Dave Burnette's Commentary

1 Samuel Chapter 18

Written By: God through Inspiration
Penned By: Samuel, Nathan, & Gad 
Date Penned: (931-975 BC)
Overview: Samuel, Israel's Last Judge (c 1-31)
Theme: Saul and David (c 16-31)
Message: Saul is Jealous of David (v 1-30)

1 Samuel 18 Commentary

(18:1-4) David and Jonathan Become Friends - When David and Jonathan met, they became close friends at once. Their friendship is one of the deepest and closest recorded in the Bible because (1) they based their friendship on commitment to God, not just each other; (2) they let nothing come between them, not even career or family problems; (3) they drew closer together when their friendship was tested; and (4) they remained friends to the end. Jonathan, the prince of Israel, later realized that David--and not he--would be the next king (23:17). But that did not weaken his love for David. Jonathan would much rather lose the throne of Israel than lose his closest friend.

(18:8-9) Saul Becomes Jealous of David - Saul's appreciation for David turned to jealousy as people began to applaud David's exploits. In a jealous rage, Saul attempted to murder David by hurling his spear at him (18:10-12). Jealousy may not seem to be a major sin, but in reality, it is one step short of murder. Jealousy starts as you resent a rival, it leads to your wishing he or she were removed; then it manifests itself in your seeking ways to harm that person in word or action. Be careful not to let jealousy get a foothold in your life.

(18:11-12) David Remains Loyal to Saul - Saul tried to kill David because he was jealous of David's popularity. David was greatly loved by Jonathan, Saul's son (18:1); Michal, Saul's daughter (18:20); and all the people (18:16). Yet despite Saul's attacks on David, he continued to protect and comfort Saul. Perhaps people have been jealous of you and have even attacked you in some way. They may be intimidated by your strengths, which make them conscious of their own shortcomings. It would be natural to strike back or to avoid them. A better response is to befriend them (Matthew 5:43-44). Ask God to open a door of opportunity for friendship with them and to give you the strength to continue to show them love, just as David did with Saul.

(18:15-18) David Remains Humble - While Saul's popularity made him proud and arrogant, David remained humble (18:23), even when the entire nation praised him. Although David succeeded in almost everything he tried and became famous throughout the land, he refused to use his popular support to his advantage against Saul. It can be tempting to allow popularity to twist your perception of your own importance. Being humble is fairly easy when you're not on center stage, but how will you react to praise and honor?

Dave Burnette's Life Application



Each day we walk through the Bible chapter by chapter, making application of our text to help us grow in the Lord. Today we continue in the book of 1st Samuel with Chapter 18. In our text, we see Saul becoming jealous of David and him killing 200 Philistines as a dowry. What catches my eye today is How Saul becomes so Jealous of David. The root of his problem is pride. In making an application, we see an example of what the seed of pride can produce. In the chapters ahead, we will know the extent of Saul's jealous rage. We see this almost weekly on the news as a jealous rage comes to a tragic end. The key to avoiding this is acknowledging Jesus as Lord and staying humble before him, even as David did in our text today. How about you? Are you humble before the Lord? Let us learn from our text today to avoid jealousy by being humble before our Lord.


1 Samuel 18

1 Samuel 18

 1And it came to pass, when he had made an end of speaking unto Saul, that the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul.

 2And Saul took him that day, and would let him go no more home to his father's house.

 3Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul.

 4And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was upon him, and gave it to David, and his garments, even to his sword, and to his bow, and to his girdle.

 5And David went out whithersoever Saul sent him, and behaved himself wisely: and Saul set him over the men of war, and he was accepted in the sight of all the people, and also in the sight of Saul's servants.

 6And it came to pass as they came, when David was returned from the slaughter of the Philistine, that the women came out of all cities of Israel, singing and dancing, to meet king Saul, with tabrets, with joy, and with instruments of musick.

 7And the women answered one another as they played, and said, Saul hath slain his thousands, and David his ten thousands.

 8And Saul was very wroth, and the saying displeased him; and he said, They have ascribed unto David ten thousands, and to me they have ascribed but thousands: and what can he have more but the kingdom?

 9And Saul eyed David from that day and forward.

 10And it came to pass on the morrow, that the evil spirit from God came upon Saul, and he prophesied in the midst of the house: and David played with his hand, as at other times: and there was a javelin in Saul's hand.

 11And Saul cast the javelin; for he said, I will smite David even to the wall with it. And David avoided out of his presence twice.

 12And Saul was afraid of David, because the LORD was with him, and was departed from Saul.

 13Therefore Saul removed him from him, and made him his captain over a thousand; and he went out and came in before the people.

 14And David behaved himself wisely in all his ways; and the LORD was with him.

 15Wherefore when Saul saw that he behaved himself very wisely, he was afraid of him.

 16But all Israel and Judah loved David, because he went out and came in before them.

 17And Saul said to David, Behold my elder daughter Merab, her will I give thee to wife: only be thou valiant for me, and fight the LORD's battles. For Saul said, Let not mine hand be upon him, but let the hand of the Philistines be upon him.

 18And David said unto Saul, Who am I? and what is my life, or my father's family in Israel, that I should be son in law to the king?

 19But it came to pass at the time when Merab Saul's daughter should have been given to David, that she was given unto Adriel the Meholathite to wife.

 20And Michal Saul's daughter loved David: and they told Saul, and the thing pleased him.

 21And Saul said, I will give him her, that she may be a snare to him, and that the hand of the Philistines may be against him. Wherefore Saul said to David, Thou shalt this day be my son in law in the one of the twain.

 22And Saul commanded his servants, saying, Commune with David secretly, and say, Behold, the king hath delight in thee, and all his servants love thee: now therefore be the king's son in law.

 23And Saul's servants spake those words in the ears of David. And David said, Seemeth it to you a light thing to be a king's son in law, seeing that I am a poor man, and lightly esteemed?

 24And the servants of Saul told him, saying, On this manner spake David.

 25And Saul said, Thus shall ye say to David, The king desireth not any dowry, but an hundred foreskins of the Philistines, to be avenged of the king's enemies. But Saul thought to make David fall by the hand of the Philistines.

 26And when his servants told David these words, it pleased David well to be the king's son in law: and the days were not expired.

 27Wherefore David arose and went, he and his men, and slew of the Philistines two hundred men; and David brought their foreskins, and they gave them in full tale to the king, that he might be the king's son in law. And Saul gave him Michal his daughter to wife.

 28And Saul saw and knew that the LORD was with David, and that Michal Saul's daughter loved him.

 29And Saul was yet the more afraid of David; and Saul became David's enemy continually.

 30Then the princes of the Philistines went forth: and it came to pass, after they went forth, that David behaved himself more wisely than all the servants of Saul; so that his name was much set by.