Lesson Scriptures: Exodus 20:13; 1 Samuel 26:7-11,22-25
Key Lesson Theme: “Honor Life”
Today's Lesson: Monday, September 21
Exodus 20:13; 1 Samuel 26:7-11,22-25
13 Do not murder.
7 That night, David and Abishai came to the troops, and Saul was lying there asleep in the inner circle of the camp with his spear stuck in the ground by his head. Abner and the troops were lying around him.
8 Then Abishai said to David, “Today God has delivered your enemy to you. Let me thrust the spear through him into the ground just once. I won’t have to strike him twice!”
9 But David said to Abishai, “Don’t destroy him, for who can lift a hand against the Lord’s anointed and be innocent?”
10 David added, “As the Lord lives, the Lord will certainly strike him down: either his day will come and he will die, or he will go into battle and perish.
11 However, because of the Lord, I will never lift my hand against the Lord’s anointed. Instead, take the spear and the water jug by his head, and let’s go.”
22 David answered, “Here is the king’s spear; have one of the young men come over and get it.
23 The Lord will repay every man for his righteousness and his loyalty. I wasn’t willing to lift my hand against the Lord’s anointed, even though the Lord handed you over to me today.
24 Just as I considered your life valuable today, so may the Lord consider my life valuable and rescue me from all trouble.”
25 Saul said to him, “You are blessed, my son David. You will certainly do great things and will also prevail.” Then David went on his way, and Saul returned home.
The Bible Meets Life
Most people acknowledge the value of human life, but we don’t all agree on what that means or who it includes. Our culture is divided over the value of unborn children, the elderly, and those who can’t support or care for themselves. Others deem some lives are less valuable than others, and this is reflected in racism, discrimination, and murder. God values all human life—He makes no exceptions—and we are to value life as He does.
The sixth commandment is precisely stated; nevertheless, it has been extensively debated. Simply, it is a prohibition against taking a life. The commandment is based on the understanding that life is a gift from God and is to be treated as such. Members of a civil society must have the confidence that they are safe and secure, that as human beings they will be shown the respect they are due, and that someone else will not determine for some arbitrary reason they are not fit to live. This commandment offers a guideline intended to instill that kind of confidence and to teach the value of life to God.
The story from First Samuel 26 is an fitting application of the sixth commandment. David had a holy respect for God and life that would not allow him to approve the assassination of King Saul even though it could have been easily and quietly accomplished. In its basic message, chapter 26 is very similar to 1 Samuel 24, but some details differ. For example, the events at Engedi in 1 Samuel 24 took place in a cave. The incident in 1 Samuel 26 took place in the open regions of the hill at Hachilah in the wilderness of Ziph. At Engedi, David had the opportunity to kill Saul himself; in Ziph, a man faithful to David named Abishai was involved and willing to carry out the act. We will see on what grounds David forbade Abishai from doing so.
Until tomorrow Saints...
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