Wednesday, July 31, 2013

My Daily Meditation
Today’s Reading
The First Book of Samuel
Chapter 20:1-43

1 And David fled from Naioth in Ramah, and came and said before Jonathan, What have I done? what is mine iniquity? and what sin have I committed before thy father, that he seeketh my life?
2 And he said unto him, God forbid, thou shalt not die: behold, my father will do nothing great nor small, but he will show it me: and why should my father hide this thing from me? he will not do it.
3 And David swore again and said, Thy father knoweth that I have found grace in thine eyes: therefore he thinketh, Jonathan shall not know it, lest he be sorry: but indeed, as the Lord liveth, and as thy soul liveth, there is but a step between me and death.
4 Then said Jonathan unto David, Whatsoever thy soul requireth, that I will do unto thee.
5 And David said unto Jonathan, Behold, tomorrow is the first day of the month, and I should sit with the king at meat: but let me go, that I may hide myself in the fields unto the third day at even.
6 If thy father make mention of me, then say, David asked leave of me, that he might go to Bethlehem to his own city: for there is a yearly sacrifice for all that family.
7 And if he say thus, It is well, thy servant shall have peace: but if he be angry, be sure that wickedness is concluded of him.
8 So shalt thou show mercy unto thy servant: for thou hast joined thy servant into a covenant of the Lord with thee, and if there be in me iniquity, slay thou me? for why shouldest thou bring me to thy father?
9 And Jonathan answered, God keep that from thee: for if I knew that wickedness were concluded of my father to come upon thee, would not I tell it thee?
10 Then said David to Jonathan, Who shall tell me? how shall I know, if thy father answer thee cruelly?
11 And Jonathan said to David, Come and let us go out into the field: and they twain went out into the field.
12 Then Jonathan said to David, O Lord God of Israel, when I have groped my father’s mind tomorrow at this time, or within this three days, and if it be well with David, and I then send not unto thee, and show it thee,
13 The Lord do so and much more unto Jonathan: but if my father have mind to do thee evil, I will show thee also, and send thee away, that thou mayest go in peace: and the Lord be with thee as he hath been with my father.
14 Likewise I require not whiles I live: for I doubt not but thou wilt show me the mercy of the Lord, that I die not.
15 But I require that thou cut not off thy mercy from mine house forever: no, not when the Lord hath destroyed the enemies of David, every one from the earth.
16 So Jonathan made a bond with the house of David, saying, Let the Lord require it at the hands of David’s enemies.
17 And again Jonathan swore unto David, because he loved him (for he loved him as his own soul,)
18 Then said Jonathan to him, Tomorrow is the first day of the month: and thou shalt be looked for, for thy place shall be empty.
19 Therefore thou shalt hide thyself three days, then thou shalt go down quickly and come to the place where thou didst hide thyself, when this matter was in hand, and shalt remain by the stone Ezel.
20 And I will shoot three arrows on the side thereof, as though I shot at a mark.
21 And after I will send a boy, saying, Go, seek the arrows. If I say unto the boy, See, the arrows are on this side thee, bring them, and come thou: for it is well with thee, and no hurt, as the Lord liveth.
22 But if I say thus unto the boy, Behold, the arrows are beyond thee, go thy way: for the Lord hath sent thee away.
23 As touching the thing which thou and I have spoken of, behold, the Lord be between thee and me forever.
24 So David hid himself in the field: and when the first day of the month came, the king sat to eat meat.
25 And the king sat, as at other times upon his seat, even upon his seat by the wall: and Jonathan arose, and Abner sat by Saul’s side, but David’s place was empty.
26 And Saul said nothing that day: for he thought, Something hath befallen him, though he were clean, or else because he was not purified.
27 But on the morrow which was the second day of the month, David’s place was empty again: and Saul said unto Jonathan his son, Wherefore cometh not the son of Jesse to meat, neither yesterday nor today?
28 And Jonathan answered unto Saul, David required of me, that he might go to Bethlehem.
29 For he said, Let me go, I pray thee: for our family offereth a sacrifice in the city, and my brother hath sent for me: therefore now, if I have found favor in thine eyes, let me go, I pray thee, and see my brethren: this is the cause that he cometh not unto the king’s table.
30 Then was Saul angry with Jonathan, and said unto him, Thou son of the wicked rebellious woman, do not I know, that thou hast chosen the son of Jesse to thy confusion, and to the confusion and shame of thy mother?
31 For as long as the son of Jesse liveth upon the earth, thou shalt not be established, nor thy kingdom: wherefore now send and fet him unto me, for he shall surely die. (a)
32 And Jonathan answered unto Saul his father, and said unto him, Wherefore shall he die? what hath he done?
33 And Saul cast a spear at him to hit him, whereby Jonathan knew, that it was determined of his father to slay David.
34 So Jonathan arose from the table in a great anger, and did eat no meat the second day of the month: for he was sorry for David, and because his father had reviled him.
35 On the next morning therefore Jonathan went out into the field, at the time appointed with David, and a little boy with him.
36 And he said unto his boy, Run now, seek the arrows which I shoot, and as the boy ran, he shot an arrow beyond him.
37 And when the boy was come to the place where the arrow was that Jonathan had shot, Jonathan cried after the boy, and said, Is not the arrow beyond thee?
38 And Jonathan cried after the boy, Make speed, haste and stand not still: and Jonathan’s boy gathered up the arrows, and came to his master,
39 But the boy knew nothing: only Jonathan and David knew the matter.
40 Then Jonathan gave his bow and arrows unto the boy that was with him, and said unto him, Go, carry them into the city.
41 As soon as the boy was gone, David arose out of a place that was toward the South, and fell on his face to the ground, and bowed himself three times: and they kissed one another, and wept both twain, till David exceeded.
42 Therefore Jonathan said to David, Go in peace: that which we have sworn both of us in the name of the Lord, saying, The Lord be between me and thee, and between my seed and between thy seed, let it stand forever.
43 And he arose and departed, and Jonathan went into the city.

