Commemorations for Kiahk 23

1. The Departure of David, the Prophet and King.

On this day, of the year 2990 of the world, the great King and the saintly honored prophet David, the son of Jesse, departed.

He was the second king over the children of Israel and the first among their kings to walk in virtue and in justice. He was from the tribe of Judah from Bethlehem. God chose him to be a king over Israel, when Saul, the son of Kish, disobeyed the commandment of God.

God commanded the Prophet Samuel to anoint for Him one of the children of Jesse, a king over Israel. Samuel chose the eldest son who had a good appearance and was tall in stature, but God rejected him and said to Samuel, "Do not look at his appearance or at his physical stature, because I have refused him. For the Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart." (I Samuel 16:7)

Jesse called all his sons and showed them to Samuel and he chose David and anointed him king. God was with him in all his ways, for his purity of heart and his meekness. He overcame Saul who wanted to kill him on several occasions. Once Saul went out to kill David and he went into a cave to attend to his needs. David came to him secretly and cut off a corner of Saul's robe (I Samuel 24:4) to show him that he wouldn't stretch his hand to kill him. Another time David found him sleeping and he took his spear and a jug of water that was by his head and did not hurt him and spared his life for the second time. (I Samuel 26:1-25) When David's men told him to destroy Saul, David said, "The Lord forbid that I should stretch out my hand against the Lord's anointed." (I Samuel 26:11)

When a man announced to David the news about the death of his rival Saul saying, "I stood over him and killed him," David took hold of his own clothes and tore them and he mourned him. David called one of the young men and said, "Go near and execute him," (2 Samuel 1: 11-15) and he struck the man so that he died.

God honored this Prophet over all mankind, for he had many virtues. Besides the virtue of humility, he was a prophet, a righteous man, and a just king. In spite of that, he called himself a "dead dog" and a "flea". (I Samuel 24:14) God praised him by saying, "I have found David, the son of Jesse, a man after My own heart, who will do all My will." (Acts 13:22; Psalms 89:20; 1 Samuel 13:14) God protected Jerusalem for his sake during his lifetime and after his death, and He made the kings of the people of Israel from his seed, and He called Himself "his Son." He prophesied in the Book of Psalms, which is a book full of useful teachings and good instructions. David's might and power were supported by God. When he was young and guarding his father's sheep, once a bear and another time a lion attacked his sheep and David killed both the bear and the lion.

When the army of Israel faced the army of the Philistines and Goliath, the champion of the Philistines, whose height was six cubits and a span, and who was armored with a bronze helmet on his head and a coat weighing five thousand shekels of bronze, and he had bronze grieves on his legs and a bronze javelin between his shoulders and the staff of his spear was like a weaver's beam and his iron spearhead weighed six hundred shekels; Goliath went out, stood up and cried out to the armies of Israel, "I defy the armies of Israel this day; give us a man that we may fight together." The Philistine presented himself for forty days, morning and evening. All of Israel heard these words and were dismayed and greatly afraid.

When David came to visit his brothers and brought provisions to their camp, he saw and heard Goliath. David was moved with divine zeal and said to him, "You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the Name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied." David took out a stone and he slung it and he struck the Philistine in his forehead, so that the stone sank in his forehead and he fell on his face to the ground. David ran and stood over the Philistine, took his sword and cut off his head and removed the reproach of Israel. (I Samuel 17)

David lived 70 years, 30 years of which were before he became a king. He was born one thousand, one hundred and twenty years before Christ.

His prayers be with us all. Amen.




2. The Departure of St. Timothy, the Anchorite.

On this day also, the fighter, St. Timothy the Anchorite (Pilgrim), departed. He was born of God-loving parents, who educated and raised him according to the church disciplines. He desired the monastic life and became a monk in one of the monasteries. He loved the solitary life and lived in a cell alone near the monastery. He lived there for some time, making a living from his handiwork.

The enemy of everything that is good tried to deceive him by appearing to him in the form of a nun who approached him to buy his handiwork. Because of her frequent visits, a special relationship developed between them. They sat to eat together at one table. After a short time, the saint realized the trick of the devil to make him fall in sin. He remembered the hour of death and the awesome nature of Judgement; consequently, he arose and took flight from that place.

God guided him to another place with a spring of water and a palm tree. He stayed there practicing worship and asceticism. He reached a great level in his ascetic life, to the extent that the wild beasts befriended him. This continued for 30 years, during which his hair became very long and spared him of wearing clothes.

When he finished his course and fought the good fight, he departed in peace.

His prayers be with us and Glory be to our God forever. Amen.