David inquired of the Lord. “Shall I go up to one of the towns of Judah?” he asked. The LORD said, “Go up.” David asked, “Where shall I go?” “To Hebron,” the LORD answered. 2 Samuel 2:1
It is now some fifteen years since the prophet Samuel visited the home of Jesse and anointed his youngest son, David, as the future king of Israel. David is now thirty years of age and has already demonstrated certain qualities which stand forever as godly examples of how to conduct one’s life.
Notice in the verse quoted at the opening of this lesson that David inquired of God, not just in a general way, but kept on asking until he received specific direction. David’s focus was not simply on ascending to the throne of Israel; he wanted to get there in God’s way and in God’s time precisely because he knew that God had ordained him to the task.
As we go through life, too often our day to day activities are virtually mindless. We get into a routine and go on about our business without consulting the LORD for His direction. At times we get a thought or an idea and are too often ready to immediately conclude that it constitutes a direction from the LORD. Not always true. Like David, we need to learn to be patient, to inquire of the LORD and wait for the FULL answer before moving out.
How often have overly zealous but undisciplined servants of God taken action before its time to find a disastrous end. You may remember earlier in our study how Saul, impatient that Samuel had not arrived, took it upon himself to offer the sacrifice and because of that, was severely punished.
We need to know, not only what God wants of us, but when. David understood this principle and was careful to seek the LORD diligently until he had specific direction to follow. That does not preclude the level of faith needed to carry out the task; to go to Hebron took courage and faith for it was not a ‘friendly’ place to live then anymore than it is now. But as soon as David heard from the LORD precisely where to go, he obeyed without question or hesitation.
Hebron has been continually populated since about 3300 BCE. It is about nineteen miles south of Jerusalem and was the scene of several important biblical events. It was at Hebron that Abram was told that Sarah would have a child in their old age. Hebron was given to Caleb by Joshua at the time of the distribution of the Land of Israel after the Israelites entered it.
David ‘settled’ in Hebron, this chapter tells us. I would imagine that after years of moving around, escaping from place to place from the sword of Saul, the opportunity to ‘settle down’ for awhile was a welcome experience.
After settling “the men of Judah came…and there they anointed David king over the house of Judah.” (2 Sam. 2:4) Fifteen long years after their momentous occasion in front of his brothers and his father’s house, the anointing Samuel bestowed on him finally reached its first public manifestation. Becoming the King of Judah was the first step towards becoming, seven years later, king of all Israel.
If there ever was a time when we needed to hear clearly from God, it is NOW! Many of the readers of this blog are in the United States. At this moment, tumultuous events dominate the news media and a critical election looms ahead in just a few days time. For Americans, but also for bible believers in every nation, it is paramount that we renew our dedication to seeking the LORD, inquiring of Him as David did, for big decisions and small ones – for every aspect of our daily lives that we may find ourselves kept and protected in the center of His will, abiding under the shadow of the Almighty (Psalm 91)