(a) Editor’s thought - Re:vs 31 - It may be assumed that by this time Saul has come to the full realization that his kingdom is no longer blessed by God, (therefore, by extension, his legacy/dynasty as king begins and ends with him), and as such God has chosen another to take his place.  This would partially answer my own question of a few days ago as to the evil spirit that comes over Saul. I suppose that in today’s terms, Saul would be diagnosed as suffering from severe depression that also exhibits bouts of rage.  Perhaps he was likewise angered more at himself for failing to heed God’s commandments when specifically asked to do God’s will.  Of course all of this is my own speculation. I would be glad to hear from other’s on this topic. 

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

My Daily Meditation
Today’s Reading
The First Book of Samuel
Chapter 19:1-24

1 Then Saul spake to Jonathan his son, and to all his servants, that they should kill David: but Jonathan Saul’s son had a great favor to David.
2 And Jonathan told David, saying, Saul my father goeth about to slay thee: now therefore, I pray thee, take heed unto thyself unto the morning, and abide in a secret place, and hide thyself.
3 And I will go out and stand by my father in the field where thou art, and will commune with my father of thee, and I will see what he saith, and will tell thee.
4 ¶ And Jonathan spake good of David unto Saul his father, and said unto him, Let not the king sin against his servant, against David: for he hath not sinned against thee, but his works have been to thee very good.
5 For he did put his life in danger, and slew the Philistine, and the Lord wrought a great salvation for all Israel: thou sawest it, and thou rejoicedst: wherefore then wilt thou sin against innocent blood, and slay David without a cause?
6 Then Saul hearkened unto the voice of Jonathan, and Saul swore, As the Lord liveth, he shall not die.
7 So Jonathan called David, and Jonathan showed him all those words, and Jonathan brought David to Saul, and he was in his presence as in times past.
8 Again the war began, and David went out and fought with the Philistines, and slew them with a great slaughter, and they fled from him.
9 And the evil spirit of the Lord was upon Saul, as he sat in his house having his spear in his hand, and David played with his hand.
10 And Saul intended to smite David to the wall with the spear: but he turned aside out of Saul’s presence, and he smote the spear against the wall: but David fled, and escaped the same night.
11 Saul also sent messengers unto David’s house, to watch him, and to slay him in the morning: and Michal David’s wife told it him, saying, If thou save not thyself this night, tomorrow thou shalt be slain.
12 So Michal let David down through a window: and he went, and fled, and escaped.
13 Then Michal took an image, and laid it in the bed, and put a pillow stuffed with goat’s hair under the head of it, and covered it with a cloth.
14 And when Saul sent messengers to take David, she said, He is sick.
15 And Saul sent the messengers again to see David, saying, Bring him to me in the bed, that I may slay him.
16 And when the messengers were come in, behold, an image was in the bed with a pillow of goat’s hair under the head of it.
17 And Saul said unto Michal, Why hast thou mocked me so, and sent away mine enemy, that he is escaped? And Michal answered Saul, He said unto me, Let me go, or else I will kill thee.
18 So David fled, and escaped, and came to Samuel to Ramah, and told him all that Saul had done to him: and he and Samuel went and dwelt in Naioth.
19 But one told Saul, saying, Behold, David is at Naioth in Ramah.
20 And Saul sent messengers to take David, and when they saw a company of Prophets prophesying, and Samuel standing as appointed over them, the Spirit of God fell upon the messengers of Saul, and they also prophesied.
21 And when it was told Saul, he sent other messengers, and they prophesied likewise: again Saul sent the third messengers, and they prophesied also.
22 Then went he himself to Ramah, and came to a great well that is in Sechu, and he asked, and said, Where are Samuel and David? And one said, Behold, they be at Naioth in Ramah.
23 And he went thither, even to Naioth in Ramah, and the Spirit of God came upon him also, and he went prophesying until he came to Naioth in Ramah.
24 And he stripped off his clothes, and he prophesied also before Samuel, and fell down naked all that day and all that night: therefore they say, Is Saul also among the Prophets?

