“And David behaved himself wisely in all his ways” 1Samuel 18:14 KJV
“David was prospering in all his ways…” 1Samuel 18:14 NASB
“And he (David) changed his behavior before them and feigned himself mad” 1Samuel 21:13 KJV
“So he (David) disguised his sanity before them, and acted insanely in their hands” 1Samuel 21:13 NASB
“Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth” Numbers 12:3 KJV
“Now the man Moses was very humble, more than any man who was on the face of the earth.” Numbers 12:3 NASB
“They provoked his spirit so that he spake unadvisedly with his lips” Psalm 106:33 KJV
“Because they were rebellious against His Spirit, He spoke rashly with his lips.” Psalm 106:33 NASB
Great men have graced the pages of Scripture. Among them are David and Moses. In 1 Samuel 18, David had to face the scrutiny and snares of Saul. Jealousy had moved Saul to numerous stratagems in an attempt to bring David down, to either discredit him or kill him. We look on with intense admiration as David walks circumspectly, avoiding the traps set for him by Saul and increasing in favor among the people. Ultimately, his “name is much set by” or very precious in Israel. His wise behavior is emphasized throughout the chapter.
The contrast, then, in 1Samuel 21 is all the more stark. Here, through his own folly, he must change his behavior to save his own life. He feigns to be a mad man, the total opposite of the “wise” behavior which marked him earlier.
Moses, the man noted for meekness endured many trials from the nation. Many times, they murmured against him; many times, they reproached him. They failed to appreciate his leadership, life, and sacrifices for them.
Moses’ meekness was exemplary. Yet a day came when meekness was not in evidence; in frustration and anger, he smote the rock rather than speak to it as instructed (Num 20:9-11). A life that had been marked by such consistency was suddenly stained with a blot.
As always, we turn from the best of men to the best Man that ever lived. He never needed to change His behavior. Wisdom marked His every word and work. There was no “little folly” to spoil the fragrance of His life. He behaved Himself wisely – whether dealing with the slowness of His closest disciples, the well-crafted questions of His foes, the scourge in Pilate’s judgment hall, or the mockery among Herod and his men of war. Every step was fraught with fragrance ascending from His life.
The worst that men could inflict upon Him did not turn His meekness into malice, His submissive spirit into spite; He was always the same.
There were no barren moments in His life. There was always, day by day, fruit in His life for the pleasure of His Father. But that fruit was always in season and never affected by changing or adverse circumstances. Neither the flattery of men nor the fury of His foes could “spoil” or mar the fruit of His life.
Look at the different times it speaks of David behaving himself wisely and link them with periods and circumstances in the life of the Lord Jesus.
Notice the one occasion when the Lord referred to Himself as being “meek and lowly in heart.” Take note of the circumstances surrounding that time.