Thought from Today’s Old Testament Passage: 1 Samuel 23:14-18
Here is, I. David absconding. He abode in a wilderness, in a mountain (v. 14), in a wood, v. 15. We must here, 1. Commend his eminent virtues, his humility, modesty, fidelity to his prince, and patient attendance on the providence of his God, that he did not draw up his forces against Saul, fight him in the field, or surprise him by some stratagem or other, and so avenge his own quarrel and that of the Lord’s priests upon him, and put an end to his own troubles and the calamities of the country under Saul’s tyrannical government. No, he makes no such attempt; he keeps God’s way, waits God’s time, and is content to secure himself in woods and wildernesses, though with some it might seem a reproach to that courage for which he had been famous.
But, 2. We must also lament his hard fate, that an innocent man should be thus terrified and put in fear of his life, that a man of honour should be thus disgraced, a man of merit thus recompensed for his services, and a man that delighted in the service both of God and his country should be debarred from both and wrapped up in obscurity. What shall we say to this? Let it make us think the worse of this world, which often gives such bad treatment to its best men; let it reconcile even great and active men to privacy and restraint, if Providence make these their lot, for they were David’s; and let it make us long for that kingdom where goodness shall for ever be in glory and holiness in honour, and the righteous shall shine as the sun, which cannot be put under a bushel.
(Matthew Henry, Matthew Henry’s Commentary on the Bible (computer file) (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers) © 1997)