Monday, July 29, 2013

My Daily Meditation
Today’s Reading
The First Book of Samuel
Chapter 18:1-30(a)

1 And when he had made an end of speaking unto Saul, the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him, as his own soul.
2 And Saul took him that day, and would not let him return to his father’s house.
3 Then Jonathan and David made a covenant: for he loved him as his own soul.
4 And Jonathan put off the robe that was upon him, and gave it David, and his garments, even to his sword, and to his bow, and to his girdle.
5 And David went out whithersoever Saul sent him, and behaved himself wisely: so that Saul set him over the men of war, and he was accepted in the sight of all the people, and also in the sight of Saul’s servants.
6 When they came again, and David returned from the slaughter of the Philistine, the women came out of all cities of Israel singing and dancing to meet king Saul, with timbrels, with instruments of joy, and with rebecks.
7 And the women sang by course in their play, and said, Saul hath slain his thousand, and David his ten thousand.
8 Therefore Saul was exceedingly wroth, and the saying displeased him, and he said, They have ascribed unto David ten thousand, and to me they have ascribed but a thousand, and what can he have more save the kingdom?
9 Wherefore Saul had an eye on David from that day forward.
10 And on the morrow, the evil spirit of God came upon Saul, and he prophesied in the midst of the house: and David played with his hand like as at other times, and there was a spear in Saul’s hand. (b)
11 And Saul took the spear, and said, I will smite David through to the wall. But David avoided twice out of his presence.
12 And Saul was afraid of David, because the Lord was with him, and was departed from Saul.
13 Therefore Saul put him from him, and made him a captain over a thousand, and he went out and in before the people.
14 And David behaved himself wisely in all his ways: for the Lord was with him.
15 Wherefore when Saul saw that he was very wise, he was afraid of him.
16 For all Israel and Judah loved David, because he went out and in before them.
17 Then Saul said to David, Behold mine eldest daughter Merab, her I will give thee to wife: only be a valiant son unto me, and fight the Lord’s battles: for Saul thought, Mine hand shall not be upon him, but the hand of the Philistines shall be upon him.
18 And David answered Saul, What am I? and what is my life, or the family of my father in Israel, that I should be son-in-law to the King?
19 Howbeit when Merab Saul’s daughter should have been given to David, she was given unto Adriel a Meholathite to wife.
20 Then Michal Saul’s daughter loved David: and they showed Saul, and the thing pleased him.
21 Therefore Saul said, I will give him her, that she may be a snare to him, and that the hand of the Philistines may be against him. Wherefore Saul said to David, Thou shalt this day be my son-in-law in the one of the twain.
22 And Saul commanded his servants, Speak with David secretly, and say, Behold, the king hath a favor to thee, and all his servants love thee: be now therefore the King’s son-in-law.
23 And Saul’s servants spake these words in the ears of David. And David said, Seemeth it to you a light thing to be a king’s son-in-law, seeing that I am a poor man and of small reputation?
24 And then Saul’s servants brought him word again, saying, Such words spake David.
25 And Saul said, This wise shall ye say to David, The king desireth no dowry, but an hundred foreskins of the Philistines, to be avenged of the King’s enemies: for Saul thought to make David fall into the hands of the Philistines.
26 And when his servants told David these words, it pleased David well, to be the King’s son-in-law: and the days were not expired.
27 Afterward David arose with his men, and went and slew of the Philistines two hundred men: and David brought their foreskins, and they gave them wholly to the King that he might be the King’s son-in-law: therefore Saul gave him Michal his daughter to wife.
28 Then Saul saw, and understood that the Lord was with David, and that Michal the daughter of Saul loved him.
29 Then Saul was more and more afraid of David, and Saul became always David’s enemy.
30 And when the Princes of the Philistines went forth, at their going forth David behaved himself more wisely than all the servants of Saul, so that his name was much set by.

(a) Editor’s thought - It is noted that David “behaved wisely” before the Lord.  That is to say that he did as was asked of him in obedience to God and as He had commanded, therefore God was always with him. 
(b) Editor’s thought - I must admit, this is a bit confusing to me, in so far as I am not sure how God can send an evil spirit. I understand that all things created are subject to His will, and as such are under His command.  Any evil spirit would be one that had rebelled with Satan. Again even he, that is Satan, knows and fears God, (not the type of reverence fear), so perhaps the answer lies in that direction.  The only other explanation that I can offer is that God allows man to suffer from his own emotions, in Saul’s case pride, envy and the resulting anger that leads to outright hatred. I would love to hear some input on this subject. 

Sunday, July 28, 2013

My Daily Meditation
Today’s Reading
The First Book of Saul
Chapter 17:45-47

There is much to be learned into today’s reading. But for as for me, it is this, that, as the Scriptures in Romans 8:31 say if God is for us who can prevail against us?  (a) Neither man, nor circumstance, should give us pause to fear knowing that God walks with us, and strengthens us to walk through all trials and tribulations, and emerge victorious.  In the example below, we witness that David fully trusts in God’s ability to preserve him and see him through this fight.  There is no doubt in his mind of the outcome, and he says as much to Goliath.  More importantly, he recognizes that this battle is not his, but God’s in so far as it is He, Who is fighting against the one who would blaspheme against Him. David, if I might be allowed to use a poor analogy, is his proxy, (b) and God will see this end in His and David’s victory. 

