9. Saul kept David with him and did not let him return to his father’s house (1 Samuel 18:2).
David has proven so valuable to Saul that the latter is determined to keep the new hero with him. Saul will ride the coattails of David’s greatness, yet somehow believes he can control that greatness and garner its benefits for himself. One who has lost his own forward momentum has little choice but to attach himself to the greater momentum of another.
Now, one might be tempted to see in Saul’s actions a mentoring relationship or some other investment in the next generation were it not for the evil that has taken his heart. His true motive will be revealed soon enough. One has wisely said, “Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.” While at this point in the story, we cannot be certain which side of the phrase Saul is practicing, clearly he wants David nearby.
But Saul will soon learn that you cannot control the blessing of God in another person’s life. Rather than try, Saul’s better course of action would have been to draw close to God and experience His blessing as well. But Saul’s human nature will only be satisfied in controlling David and trying to somehow live in the blessings David is reaping.
It won’t work. Soon they’ll be singing of how Saul has slain his thousands, but David his tens of thousands. God’s blessing will lift the younger man to greater prominence and Saul’s purposes in keeping David near will fail.