Re:Verse reading–1 Samuel 28:3-20; 31:1-6 (day six)
“He said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the Prophets, neither will they be convinced if someone should rise from the dead.’”-Jesus, Luke 16:31
God’s allowing Samuel to rise from the dead is most definitely curious, surprising even, but the message he delivered to Saul most certainly was not. The message was the same message he had heard several times before, to no avail. These hard words had never led Saul to repentance, nor would they now.
Never take God’s Word for granted; never pass by His voice heard in the Scriptures. You never have to go elsewhere to find the will of God for your life, and though His words can be hard at times, they are meant from your good. So, seek God now; listen to His words today; repent while repentance can be found.
Re:Verse reading–1 Samuel 16. (Day one)
“How long will you grieve over Saul, since I have rejected him?”–v 1.
Samuel was heartbroken by Saul’s failure. The old prophet genuinely loved the young king. Had been a passionate and prayerful supporter. Those days were now over.
With great patience, the Lord allowed Samuel the time necessary for mourning. Time to grieve. Time to recover. (Compare the Lord’s kindness to Elijah in 1 Kings 19)
Eventually, however, it is the purpose of God for Samuel (us) to accept/release what is lost and move forward with faith. “Weeping may come in the night, but joy comes in the morning”–Psalm 30:5.
A new and hopeful sunrise is coming for Israel. A new king will soon be anointed and God wants Samuel (us) to be a part of it.
Lord, give courage when this call comes to me to count as loss things that were gain, and to do so for the sake of Christ! (Philippians 3:7)
Re:Verse reading–1 Samuel 15 (day seven)
Then Saul said to Samuel, “I did obey the voice of the Lord, and went on the mission on which the Lord sent me, and have brought back Agag the king of Amalek, and have utterly destroyed the Amalekites. But the people took some of the spoil, sheep and oxen, the choicest of the things devoted to destruction, to sacrifice to the Lord your God at Gilgal.” (v. 20-21)
Everything Saul achieved was exactly what a nation wants in battle: incredible spoils and the opposing king imprisoned. The campaign was a flawless military endeavor, a flawless military endeavor that ruined his career. There are times in this life that play out perfectly by every discernable measure, but they separate us from God. As perfect as the scenario looks, if it separates you from God it is ruinous. Do not let worldly measures of success define you, rather seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness, and all those other things will be added to you.
Re:Verse reading–1 Samuel 15 (day five)
It is not the name of the deity but the heart of the worshipper that creates idols. – Alexander Maclaren
Saul’s heart was unchanged when he was confronted with his own sin. Samuel challenges Saul’s disobedience. God meant for the battle to be about justice (God focused). Saul saw it as an opportunity for his own status and wealth (self focused). Verse 25- “Now therefore, please pardon my sin and return with me, that I may worship the Lord.” The fact that he wanted to return to ”worship” showed that his heart had not changed. He remained more concerned about his own standing and popularity than obedience to God. Saul is asking Samuel to endorse the celebration so that Saul might appear strong and mighty in the eyes of the people. He never learned this important lesson- The alternative to full surrender is rebellion. Sound harsh? No. Sounds Holy!!
Want to see a clear picture of a king’s heart changed through repentance? Look at Psalm 51