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FROM GATH. David showeth that in his trouble all his comfort was in prayer unto Goh * Maschil of David, [or, A Psalm of Instruction. By David,) a Prayer when

he was in the Cave. 1 I cried unto the LORD with my voice; With


voice unto the LORD did I make my supplication. 2 I "poured out my complaint before him;

I showed before him my trouble.
3 When my spirit was overwhelmed within me,
Then thou knewest my path.
In the way wherein I walked
Have they privily laid a snare for me.
4 'I looked on my right hand, and beheld,

But d there was no man that would know me:
Refuge 'failed me—no man ‘cared for


soul. 6 I cried unto thee, O LORD!

I said, “Thou art my refuge.

And ‘my portion & in the land of the living.” 6 Attend unto my cry;

For I am hbrought very low :
Deliver me from my persecutors;

For they are stronger than I.
? Bring my soul out of prison,
That I may praise thy name: :
The i righteous shall compass me about ;
For thou shalt deal bountifully with me.

· Psa. 37, title.
a Psa. 102, title. Isa. 26. 16.
b Psa. 148. 4.
e Psa. 140. 5.
? Or, Look on the right hand,

and see. Psa. 69. 9.

d See Job 19. 18.
Heb. perished from

4 Heb. sought after my

. Psa. 46. 1.

Psa. 16. 8. Lam. 8. 94.
& Psa. 27. 18.
b Psa. 116. 6.
i Psa. 84. 8.
* Psa. 18. 6.




David praiseth God, and exhorteth others thereto by his experience, 1-8; they are

blessed that trust in God, 9, 10; he exhorteth to the fear of God, 11-14; the privileges of the righteous, 15–22.

'A Psalm of David when he changed [i.e. after he had changed] his behaviour

before Abimelech, [i.e. Achish,] who drove him away, and he departed.


1 I will a bless the LORD at all times:

His praiše shall continually be in my mouth. 2 My soul shall make her bboast in the LORD:

The Chumble shall hear thereof, and be glad. 30 magnify the LORD with me! And let us exalt his name together.

I sought the LORD, and he heard me, And delivered me from all


fears. 5 They 'looked unto him, and were lightened:

And their faces were not ashamed. 6 This fpoor man cried, and the LORD heard him,

And & saved him out of all his troubles. * The Angel of the LORD i encampeth round about them

that fear Him, And delivereth them. 8 Oktaste and see that the LORD is good!

Blessed 'is the man that trusteth in him !
90 m fear the LORD, ye his saints!
For there is no want to them that fear him.

11 Sam. 21. 13.
Eph. 5. 20. 1 Thess. 5. 18.

2 Thess. 1. 8.
Jer. 9. 24. 1 Cor. 1. 81.
< Psa. 119. 74.

& Psa. 69. 80. Lu. 1. 46.b Dan. 6. 22. Heb. 1. 14.
e Mat. 7. 7.

i Bee Gen. 32. 1, 2. 2 K1. 6. 17. Zo. 9. 8. ? Or, forced.

k 1 Pe. 2. 3. Psa. 3. 4.

1 Psa. 2. 12. & 2 Sam. 22. 1.

m Psa. 31. 28.


10 The "young lions do lack, and suffer hunger; But othey that seek the LORD shall not want any good

thing Come, ye children, hearken unto me! I Pwill teach you the fear of the LORD. 12 What man is he that desireth life,

And loveth many days, that he may see good ? 13 Keep thy tongue from evil,

And thy lips from 'speaking guile. 14 Depart * from evil, and do good; Seek * peace, and pursue

it. The eyes of the LORD are upon the righteous, And his ears are open unto their cry. 16 The face of the LORD is against them that do evil,


To wcut off the remembrance of them from the earth. 17 The righteous cry, and the LORD heareth,

And delivereth them out of all their troubles. 18 The Lord is nigh 'unto them ? that are of a broken


And saveth 'such as be of a contrite spirit. 19 Many " are the afflictions of the righteous ;

But the LORD delivereth him out of them all. 20 He keepeth all his bones :

Not one of them is broken. 21 Evil shall slay the wicked;

And they that hate the righteous shall be desolate. 22 The LORD d redeemeth the soul of his servants;

And none of them that trust in him shall be desolate.