45 Then said David to the Philistine, Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield, but I come to thee in the Name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the host of Israel, whom thou hast railed upon.
46 This day shall the Lord close thee in mine hand, and I shall smite thee, and take thine head from thee, and I will give the carcasses of the host of the Philistines this day unto the fowls of the heaven, and to the beasts of the earth, that all the world may know that Israel hath a God,
47 And that all this assembly may know, that the Lord saveth not with sword nor with spear, (for the battle is the Lord’s) and he will give you into our hands.

(a) Editor’s thought - I am also here reminded of Philippians 4:6-19
(b) Editor’s thought - I am always amazed how God chooses those who are the least in the eyes of men, but greatest in the eyes of God. 

Saturday, July 27, 2013

My Daily Meditation
Today’s Reading
The First Book of Samuel
Chapter 16:1-23

1 The Lord then said unto Samuel, How long wilt thou mourn for Saul, seeing I have cast him away from reigning over Israel? fill thine horn with oil and come, I will send thee to Jesse the Bethlehemite: for I have provided me a King among his sons.
2 And Samuel said, How can I go? for if Saul shall hear it, he will kill me. Then the Lord answered, Take an heifer with thee, and say, I am come to do sacrifice to the Lord.
3 And call Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show thee what thou shalt do, and thou shalt anoint unto me him whom I name unto thee.
4 So Samuel did that the Lord bade him, and came to Bethlehem, and the elders of the town were astonished at his coming, and said, Comest thou peaceably?
5 And he answered, Yea: I am come to do sacrifice unto the Lord: sanctify yourselves, and come with me to the sacrifice. And he sanctified Jesse and his sons, and called them to the sacrifice.
6 And when they were come, he looked on Eliab, and said, Surely the Lord’s Anointed is before him.
7 But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, nor on the height of his stature, because I have refused him: for God seeth not as man seeth: for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord beholdeth the heart. (a), (b)
8 Then Jesse called Abinadab, and made him come before Samuel. And he said, Neither hath the Lord chosen this.
9 Then Jesse made Shammah come. And he said, Neither yet hath the Lord chosen him.
10 Again Jesse made his seven sons to come before Samuel, and Samuel said unto Jesse, The Lord hath chosen none of these.
11 Finally, Samuel said unto Jesse, Are there no more children but these? And he said, There remaineth yet a little one behind, that keepeth the sheep. Then Samuel said unto Jesse, Send and fet him: for we will not sit down, till he be come hither.
12 And he sent, and brought him in: and he was ruddy, and of a good countenance, and comely visage. And the Lord said, Arise, and anoint him: for this is he.
13 Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the midst of his brethren. And the Spirit of the Lord came upon David, from that day forward: then Samuel rose up, and went to Ramah.
14 But the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul, and an evil spirit sent of the Lord, vexed him.
15 And Saul’s servants said unto him, Behold now, the evil spirit of God vexeth thee.
16 Let our Lord therefore command thy servants that are before thee, to seek a man that is a cunning player upon the harp: that when the evil spirit of God cometh upon thee, he may play with his hand, and thou mayest be eased.
17 Saul then said unto his servants, Provide me a man, I pray you, that can play well, and bring him to me.
18 Then answered one of his servants, and said, Behold, I have seen a son of Jesse, a Bethlehemite, that can play, and is strong, valiant, and a man of war, and wise in matters, and a comely person, and the Lord is with him.
19 Wherefore Saul sent messengers unto Jesse, and said, Send me David thy son, which is with the sheep.
20 And Jesse took an ass laden with bread and a flagon of wine and a kid, and sent them by the hand of David his son unto Saul.
21 And David came to Saul, and stood before him: and he loved him very well, and he was his armor bearer.
22 And Saul sent to Jesse, saying, Let David now remain with me: for he hath found favor in my sight.
23 And so when the evil spirit of God came upon Saul, David took an harp and played with his hand, and Saul was refreshed and was eased: for the evil spirit departed from him.

(a) Editor’s notation - Read also Acts 13:22; Psalm 89:21; Isaiah 55:8-9; John 7:24; 2 Corinthians 10:7; 
(b) Editor’s thought -  Heavenly Father help my heart to be as yours. Create in your servant the ability to see other’s as you see them, and not to look upon the outside, but look inside. 

Friday, July 26, 2013

My Daily Meditation
Today’s Reading
The First Book of Samuel
Chapter 15:22-24

Just a short notation this morning.  Yesterday I read a post from a fellow brother in Christ about being quick to obey what God asks of us to do. God being Who He is, always confirms His word via two more more people. When reading my study today, I realized that it was conformation of this brother’s post. 

22 And Samuel said, Hath the Lord as great pleasure in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as when the voice of the Lord is obeyed? behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken is better than the fat of rams. (a)
23 For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and transgression is wickedness and idolatry. Because thou hast cast away the word of the Lord, therefore he hath cast away thee from being king. (b)
24 Then Saul said unto Samuel, I have sinned: for I have transgressed the Commandment of the Lord, and thy words, because I feared the people, and obeyed their voice.

Editor’s notation - Read also Hosea 6:6-7, Matthew 9:13
Editor’s thought - Sin is sin. There is no great sin, nor little sin all sin is the same in the eyes of God. 

