A Cowardly Ruler Saul’s Disobedience

A Cowardly Ruler Saul’s Disobedience

Book of 1 Samuel Chapters 13-15

In last weeks lesson we saw Samuel’s last sermon to the nation of Israel. Samuel was bringing his ministry to Israel to a close. King Saul would now lead Israel and also judge Israel for 40 years.

Israel hopes are in the success of Saul as king.

We saw as the Ammonites were defeated but an enemy that still harassed Israel were still a problem. The Philistines still controlled a large portion of Israel.

The Lord had told Samuel that the new king would deliver Israel from the Philistine:

1Sa 9:16  To morrow about this time I will send thee a man out of the land of Benjamin, and thou shalt anoint him to be captain over my people Israel, [that he may save my people out of the hand of the Philistines]: for I have looked upon my people, because their cry is come unto me.

When Samuel had anointed Saul, he had told Saul that when he was anointed by the Holy Spirit and it was time to take action against the Philistines but Saul had refused up to this time.

1Sa 10:5  After that thou shalt come to the hill of God, [where is the garrison of the Philistines]: and it shall come to pass, when thou art come thither to the city, that thou shalt meet a company of prophets coming down from the high place with a psaltery, and a tabret, and a pipe, and a harp, before them; and they shall prophesy:

Saul was presented with an opportunity to remove this garrison of Philistines on this day!

In our lesson today we will see these things unfold.

Our lesson today is to know that serving the Lord means doing the right thing, at the right time, and in the right way. God expects all His people to obey His Word and follow His Will!

Disobedience always has consequences!

Let’s Begin:

*****1Sa 13:1  Saul reigned one year; and when he had reigned two years over Israel,
1Sa 13:2  Saul chose him three thousand men of Israel; whereof two thousand were with Saul in Michmash and in mount Bethel, and a thousand were with Jonathan in Gibeah of Benjamin: and the rest of the people he sent every man to his tent.

According to time lines Saul began his reign of Israel in 1051 BC and David the next king of Israel was born in 1041 BC.

Saul reigned at least two years before he began to establish an army. Over 300,000 men had offered their services to Saul in the battle with the Ammonites.

But, Saul had only chosen 3000 soldiers and then divided them between himself and his son Jonathan.

*****1Sa 13:3  And Jonathan smote the garrison of the Philistines that was in Geba, and the Philistines heard of it. And Saul blew the trumpet throughout all the land, saying, Let the Hebrews hear.

We will see this son of Saul’s, Jonathan several times in Scripture but we can see the type of this man in this verse, that Jonathan was a brave and victorious soldier.

All these signs will point us to the fact that Jonathan would probably have been a great king had his father not rejected the Lord.

The Philistines controlled Israel at this time and when Jonathan attacked and defeated this Garrison of the Philistines, it was a declaration of war and the Philistines were quick to respond.

This prompted King Saul to gather his troops at Gilgal while the Philistines gathered at Michmash.

Suddenly Saul finds himself in the situation that had been foretold by Samuel, waiting for Samuel to come to Gilgal.

Saul was to wait seven days for Samuel to arrive to offer the appropriate sacrifices.

Even though some time had passed Saul realizes that he was in this situation.

*****1Sa 13:8  And he tarried seven days, according to the set time that Samuel had appointed: but Samuel came not to Gilgal; and the people were scattered from him.
1Sa 13:9  And Saul said, Bring hither a burnt offering to me, and peace offerings. And he offered the burnt offering.
1Sa 13:10  And it came to pass, that as soon as he had made an end of offering the burnt offering, behold, Samuel came; and Saul went out to meet him, that he might salute him.

For what ever reason that Samuel was delayed, and, Saul goes ahead and offers a sacrifice and this
will bring divine judgment from the Lord.

There can only be one King/Priest and that will be King Jesus!

*****1Sa 13:13  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 now would the LORD have established thy kingdom upon Israel for ever.
1Sa 13:14  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 captain over his people, because thou hast not kept that which the LORD commanded thee.

Saul had done a foolish thing and Samuel informed him that because of this, his kingdom would not continue.

Saul is informed that the Lord was seeking a man after his own heart and Saul had failed.

This event began the downfall of King Saul!

*****1Sa 13:19  Now there was no smith found throughout all the land of Israel: for the Philistines said, Lest the Hebrews make them swords or spears:

We can see in this verse how the Philistines were denying the children of Israel the ability to defend themselves.

Today in America we call this our second amendment rights. The right to bear arms.

The right to bear arms is not only for hunting and providing food but it also gives the people the ability to defend themselves against an oppressive government.

And, the United Nations is trying to disarm the public in every nation.

The Chaldeans, had a similar policy:

2Ki 24:14  And he carried away all Jerusalem, and all the princes, and all the mighty men of valour, even ten thousand captives, and all the craftsmen and smiths: none remained, save the poorest sort of the people of the land.

The Romans also had this policy and many governments since that time, including Adolf Hitler.

Without weapons, the means to defend themselves, the children of Israel were greatly distressed

1Sa 13:6  When the men of Israel saw that they were in a strait, (for the people were distressed,) then the people did hide themselves in caves, and in thickets, and in rocks, and in high places, and in pits.

*****1Sa 14:3  And Ahiah, the son of Ahitub, Ichabod’s brother, the son of Phinehas, the son of Eli, the LORD’S priest in Shiloh, wearing an ephod. And the people knew not that Jonathan was gone.

Ahiah was now High Priest of Israel. The High Priest wore the ephod. It was the High Priest that carried the Urim and the Thummim.

At this time in Israel, we have a King whose time is doomed and the representatives of the family of Eli whose priesthood is also doomed.

"This Ahiah is probably the same as Ahimelech who Saul put to death for helping David".

*****1Sa 14:4  And between the passages, by which Jonathan sought to go over unto the Philistines’ garrison, there was a sharp rock on the one side, and a sharp rock on the other side: and the name of the one was Bozez, and the name of the other Seneh.

Jonathan had a plan to go against this Philistine garrison.

That word Bozez means "shining" but it can also mean "ooze" which could indicate a bog or a swamp.

That word Seneh means "bush" and probably a thorn bush.

Jonathan had trouble on the left and trouble on the right and straight ahead were the Philistines.

