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Tag Archives: I Samuel 8

Getting to Know . . . I Samuel (10:1-8)

The prophet Samuel prophesies three events that will happen to Saul when he leaves Samuel. After anointing Saul and kissing him, Samuel says that the Lord has anointed him as ruler over His inheritance (v. 1). Samuel then says Saul will have three encounters: (1) one will be that he will meet two men who turn over the lost donkeys to him, even using the words that Saul’s father has stopped thinking about them and is worried about Saul! (v. 2)

(2) The second encounter will involve three men going to worship at Bethel. Samuel specifies what they will be carrying! Saul is to accept two loaves of bread from them (v. 4).

(3) The third encounter will happen close to a Philistine outpost! There he will meet a procession of prophets coming from the high place and prophesying. Samuel says, “The Spirit of the Lord will come powerfully upon you, and you will prophesy with them; and you will be changed into a different person. 7 Once these signs are fulfilled, do whatever your hand finds to do, for God is with you.”

Samuel then promises to meet Saul in Gilgal and to wait seven days for him to arrive and to give him further instructions (v. 8).

Please notice:  Samuel is a real prophet!  He is given information by God that can only be explained as supernatural revelation!  He knows the number of the men in each of the two first encounters.  He knows the words the first men will use about Saul’s father worrying about him.  He knows exactly what each man will be carrying in the second encounter.  He knows what the procession of the prophets will be doing in the third encounter and how it will impact Saul himself.  Such knowledge can only be God-given.  Perhaps Saul needed these concrete evidences of Samuel’s prophetic gift.

What a great statement Samuel gives after prophesying the third encounter: “The Spirit of the Lord will come powerfully upon you, and you will prophesy with them; and you will be changed into a different person. 7 Once these signs are fulfilled, do whatever your hand finds to do, for God is with you.”  Oh, that each of us would changed into different people because of the presence of the Spirit of the Lord!   And that each of us would have the freedom to do whatever our hands find to do because God is with us!

 
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Posted by on November 18, 2018 in I Samuel 10

 

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Getting to Know . . . I Samuel! (chapter 8) Demanding a King!

Looking at I Samuel 8 this morning, we recall that in the previous chapter a great revival broke out among the people of God! The story now fast-forwards to when Samuel is old and he appoints his sons as Israel’s leaders. [I don’t believe we were told in the text about Samuel’s wife or their two sons].

Unfortunately, his two sons — Joel and Abijah — followed the pattern of Eli’s two sons. “They turned aside after dishonest gain and accepted bribes and perverted justice” (v. 3).

Israel’s elders have to approach Samuel. They ask for a king as the other nations have, because Samuel’s sons do not follow Samuel’s “ways.” (v. 5). This displeases Samuel and he prays to the Lord.

The Lord tells Samuel to listen to the people, for “they have not rejected you but me as their king. They have a habit of forsaking me and serving other gods — their practice since I rescued them from Egypt. Warn them that a king will claim certain rights.”

Samuel lists the “rights” a king will claim — conscripting their sons to serve his chariots and horses, becoming commanders of Israel’s soldiers, plowing his ground and reaping his harvest, and making weapons of war and equipment for his chariots (vv. 11-12). He will also draft their daughters to be perfumers and cooks and bakers (v. 13). He’ll take the best of the fields and vineyards and olive groves and give them to his attendants. A tenth of your grain and vintage will be given to his officials. He will take for his own use your servants and the best of your cattle and donkeys (v. 16). He’ll take a tenth of your flocks “and you yourselves will become his slaves” (v. 17). Then the Lord says, “When that day comes, you will cry out for relief from the king you have chosen, but the Lord will not answer you in that day” (v. 18).

The people insist on having a king — “We want a king over us. We want to be like the other nations and have a king who will fight our battles” (v. 20).

Samuel repeats all this to the Lord and the Lord tells him to listen to them and give them a king (v. 22). Then Samuel sent all of them home.

How fickle are the people of God! One moment they repent and experience

“You have made a wise choice!”

a great revival. The next minute they demand a king like the pagan nations around them.  Samuel bears some guilt in this turn of events. He did not discipline his sons, but followed Eli’s example in allowing his sons to live ungodly lives.

Incredibly, the people of Israel no longer want the Lord to be their king! They want a human being to lead them. We see that the Lord acquiesces to their demand, telling Samuel that they have not rejected him but the Lord!

But no human ruler is perfect. And, although they are warned in specific terms of the claims that such a king will make on their families and property, they insist on having a human king to “fight our battles.”

My takeaway today:  I can reject the Lord as my King, becoming persuaded by the world that He should be replaced as the ruler of my life.  But there will be a price to be paid.

 
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Posted by on November 16, 2018 in I Samuel 8

 

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