David went to Nob, to Ahimelek the priest. Ahimelek trembled when he met him, and asked, “Why are you alone? Why is no one with you?”
2 David answered Ahimelek the priest, “The king sent me on a mission and said to me, ‘No one is to know anything about the mission I am sending you on.’ As for my men, I have told them to meet me at a certain place. 3 Now then, what do you have on hand? Give me five loaves of bread, or whatever you can find.”
4 But the priest answered David, “I don’t have any ordinary bread on hand; however, there is some consecratedbread here…
…6 So the priest gave him the consecrated bread,since there was no bread there except the bread of the Presence that had been removed from before the Lord and replaced by hot bread on the day it was taken away.
7 Now one of Saul’s servants was there that day, detained before the Lord; he was Doegthe Edomite, Saul’s chief shepherd.
8 David asked Ahimelek, “Don’t you have a spear or a sword here? I haven’t brought my sword or any other weapon, because the king’s mission was urgent.”
9 The priest replied, “The sword of Goliath the Philistine, whom you killed in the Valley of Elah, is here; it is wrapped in a cloth behind the ephod. If you want it, take it; there is no sword here but that one.”
David said, “There is none like it; give it to me.”
… And so began David’s journey of running from Saul.
David, in many ways, was just beginning his life on this fateful day. He had been in battles, yes. He ran after bears and lions that would dare to take a sheep from his flock, killing them as he rescued his charge from their mouth. He ran up to Goliath, with a sling and a stone because he dared to “defy the armies of the living God?” David was bold in his confidence – running headfirst toward his enemy – because he knew who was fighting for him, as surely as he knew who he was fighting for.
But this new battle? This was personal. This was a friend, a mentor, the father of his closest friend. God’s anointed king. He wasn’t running after the enemy anymore. He was running away. In many ways, it appeared that the tables were turned; and he must have wondered… am I the enemy now, that I should be hunted like this? Have I done some hidden wrong? Is this how I will end my days… running, hiding? God, I don’t even have bread for my journey. I don’t even have a weapon for my fight. Are you here? Are you still with me?
And God shows up
less “ta-dah!” than previously,
But God shows up and provides, straight to the hurt and the questions, the fear and the pain? “David, yes, I’ve chosen you. And I am with you – though there will be days that you may not always ‘feel’ it. And I will not give you just any ordinary bread, you will eat what has been consecrated. And I will not leave you with any ordinary weapon, you will use the sword we used – you and I- to kill Goliath.”
Inner battles… where the rubber meets the road. Where you put your money where your mouth is. Where every cliche thuds excruciatingly hard and true.
Inner wars – tougher, ouchier. But God never ditches us. He never turns his back.
The same God who fights the ‘in your face’ battles for us – fights the internal ransacking ones even harder.
And more than that? … He wins.
With Jesus – our not even remotely ordinary bread,
and His empty grave- our Goliath slayer…We win.
Jesus, looking for you to bust out in victory for so many that need you right now. Let it be so.