*****1Sa 14:6  And Jonathan said to the young man that bare his armour, Come, and let us go over unto the garrison of these uncircumcised: it may be that the LORD will work for us: [for there is no restraint to the LORD to save by many or by few].
1Sa 14:7  And his armourbearer said unto him, Do all that is in thine heart: turn thee; behold, I am with thee according to thy heart.
1Sa 14:8  Then said Jonathan, Behold, we will pass over unto these men, and we will discover ourselves unto them.
1Sa 14:9  If they say thus unto us, Tarry until we come to you; then we will stand still in our place, and will not go up unto them.
1Sa 14:10  But if they say thus, Come up unto us; then we will go up: for the LORD hath delivered them into our hand: and this shall be a sign unto us.

In chapter 13 we read that in the face of the enemy, Saul had panicked and not waited on Samuel.

We now see Jonathan, the son of Saul, in this chapter and how much trust and faith he had in the Lord.

There is quite a contrast between father and son!

Jonathan realizes that God is not constrained and can win a war just as easily with a few as with many.

Jesus had these words for all those that believe:

Mat 19:26  But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.

And the Apostle Paul added these words:

Rom 8:31  What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?
Rom 8:32  He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?

*****1Sa 14:18  And Saul said unto Ahiah, Bring hither the ark of God. For the ark of God was at that time with the children of Israel.
1Sa 14:19  And it came to pass, while Saul talked unto the priest, that the noise that was in the host of the Philistines went on and increased: and Saul said unto the priest, Withdraw thine hand.

This was another rash decision made by King Saul.

The Ark of God was still in the house of Abinidab even though the Tabernacle may have been in Nob at this time.

And Saul still being in a panic, would not wait on the High Priest to make contact with the Lord.

While these things were going on Saul’s army were not in the battle and were confused!

*****1Sa 14:24  And the men of Israel were distressed that day: for Saul had adjured the people, saying, Cursed be the man that eateth any food until evening, that I may be avenged on mine enemies. So none of the people tasted any food.

Here again we see another rash decision by King Saul.

Saul was so panicked that he would not wait for his army to eat and prepare for the battle and he made the taking of food a capitol crime requiring death.

The army of Saul became so exhausted for want of food, that they could not pursue their enemy!

*****1Sa 14:37  And Saul asked counsel of God, Shall I go down after the Philistines? wilt thou deliver them into the hand of Israel? But he answered him not that day.

God had already delivered the Philistines into the hand of Jonathan, so the Lord was silent at Saul’s request.

AND, it will not be very long before The Lord will cut off all contact with Saul:

1Sa 28:6  And when Saul enquired of the LORD, the LORD answered him not, neither by dreams, nor by Urim, nor by prophets.

*****1Sa 14:44  And Saul answered, God do so and more also: for thou shalt surely die, Jonathan.
1Sa 14:45  And the people said unto Saul, Shall Jonathan die, who hath wrought this great salvation in Israel? God forbid: as the LORD liveth, there shall not one hair of his head fall to the ground; for he hath wrought with God this day. So the people rescued Jonathan, that he died not.

Another reason God had rejected Saul was because of this threat to murder his own son.

Saul had foolishly ordered that no food be eaten by his troops until the Philistines were defeated.

Jonathan, his son, was unaware of this command and had eaten some honey.

The people, however, refused to let Saul carry out this foolish law and saved Jonathan from death.

God saved Israel that day but this was in spite of Saul’s stupidity through all these things:

1) Jonathan had formed the battle plan and had shown his personal courage.

2) God had sent an earthquake that caused the Philistines to tremble and be afraid.

3) There came a panic among the Philistines troops and they fled before Israel.

King Saul could not take credit for any of these things.

*****1Sa 14:52  And there was sore war against the Philistines all the days of Saul: and when Saul saw any strong man, or any valiant man, he took him unto him.

Now Saul tries to surround himself with the strongest and bravest men of all Israel.

This verse fulfills what Samuel had told Israel about their king:

1Sa 8:11  And he said, This will be the manner of the king that shall reign over you: He will take your sons, and appoint them for himself, for his chariots, and to be his horsemen; and some shall run before his chariots.
1Sa 8:12  And he will appoint him captains over thousands, and captains over fifties; and will set them to ear his ground, and to reap his harvest, and to make his instruments of war, and instruments of his chariots.

Saul began building an army but not with volunteers.

Saul began to rely on the power of the flesh and not on Power of God!

Remember Saul had not proved his leadership skills when he denied his own army the food to keep them strong and this had also denied them a total victory over the Philistine.

*****1Sa 15:1  Samuel also said unto Saul, The LORD sent me to anoint thee to be king over his people, over Israel: now therefore hearken thou unto the voice of the words of the LORD.

We will see that God did not finally reject Saul until He had given him one more opportunity to fully carrying out His commands.

We need to realize that God takes us all and puts us in certain conditions to see if we will stay obedient to His Word.

The life we now live is like being on probation!

We have the trial of Saul before us "as an example" as God will not hide anything from us!

Saul began as a humble young man who happened to be the tallest man in Israel but also had a great physique.

We will see as these things fade and fail him!

Saul’s pride in his own self and defiance of God and even later jealousy and envy take over Saul’s life and he becomes a miserable person in himself and a total wreck before his nation.

The Bible says:

1Ti 1:19  Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck:

This first King of Israel became like a shipwreck!

*****1Sa 15:2  Thus saith the LORD of hosts, I remember that which Amalek did to Israel, how he laid wait for him in the way, when he came up from Egypt.

We can see that the Lord intends to punish the Amalekites for what they did to Israel when they waylaid them as came up from Egypt!

Exo 17:8  Then came Amalek, and fought with Israel in Rephidim.

Remember Balaam and what he prophesied only because he was forced to by the Lord?

Num 24:19  Out of Jacob shall come he that shall have dominion, and shall destroy him that remaineth of the city.
Num 24:20  And when he looked on Amalek, he took up his parable, and said, "Amalek was the first of the nations; but his latter end shall be that he perish for ever".

We now read King Saul’s command.

*****1Sa 15:3  Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.

Here is what Moses had already told Israel:

Deu 25:17  Remember what Amalek did unto thee by the way, when ye were come forth out of Egypt;
Deu 25:18  How he met thee by the way, and "smote the hindmost of thee", "even all that were feeble" behind thee, "when thou wast faint and weary"; and he feared not God.
Deu 25:19  Therefore it shall be, when the LORD thy God hath given thee rest from all thine enemies round about, in the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance to possess it, that thou shalt blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven; thou shalt not forget it.

