The Law of Solid Ground Part 7

David’s Respect for Saul-1 Samuel 24:1-22

Leadership operates on the basis of trust. Before David became king, he showed respect for the king who preceded him. Saul failed to practice this law, and lost his kingdom. The Bible provides a vivid contrast between Saul and David’s leadership.

Saul David
1. Self-conscious from the beginning 1. Displayed God-confidence from the beginning
2. Presumed on the priestly office 2. Didn’t assume any right or privilege
3. Disobeyed God in the little things 3. Obeyed God in the little things
4. Lost integrity by covering his sin 4. Maintained integrity by respecting Saul
5. Failed to submit to God-given authority 5. Consistently submitted to authority
6. Preoccupied with his own fame 6. Desired to increase Gods reputation

Power Abuse-2 Samuel 11:1-27

Pittacus wrote, “The measure of a man is what he does with power.” When David used Bathsheba for his own selfish purposes, he began a long spiral downward into deceit, adultery, and murder.

Second Samuel 11 tells the story of a king who forgot that leaders wield power for one reason only: to serve. Consider the “Path to Abusive Power” in leaders:

Stage One: Surprise—”I get this?”
Stage Two: Self-Esteem—”I need this.”
Stage Three: Satisfaction—”I deserve this.”
Stage Four: Selfishness—”I demand this.”

By watching King David weave a tangled web following his sin with Bathsheba, we notice five common abuses of power that still trip up leaders today. Calvin Miller describes them this way:

  1. Drifting away from those disciplines we still demand of our people (v. 1).
  2. Believing that others owe us whatever use we can make of them (vv. 2, 3).
  3. Attempting to fix things up rather than make things right (v. 6).
  4. Refusing to accept that we could be blindly out of God’s will (v. 11).
  5. Believing that people in our way are expendable (v. 14).

Join me next time for The Law of Solid Ground Part 8.