Stopped in His Tracks

1 Samuel 28:1-30:20


The Scriptures declare that the word of God is living and Powerful – A sharp two edged Sward – Piercing our hearts


An elderly woman had just returned to her home from an evening of church services  when she was startled by an intruder.


She caught the man in the act of robbing her home
of its valuables and yelled, "Stop! Acts 2:38!"
(Repent and be baptized, in the name of Jesus Christ so that your sins may be forgiven.)


The burglar stopped in his tracks. The woman calmly called the police and explained what she had done.


As the officer cuffed the man to take him in, he asked the burglar,
 "Why did you just stand there? All the old lady did was yell a scripture to you."


"Scripture?" replied the bewildered burglar, "She said she had an Ax and Two 38's!"


He was stopped in his tracks – Well that is where we find David tonight in our text – Stopped in his tracks


1 Sam 28 – Review

We left David in a Bad Spot – one that is going to get worse before it gets better.

A) Recall David went to Achish of the Philistines –WORLD  He is pretending to Achish’s servant


B) Military raids of Israel – but really he is completely destroying friends of the Philistines

1) I am sure in some way – David is justifying his dwelling with the enemy by theses battles


C) He & his men & their families are Dwelling in Ziglag

1) 16 months double life running from God – no Psalms – no fellowship


D) Now David is about to do the Unthinkable


1 Sam 28:1-2

28:1 Now it happened in those days that the Philistines gathered their armies together for war, to fight with Israel. And Achish said to David, "You assuredly know that you will go out with me to battle, you and your men."


2 So David said to Achish, "Surely you know what your servant can do."


And Achish said to David, "Therefore I will make you one of my chief guardians forever."



David is Going out to do battle with the very people he has been destined to lead.

A) He is going to fight against the people of God – the very people he has been called to serve.


B) But We are going to see – how the Lord stops David in his tracks –

1) but before we do – there is a break in the Story - 


C) Focus shifts to King Saul – Rd v.3-10


So Saul, who put the wizards and witches out of the land NOW asks for a witch!

A) Some might be prone to say: Give him a break, he asked of the Lord and the Lord didn't answer


B) I do NOT buy that


1 Chron. 10:13-14 So Saul died for his unfaithfulness which he had committed against the LORD, because he did not keep the word of the LORD, and also because he consulted a medium for guidance. 14 But he did not inquire of the LORD; therefore He killed him, and turned the kingdom over to David the son of Jesse.


C) That says that he did NOT inquire of the Lord

     1) Does that contradict 1 Sam. 28:6?


D) NO it gives insight into it - It shows us that you can SEEMINGLY inquire of the Lord but not SINCERELY

There are those who say: I have prayed about it and I don't       know what to do?

A) How long?...... Have you fasted?..... Have you REALLY enquired of the Lord?


B) We can fool ourselves into thinking that we have prayed when there is NO fervency and NO intensity


C) It would almost appear that Saul REALLY wanted a witch.                   RD v.11-25


Here we come to a much debated passage of Scripture - Was this really Samuel

A) On the one hand the woman's profession was absolutely forbidden


B) Therefore many believe that this could NOT have been Samuel summoned from the dead


MATTHEW HENRY says that God permitted the devil to answer the request so that those who receive not the love of the truth  might be given up to a strong delusion


C) That is all that séances are about - Demonic impersonations to get people side tracked

1) Good place – things are wonderful – False hope


D) Some believe that this is what was happening here – This was a Demon delivering this message

1) Problem is the message was absolutely true – what the Demon said happened. -  No foreknowledge

Now There are those who believe that since the apparition came    BEFORE she performed her rituals

A) and that she herself was shocked by the appearance of Samuel


B) and the predictions that were confidently and accurately made, that it indeed was Samuel


C) They believe that God in his sovereignty on this one         occasion allowed someone who had died to speak


D) I personally think that this is possible based by what was said by the Spirit

1) I could go either way.  { We will find out in eternity


What I think is extra sad here is that Saul here is the Progression that we see in the Demise of Saul

A) First met him in Ch.9 – A humble man – who ends up being anointed by the Spirit  - called


B) Here our last picture is one of a man who has so hardened his heart against the Lord – he is consulting w/ a Witch


C) That is always the progression of sin – it gets worse – it is a down word spiral into DARKNESS

1) The Darkness gets darker with each passing Day


D)As we move now to Ch.29 we come back to David in the land of the Philistines – Ready to go to War!

