Old Testament Bible Personalities: David

King David: The ENFJ

Traits of the ENFJ

Characterized by:

the value they place in humanity, imaginative and loyal, desire to make the world better for everyone


ambitious, keen interest in people, focused on values


can become people pleasers, put too much on their “to do” lists, forget themselves

David in the Bible:

  • has an extremely large presence in the Bible. His name alone found in almost 1000 verses and 28 out of 66 books of the Bible (19 OT; 9 NT).
  • is first mentioned by name in Ruth 4:17 (1 Sam 16)
  • His life account can be found in 1 & 2 Samuel
  • wrote many of the Psalms

David’s background:

  • came from a family in the tribe of Judah (aka the lineage of Jesus)
  • lived in Israel and tended his father’s sheep
  • became the 2nd king of Israel.
  • dad’s name was Jesse
  • youngest of 8 sons
  • great, great grandson of Ruth
  • a “ruddy“ youth
  • played the harp
  • reigned in Israel from 1010-970 BC
  • Saul’s archenemy
  • a “man after God’s own heart”
  • Johnathan, Saul’s son, was his best friend
  • Characterized by his humility and loyalty to God, repented when he sinned
  • Struggled with sexual sin, had more than 1 wife (2 Sam 5:13)
  • A great poet (Psalms)

David’s character: 

The account of David’s life in the Bible is one that can be read and reread and the well of lessons we can garner will never run dry. He was all together human, his flaws, imperfections, and sins all penned for the whole world to read and learn from forever, yet he was still a “man after God’s own heart.”

He was the youngest of 8 boys, born to Jesse. If you are interested in more information about birth order and it’s impacts on personality development, I found a great blog post that discusses it in relation to the MBTI traits. You can find it here.

Some traits of a last born child are: sociable, charming, loving, fun, may be described as a “class clown,” open, willing to take risks, sometimes impetuous, temperamental, irresponsible, self-centred. I encourage you to study his life and see if you can find these descriptions to be true of him.

David was:

  • humble
  • outgoing
  • loyal
  • principled
  • did not tolerate revenge, left it to God
  • empathetic
  • emotionally aware
  • respectful of others
  • sociable
  • charming
  • sometimes irresponsible
  • risk taker
  • open and loving
  • creative
  • compassionate
  • trustworthy
  • supportive
  • persuasive
  • inspirational

Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me

Psalm 51:10


David was a shepherd for his father. He became Saul’s armor bearer after killing Goliath, he was an army captain, a harp player, a dynamic and outgoing ruler who stayed loyal, for the most part, to his values and principles.

On more than one occasion he was presented with the opportunity to kill Saul, however he was adamant that slaying God’s anointed was reprehensible. He was on the run for much of his early life from Saul who was his jealous archenemy. Let’s not discount the inner turmoil and conflict this potentially caused, yet he did not waiver in his dedication to God, and when he sinned, he repented.

Life as King

Besides his slaying of Goliath, perhaps his other most well known action was his sin with Bathsheba. The son from that union died and when presented with his sin he wept and demonstrated true repentance, a quality we never see from his predecessor, Saul. He was a dedicated servant of God and a true encouragement.

2 Growth Tips for David the ENFJ 

ENFJ’s growth tips to learn contentment and to set proper boundaries arise from their desire to be valuable and influential in the world. They want humanity to be better and feel like they have what it takes to contribute to a world in order for it to be better.

The ENFJ’s in our lives make the world a better place!

David was a fascinating character who loved God and spent most of his life working to please God. We can learn from his character so many things. He was unwavering in his confidence that God would deliver His people, he knew how to inspire people, he loved deeply, he was idealistic, a people person, and did not let his enemies deter him from staying true to his values.

David definitely was certainly valuable and influential in the world. To draw inspiration from his ENFJ character, let’s explore 2 growth tips for him and learn how to turn even his considerable sin with Bathsheba into a lesson for growth in our own personal development and success.


There must have been times in David’s life in which he felt content, but we have record of at least one time in which he was not content with what he had. Instead of minding his own business and being grateful for his own life (and wife/wives at this time), he gazed upon Bathsheba bathing, requested her presence, committed adultery with her, and subsequently had her husband killed to deal with the product of that adultery.