This gives us a better idea of just how cruel the people of Amalek truly were and the reason for God’s judgment upon them.

Remember in verse 2, it reads that this was the Lords punishment and when it comes to obeying the commands of the Lord we are to respond without question!

Anything less than total destruction of the Amalekites would be a failure to obey God!

In His holiness and infinite wisdom we are to completely trust knowing that He will never go beyond His own Righteousness and His Own Perfectness.

We do not yet have the wisdom of God and that will only come at the time of the Rapture, when we meet the Lord in the air:

1Jn 3:2  Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, "we shall be like him"; for we shall see him as he is.

It is at this time we will understand all things!

*****1Sa 15:7  And Saul smote the Amalekites from Havilah until thou comest to Shur, that is over against Egypt.

Saul gathered an army of 210,000 soldiers and laid wait in a valley until the Kenites had an opportunity to depart from among the Amalekites.

The Kenites were mostly traveling smiths by trade, some would say gypsies, and normally no ones enemies, though they never worshiped the Lord and always held on to their false religion.

Saul and his army won this battle but we see that Saul did not completely obey the Lord!

We also know that the Land from Havilah to Shur was the same land occupied by the descendants of Ishmael:

Gen 25:17  And these are the years of the life of Ishmael, an hundred and thirty and seven years: and he gave up the ghost and died; and was gathered unto his people.
Gen 25:18  And they dwelt from Havilah unto Shur, that is before Egypt, as thou goest toward Assyria: and he died in the presence of all his brethren.

And we know that the descendants of Esau and the descendants of Ishmael occupied the same land.

God had said:

Rom 9:13  As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.

Oba 1:10  For thy violence against thy brother Jacob shame shall cover thee, "and thou shalt be cut off for ever".

Mal 1:2  I have loved you, saith the LORD. Yet ye say, Wherein hast thou loved us? Was not Esau Jacob’s brother? saith the LORD: yet I loved Jacob,
Mal 1:3  "And I hated Esau, and laid his mountains and his heritage waste for the dragons of the wilderness".

We should never forget these words of the Lord for they still hold true today:

Gen 12:3  And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.

God will punish the wicked or He would not be God!

This promise will be kept just as all other promises will be kept!

*****1Sa 15:8  And he took Agag the king of the Amalekites alive, and utterly destroyed all the people with the edge of the sword.

Saul missed his last opportunity to preserve his kingdom for his son Jonathan, who we can see and will see could have been a great king.

Saul was showing respect to a king who ruled a people "that destroyed children" and even "those that could not defend themselves with the old" as we saw when they attacked Israel. They were also cowardly and thieves, who took what they could get from the innocent. (Deut 25:18)

The Apostle Paul used this in his sermon to the Galatians:

Gal 4:28  Now we, brethren, as Isaac was, are the children of promise.
Gal 4:29  But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now.
Gal 4:30  Nevertheless what saith the scripture? Cast out the bondwoman and her son: for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of the freewoman.
Gal 4:31  So then, brethren, we are not children of the bondwoman, but of the free.

*****1Sa 15:9  But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatlings, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them: but every thing that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly.

It has already been stated that Saul disobeyed the Lord but we now see that his army also is involved.

Saul had little control of his army and actually feared them as we will see.

This army was also not fighting for the "Glory of God", they were instead fighting for personal profit.

Saul and his army were careful to protect the innocent Kenites but God had said that everything else was "worthless" to Him.

If it was "worthless to the Lord" then it should hold no value to God’s people!

God had given King Saul another chance and he was failing miserably!

It would be these same evil people who would bring Saul to his own death.

Listen as King David questions an Amalekite:

2Sa 1:8  And he said unto me, Who art thou? And I answered him, "I am an Amalekite".
2Sa 1:9  He said unto me again, Stand, I pray thee, upon me, and slay me: for anguish is come upon me, because my life is yet whole in me.
2Sa 1:10  So I stood upon him, and slew him, because I was sure that he could not live after that he was fallen: and I took the crown that was upon his head, and the bracelet that was on his arm, and have brought them hither unto my lord.

Had Saul obeyed the Lord even this could not have happened!

We must realize that when we are not obedient to the Lord it will affect us and our families in the future, as well as today!

*****1Sa 15:10  Then came the word of the LORD unto Samuel, saying,
1Sa 15:11  It repenteth me that I have set up Saul to be king: for he is turned back from following me, and hath not performed my commandments. And it grieved Samuel; and he cried unto the LORD all night.

God cannot change His mind and still be God!

AND, God cannot go against His own character regarding sin and it’s consequences!

God explains His statement by saying Saul had turned back from following Him.

Saul had made the decision to go his own way and reject the Word of God!

Samuel had told Saul earlier these words:

1Sa 13:13  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 now would the LORD have established thy kingdom upon Israel for ever".

Saul could have been blessed with a kingdom that would have extended through his family but his own actions would cause his kingdom to end with his own 40 year reign.

Samuel had anointed Saul and we have already seen that in the life of Samuel, no one had found a blemish in his ministry.

It grieved Samuel that Saul had caused this thing to come upon Israel.

It was Israel that had demanded a king and their first king was a total failure!

*****1Sa 15:12  And when Samuel rose early to meet Saul in the morning, it was told Samuel, saying, Saul came to Carmel, and, behold, he set him up a place, and is gone about, and passed on, and gone down to Gilgal.
1Sa 15:13  And Samuel came to Saul: and Saul said unto him, Blessed be thou of the LORD: I have performed the commandment of the LORD.
1Sa 15:14  And Samuel said, What meaneth then this bleating of the sheep in mine ears, and the lowing of the oxen which I hear?

Samuel had not slept since God had made His will known to him and in this time Saul "had set up a memorial to himself" in Carmel for his victory.

Saul had ceased in the war with the Amalek with this one victory and proceeded with King Agag and those animals that were not destroyed to Gilgal to make a sacrifice before all of Israel.

Saul seemed very content with himself that he had obeyed the commandment of the Lord and he lied to Samuel about his victory not knowing that Samuel had already been informed by the Lord.

Samuel quickly responds with, "then what is all this noise coming from these animals"?