During that period of David’s life there is no record of him writing any Psalms or having any real communion w/ God

A) To a certain extent David has turned his Back on God / But God would not turn his back on David !!!


B)  As we come to ch.29 we see the graciousness of God to bring back his wayward Servant !!!!    Read v.1-2


1 Sam 29:1-2

Then the Philistines gathered together all their armies at Aphek, and the Israelites encamped by a fountain which is in Jezreel.2 And the lords of the Philistines passed in review by hundreds and by thousands, but David and his men passed in review at the rear with Achish.


So the Philistines Gather to fight against Israel & David is where he never thought that he would be Lined up to Fight against the people of God

A)That often is the case When we sin, when we backslide, when we turn away from the things of God,


B) We can find ourselves in a place we never thought we would be.


C) But it is here that we see the Lord is going to intervene – to get David out of a very Disastrous situation


 1) God is still on the throne – He will not let go of David so easily                      RD v3-5

The Leaders among the Philistines looked at David and his men, and said, “They aren’t one of us. They are Hebrews. The worship another God. They live in the land God promised to them. We don’t belong together!”


 The Philistine leaders could see what David was blinded to.

A)David had started to think and act like a Philistine, and was ready to fight with them against the people of God.


B) But the Philistine leaders could see that this wasn’t right, that David wasn’t really one of them!!!!



 “It is very terrible when the children of the world have a higher sense of Christian morality & rightness than Christians themselves, and say to one another, ‘What are they doing  here?’” (Meyer)


C)That is something that we often forget – is Unbelievers expect Christians to act is a certain way

1)    They have certain expectations of those who call themselves followers of Christ


D) It is not a good thing when they are looking at us – Wondering why are they doing that / or why we are in that  place

1) I thought you were a Christian – Manuel

So the Princes of the Philistines come declaring what David should have Known all along – He doesn’t belong w/ us


At first Achish defends David –v. 3 “David has been with me” and “I have found no fault in him” since “he defected to me”

A)To hear an ungodly ruler say, such a thing should have been a great wake-up call to David.


B) It would be as if an ungodly coworker insisted to other coworkers that you really weren’t a Christian after all, because he had seen how you live!


 1) God was speaking to David through this, but David wasn’t listening?


C) The Philistine princes obviously didn’t trust David & probably went away thinking – WE SHOWED HIM – STUPID HEBREW

1)    But in actuality they were merely instruments in the hands of the Lord to get David where the Lord wanted him .                     RD  v.6-10


David Appeals to Achish

A)But what have I done? David seems genuinely disappointed that he will not be able to fight for the Philistines against Israel.


B) David is upset that he had caused the Princes of the Philistines to be Displeased w/ Him

C) Is this the same David who fought Goliath?

1) Could you imagine someone coming to David before that battle, and saying,


“Excuse me David, I don’t think you should do that. You might displease the lords of the Philistines.”


B)What do you think David’s response would be? He might have said

“Of course I will displease the lords of the Philistines! I want to displease the lords of the Philistines!

I can’t wait to displease the lords of the Philistines!

Kill me if I ever stop displeasing the lords of the Philistines!”


C) But all of that is a distant memory, in this time of backsliding and compromise for David.

1)    David is more Concerned at this point in his life w/ the fear of man than he is the fear of God



But in the mist of all of it – we see the hand of God at work in David’s life keeping him from doing  something he would really regret

A) David’s heart is in a bad place, but God hasn’t abandoned him!


B) We should praise God for the times when He kept us from sinning as bad as we wanted to sin!

C) Pastor who before conversion – drinking problem – low point gave into temptation to get a Beer – Unknown area – Best friends walks in


D) Now he could have went to another Liquor store – got the message – David could have attacked Israel on his own – instead


v.11 So David and his men rose early to depart in the morning, to return to the land of the Philistines. And the Philistines went up to Jezreel.


D) David returns to Ziklag and the Philistines army prepares to meet Saul


All of  that happened in this chapter should have awakened David  

A)He should have saw God’s hand in all of this , but he didn’t.


B) Now God is going to get David’s attention/ but at what Price ? What will it take to bring David around?