Practicing contentment requires:

  • gratitude
  • Looking at what you have instead of what you don’t have
  • You to stop comparing what you have (or don’t have) to what someone else has (or doesn’t have)

David should’ve taken some time to practice being grateful for what he had already. Instead of looking at what he did not have (Bathsheba), he should’ve busied himself looking at his own wife (actually, wives at this point).

Set Boundaries

David, because he was king, could take what he wanted and use his power for what he wanted. While he was a good man, concerned with godly principles much of his life, he also was not perfect.

There is no doubt that David’s power differential was at play when he committed adultery with Bathsheba and had her husband murdered. In other words, it is unlikely that he would have been able to demand Uriah’s murder (and likely would not have had an opportunity to commit adultery with Bathsheba-the wife of a well respected general in the king’s army) had he not been the king.

Boundaries are limits that we set up for ourselves that we decide we will not cross. In David’s situation, he was clearly made aware that he crossed his own lines, and more importantly God’s, when Nathan pointed out to him “Thou art the man” (2 Samuel 12:7).

Setting boundaries for ourselves, gives us and others with whom we interact a clear understanding of where we draw the line.

The Boundary Balance

Imagine boundary setting as a spectrum. On one end are those who set extremely rigid boundaries and on the other are those who have a severe lack of boundaries. Having either rigid boundaries or a lack of boundaries completely both demonstrate unhealthy attachments with others.

Instead, it would be best to try to aim for the centre of these two extremes.

No boundaries

A person with little to no boundaries are typically not assertive, are unable to stand up for themselves, lack insight in to their value system, struggle to maintain an individual identity, and are often referred to as “people pleasers.”

Rigid Boundaries

A person with rigid boundaries can be described as someone immovable, unflinching, unable to empathize, struggle with maintaining relationships, cannot see the gray areas, unable to compromise.

Unhealthy boundaries tend to arise from issues of childhood attachment to parents/primary caregivers and/or traumatic experiences.

Learning where we fall on this spectrum of boundary setting can help us more deeply understand ourselves, form an identity, help us develop more fulfilling relationships (which leads to contentment) and can help us heal any traumatic wounds we have experienced in our lives.

David violated boundaries

What exactly was going through David’s mind when he took action to get Bathsheba? Was he dissatisfied not being with his soldiers on the battlefield? Was he bored? Had he seriously not had enough adventure and risk taking in his life up to this point? Did he just feel lonely? We will never know on this side of eternity what he was thinking/feeling when he committed this awful sin, but one thing is clear about this situation: boundaries were violated.

David ignored his own boundaries to be righteous and godly before God. He trespassed Bathsheba’s boundaries when he looked in to her house while she was bathing. He trespassed God’s boundaries when he committed adultery and murder to cover up the adultery, and he ended up losing a son because of his impulsive desires.

David, the ENFJ: the Ultimate Old Testament Protagonist

Even after considerable sins, David comes out a victor and a godly character to emulate as he accepted his responsibilities, identified his shortcomings, learned and grew from them continuously, and above all, stayed loyal to his God. Despite his shortcomings, there are so many times throughout his life that he stood out among others as someone loyal to God, loyal to his people, and always a person with a keen interest in doing what is righteous for humanity.

*I attempt to be diligent and responsible with my research, as well as original in presenting the information, however with the massive online information on the MBTI and personality assessments, there is likely to be some overlap in information presented.
If I use any other resource besides those listed below, it will be quoted directly, and cited separately from this. 

MBTI Manual published by CPP 
*Briggs Myers, Isabel (2015, 7th ed). Introduction to Myers-Briggs Type: A Guide to Understanding Your Results on the MBTI Assessment. USA: CPP, Inc & The Myers Briggs Co.

*Disclaimer: Using the MBTI to speculate personality type of Bible characters is only a jumping off point for further discussion and learning from them. Bible characters cannot take the MBTI themselves, therefore what I provide here is merely conjecture. 

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