David spoke to Saul when they faced each other in the wilderness. The king had been pursuing David but David had taken Saul’s spear and jar of water from beside him “because a deep sleep from the LORD had fallen upon them” (1 Samuel 26:12). David called out to Saul from the other side of the hill across the ravine. Saul admits, “I have acted foolishly and made a great mistake” (verse 21). David responds, “Here is the spear O king! Let one of the young men come over and take it” – then David adds, “The LORD rewards every man for his righteousness and his faithfulness …” (verse 23).
The wonder of the way the Lord rewards will not be seen in all its fullness until God’s kingdom is established and the resurrection has taken place; but as we ponder God’s word we see how all things both good and bad “work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28). Paul learnt the wonder of this as he reflected on the course his life had taken through the actions of God’s Son.
Some of the Psalms of David were inspired as he reflected on God’s guiding care during his life, especially in difficult situations. Look at Psalm 3:3-6, and the prophetic Psalm 22 that relates to the mortal life of Jesus but must have been founded on some event(s) in David’s life! As this Psalm proceeds, he is able to write (pray), “From you comes my praise in the great congregation; my vows I will perform before those who fear him (God)” (verse 23). Then we read the oft-quoted Psalm 23:4, “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me”.
As this world becomes more than ever “a valley of the shadow of death” and full of godlessness, may we be ever more conscious of how “the LORD rewards”.