David flew to the cave at Adullum (see map) with his men. Then, he brought his family to Moab. (Moab is the home of his great-grandmother, Ruth.) Then, he went to Horeth, east of Adullum in Judah.
In the meantime, Saul learned of David's whereabouts, and he took it out on his own men. Doeg told David of his sighting in Nob. Saul went to Nob and falsely accused the innocent priest, Ahimelech, of conspiring against him. By the hand of Doeg, all 85 priests and their families and livestock were slain. Only one priest, Abiathar, survived to tell David and live under his protection. Eventually, Abiathar became high priest during David's reign as king.
This action is horrific and beyond the pale (I linked the meaning of this phrase for our many foreign readers). Saul's paranoia and jealousy had sent him over the edge.
Saul had gone so far from the heart of God by this action. He had turned into an evil tyrant. This passage always breaks my heart. Evil will not win in Saul and David's case, and we know that when Jesus returns all evil will be put away.
This chapter always upsets me because Ahimelech was innocent! He had nothing to do with any of this, and he was caught up in the middle, and he (and the rest of the priests and families and livestock) died because of it. It just is not fair!
But sometimes life is not fair.
People may not murder us physically when they believe something that is not true about us, but they can certainly "murder" us with their tongues and spread all sorts of lies about us. That is when we just need to cling to the LORD and trust that He knows the truth about us, and truth will always win over the lies in the end! God is not necessarily fair, but He is always just.
Sometimes, people misunderstand us, and then they pass that information about us to another person, and that can be hurtful too. I had something happen today where a person passed something on about me that was based on their misinterpretation. Thankfully, I was able to clarify what I meant, and that person was so apologetic for misunderstanding me. She offered to go to the person she had passed on the information to and clear it up. That is because she is a humble and godly person, unlike Saul!
Pray and forgive those who have believed false things and "murdered" you with their tongues. Pray for their tongue. Go to them in love and seek to clarify the situation. Build a bridge!
Pray that you are one to clarify and not jump to conclusions or murder others with your tongue.
For movie buffs: this scene is dramatically displayed in the 1985 movie, King David.
In preparation for tomorrow. Pray through Psalm 52:9-10:
But as for me, I am like a green olive tree in the house of God;
I trust in the lovingkindness of God forever and ever.I will give You thanks forever, because You have done it,And I will wait on Your name, for it is good, in the presence of Your godly ones. Amen.