Don’t attack your leader!
Your role is to submit, encourage, exhort, support, and love that leader.
"No!" David said. "Don't kill him. For who can remain innocent after attacking the LORD'S anointed one?”
1 Samuel 26:9
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Don’t attack your leader!
King Saul is still pursuing David and has chased him to the Wilderness of Ziph. Saul has three thousand of his best troops to attack David. And no matter what Saul does, God protects David from Saul. Saul should have had his focus on dealing with the Philistines rather than David and his few hundred men. Saul couldn’t see past his selfish ambition that David wasn’t his enemy.
This is the second occasion David has been in a position to easily kill Saul. The first time Saul came into a cave that David and his men were hiding in to relieve himself. David spared his life because he felt it wasn’t his place to judge Saul. In today’s reading, David takes Abishai and walks right into the camp of King Saul and right past all those men who are there to protect him while they sleep.
Abishai is convinced that David should kill Saul because God had handed him over to David. David refuses and in so doing reveals a great truth that we need to understand about how God deals with his leaders. David refused to kill Saul because God had anointed him. He knew it was not his place to punish him; it was God’s place to punish Saul. When a leader God has placed in the body needs to be punished, it is God who will punish them.
To be deserving of punishment, you need to be in willful disobedience of God and have refused His attempts to correct you on numerous occasions. God is patient and full of grace and mercy, but He will punish anyone who refuses to obey. David describes in the reading for today the three ways that God will punish His disobedient leaders. He will punish them Himself by withdrawing His hand of blessing and allowing the curse to fall upon them. Or He will allow them to experience the natural consequences of their sin. Or finally, He will use an enemy to punish them. In the case of Saul, God used the Philistines to punish Saul, ultimately ending his life in battle with them.
Nowhere in scripture will you find a place where God says that it is okay for us to attack those who are placed in authority over us. God is very clear on this, if they are in a position of authority over you, they are not your responsibility; they are God’s. If they are in sin or are being disobedient to God, He will deal with them. Your role is to submit, encourage, exhort, support, and love that leader. If doing that compromises your relationship with God, then you must take yourself out from under the authority of that leader quietly and respectfully. But before you do that, make sure it is not you who is in sin or being disobedient to God. Jesus, help us to stand with the leaders you have anointed.