1 Samuel, Chapter 16

- י ל י -

David Comforts Saul by Playing the Harp

Samuel mourns the fate of Saul – a man who has lost his kingship and divine mission because of his sins. As Samuel continues to fall deeper into his depression, God orders him to stop mourning and continue searching for the lost divine sparks. He must find the new king. Crisis can be transformed into a moment of revelation. Rays of hope are visible in the darkness. Samuel searches for Israel’s new king in Bethlehem. He comes to the home of a man named Jesse. Jesse has eight sons, seven of whom are tall and impressive – and one more, named David, who is not highly esteemed. God warns Samuel that the new ruler should be found not based on his looks, but on his reverence for God. After inspecting the seven impressive brothers, Samuel asks if there are no sons left for him to see. Jesse points to the young boy keeping the sheep – David. Samuel sees the young shepherd and finds him fitting to reign over Israel and become an emissary of God. 

Saul wallows in bitter misery. He understands that his days of glory are over. The consequences of his sin are inevitable. He seeks to alleviate his pain. David is brought to the palace to play the harp and console him. Music and creativity are divine, luminous gifts that have the ability to give us hope and comfort.

“And the LORD said unto Samuel, How long wilt thou mourn for Saul, seeing I have rejected him from reigning over Israel? fill thine horn with oil, and go, I will send thee to Jesse the Bethlehemite: for I have provided me a king among his sons” (1 Samuel 16:1) 

“And it came to pass, when the evil spirit from God was upon Saul, that David took an harp, and played with his hand: so Saul was refreshed, and was well, and the evil spirit departed from him” (1 Samuel 16:23)

Enthusiasm is excitement over the prospect of fulfillment through spiritual work and sharing.