So the women sang as they danced, and said:
“Saul has slain his thousands,
And David his ten thousands.”
Then Saul was very angry, and the saying displeased him; and he said, “They have ascribed to David ten thousands, and to me they have ascribed only thousands. Now what more can he have but the kingdom?” So Saul eyed David from that day forward.
— First Samuel 18:7-9
Saul probably felt justified to seek David’s life, for if David was anointed, Saul would have to die before David could take the throne. It may have seemed to Saul that God was using David to bring about his death. So, to Saul, it was David or him. Saul’s argument with God could have been, “I did not choose to be anointed king. You arranged the casting of the lot, and You even told the people where I was hiding and had me brought out. And now You want to terminate me? Aren’t Your gifts irrevocable?”
Saul certainly had a right to honor his own kingship since it was given to him by the Lord, but he should not have tried to kill David. He should have simply tried to carry out his kingship in a way that furthered the Lord’s interests. The Lord, however, was unable to use Saul as a king who would rule His people according to His heart.
Adapted from David: After God’s Heart, page 36.
Tomorrow: “Are We Jealous for a Position?” (3)