Job 4. 10, 11.

Lev. 17. 10. Jer. 44. 11. o Psa. 84. 11.

Amos 9. 4. p Psa. 82. 8.

w See Job 18. 17. 91 Pet. 8. 10. 11.

* Psa. 145. 19, 20. 11 Pet. 2. 22.

y Psa. 145. 18. • Psa. 37. 27. Isa. 1. 16, 17. Heb. to the broken of t Rom. 12. 18. Heb. 12. 14.

Job 86. 7. Psa. 88. 18. 1 Pet. 8.12 Isa. 67. 18

4 Heb. contrite of spirit.
a Sce Job 5. 19. 2 TL. 3. 11, 12.
6 John 19. 36.
c Psa. 24. 23.
5 Or, guilty.
a Gen. 19. 16. 2 Sam. 4. 9. 1 KL

1. 20. Psa. 71. 28. Larn. 8. KS.




David now became sensible that, however perilous it might be to attempt a residence within his native tribe, the danger was greatly enhanced by going abroad. If at home he had enemies, there, also, he had friends. True, the protection of government had been withdrawn, and he was declared an ontlaw; but these violent measures arose solely from the personal jealousies of the king, and were as groundless as they were relentless and cruel. David had rendered the nation important services, of which they were not unmindful. The great body of the people were in sympathy with his cause, while his enemies were limited to the court and family of Saul. His military renown would have placed him at the head of an army, had he raised the standard of rebellion ; but from such a thought he shrunk away with horror. He always looked upon Saul not merely as the political head of the tribes, but as a king whom Jehovah had anointed, and whom he alone, therefore, according to the true spirit of the Theocracy, could depose. With these feelings he could offer no resistance to the authority of his sovereign, much less dispute with him the title to the throne. He determines, therefore, merely to maintain a fugitive abode in the mountainous district of Judah, trusting to Providence for his protection. With the wild scenery of his native hills he was familiar, and he had communed with the awful solitude of the deserts of Judah when but a simple shepherd boy. To these gloomy abodes he now commits his wayward and uncertain future.

When the news of David's return to Adullam had reached his father's house, they all repaired to the cave. when they learned the place of his retreat, resorted to him, chiefly such as misfortune or injustice had weaned from the attachments of home. When it is said, that “every one that was in distress, and every one that was in debt, and every one that was discontented, gathered themselves unto him, and he became captain over them,” it must not be inferred that the

Others also,

refuse of the people are here intended. The probability is, that injustice and a lax administration had caused many estates of the poorer people to be sold, which could not be recovered till the year of jubilee, and a disaffection toward government widely existed. The men who came to David were generally poor, indeed; but, for aught that appears to the contrary, honourable, and they subsequently arose to distinction. Four hundred effective men attached themselves to David at this time. It must not be supposed that David meditated an insurrection, or was preparing to lead a brigand life. He was himself a prince, and had held the highest military rank. It was his right to maintain a retinue, or body guard, if he was thus disposed. Besides, the country was still in a state of war with the Philistines, and the southern district was much annoyed by the roving bands of Arabia. It was a time when his country and his tribe demanded his services. To this call he was not inattentive. From time to time he offered them such protection as was in his power; and though his manner of life was precarious, it was still subjected to the rigid rules of justice and of religion.

The parents of David had now grown old, and as they could not longer remain with safety in the dominions of Saul, David, with pious care, obtains permission of the king of Moab for them to reside under his protection till his own fortunes should become more settled. He had now remained some time in the cave of Adullam, and is advised by the prophet Gad to remove further south, into the more rugged and solitary parts of Judah. Accordingly he retreats to the “Forest of Hareth.”

The news of David's return, and of his becoming the leader of a band of hardy volunteers, had reached the ears of Saul, and excited in him no little anxiety. The movement of David appeared to him like premeditated rebellion; and if an insurrection should be excited it was impossible to foretell to what extent the disaffection might spread, or who of his subjects he could henceforward trust. Already he suspected a conspiracy against his own life, and, because none informed him of the fact, he distrusted all about him. Calling together his servants and the officers of his court, he harangued them in a strain congenial to his gloomy forebodings, accusing David of designs upon his life and his kingdom; while his subjects, and even the members of his court and his own family, connived at the

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