How The Mighty Have Fallen! Long before Jim Collins entitled his latest book with this phrase, David said this when King Saul and Prince Jonathan were killed in battle. In fact, he said it not once, but three times in just eight verses.
It is understandable that David would lament the death of his friend Jonathan. They were covenant brothers, they shared the same heartbeat for God and for Israel, and they stood by each other through thick and thin.
But Saul? Why would David lament the death of Saul? This is the man who was jealous of David. So jealous that he did everything he could to trip David up. Including trying to kill him. Saul chased David from his home, from his family, from his wife, even from his country.
Why would David lament Saul’s death? Wouldn’t it be more appropriate to rejoice over it?
But David still saw Saul as “the Lord’s anointed.” David recognized the good in Saul. He called him…
- the glory of Israel
- a successful warrior
- Israel’s provider
When David heard Saul had been killed, he lamented, Oh, how the mighty have fallen!
When I see the mighty, God-anointed leader fall, do I lament?
I may shake my head, I may feel vindicated, I may be disgusted, but I don’t know that I have ever lamented or grieved when one of these mighty brothers has fallen. Or if I have, my lament has been short-circuited by other less appropriate emotions.
Despite their sin, they are still God’s anointed.
Who am I to sit in judgment? Who am I to do anything but lament their fall?
Lord, forgive me! Father, help me to see Your anointed ones in the proper perspective: as Your anointed. Holy Spirit, remind me of the tragedy of even one mighty one who falls. May my response be one of lament, and mercy, and prayer.