Week 5

After the period of judges, the Israelites cried out for a king and God gave them what they wanted.  What they got was Saul.  Saul started out well but went downhill in a hurry.  At the end he was tormented by evil spirits and trying to hunt down David in order to kill him.

While Saul is obviously an interesting study, we’re going to skip right over him.  Because he didn’t follow God, God rejected him in favor of David.  So Saul really doesn’t play a long term role in Israel’s history or biblical history.  In my opinion at least, even though he was Israel’s first king and he reigned for 40 years, he is still only a footnote as far as importance goes.

David on the other hand is the most important king in Israel’s history.  Even today, approximately 3,000 years after his reign, the Jews in Israel are still longing for days like those of King David.  As Christians, it is even more important than David’s life that Jesus was born as a descendant of David.  Without David there would be no Jesus.

This lesson covers most of the life of David but not all of it.  Like most of what is covered in this course, we only have time to hit the highlights. There is some overlap in time in the books of 1-2 Samuel and 1 Chronicles.  This means that as you read from one book to another it is not necessarily in chronological order just because 1 Chronicles is located after Samuel in the Bible.

Required reading

1 Samuel 16-29

2 Samuel 1-12

1 Chronicles 11-22, 28-29

Corresponding articles and videos on this site

We have written on topics covered in this lesson.  You can either read the article or watch the video, both cover the same material.  These provide good supplemental thoughts to go with your Bible reading and may help you answer some of the questions below.

Optional reading 

An Historical Survey of the Old Testament – the first half of chapter 7

A History of Israel: From the Bronze Age Through the Jewish Wars – chapters 16-18

Discussion questions

The first question is required.  You may choose any of the remaining two questions to answer.  Answers should be 100 words or more. You are welcome to use resources that you may have or search the internet for help.

1) After all that David did wrong, why was he still considered to be a man after God’s own heart?

Answer two of the following:

2) What lessons can we learn from the story of David and Goliath?

3) Why do you believe David refuses to kill Saul?

4) Why do you think it was wrong for David to count his fighting men in 1 Chronicles 21?

5) Why isn’t David allowed to build the temple for the Lord?

6) What can we learn about repentance from what David does after his sin with Bathsheba?


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