*****1Sa 15:15  And Saul said, They have brought them from the Amalekites: for the people spared the best of the sheep and of the oxen, to sacrifice unto the LORD thy God; and the rest we have utterly destroyed.

Again Saul shows the breaking down of his moral character "by laying the blame upon his army".

Saul indicates to Samuel that these were the best of the animals were only saved for the purpose of sacrifice.

We already know that God had said that these things were worthless for any purpose!

*****1Sa 15:16  Then Samuel said unto Saul, Stay, and I will tell thee what the LORD hath said to me this night. And he said unto him, Say on.
1Sa 15:17  And Samuel said, When thou wast little in thine own sight, wast thou not made the head of the tribes of Israel, and the LORD anointed thee king over Israel?
1Sa 15:18  And the LORD sent thee on a journey, and said, Go and utterly destroy the sinners the Amalekites, and fight against them until they be consumed.
1Sa 15:19  Wherefore then didst thou not obey the voice of the LORD, but didst fly upon the spoil, and didst evil in the sight of the LORD?

That word "stay" meant for Saul to stop his lies and to listen to what the Lord had to say and Saul said "say on".

Samuel reminded Saul how he had been a humble man and felt unworthy to be king but was now full of pride and arrogance, doing things in his own way.

Samuel reminded Saul that it was the Lord that sent him to destroy the Amalekites also using the word "sinners" which means God had already judged them and Saul was to be the executioner and to fight against them until "all" were destroyed.

Saul had not been obedient!

Saul had seized the spoil for his own use,"in an act of greed".

Saul had done these things knowing that nothing can be hid from the Lord.

Saul had "purposely" ignored the Word of God!

*****1Sa 15:20  And Saul said unto Samuel, Yea, I have obeyed the voice of the LORD, and have gone the way which the LORD sent me, and have brought Agag the king of Amalek, and have utterly destroyed the Amalekites.
1Sa 15:21  But the people took of the spoil, sheep and oxen, the chief of the things which should have been utterly destroyed, to sacrifice unto the LORD thy God in Gilgal.

Saul breaks in on Samuel before he finishes, not in agreement with these words from Samuel.

Saul admits to bringing back Agag but blames the taking of the spoil upon his army.

*****1Sa 15:22  And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.

Samuel says it is better to obey the Word of God, then, there would be no sacrifice needed.

We need no repentance or sacrifice for sins we have not committed!

To the Church we have these words:

1Jn 1:9  If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
1Jn 1:10  If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

These are the words of truth but if we stand on the Word of God then we would not have sin to confess:

Eph 6:13  Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, [that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, "to stand"].

If we stand on the Word of God then we will have less sin in our lives and no sacrifice is needed.

We need forgiveness only for those things that go against the Word of God!

*****1Sa 15:23  For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king.

What is the sin of witchcraft? Witchcraft is "divination" or the telling of future events.

It is a false system for trying to find the divine will of God!

Rebelling against God is going our own way!

Pro 16:25  There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, "but the end thereof are the ways of death".
And being too stubborn is to insist that your are innocent as Saul has done!

Saul was his own idol at this time!

Because he had rejected the Lord, he was therefore rejected of the Lord!

*****1Sa 15:24  And 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.
1Sa 15:25  Now therefore, I pray thee, pardon my sin, and turn again with me, that I may worship the LORD.
1Sa 15:26  And Samuel said unto Saul, I will not return with thee: for thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, and the LORD hath rejected thee from being king over Israel.

While Saul was trying to confess his sin, he began making excuses for his sin.

Saul was more concerned about his reputation before the people than in the eyes of God!

This is not an attitude of repentance!

Samuel could not join Saul because it would look like he was still in support of Saul.

Saul was rejected because he had rejected the Word of God!

Why will this earth be punished?

Jer 6:19  Hear, O earth: behold, I will bring evil upon this people, even the fruit of their thoughts, "because they have not hearkened unto my words, nor to my law, but rejected it".

We are judged by God’s Word and only God’s Word!

*****1Sa 15:27  And as Samuel turned about to go away, he laid hold upon the skirt of his mantle, and it rent.
1Sa 15:28  And Samuel said unto him, The LORD hath rent the kingdom of Israel from thee this day, and hath given it to a neighbour of thine, that is better than thou.

Because of Saul’s own evil conduct and bad behavior the kingdom of Saul would end with his reign and be given to another.

We know that this neighbor would be none other than David who would be a man after God’s own heart and therefore better than Saul whose heart had turned to himself.

*****1Sa 15:29  And also the Strength of Israel will not lie nor repent: for he is not a man, that he should repent.

It is Jehovah who is the true "Strength" of Israel and what God purposes "He will bring to pass".

God will never change His purpose!

What is God’s Purpose?

1Ti 2:3  For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour;
1Ti 2:4  Who will have all men to be saved, [and to come unto the knowledge of the truth].

God will never deviate nor repent from this purpose and those that reject Him will suffer for that choice.

2Th 2:10  And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; [because they received not the love of the truth], "that they might be saved".

*****1Sa 15:30  Then he said, I have sinned: yet honour me now, I pray thee, before the elders of my people, and before Israel, and turn again with me, that I may worship the LORD thy God.
1Sa 15:31  So Samuel turned again after Saul; and Saul worshipped the LORD.

Samuel could not pardon the sin of Saul only the Lord could do that.

It was in  the best interest of Israel for their allegiance to remain with Saul at this time, that he be not despised.

And Samuel needed to do what Saul had neglected to do!

*****1Sa 15:32  Then said Samuel, Bring ye hither to me Agag the king of the Amalekites. And Agag came unto him delicately. And Agag said, Surely the bitterness of death is past.
1Sa 15:33  And Samuel said, As thy sword hath made women childless, so shall thy mother be childless among women. And Samuel hewed Agag in pieces before the LORD in Gilgal.

This cruel king who would kill a child, even sacrificing his own children to false gods.

He murdered the old with the young.

He lived an immoral lifestyle.

He rejected the Word of God and hated God?s people.

Yet he now begged for mercy.

There would be no mercy!

*****1Sa 15:34  Then Samuel went to Ramah; and Saul went up to his house to Gibeah of Saul.
1Sa 15:35  And Samuel came no more to see Saul until the day of his death: nevertheless Samuel mourned for Saul: and the LORD repented that he had made Saul king over Israel.

