It was late at night and I was four episodes deep into a new K-drama. The hero and the heroine had spent the last couple of episodes pretending that they weren’t falling for each other.
And then, oh no! The heroine is suddenly kidnapped!
At that moment I simultaneously rolled my eyes and giggled with excitement. I knew exactly what was coming. It wasn’t original at all. But that’s because it was so delicious:
The hero was going to have no choice but to come and save her.
I know. I know! I know it’s silly and cheesy, but audiences love it because it taps down into something a lot of us desire: we want to feel protected. We want to feel loved and prioritized.
We want to know that if something goes down, the person we love will be at our side no matter what.
What if I told you that certain Someone already exists and is ready to swoop in on your behalf?
Deus Ex Machina
David got to experience that heart-pounding moment of last minute salvation in 1 Samuel 29.
The last we had heard of David, he was living amongst the Philistines, the mortal enemies of his native country of Israel. Not only that, but he was letting the Philistines think that he was loyal to them.
So it should have come as no surprise when the Philistine king, Achish, commanded David to join his army as they marched against—the Israelites.
What was David going to do? The Philistine army got closer and closer to the battlefield. Time was running out. Would David turn against the Philistines? Would he use this fight as an opportunity to take the throne of Israel? Would he sneak away?
The Philistines finally reach their last campsite before the attack on Israel. The tents are pitched. The soldiers begin to turn in for the night. This is David’s last chance. Will David reveal himself as a fraud or continue as a traitor?
But wait! Just in the nick of time, Someone swoops in to save David. And He does it through the Philistines. King Achish suddenly comes to David to tell him he can’t fight with them anymore. The other soldiers don’t trust him enough. He has to go home.
Home! Away from the fight against his people. Away from a year-long lie. Away to await God’s next instructions.
David has been rescued by his Hero.
“I am a God close by.”
Maybe you’re like me, and the image of God coming to rescue you is a foreign one. I imagine God staying back, watching me make my mistakes, and then punishing me for them.
And look, sometimes that is what’s best for us—to deal with the consequences of our sins to the bitter end.
But other times, God steps in and pulls us out of our mess.
But no matter which outcome God allows, stories like this are a reminder: God is there.
God is near by, next to us, in the thick of it. He sees what we’re going through. He knows what our situation is.
He cares, and we are not alone.
The God we love is by our side, no matter what.
What do you think? What do you think David would have done had God not rescued him?