Navigating the Burdens of Leadership: David’s Heartfelt Remorse

1 Sam. 22:22b …I have occasioned the death of all the persons of thy father’s house.

While Saul was pursuing after the life of David, David went through the city of Nob in his journey, and since that city did not report his whereabouts to Saul, Saul then had eighty-five priests, as well as their entire city including the men, women, children, infants, and livestock all killed. It is in the aftermath of this devastating event that David then makes this statement; “I have occasioned the death of all the persons of thy father’s house.” He was speaking, of course, to one of the men of the city that actually fled, and his heart was broken. Can you imagine the sheer weight of responsibility he felt for their loss? Here’s how we’d say it today; it’s MY fault! David is taking the blame. And although we know that David meant no harm to come to anyone, and though he could neither predict nor control the actions of king Saul, he still felt responsibility because if it were not for HIM being there, and then escaping, they would have never been the target of Saul’s destructive reactions.

Now, with that understanding, can we better understand why so many of God’s anointed men today would rather walk alone? It is not always that they enjoy the silence, but it is that they do not enjoy the breaking of silence when one who has fought with them becomes a casualty of war for simply being associated with them. The truth is, when you have enemies, they are not just your enemies, but also your ally’s enemies. So David begins to tread as lightly as possible because he doesn’t want another City of Nob episode. He doesn’t want others to be targeted for his position. But, as much as he doesn’t want that to happen, he must learn that in many, if not most cases, it is unavoidable.

As a matter of fact, do you remember what Jesus told one man who came to him, saying he would follow Him anywhere? Jesus said, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head.” Jesus was giving this man fair warning that if he decides to follow Christ, that he would by association with Christ alone, become immediately vulnerable to all of the dangerous elements of a spiritually hostile world seeking his destruction. We know that in many cases, God provides protection, but we also know that in other cases, dangers simply come with the territory of following Jesus.

So, if you and your team receive direct hits for serving The Lord, just know that it’s not really your fault. This is the journey that all “kings and priests” must take. It’s part of the territory, but so is the victory.

~ Pastor Gary Caudill
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