Samuel went no more to council King Saul because he had been rejected of the Lord, yet he did mourn for him.

King Saul had lost his dynasty, his character, and his throne and his crown.

He had lost a godly friend in Samuel.

We will soon see David appear on the scene and Saul will loose his self control and his good sense and will soon loose it all including his own life.

This was the decision he had made for himself and the results were that he was judged by the Word of God.

Rev 20:12  And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

Questions?

Let’s Pray!

A Preaching Prophet Samuel’s Warning

A Preaching Prophet Samuel’s Warning

Text: Book of 1 Samuel Chapter 12

We did not get into Chapter 11 last week but Israel, led by their new King Saul had a major victory over the Ammonites.

God in His permissive will had allowed certain things to come to pass. The nation of Israel got what they wanted, a King, but they would now have to live with the result.

We will see as we go further into the Book of Samuel that Israel was not prepared for the outcome of their request.

Israel had been lax in their prayer life and it is important that we as the children of God consider our choices and decisions "through much prayer" to the Lord and God’s Word.

Although Israel had sinned and continue to do so, "repentance and confession" will still assure God’s forgiveness and God’s continued blessings upon them.

To the church we must realize that Jesus not only paid our sin debt with His blood, but "it was the Cross" that opened the door into the throne room of God for our prayers to reach into Heaven.

Remember the Veil was ripped into exposing the Mercy Seat to all that believe!

Repentance, God’s grace, and faithful service, are the theme of Samuel’s message in this chapter.

This was the message that Israel needed to hear.

This is also the message that the Church needs today!

If we pay attention will see that the term LORD is used 24 times in this passage.

The Hebrew word for Lord used here is "Jehovah" and it is used 6528 times in the Old Testament.

Jehovah means the eternal self existing God, The Great "I Am" of Exodus 3:14.

Jesus said in the Book of Revelation:

Rev 1:8  "I am" Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.

Let’s Begin:

*****1Sa 12:1  And Samuel said unto all Israel, Behold, I have hearkened unto your voice in all that ye said unto me, and have made a king over you.

What we see recorded in this passage is Samuel’s last public message to Israel. We will see Samuel do several things in this passage.

1) Samuel will first vindicate his life and his ministry.

2) Samuel will then step aside and turn the leadership of Israel over to King Saul.

3) But Samuel emphasizes that it is essential for Saul and Israel to remain faithful to God.

The fact that Saul had led the Army in a great victory over the Ammonites did not change the fact that their future success rested in trusting in Jehovah, Our Lord.

The Lord had made it very clear that any King of Israel was not to be like the foreign kings Israel had faced in their battles!

*****1Sa 12:2  And now, behold, the king walketh before you: and I am old and grayheaded; and, behold, my sons are with you: and I have walked before you from my childhood unto this day.

Samuel would certainly not be the last of the prophets but he would be the last of the Judges of Israel. The rule of Israel by Monarchy would begin with King Saul the first king of Israel.

This part of Samuel’s work was done!

But Samuel was still Prophet to Israel and would be until his death!

The two sons of Samuel had not been like their father but Samuel had still given them to Israel and Samuel had given his entire life to serve his nation that he loved so much.

*****1Sa 12:3  Behold, here I am: witness against me before the LORD, and before his anointed: whose ox have I taken? or whose ass have I taken? or whom have I defrauded? whom have I oppressed? or of whose hand have I received any bribe to blind mine eyes therewith? and I will restore it you.

Samuel had, had a long and blameless life.

In our day when the lives of our politicians are spread before the world to see,  none of them are found guiltless, but Samuel would have been found innocent of any wrong doing.

No one could find any fault in Samuel!

In many ways from his birth until this day in Gilgal we can see Samuel as a type of Christ.

Remember Gilgal is where Joshua had set up camp and Israel had began to occupy the land and it would be at Gilgal where they would get their new beginning under King Saul.

This should remind us that Jesus Christ is our placve of a new beginning. Jesus says we must be born again.

When Luke wrote of the Sermon of the Apostle Peter we find that Samuel had foretold of the Jesus the Messiah.

Act 3:24  Yea, and all the prophets "from Samuel" and those that follow after, as many as have spoken, have likewise foretold of these days.

Samuel was indeed instrumental in announcing the gospel!

Samuel’s childhood looked forward to that of Jesus, and his loyal ministry under Eli the high priest, is an example for all of us in service before our faithful High Priest, Christ Jesus!

Later we will even see where Samuel will anoint King David, "a type" and an ancestor of our great King who will return to judge this world, King Jesus.

And We know that Samuel’s prayers could reach into Heaven and was heard of Our Lord:

Psa 99:5  Exalt ye the LORD our God, and worship at his footstool; for he is holy.
Psa 99:6  Moses and Aaron among his priests, "and Samuel" among them that call upon his name; "they called upon the LORD, and he answered them".
Psa 99:7  He spake unto them in the cloudy pillar: they kept his testimonies, and the ordinance that he gave them.

Samuel had a great testimony this day and Israel only recognized part of it.

*****1Sa 12:4  And they said, Thou hast not defrauded us, nor oppressed us, neither hast thou taken ought of any man’s hand.
1Sa 12:5  And he said unto them, The LORD is witness against you, and his anointed is witness this day, that ye have not found ought in my hand. And they answered, He is witness.

Israel admitted before the Lord that they had no grounds for any dissatisfaction with Samuel and they way he had judged them.

The life of Samuel had provided a standard for King Saul and any future king to meet.

Verse five states that Saul had also witnessed this testimony of Samuel.

Again we see Samuel as "a type" of Christ.

You see when we give our testimony, King Jesus is also our witness to the truth of that testimony.

Listen to the words of Jesus in His testimony:

Joh 8:46  "Which of you convinceth me of sin"? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me?
Joh 8:47  He that is of God heareth God’s words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God.

Their was not one witness to any sin in the Lord Jesus Christ!

Samuel was giving Israel and King Saul the truth of God, just as Jesus gives us the truth of God’s Word.

To the world we live in, Jesus ask this question. Why do you not believe me?

And just like Israel we have no excuse!

*****1Sa 12:6  And Samuel said unto the people, It is the LORD that advanced Moses and Aaron, and that brought your fathers up out of the land of Egypt.
1Sa 12:7  Now therefore stand still, that I may reason with you before the LORD of all the righteous acts of the LORD, which he did to you and to your fathers.