Thursday, July 25, 2013

My Daily Meditation
Today’s Reading
The First Book of Samuel
Chapter 13:13-14

13 And Samuel said to Saul, Thou hast done foolishly: thou hast not kept the commandment of the Lord thy God, which he commanded thee: for the Lord had now stablished thy kingdom upon Israel forever.
14 But now thy kingdom shall not continue: the Lord hath sought him a man after his own heart, and the Lord hath commanded him to be governor over his people, because thou hast not kept that which the Lord had commanded thee.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

My Daily Meditation
Today’s Reading
The First Book of Samuel
Chapter 12:14-15, 20-25

Last evening, it was impressed upon my mind to think upon the word “compassion”.  Now Webster’s dictionary (Edition 1828),  defines the word compassion thusly;

“ A suffering with another; painful sympathy; a sensation of sorrow excited by the distress or misfortunes of another; pity; commiseration. Compassion is a mixed passion, compounded of love and sorrow; at least some portion of love generally attends the pain or regret, or is excited by it.”

Throughout the Old Testament we find the people of Israel,  wavering in their belief in Him Who had chosen them as His people.  They would serve and rebel, serve and rebel, time and again, and yet still, He would show them compassion, and mercy.  Our God is long suffering, and slow to anger and wrath. But when we rebel, or turn away, He allows us to fall by our own misdeeds.  Quite simply put, when we exclude God, He allows us, to go about our own ways until we realize that our ways have caused us grief.  

But God is not without compassion, in fact, it is one of the best aspects of His character.  For as defined above, he can empathize with our sorrows, even though we’ve brought them upon ourselves.  

14 If ye will fear the Lord and serve him, and hear his voice, and not disobey the word of the Lord, both ye, and the king that reigneth over you, shall follow the Lord your God.
15 But if ye will not obey the voice of the Lord, but disobey the Lord’s mouth, then shall the hand of the Lord be upon you, and on your fathers.
20 And Samuel said unto the people, Fear not, (ye have indeed done all this wickedness, yet depart not from following the Lord, but serve the Lord with all your heart, (a)
21 Neither turn ye back: for that should be after vain things which cannot profit you, nor deliver you, for they are but vanity.)
22 For the Lord will not forsake his people for his great Name’s sake: because it hath pleased the Lord to make you his people.
23 Moreover God forbid, that I should sin against the Lord, and cease praying for you, but I will show you the good and right way.
24 Therefore fear you the Lord, and serve him in the truth with all your hearts, and consider how great things he hath done for you. (b)
25 But if ye do wickedly, ye shall perish, both ye and your King.

(a) Editor’s notation - Read Luke 12:4-5
(b) Editor’s notation - Read Psalms 77; Psalm 78 ( in particular focus on verses 38-39)

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

My Daily Meditation
Today’s Reading
The First Book of Samuel
Chapter 10:17-27

Brethren in Christ;
In an earlier chapter we read the warning that God gives the people of Israel about the dangers of setting a man above them, instead of looking to Him for guidance.  He speak to them, through Samuel, and tells them of all the things that will happen if they want to choose this course of action.  Basically He says it will not work, nor go well with them. But people, being flawed as we are decided that they know best, instead of trusting in God, and reject His warning. In the very last verse of today’s reading, we find that within seconds of the new king Saul being introduced, there were already forces of dissent among the people. 

So it is with us today friends that when we reject God, and His guiding hand in our lives, we suffer strife, anxiety, fear, loathing, envy, and know not the meaning of true peace in our lives for we create for ourselves many of our own problems. To coin a phrase, we’ve become our own worst enemies. 

 17  And Samuel assembled the people unto the Lord in Mizpah,
18 And he said unto the children of Israel, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, I have brought Israel out of Egypt, and delivered you out of the hand of the Egyptians, and out of the hands of all kingdoms that troubled you.
19 But ye have this day cast away your God, who only delivereth you out of all your adversities and tribulations: and ye said unto him, No, but appoint a king over us. Now therefore stand ye before the Lord according to your tribes, and according to your thousands.
20 And when Samuel had gathered together all the tribes of Israel, the tribe of Benjamin was taken.
21 Afterward he assembled the tribe of Benjamin, according to their families, and the family of Matri was taken. So Saul the son of Kish was taken, and when they sought him, he could not be found.
22 Therefore they asked the Lord again, if that man should yet come thither. And the Lord answered, Behold, he hath hid himself among the stuff.
23 And they ran, and brought him thence: and when he stood among the people, he was higher than any of the people from the shoulders upward. (a)
24 And Samuel said to all the people, See ye not him, whom the Lord hath chosen, that there is none like him among all the people? and all the people shouted and said, God save the King.
25 Then Samuel told the people the duty of the kingdom, and wrote it in a book, and laid it up before the Lord, and Samuel sent all the people away every man to his house.
26 Saul also went home to Gibeah, and there followed him a band of men, whose heart God had touched.
27 But the wicked men said, How shall he save us? So they despised him, and brought him no presents: but he held his tongue.

(a) Editor’s thought - Re: vs 21-22 - Saul seems very reluctant to want to take on this roll.

Monday, July 22, 2013

My Daily Meditation
Today’s Reading
The Book of Joshua Chapter 24:15
The First Book of Samuel Chapter 10:1, 6-9

15 And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served (that were beyond the flood) or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but I and mine house will serve the Lord.

