ESOCS Devotional 16 April 2023
MEMORY VERSE: “And when Samuel saw Saul, the LORD said to him, “There he is, the man of whom I spoke to you. This one shall reign over my people.” 1 Samuel 9:17
TEXT: 1 SAMUEL 9:15-27
15 Now the day before Saul came, the Lord had revealed this to Samuel: 16 “About this time tomorrow I will send you a man from the land of Benjamin. Anoint him ruler over my people Israel; he will deliver them from the hand of the Philistines. I have looked on my people, for their cry has reached me.”
17 When Samuel caught sight of Saul, the Lord said to him, “This is the man I spoke to you about; he will govern my people.”
18 Saul approached Samuel in the gateway and asked, “Would you please tell me where the seer’s house is?”
19 “I am the seer,” Samuel replied. “Go up ahead of me to the high place, for today you are to eat with me, and in the morning I will send you on your way and will tell you all that is in your heart. 20 As for the donkeys you lost three days ago, do not worry about them; they have been found. And to whom is all the desire of Israel turned, if not to you and your whole family line?”
21 Saul answered, “But am I not a Benjamite, from the smallest tribeof Israel, and is not my clan the least of all the clans of the tribe of Benjamin? Why do you say such a thing to me?”
22 Then Samuel brought Saul and his servant into the hall and seated them at the head of those who were invited—about thirty in number. 23 Samuel said to the cook, “Bring the piece of meat I gave you, the one I told you to lay aside.”
24 So the cook took up the thigh with what was on it and set it in front of Saul. Samuel said, “Here is what has been kept for you. Eat, because it was set aside for you for this occasion from the time I said, ‘I have invited guests.’” And Saul dined with Samuel that day.
25 After they came down from the high place to the town, Samuel talked with Saul on the roof of his house. 26 They rose about daybreak, and Samuel called to Saul on the roof, “Get ready, and I will send you on your way.” When Saul got ready, he and Samuel went outside together. 27 As they were going down to the edge of the town, Samuel said to Saul, “Tell the servant to go on ahead of us”—and the servant did so—“but you stay here for a while, so that I may give you a message from God.”
What could God have seen in Saul to select him among all the children of Israel, to honor him and anoint him king over all Israel? He was not from the tribe of Judah where the scepter was to remain until Shiloh come. Rather, he was from the smallest tribe in Israel and from the smallest family in this smallest tribe. He was by no means a king stuff. Though tall with a striking look, he appeared naïve and non-kingly in many ways. He lacked the necessary confidence to lead a people as a king. There was not much to commend him and by human rating, he had no chance of ever becoming king. Yet, God singled him out and set him up for leadership and greatness.
As the scripture says, He chooses the foolish things of the world to shame the wise and the weak things of the world to shame the strong (1 Cor. 1:27). He chooses the lowly things and the despised things and the things that are not to nullify the things that are so that no one may boast before Him. God is sovereign and does what He likes (Eccl. 8:3). There is no limiting Him. He is able to do all things and to use all things. He gives strength to the weak and brings ability into him that is said to be unable. God’s grace and favor towards man; all the blessings upon man is of God and not of man. God made Saul king in spite of all that he wasn’t; and gave him the ability he needed to be king. Thus, what he was, all his successes and the glories of his exalted position were of God; a gift from God.
No one should ever forget God’s grace and favor. But Saul did. He grew powerful, used the office for himself, became disobedient and rebellious and did not glorify God. He forgot his humble beginning and how God chose him and made him great, and that was the beginning of the end for Him. His fall was great, his end very tragic, and his posterity destroyed.
When God decides to favor you, don’t forget He did it not for anything you are, but because He chose to show you mercy. It is His ability and not yours that works in you to bring success into your life. Don’t forget to give Him the glory.
- Think of all the ways God has favoured you. Write them down and give Him thanks.
- Evaluate how you have responded to God in all His goodness.
- Father, we thank you for thy grace and all the things you have bestowed on us. Forgive us in any way we have been self-centered and ungrateful. Give us a heart that will love and appreciate you. Amen.
FURTHER READING: Exodus 34:1-10; Isaiah 52:13-53:12; Matthew 11:1-11; 1 Peter 3:8-10
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ESOCS Devotional 16 April 2023