David was just what Saul needed.. Already we can see David’s abilities being recognized, yet David was not promoting himself: God was doing it. (Proverbs 22:29; 1 Peter 5:6) Too many people today try to push themselves into prominent places without first proving themselves at home in the small matters. David came to court and immediately became a favorite. Of course, if Saul had known that God had chosen David to be king, he would have immediately tried to kill him. When he did discover this, Saul began to persecute David and hunt him in the wilderness of Israel.
David did not remain permanently in Saul’s presence. 1 Samuel 16:15 should read, “But David went back and forth from Saul to feed his father’s sheep.” He would visit Saul when needed, but he did not neglect his responsibilities at home. What humility! Here is gifted, chosen to be king, anointed of God, yet he still cares for the sheep and works as a servant! No wonder God was able to use David.
David came to Saul at Gibeah and served him. It was not long before the king was “pleased with him.” Saul was so impressed with this shepherd boy that he decided to make David a permanent member of his court. Saul assigned him a coveted role as “one of his armor bearers.” In this position David was kept close to the king and was able to respond immediately “whenever the spirit from God came upon Saul” (1 Samuel 16:23). David’s success was due to the fact that the Spirit of the Lord was with him in power (1 Samuel 16:13, 18).
David was a loyal, trustworthy servant of Saul who used his abilities to benefit the king. In spite of Saul’s repeated efforts to kill David, Israel’s next king made absolutely no efforts to bring down Saul’s dynasty. In fact, David performed feats in Saul’s behalf that no one else could, and the king initially appreciated David’s efforts. Any deterioration in the relationship between Saul and David would not be David’s fault.