1) Know this  Because God loves David, He will do what it takes.                         RD Ch.30 1-6


C) David & his men leave their families unguarded & unprotected in their compromise to join forces w/ the enemy to fight against the People of God –

1)    Upon return they find a disaster – their city is burned down / their homes are in ruins & their families are gone

D) That is usually the case w/ sin & compromise can do –It leaves your family in ruins/ House divided and Family taken captive by the enemy


David & his men begin to weep – until there was no power left in them to cry – They wept until they had no more strength to WEEP!

A)Now picture this : these are commandos / warriors – some of the finest fighters in Israel’s History –


Sobbing uncontrollably


B) These men are broken why ? Because of the loss of their families

1)    Often takes this to break a MAN OF HIS PRIDE!!


BB) Seen too many men go down this road of Compromise & double life who weren’t broken until their families were ruined


C) What they do at this point makes all of the difference in the world /Chose the pathway that will result in any hope of Restoration

  1) Or Will they continue on the one that leads to further death & Despair


D) He is the God of Restoration – if we would be humble ourselves – submit to his direction



The tendency of some people when confronted like this w/ the results of their sin is to turn inward & get bitter

A)They get bitter at themselves / bitter at God / bitter at those who hurt them


B) And that ROOT OF BITTERNESS permeates the soil of their hearts & bitterness spreads like poison throughout their whole being

1)    They sub consciously make a pact w/ themselves that they will never hurt like this again.


C) They turn themselves off to people & to the Lord – they are not going to trust God or anyone else for that matter  anymore !!



  1)They go to their graves ANGRY BITTER / CANTERKOROUS individuals who make everyone’s life around them miserable


So some turn inward – others turn outward – They look for someone to blame - -  I am in this mess not my fault, it is their fault

A)They are looking for someone to get mad at – someone to blame –which is what David’s men do v.6


B) They turn to David & were talking about Stoning Him

1)          Instead of dealing w/ their own hearts they turn to David who they willingly followed into Sin

C) This dates back to Adam in the Garden – Looking to make excuses for our actions – not me – it was the Women you gave me


D) The need to take responsibility for our actions !



So some turn within & get bitter – Some turn outward looking for someone to blame – But the wise man / woman turns to the Lord

A)Now it took 16 months / it took a severe tragedy – but that is what David finally does v. 6c – David strengthens himself in the Lord


B) This is what matters most – not recovering family – but it is getting right w/ the Lord RETURN TO SANITY – Prodigal came to senses 

1)    Too often that never happens – see people who because of their sin / compromise – have lost their families / or Ministry.


C) But instead of really surrendering their hearts to the Lord / instead of really repenting of their sin – they go through the motions

1) Great EMOTION- cry tears / anguish / they seem sincere


D) But they don’t stop the drinking / they don’t totally break off the relationships w/ the person or people who were bad influences


David Strengthened Himself in the Lord

A)David turned to the Lord broken hearted in full surrender –


B) And God was more than READY to supply David w/ the Strength courage & Assurance that He Needed


C) Also note: The Amalikites were Savages who made their reputation in battle by attacking the rear ranks – Weak /women & Children –


D) They would emotionally Pulverize an army w/ a surprise attack killing their families

1)Here they take them captive – God’s gracious hand


Rd v.7-20



God’s promise was proved true.

A)When David inquired of the Lord, God promised You shall surely overtake them and without fail recover all (1 Samuel 30:8).


B) Note The promise was fulfilled exactly, but it wasn’t fulfilled as David sat back passively and said, “All right God, now You can do it.”

1) The Lord fulfilled His promise, but He used David’s actions to fulfill the promise.




C) God’s promise didn’t exclude David’s cooperation, the promise invited his cooperation.

1)    David cooperated w/ God – trusting in the Promise of the Word of God & recovered all .






A)All that was lost by sin, our glorious and victorious Captain has recovered. What then shall be his spoil?


B)Treasure in the Field – buys the field to get the treasure –


V.13 David asks the Amalakite man that they found 2 questions I want to close w/ today –

             Who do you Belong to ?


A)Is it Christ – are you his follower – His servant – Is it seen by your actions the way that you live your life ?


B) 2nd Where are you from – Who have you been hanging out w/? Where have you been spending your time