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Waiting on God’s Promises

Scripture: 1 Samuel 24

I. While you wait for God’s promises, you pass God’s tests.

A. At the end of 1 Samuel 23, David had just barely escaped from King Saul. But in 1 Sam. 24 Saul hunts for David again. Saul decides to go into a cave. And guess who just happens to be in that cave that Saul goes into? David and his men (vs. 3). In the minds of David’s soldiers, this was the day for David to become king. In their minds, it was God’s will for David to kill his enemy Saul and become king. But David did not take the life of God’s anointed king (vs. 6)

B. David would instead wait for God to give him the promised kingdom. He would not take a shortcut to the kingdom by killing Saul. David passed this test of waiting for a kingdom like Jesus passed Satan’s test in Matthew 4:7-8: “Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to him, ‘All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.’”

II. While you wait for God’s promises, you appeal to God’s justice.

A. Of course, there was someone in the way of David receiving God’s promise: King Saul. And King Saul was treating David wickedly. But David speaks of his innocence before Saul. He does a little show and tell to prove his innocence. He holds up the piece of Saul’s robe that he had cut off in the cave in vs. 11. He was saying to the king, “I could have cut you up, but I only cut your robe. You see clearly then that I am not out to harm you. I am an innocent man.”

B. Saul, on the other hand, was not so innocent. David says in vs. 11: “I have not sinned against you, though you hunt my life to take it.” So, would David take revenge? No. He would let God be Saul’s judge. David will wait to see that justice. He can wait for justice because he knows that not even Saul can take away God’s promised gift of the kingdom from David. David will be king. Nothing can stop God from keeping His promises.

III. While you wait for God’s promises, you rest in God’s faithfulness.

A. Saul gives a speech to David beginning in vs. 17. Four times in three verses (vs. 17-19) David’s enemy Saul says that David is good. David is innocent. If God can speak words of blessing and good to David through the evil Saul, then what can’t God do? God will certainly keep His promises to David. Psalm 57:2-3: “I cry out to God Most High, to God who fulfills his purpose for me. He will send from heaven and save me; he will put to shame him who tramples on me. God will send out his steadfast love and his faithfulness!”

Application:
Wait for God to keep His promises to you. He will certainly keep them.

Sources:
The book of 1 Samuel
Commentaries on 1 Samuel by Dale Ralph Davis, Robert Bergen, and Tim Chester

Sermon Discussion Questions

  1. How do you think David was able to discern that Saul’s walking into his cave was not God’s providence, but it was a test from God to see if David would be able to wait on God’s promise to be king? What principles can help you decide in such situations in your life?
  2. Why can you have confidence that God will ultimately do what is just and right? Are you prepared to wait for God’s justice to be done on your behalf?
  3. How have you seen God’s faithfulness to His promises in your life? Is there some promise of God you need to remind yourself of and memorize at this time?