1 Then Samuel took a vial of oil, and poured it upon his head, and kissed him, and said, Hath not the Lord anointed thee to be governor over his inheritance?
6 Then the Spirit of the Lord will come upon thee, and thou shalt prophesy with them, and shalt be turned into another man.
7 Therefore when these signs shall come unto thee, do as occasion shall serve: for God is with thee.
8 And thou shalt go down before me to Gilgal: and I also will come down unto thee to offer burnt offerings, and to sacrifice sacrifices of peace. Tarry for me seven days, till I come to thee, and show thee what thou shalt do.
9 And when he had turned his back to go from Samuel, God gave him another heart; and all those tokens came to pass that same day.

Friends there is a well known musician and he once penned a song with the lyrics;

“You're gonna have to serve somebody, yes indeed
You're gonna have to serve somebody,
Well, it may be the devil or it may be the Lord
But you're gonna have to serve somebody.”

So, who are you “gonna” serve? Well, Joshua made his choice quite clearly, and without hesitation.  There was no doubt in his mind as to who he was going to serve and that would be our Creator.  Do you seek favor in the things of man? 

Now, let us be honest, everyone wants to be told their doing a good job. And likewise, those in authority over us no matter what capacity, should and would do well to commend those under them when they do well.  However, do you, seek only that praise? The scriptures say in the Acts of the Apostles chapter 5:29 that we should obey God rather than man. 

Friends do not misunderstand me here, and follow along. I am not submitting that we should never listen to those in authority over us. If we all did, we’d be a nation of total anarchy and confusion. In fact, we’d not be a nation at all.  When law and authority are just, and within the confines of God’s view of righteousness, mercy and justice, then any authority over us is to be considered as if from God Himself.  Again, the scriptures say,  those in authority are to be feared only by those who are themselves, evil, wicked, or inclined to criminal activities.  Do good, and you’ll have nothing to fear from them, and will likewise receive praise from same.  However, when injustice rules the minds of those in the seats of power, then it is our duty to access and discern them as such and seek what God has to say on any given matter.  Scripture tells us when they, the righteous are in power the people rejoice, but when the wicked are so, the people groan.  

My apologies for going off on a tangent here friends, but it is important that we understand the difference. Too often there are many who find these commands as a paradoxical contradiction and conflicting passages of scripture. 

So this once again begs the question, who are you going to serve?   Are you going to serve God, who through His servants seek only to guide you in a proper path, or are you going to serve man whose paths usually tend to go off the straight and narrow road, and lead to all divers of problems. You’ll have to make that choice friends. But as for me and mine; We will serve the Lord. 

Brethren, in the second passage of today’s study, we see Samuel anointing Saul king over Israel. I don’t think it is quite apparent yet to Saul at this point of what is actually being done to him. It is possible that he knew that he had received a spiritual promotion so to speak, but the full magnitude of it, was still unknown to him.  But I do believe, that God’s intention was for him, that is Saul, to be guided by the man of God, Samuel, in His ways, so that the new king would be a righteous, leader.  Hence the knowledge of a change that had come over him. 

Sunday, July 21, 2013

My Daily Meditation
Today’s Reading
The First Book of Samuel
Chapter 8:6-22

Brethren in Christ;
It cannot be stressed enough, and so I say it often, that when we refuse to hear God’s words, and follow not in his precepts or walk in His ways, that we will suffer from the folly of our own choices.  When we put the ways of man, before the ways of God, we lose the benefits of His Wisdom. In the First Book of Samuel we read of the folly of abandoning God, and instead look to the wisdom of man for answers. 

Come with me today and go to church. Return to Him who created you. Seek Him in his Sanctuary, sing praises to His name, and fellowship with whom He calls His Own. 

6 But the thing displeased Samuel, when they said, Give us a King to judge us: and Samuel prayed unto the Lord.
7 And the Lord said unto Samuel, Hear the voice of the people in all that they shall say unto thee: for they have not cast thee away, but they have cast me away, that I should not reign over them.
8 As they have ever done since I brought them out of Egypt even unto this day, (and have forsaken me, and served other gods) even so do they unto thee.
9 Now therefore hearken unto their voice: howbeit, yet testify unto them, and show them the manner of the king that shall reign over them.
10 So Samuel told all the words of the Lord unto the people that asked a king of him.
11 And he said, This shall be the manner of the king that shall reign over you: he will take your sons, and appoint them to his chariots, and to be his horsemen, and some shall run before his chariot.
12 Also he will make them his captains over thousands, and captains over fifties, and to ear his ground, and to reap his harvest, and to make instruments of war, and the things that serve for his chariots.
13 He will also take your daughters and make them Apothecaries, and Cooks, and Bakers.
14 And he will take your fields, and your vineyards, and your best Olive trees, and give them to his servants.
15 And he will take the tenth of your seed, and of your vineyards, and give it to his Eunuchs, and to his servants.
16 And he will take your menservants, and your maidservants, and the chief of your young men, and your asses, and put them to his work.
17 He will take the tenth of your sheep, and ye shall be his servants.
18 And ye shall cry out at that day, because of your king, whom ye have chosen you, and the Lord will not hear you at that day.
19 But the people would not hear the voice of Samuel, but did say, Nay, but there shall be a king over us.
20 And we also will be like all other nations, and our king shall judge us, and go out before us and fight our battles.
21 Therefore when Samuel heard all the words of the people, he rehearsed them in the ears of the Lord.
22 And the Lord said to Samuel, Hearken unto their voice, and make them a king. And Samuel said unto the men of Israel, Go every man unto his city.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

