II Sam. 1:1-27; Ps. 18:1-50
Following David’s battle with the Amalekites to regain the families and spoil taken from Ziklag, a young Amalekite man came from Saul’s camp and reported on the great slaughter of the Israelites and their defeat by the Philistines. He also reported the deaths of Saul and Jonathan to David.
Apparently, the Amalekite man knew of Saul’s hatred of David and of David’s fear of the king. It also appears that he came upon the bodies of Saul and his men and removed his crown and bracelet to present to David. His great mistake was in attempting to gain David’s favor by telling him that he had killed his enemy. David had previously spared the king twice and had refused to allow his men to kill Saul. The man’s lie about killing the Lord’s anointed cost him his own life.
Instead of rejoicing, David’s lamentation over Saul and his friend Jonathan led him to write “The Song of the Bow” as a tribute to them.
Even though David did not approve of all of the actions of King Saul, he did respect his position of authority and his might. That mighty man and his son, David’s friend had been brought low in death. He wrote of their good qualities and deeds.
Friendship with another person is one of the most precious gifts one can enjoy. Without it, man is most miserable. David and Jonathan had a special bond that endured through many trials.
On the occasion of Saul’s death, David penned a psalm of deliverance from his enemies. The poem began with an expression of the writer’s love for God. It continued with praises for the many blessings that he had enjoyed at the hands of God.
David further pointed out that it was through his own obedience that God had looked upon him with favor. He was not a self-righteous boaster, but he recognized that God loves righteousness and hates sin. David had accomplished many things, but God was the One who had provided the strength.
Pagan gods are lifeless images of wood, stone or precious metals. David concluded the psalm by recognizing Jehovah God as a living savior and deliverer.