1 Samuel 24 relays a great story of how we should think about God’s will. It is a topic that too many people balk at and not enough people exercise faith in. That is, they try and try to look for this elusive, over-spiritualized event they call God’s will. Should I marry this person? I will wait for the moment when I am praying and some kind of peace falls over me. May I suggest that resting in God’s will is more than that?
If God is sovereign, he directs every particle in the sky…every atom. He knows the number of hairs on your head – a fact that not even you, yourself know! And the glorious thing about all this is that this all-powerful, all-wise God has revealed in his Word what his will is.
1 Thess 4:3 tells us that it entails, but is not limited to in Paul’s mind, our sanctification. And so when we turn to David’s travails with Saul pursuing him, this is God’s way of refining David – or so David thought.
Saul had just dropped his pants and was using the bathroom in a cave, pretty vulnerable spot, don’t you think? Everybody was telling David, “This is your chance, God has given him into your hands. Kill him” (24:4). But David thought more highly of God’s will than an opportune time and a rash interpretation of that time.
He rested in the fact that he was already anointed by God (ch. 16). He rested in the fact that God promised to give the kingdom into his hands. He rested in the fact that he knew not to sin against God by killing the king of Israel. All these things were revealed to David prior to this moment, and he let these truths dictate his actions, not what seemed to be the right thing.
Are you looking for signs and wonders? One of the biggest problems with our world today is that people are totally Bible-illiterate. They will quote Jesus about turning the other cheek, but forget that he turned over the money-changers’ tables and demanded that we render our lives to God. He has revealed to us his will. We do need to pray (lest you think I am a total rationalist) and ask for wisdom and grace before we make a decision, not after (more on this tomorrow). But we mustn’t wait for warm fuzzies and opportune times to determine if it is God’s will. We must weigh all things – especially how we shall act.