Now Samuel explains to these people that it was God and not any man, that had done so many great things for them.

It was the Lord who had raised up Moses and Aaron and made them the deliverers of Israel from the bondage of Egypt.

There are those that think they can work there way into Heaven, but if God had chosen us for our good merits, then we would also have the fear that He would casts us away.

Those that believe in works, live in fear of losing their salvation!

But God chose us in Christ Jesus, before the foundation of this world we live in, "For His Names Sake".

HE CANNOT LOSE ANY OF US!

But our Lord does work through humans!

Israel owed it’s entire existence to Jehovah God but they also owed Him their blessings and their sincere worship!

We seem to forget proper worship also comes with salvation.

God deserves our praise!

The Lord had given Samuel to Israel from his childhood and he had led them in the ways of the Lord and had not faulted in any way.

We need to remember all those who the Lord has placed in our lives to lead and guide us in the ways of salvation!

The Lord always knows who we need and what we need but He also knows where we need Him!

The Bible teaches us:

Php 4:19  But my God shall supply all your need "according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus".

You see, we all need Jesus Christ to be a complete Christian!

*****1Sa 12:8  When Jacob was come into Egypt, and your fathers cried unto the LORD, then the LORD sent Moses and Aaron, which brought forth your fathers out of Egypt, and made them dwell in this place.

Samuel reminds Israel that God had always raised up deliverers in their times of trouble.

They had been made slaves in Egypt.

They had suffered intensely under a tyrant who took all their personal freedoms and had broken their spirits.

But God had heard their cry and sent Moses and Aaron to deliver them.

Moses has led them to the land promised to Abraham  and Joshua had led them into that promised land.

But they had soon forgotten again what the Lord had done!

*****1Sa 12:9  And when they forgat the LORD their God, he sold them into the hand of Sisera, captain of the host of Hazor, and into the hand of the Philistines, and into the hand of the king of Moab, and they fought against them.
1Sa 12:10  And they cried unto the LORD, and said, We have sinned, because we have forsaken the LORD, and have served Baalim and Ashtaroth: but now deliver us out of the hand of our enemies, and we will serve thee.

They had forgotten God’s deliverance and had gone back to their old ways of worshiping idols and false gods and again they came under the control of foreign powers.

Many think America is too strong for this to ever happen but they have forgotten "Who Actually Sits On The Throne" just as Israel had forgotten!

Joshua had defeated Hazor, but while Israel fell into false worship, another king, King Jabin came into power and sent Sisera  to capture Israel.

BUT, Israel repented again and God sent Barak along with Deborah to deliver them.

God had delivered them many times from the hands of the Philistines.

And, God had delivered Israel out of the hands of King Eglon of Moab.

*****1Sa 12:11  And the LORD sent Jerubbaal, and Bedan, and Jephthah, and Samuel, and delivered you out of the hand of your enemies on every side, and ye dwelled safe.

In the time of the Judges, God had sent Gideon to deliver Israel.

God had sent Bedan. No one is sure if this was Samson, Barak, or Abdon but God sent another deliverer.

And, God sent Jephthah who again defeated the Ammonites, and now Samuel had been their deliverer until the time of King Saul.

*****1Sa 12:12  And when ye saw that Nahash the king of the children of Ammon came against you, ye said unto me, Nay; but a king shall reign over us: when the LORD your God was your king.
1Sa 12:13  Now therefore behold the king whom ye have chosen, and whom ye have desired! and, behold, the LORD hath set a king over you.

Samuel has reminded the children of Israel that it was God who had delivered them all these times, and Samuel drove home the point that it is the Lord who is ultimately Israel’s Savior and not any of these men he mentioned.

Israel’s security depends on the Lord and not on some human leader. It did then and it does now!

And Samuel says "behold"!

Samuel says since I have reminded you that God shall deliver, look upon your king that you have desired.

Samuel was saying that this king cannot do the things of God!

But because you have demanded him, the Lord has set a king over you.

During the time of  the Apostle Paul, he also reminded Israel of this day:

Act 13:19  And when he had destroyed seven nations in the land of Chanaan, he divided their land to them by lot.
Act 13:20  And after that he gave unto them judges about the space of four hundred and fifty years, until Samuel the prophet.
Act 13:21  And afterward they desired a king: and God gave unto them Saul the son of Cis, a man of the tribe of Benjamin, by the space of forty years.

Paul was telling Israel that they had not changed in their ways all these years!

The Lord Jehovah had chosen to be Israel’s king back in the Book of Exodus:

Exo 15:18  The LORD shall reign for ever and ever.

And the Prophet Hosea gave us these words:

Hos 13:9  O Israel, thou hast destroyed thyself; but in me is thine help.
Hos 13:10  "I will be thy king": where is any other that may save thee in all thy cities? and thy judges of whom thou saidst, Give me a king and princes?
Hos 13:11  I gave thee a king in mine anger, and took him away in my wrath.

The Lord will be the King of Israel on this earth but that time has not yet come!

King Jesus is coming!

But we can go ahead and sing His Praises now!

The Bible teaches us in the Book of Psalms with these words:

Psa 47:6  Sing praises to God, sing praises: "sing praises unto our King", sing praises.
Psa 47:7  "For God is the King of all the earth": sing ye praises with understanding.
Psa 47:8  God reigneth over the heathen: God sitteth upon the throne of his holiness.
Psa 47:9  The princes of the people are gathered together, even the people of the God of Abraham: for the shields of the earth belong unto God: he is greatly exalted.

*****1Sa 12:14  If ye will fear the LORD, and serve him, and obey his voice, and not rebel against the commandment of the LORD, then shall both ye and also the king that reigneth over you continue following the LORD your God:
1Sa 12:15  But if ye will not obey the voice of the LORD, but rebel against the commandment of the LORD, then shall the hand of the LORD be against you, as it was against your fathers.

Now Samuel gives God’s warning to Israel.

Samuel warned the people of Israel against substituting the honor and fear of Jehovah, their true King, with that of a man who was some earthly king.

Saul was just a human, just like everyone that met that day in Gilgal and they were encouraged to never forsake the fear of the Lord because that will always bring the judgment of the Lord!

God would bless Israel "in plain sight of their enemies" but if they forsake the Lord God would also punish Israel "in plain sight of their enemies" and they would be a great price!

