will examine these issues further and prayerfully come to understand that a transition no less dramatic than the decline of a Saul type ministry and the ascent of a Spirit-filled David like ministry has indeed already begun.
God Bless you and keep looking up, Marty Martinez
Brother Marty Martinez