My Daily Meditation
Time of Harvest

I am not a country boy. I didn’t grow up on a farm, or lived in a rural area when I was younger. I grew up in a big city. However, it has always been understood by me what Jesus meant when he spoke on the harvest.  Brethren, the time grows short, and indeed, I believe we are witness to a time that will have been unlike any other in history.  There are so many hurting people out there,  looking for a shepherd to guide them, to take them through the valleys of life that they might be unscathed and safe.  We have the greatest Shepherd of all time, and He has given us this duty to reap in the harvest. The need is for more laborers, more workers to do the job, and prepare the way for the Shepherd, so that He can lead us to the Kingdom of God.  Do not shirk nor shrink from this responsibility, friends.  Seek the lost, bring in the harvest.  (a)

36 But when he saw the multitude, he had compassion upon them, because they were dispersed, and scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd.
37 Then said he to his disciples, Surely the harvest is great, but the laborers are few.
38 Wherefore pray the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth laborers into his harvest.
The Gospel According to Matthew Chapter 9:36-38

5 They that sow in tears, shall reap in joy.
6 They went weeping, and carried precious seed: but they shall return with joy, and bring their sheaves.
The Book of Psalms Chapter 126:5-6

(a) Editor’s thought - An addendum to the above comments. I am reminded of the old Christian Hymn below

Sowing in the morning, sowing seeds of kindness,
Sowing in the noontide and the dewy eve;
Waiting for the harvest, and the time of reaping,
We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves.

Bringing in the sheaves, bringing in the sheaves,
We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves,
Bringing in the sheaves, bringing in the sheaves,
We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves.

Sowing in the sunshine, sowing in the shadows,
Fearing neither clouds nor winter’s chilling breeze;
By and by the harvest, and the labor ended,
We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves.


Going forth with weeping, sowing for the Master,
Though the loss sustained our spirit often grieves;
When our weeping’s over, He will bid us welcome,
We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves

A good and simple version can be found here

Friday, July 19, 2013

My Daily Meditation
Today’s Reading
The First Book of Samuel
Chapter 5:2-5
Chapter 6:6
Chapter 7:3

The first commandment by God is for us to remember that He is God and to put no other gods before Him. This means that in all our ways acknowledge Him. Worship no other god or gods, that is to say, put nothing in front of you that will distract you from the knowledge and wisdom of God.  When we allow God to be first in our lives we reap the blessings of His wisdom. Conversely, when we harden our hearts, and turn away from Him we only reap the wisdom of man, which not only pales as comparatively, but usually leaves us wallowing in the misery and mire of our own making by excluding Him. 

2 Even the Philistines took the Ark of God, and brought it into the house of Dagon, and set it by Dagon. (a)
3 And when they of Ashdod rose the next day in the morning, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face on the ground before the Ark of the Lord, and they took up Dagon, and set him in his place again.
4 Also they rose up early in the morning the next day, and behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face on the ground before the Ark of the Lord, and the head of Dagon and the two palms of his hands were cut off upon the threshold: only the stump of Dagon was left to him.
5 Therefore the Priests of Dagon, and all that come into Dagon’s house, tread not on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod, unto this day.

6 Wherefore then should ye harden your hearts, as the Egyptians and Pharaoh hardened their hearts, when he wrought wonderfully among them, did they not let them go, and they departed?

3 Then Samuel spake unto all the house of Israel, saying, If ye be come again unto the Lord with all your heart, put away the strange gods from among you, and Ashtoreth, and direct your hearts unto the Lord, and serve him only, and he shall deliver you out of the hand of the Philistines.

(a) Editor’s notation - Source Wikipedia - Dagon was originally an East Semitic Mesopotamian (Akkadian, Assyrian, Babylonian) fertility god who evolved into a major Northwest Semitic god, reportedly of grain (as symbol of fertility) and fish and/or fishing (as symbol of multiplying). He was worshipped by the early Amorites and by the inhabitants of the cities of Ebla (modern Tell Mardikh, Syria) and Ugarit (modern Ras Shamra, Syria) (which was an ancient city near the Mediterranean containing a large variety of ancient writings and pre-Judeo-Christian shrines). He was also a major member, or perhaps head, of the pantheon of the Biblical Philistines.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

My Daily Meditation
Today’s Reading
The First Book of Samuel
Chapter 2:30, 35

Friends, regard in your hearts the words of the Lord your God.  Do not turn from Him, do not try to hide from Him, for He can discern your hearts, and can find you anywhere you think He cannot see you.  There is not one thought, or one place that you can escape His notice of you.  Come and see for yourselves  how the Lord can be good. Serve Him in the way He chooses for you to serve. As the scriptures have said, as is written, His yoke is light, and His service is easy.  