AND, History has borne this out!

*****1Sa 12:16  Now therefore stand and see this great thing, which the LORD will do before your eyes.
1Sa 12:17  Is it not wheat harvest to day? I will call unto the LORD, and he shall send thunder and rain; that ye may perceive and see that your wickedness is great, which ye have done in the sight of the LORD, in asking you a king.

We know that throughout time Israel has required a sign!

Israel was born out of signs and wonders!

Israel became a national entity when God brought them out of Egypt, with many great signs and wonders that occurred at that time.

The Bible teaches us:

1Co 1:22  For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom:

The Jews had always been used to miracles to confirm the word of the prophets!

Samuel knew this and told them he would call on the Lord.

Today we would say that "thunder and rain" was not much of a sign.

But rain usually fell in Judea only twice a year and was called "the former rain" and "the latter rain" but rain never fell on the days of the harvest.

During harvest days the skies were clear and cloudless.

So, Israel did not question that this was a great miracle that could only have come form Jehovah at the request of Samuel!

*****1Sa 12:18  So Samuel called unto the LORD; and the LORD sent thunder and rain that day: and all the people greatly feared the LORD and Samuel.
1Sa 12:19  And all the people said unto Samuel, Pray for thy servants unto the LORD thy God, that we die not: for we have added unto all our sins this evil, to ask us a king.

This was such an unusual thing that came by the prayer of Samuel, that the people of Israel knew it was a miracle came from God.

The power of God has and is often shown in the elements!

God is the Creator and the Sustainer of this universe we live in!

The entire universe is under the control of our Lord!

It was possible that this one storm could have destroyed the entire wheat harvest of Israel.

The Bible does not say that God destroyed that wheat harvest but in that brief moment the people stood in awe of both Samuel and Jehovah God.

But Israel still had a reoccurring problem and the Book of Psalms describes this problem.

Psa 106:12  Then believed they his words; they sang his praise.
Psa 106:13  They soon forgat his works; they waited not for his counsel:

Israel believed the Word of God and gave Him Praise, BUT they soon forgot God’s "grace" and went back to doing things their own way!

This happened over and over again.

But for us to look upon Israel in judgment would be wrong because we that are saved have this same problem!

We soon forget how good the Lord has been to us in our salvation and many slip back into their old ways and all of us are still sinners being saved only by the "Grace" of God!

*****1Sa 12:20  And Samuel said unto the people, Fear not: ye have done all this wickedness: yet turn not aside from following the LORD, but serve the LORD with all your heart;
1Sa 12:21  And turn ye not aside: for then should ye go after vain things, which cannot profit nor deliver; for they are vain.

There is only one reason God will not abandon this people!

"For His Name’s Sake!

Psa 106:8  Nevertheless he saved them "for his name’s sake", that he might make his mighty power to be known.

Not because it was true that they were worthy, for they were not.

Not because they were righteous, because they were certainly a rebellious and disobedient people.

But  "For His Name’s Sake"!

Six times the Bible says that  Jehovah God is the God of the Hebrews!

God is still the God of the Hebrews but he is also the God of the Church!

Got had made Himself known to Israel by bringing them out of Egypt and He would not abandon them now because He is still the God of the Hebrews.

The "power of God" is in His grace and His mercy, and in His justice and His Holiness, and in His Almighty power, and in His goodness, and most important in His truth!

It is important for the world to understand that God will save His people!

BUT, Everything we put before God is a vain thing just as any idol.

*****1Sa 12:22  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.

We will make mistakes after our salvation but remember God will not abandon His people!

Let’s remember these words of Jesus:

Joh 15:16  Ye have not chosen me, "but I have chosen you", and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.

Jesus chooses all that believe upon Him to be saved!

The Apostle Paul wrote to the Saints in Rome these words:

Rom 11:29  For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.

Salvation is the free gift of God!

Rom 10:13  For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

And we have this promise:

Php 1:6  Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you "will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ":

But Israel also has this promise:

Rom 11:26  And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob:

During the time of the Church all that call of the Lord Jesus Christ shall be saved.

After the end of church age, or after the Rapture of the church, which is the same thing, Israel will be saved at the Second Coming of Christ.

God took great pleasure  in saving us:

Heb 12:2  Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; "who for the joy that was set before him" endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

And God will take great pleasure in coming after His chosen people, the Church and Israel.

*****1Sa 12:23  Moreover as for me, God forbid that I should sin against the LORD in ceasing to pray for you: but I will teach you the good and the right way:

What we should see here is  that we are in sin when we do not pray for all of God’s people!

We need to pray for the church, for the church is God’s people!

But we also need to pray for Israel as we have just proven, that they are still God’s people!

And we must not forget, we must pray for "the lost" that they will come to know the Lord Jesus Christ as their Savior and become God’s people.

It is a terrible sin to not pray!

God had been rejected by Israel and replaced by King Saul.

Samuel had been rejected by Israel and would no longer be judge of Israel but would still be God’s called prophet.

BUT, it was still Samuel’s job to teach the good and right way to reach the Lord!

And that will also, always be our number one job!

*****1Sa 12:24  Only fear the LORD, and serve him in truth with all your heart: for consider how great things he hath done for you.

The Bible says the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom!

But we must serve the Lord with all our heart.

We must serve the Lord faithfully! 

This was true for Israel then and this is true for the church today!

There is no guess work when it comes to serving the Lord!

God gives us His Bible, which is the Word of Truth.

2Pe 1:20  Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.

We are to obey the Word of the Lord for what it says and "not for what we think it says"!

*****1Sa 12:25  But if ye shall still do wickedly, ye shall be consumed, both ye and your king.

The people of Israel had sinned in desiring a King but God would help them if they feared Him and obeyed Him.

There is no king or ruler of any nation and no government that we should place before the Lord!

Israel had received what they asked for! 

Israel would now have to live with the request that they had made!

But God will not ever abandon Israel.

And, God will never abandon His Church!

We will make many mistakes as we serve the Lord! 

And God will sometimes give us things that are not in our best interest.

No matter how we fail Him, the Lord expects us to repent, take our chastisement, and get back in the fight because the work of the Lord must go on until He returns!

And He Will Return!

Questions?

Let’s Pray!

