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PLAYING ON THE HARP BEFORE SAUL.

from Old Testament Stories





We are not told much in the Bible concerning the early life of David.
He was born in Bethlehem. We have seen who his father was, but I do
not find that his mother's name is given. His own name means
"beloved." What a happy name! He must have been much loved by his
parents, and we know he was loved by God.

Like many other youths in Canaan, he acted as a shepherd to his
father's flocks. He was a fair, open-faced boy; "ruddy, and of a
beautiful countenance, and goodly to look at," so the Scriptures say.
He was a good musician, knew how to sling stones at a mark, and was so
brave that when a lion and a bear came to attack the lambs of his
flock he went after them and killed them both. One day a strange and
most important event happened. Samuel, the prophet, came from Ramah,
and pouring some very precious oil upon the head of David, anointed
him to be the future King of Israel. Saul was then King, but on
account of his wickedness God had rejected him, saying that another
should reign in his stead.

Soon after this event Saul became very wretched. An evil spirit
troubled him, we are told. His servants advised him to get a man that
could play skilfully upon the harp, so that music might drive away his
misery. Some one suggested David; and David was sent for. He brought
sweet strains from his harp, and Saul was soothed. Saul was pleased
with David. We are told that "he loved him greatly," and that David
became his armour-bearer. But he soon grew jealous, and twice threw a
javelin at David, seeking to smite him to the wall and kill him. This,
however, he was not able to do.





Next: DAVID AND GOLIATH.

Previous: DEATH OF ELI AND HIS SONS.



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