30 Wherefore the Lord God of Israel saith, I said, that thine house, and the house of thy father should walk before me forever: but now the Lord saith, It shall not be so: for them that honor me, I will honor, and they that despise me, shall be despised.
35 And I will stir me up a faithful Priest, that shall do according to mine heart, and according to my mind: and I will build him a sure house, and he shall walk before mine Anointed forever

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

My Daily Meditation
Today’s Reading
The Book of Samuel
Chapter 1:11-22
Chapter 2:1-11, 18-21

Sisters in Christ, remain steadfast in the Lord. Continue to place your trust in Him for in Him all good things come to you.  Fear not for God will put His hedge about you. If one speaks ill of you He will return those words upon that one’s head. If one mocks you, He will raise you up to place of honor.  He will surround His maidservants with a hedge of life from which she will draw her strength.  Do not be afraid to speak out in favor of the Lord or to proclaim his greatness and goodness.  For in you, the lesser vessel, is found an honor in such a way that no man can take it from you, nor can any man  imitate it. It is yours and yours alone, so that you will in all ways be deserving of praise. (a)

11 Also she vowed a vow, and said, O Lord of hosts, if thou wilt look on the trouble of thine handmaid, and remember me, and not forget thine handmaid, but give unto thine handmaid a man-child, then I will give him unto the Lord all the days of his life, and there shall no razor come upon his head.
12 And as she continued praying before the Lord, Eli marked her mouth.
13 For Hannah spake in her heart: her lips did move only, but her voice was not heard: therefore Eli thought she had been drunken.
14 And Eli said unto her, How long wilt thou be drunken? Put away thy drunkenness from thee.
15 Then Hannah answered and said, Nay my lord, but I am a woman troubled in spirit: I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but have poured out my soul before the Lord.
16 Count not thine handmaid for a wicked woman: for of the abundance of my complaint and my grief have I spoken hitherto.
17 Then Eli answered, and said, Go in peace, and the God of Israel grant thy petition that thou hast asked of him.
18 She said again, Let thine handmaid find grace in thy sight: so the woman went her way, and did eat, and looked no more sad.
19 Then they rose up early, and worshipped before the Lord, and returned, and came to their house to Ramah. Now Elkanah knew Hannah his wife, and the Lord remembered her.
20 For in process of time Hannah conceived and bare a son, and she called his name Samuel, Because, said she, I have asked him of the Lord.
21 So the man Elkanah and all his house, went up to offer unto the Lord the yearly sacrifice and his vow:
22 But Hannah went not up: for she said unto her husband, I will tarry until the child be weaned, then I will bring him that he may appear before the Lord, and there abide forever.
23 And Elkanah her husband said unto her, Do what seemeth thee best: tarry until thou hast weaned him: only the Lord accomplish his word. So the woman abode, and gave her son suck until she weaned him.
24 And when she had weaned him, she took him with her with three bullocks and an Ephah of flour and a bottle of wine, and brought him unto the house of the Lord in Shiloh, and the child was young.
25 And they slew a bullock, and brought the child to Eli.
26 And she said, Oh my Lord, as thy soul liveth, my lord, I am the woman that stood with thee here praying unto the Lord.
27 I prayed for this child, and the Lord hath given me my desire which I asked of him.
28 Therefore also I have given him unto the Lord: as long as he liveth he shall be given unto the Lord: and he worshipped the Lord there.

1 And Hannah prayed, and said, Mine heart rejoiceth in the Lord, mine horn is exalted in the Lord: my mouth is enlarged over mine enemies, because I rejoice in thy salvation.
2 There is none holy as the Lord: yea, there is none besides thee, and there is no god like our God.
3 Speak no more presumptuously: let not arrogancy come out of your mouth: for the Lord is a God of knowledge, and by him enterprises are established.
4 The bow and the mighty men are broken, and the weak have girded themselves with strength.
5 They that were full, are hired forth for bread, and the hungry are no more hired, so that the barren hath borne seven: and she that had many children is feeble.
6 The Lord killeth and maketh alive: bringeth down to the grave and raiseth up.
7 The Lord maketh poor and maketh rich: bringeth low, and exalteth.
8 He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth up the beggar from the dunghill, to set them among princes, and to make them inherit the seat of glory: for the pillars of the earth are the Lord’s, and he hath set the world upon them.
9 He will keep the feet of his Saints, and the wicked shall keep silence in darkness: for in his own might shall no man be strong.
10 The Lord’s adversaries shall be destroyed, and out of heaven shall he thunder upon them: the Lord shall judge the ends of the world, and shall give power unto his King, and exalt the horn of his Anointed.
11 And Elkanah went to Ramah to his house, and the child did minister unto the Lord before Eli the Priest.
18 Now Samuel being a young child ministered before the Lord, girded with a linen Ephod.
19 And his mother made him a little coat, and brought it to him from year to year, when she came up with her husband, to offer the yearly sacrifice.
20 And Eli blessed Elkanah and his wife, and said, The Lord give thee seed of this woman, for the petition that she asked of the Lord: and they departed unto their place.
21 And the Lord visited Hannah, so that she conceived, and bare three sons, and two daughters. And the child Samuel grew before the Lord.

(a) Editor’s notation - Read also Proverbs 31:10-31