What do I mean by the term “Faithful in the dark”? I mean that when few people or no people are watching, something is done in the dark. We want to look at an incident in the life of David when he was faithful literally in the dark, the darkness of a cave.

As you know there will be times of temptation in our lives.

We will be tempted to do what is wrong.

We will be tempted to get even with someone.

We will be tempted to take matters into our own hands. James 1:13-15

In this instance David’s temptation would be to take vengeance on his enemy Saul. He was tempted to take matters into his own hands and remove Saul from the land of the living.

Vss. 1-2 – Saul was told that David was hiding at Engedi.

Vs. 3 – Saul comes calling. He was actually in the cave to answer the call of nature. Perhaps he fell asleep. Meanwhile, David’s and his men were hiding against the sides of the walls of the cave. They could see Saul, but Saul could not see them. Their eyes were adjusted to the darkness, Saul’s were not.

RESTRAINT – Vss. 4-7

One of the problems with temptation is knowing when something is a temptation, “a solicitation to do evil”, or an opportunity. Sometimes, what we take as an opportunity to get even is really a temptation to do what is wrong.

Vs. 4 – The trouble with temptation is that sometimes, we are encouraged to do wrong by those who are dearest and closest friends. In this case David’s men’s encourage him to get even with his enemies. “Take vengeance David!”

Vs. 5 – David’s conscience bothered him, even though he did not hurt Saul. I think his conscience bothered him, because he did something to belittle the king.

Vs. 6 – David may not have respected Saul for the way he acted, but David respected Saul for who he was. David viewed Saul as God’s anointed leader, as his master.

David would not take vengeance on Saul. God had made Saul King, God would remove Saul from being King without David’s assistance.

David is example of some New Testament Scriptures. Matthew 5:44, Romans 12:14, Romans 12:17-19

Vs. 7 – Evidently there was quite a heated discussion, and David won out, persuading the others to do what is right.


I can picture David waiting for Saul to proceed some distance before popping out of the cave, and saying “My Lord, the King”.

He bowed in sincere respect as to who Saul was. Romans 13:7, 1 Peter 2:17

REPORT – Vss. 9-11

Vss. 9-11 – Saul was evidently being told by others that David wanted to do him harm.

David made it clear that this wasn’t true.

He showed him the evidence of the truth.

David explained how he had Saul “dead to rights”. Saul would have been executed by David, if indeed that was David’s plan.

There is a time when we need to speak up.

There are times when those who are against do not understand the facts, and the Lord may give us opportunity to explain the facts.

RELIANCE – Vss. 12-15

Vs. 12 – David was dependent on the Lord to avenge Him. He was expecting the Lord to avenge Him. But David himself would not take action.

Vs. 13 – David quotes an ancient Proverb here. “Wickedness proceedeth from the wicked.” This is a allusion to David’s innocence.

Vs. 14 – David seems to be implying that Saul is wasting his time hunting a dead dog or one insignificant little flea. Both are harmless.

Vs. 15 – David concludes by repeating his words of reliance on God. God is the judge. He will vindicate David. God alone will give the deliverance. I am reminded of some verses on reliance. Psalm 62:5-6, Psalm 118:6, Psalm 118:14, Psalm 125:1

REPRIEVE – Vss. 16-22

This response on the part of Saul is a good example of

Proverbs 6:7 – When a man’s ways please the Lord, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him.

Vs. 16 – Saul, at least temporarily, was convicted. He weeps

Vs. 17 – He admits that David is more righteous than Saul.

Vss. 18-19 – He admits that David has dealt well with Saul.

Vs. 20 – He admits that David will be king.

Vs. 21 – He asks for mercy on his family.

Vs. 22 – Saul stopped following him for a period of time.