DAVID’S TAKING THE LESSONS OF THE CROSS
The second striking point in this section of 1 Samuel is David’s taking the lessons of the cross.
Always under the Cross
Although David was persecuted and suffered so much, he never fought, reacted, or responded. Using the New Testament term, he was always under the cross. He bore the cross every day under any kind of situation. He did not complain, criticize, oppose, or condemn. He was just under the cross to suffer the dealing.
Christ within Us
Being the One Who Bears the Cross
The New Testament speaks of bearing the cross, but who is able to do this? Philippians 3:10 indicates that the strength for us to bear the cross is the power of Christ’s resurrection. We have One who is not only resurrection power—we have One who Himself is the resurrection (John 11:25). He is our Jonathan and our Michal. He is much greater than Jonathan and Michal, and He is nearer to us. We have a Christ who is in us. While we are bearing the cross, actually we are not the ones who are doing this. The Christ who is within us is the One who bears the cross.
In the New Testament there are two crucial "ins." The New Testament revelation emphasizes the fact that, on the one hand, Christ is in us (Rom. 8:10; 2 Cor. 13:5; Gal. 2:20; 4:19; Col. 1:27) and that, on the other hand, we are in Christ (John 14:20; 15:4; Rom. 6:3; 1 Cor. 1:30; 2 Cor. 5:17; 12:2; Gal. 3:27-28). How wonderful it is that we are in Christ and that Christ is in us! The entering of Noah and his family into the ark, a type of Christ, illustrates that our Christ today is enterable. However, this illustration is limited, because although Noah could enter into the ark, the ark could not enter into Noah. We therefore must go on to see that Christ is not only the enterable One—He is also the entering One, the One who has come into us to live in us and to bear the cross within us.
As David was taking the lessons of the cross, he enjoyed God’s provision. Jonathan was a type of Christ as God’s provision, and Michal was a type of God’s provision. We have seen that when David was persecuted by Saul, he did not react in a negative way, and he did not complain, condemn, criticize, or oppose. The only thing he did was flee. As God’s provision to David, both Jonathan and Michal helped David to flee. Without them, David would not have had a way to escape from Saul (1 Sam. 20:1-42; 19:11-18). Eventually, David "graduated" from his trials under Saul. If God had graded David, He surely would have given him the highest mark.
David Being the Gainer and the Enjoyer
Under God’s sovereignty, David took the lessons of the cross. Because of this David eventually was not a loser but a gainer, not a sufferer but an enjoyer. Whereas David became the winner, Saul was the loser and also the sufferer.
The situation should be the same with us today. We need to learn two vital lessons—the lesson of God’s sovereignty and the lesson of taking the cross with the power of resurrection. If we would be quiet, remaining in a situation under the cross, we may apparently be the losers and the sufferers, but actually we are the gainers and the enjoyers. The more we learn the lessons of God’s sovereignty and of taking the cross, the more we will be the gainers and the enjoyers.
(Life-Study of 1 & 2 Samuel, Chapter 15, by Witness Lee)