17 Saul said to David, “Here is my older daughter Merab. I will give her to you in marriage; only serve me bravely and fight the battles of the Lord.” For Saul said to himself, “I will not raise a hand against him. Let the Philistines do that!”
18 But David said to Saul, “Who am I, and what is my family or my clan in Israel, that I should become the king’s son-in-law?”19 So when the time came for Merab, Saul’s daughter, to be given to David, she was given in marriage to Adriel of Meholah.
20 Now Saul’s daughter Michal was in love with David, and when they told Saul about it, he was pleased. 21 “I will give her to him,” he thought, “so that she may be a snare to him and so that the hand of the Philistines may be against him.” So Saul said to David, “Now you have a second opportunity to become my son-in-law.”
22 Then Saul ordered his attendants: “Speak to David privately and say, ‘Look, the king likes you, and his attendants all love you; now become his son-in-law.’”
23 They repeated these words to David. But David said, “Do you think it is a small matter to become the king’s son-in-law? I’m only a poor man and little known.”
24 When Saul’s servants told him what David had said, 25 Saul replied, “Say to David, ‘The king wants no other price for the bride than a hundred Philistine foreskins, to take revenge on his enemies.’” Saul’s plan was to have David fall by the hands of the Philistines.
26 When the attendants told David these things, he was pleased to become the king’s son-in-law. So before the allotted time elapsed, 27 David took his men with him and went out and killed two hundred Philistines and brought back their foreskins. They counted out the full number to the king so that David might become the king’s son-in-law. Then Saul gave him his daughter Michal in marriage.
28 When Saul realized that the Lord was with David and that his daughter Michal loved David, 29 Saul became still more afraid of him, and he remained his enemy the rest of his days.
30 The Philistine commanders continued to go out to battle, and as often as they did, David met with more success than the rest of Saul’s officers, and his name became well known.
The Bible is full of drama, intrigue and bloodshed. Humanity has also been drawn to love, power-plays, bravery and… the cutting off of people’s body parts? I read this story and realise that no matter how much we try to glamorize our biblical characters we can’t help seeing that the world they lived in was brutal and the lives they lived demonstrate this. Saul continues to use his daughters to try and snare David into a relationship that will get him killed by the Philistines. However, no matter what Saul does, David seems to know how to respond. When he goes to battle he is successful because God is with him. The thing that interests me is what does God encourage and what is just human manipulation. Would God want David to go and take 100 Philistine foreskins or is that a human perversion? It amazes me to see how things become normal to us in through exposure and our social norms. Church groups get so used to a certain way of doing things that very soon that group comes to believe that the way they do it is God’s way. We start to build a biblical case to justify our stance even if it does not look like the life or teaching of Jesus. When we look at what Jesus teaches and how He lived we should be able to filter out what is Human perversion and what is of God. Jesus is God in human form, when God lived among us – how did He live…what did He teach. I think that we need to constantly look at our lives, our belief systems and hold them up to the life and teaching of Jesus to see if they match up. If we are not using Jesus as our blueprint then we need to consider what our blueprint is and more often than not we will discover that our Christianity is based on what others say Jesus is rather than who He says he is. Let me know what you think.