A Preaching Prophet Samuel’s Warning

A Preaching Prophet Samuel’s Warning

Text: Book of 1 Samuel Chapter 12

We did not get into Chapter 11 last week but Israel, led by their new King Saul had a major victory over the Ammonites.

God in His permissive will had allowed certain things to come to pass. The nation of Israel got what they wanted, a King, but they would now have to live with the result.

We will see as we go further into the Book of Samuel that Israel was not prepared for the outcome of their request.

Israel had been lax in their prayer life and it is important that we as the children of God consider our choices and decisions "through much prayer" to the Lord and God’s Word.

Although Israel had sinned and continue to do so, "repentance and confession" will still assure God’s forgiveness and God’s continued blessings upon them.

To the church we must realize that Jesus not only paid our sin debt with His blood, but "it was the Cross" that opened the door into the throne room of God for our prayers to reach into Heaven.

Remember the Veil was ripped into exposing the Mercy Seat to all that believe!

Repentance, God’s grace, and faithful service, are the theme of Samuel’s message in this chapter.

This was the message that Israel needed to hear.

This is also the message that the Church needs today!

If we pay attention will see that the term LORD is used 24 times in this passage.

The Hebrew word for Lord used here is "Jehovah" and it is used 6528 times in the Old Testament.

Jehovah means the eternal self existing God, The Great "I Am" of Exodus 3:14.

Jesus said in the Book of Revelation:

Rev 1:8  "I am" Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.

Let’s Begin:

*****1Sa 12:1  And Samuel said unto all Israel, Behold, I have hearkened unto your voice in all that ye said unto me, and have made a king over you.

What we see recorded in this passage is Samuel’s last public message to Israel. We will see Samuel do several things in this passage.

1) Samuel will first vindicate his life and his ministry.

2) Samuel will then step aside and turn the leadership of Israel over to King Saul.

3) But Samuel emphasizes that it is essential for Saul and Israel to remain faithful to God.

The fact that Saul had led the Army in a great victory over the Ammonites did not change the fact that their future success rested in trusting in Jehovah, Our Lord.

The Lord had made it very clear that any King of Israel was not to be like the foreign kings Israel had faced in their battles!

*****1Sa 12:2  And now, behold, the king walketh before you: and I am old and grayheaded; and, behold, my sons are with you: and I have walked before you from my childhood unto this day.

Samuel would certainly not be the last of the prophets but he would be the last of the Judges of Israel. The rule of Israel by Monarchy would begin with King Saul the first king of Israel.

This part of Samuel’s work was done!

But Samuel was still Prophet to Israel and would be until his death!

The two sons of Samuel had not been like their father but Samuel had still given them to Israel and Samuel had given his entire life to serve his nation that he loved so much.

*****1Sa 12:3  Behold, here I am: witness against me before the LORD, and before his anointed: whose ox have I taken? or whose ass have I taken? or whom have I defrauded? whom have I oppressed? or of whose hand have I received any bribe to blind mine eyes therewith? and I will restore it you.

Samuel had, had a long and blameless life.

In our day when the lives of our politicians are spread before the world to see,  none of them are found guiltless, but Samuel would have been found innocent of any wrong doing.

No one could find any fault in Samuel!

In many ways from his birth until this day in Gilgal we can see Samuel as a type of Christ.

Remember Gilgal is where Joshua had set up camp and Israel had began to occupy the land and it would be at Gilgal where they would get their new beginning under King Saul.

This should remind us that Jesus Christ is our placve of a new beginning. Jesus says we must be born again.

When Luke wrote of the Sermon of the Apostle Peter we find that Samuel had foretold of the Jesus the Messiah.

Act 3:24  Yea, and all the prophets "from Samuel" and those that follow after, as many as have spoken, have likewise foretold of these days.

Samuel was indeed instrumental in announcing the gospel!

Samuel’s childhood looked forward to that of Jesus, and his loyal ministry under Eli the high priest, is an example for all of us in service before our faithful High Priest, Christ Jesus!

Later we will even see where Samuel will anoint King David, "a type" and an ancestor of our great King who will return to judge this world, King Jesus.

And We know that Samuel’s prayers could reach into Heaven and was heard of Our Lord:

Psa 99:5  Exalt ye the LORD our God, and worship at his footstool; for he is holy.
Psa 99:6  Moses and Aaron among his priests, "and Samuel" among them that call upon his name; "they called upon the LORD, and he answered them".
Psa 99:7  He spake unto them in the cloudy pillar: they kept his testimonies, and the ordinance that he gave them.

Samuel had a great testimony this day and Israel only recognized part of it.

*****1Sa 12:4  And they said, Thou hast not defrauded us, nor oppressed us, neither hast thou taken ought of any man’s hand.
1Sa 12:5  And he said unto them, The LORD is witness against you, and his anointed is witness this day, that ye have not found ought in my hand. And they answered, He is witness.

Israel admitted before the Lord that they had no grounds for any dissatisfaction with Samuel and they way he had judged them.

The life of Samuel had provided a standard for King Saul and any future king to meet.

Verse five states that Saul had also witnessed this testimony of Samuel.

Again we see Samuel as "a type" of Christ.

You see when we give our testimony, King Jesus is also our witness to the truth of that testimony.

Listen to the words of Jesus in His testimony:

Joh 8:46  "Which of you convinceth me of sin"? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me?
Joh 8:47  He that is of God heareth God’s words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God.

Their was not one witness to any sin in the Lord Jesus Christ!

Samuel was giving Israel and King Saul the truth of God, just as Jesus gives us the truth of God’s Word.

To the world we live in, Jesus ask this question. Why do you not believe me?

And just like Israel we have no excuse!

*****1Sa 12:6  And Samuel said unto the people, It is the LORD that advanced Moses and Aaron, and that brought your fathers up out of the land of Egypt.
1Sa 12:7  Now therefore stand still, that I may reason with you before the LORD of all the righteous acts of the LORD, which he did to you and to your fathers.

Now Samuel explains to these people that it was God and not any man, that had done so many great things for them.

It was the Lord who had raised up Moses and Aaron and made them the deliverers of Israel from the bondage of Egypt.

There are those that think they can work there way into Heaven, but if God had chosen us for our good merits, then we would also have the fear that He would casts us away.

Those that believe in works, live in fear of losing their salvation!

But God chose us in Christ Jesus, before the foundation of this world we live in, "For His Names Sake".

HE CANNOT LOSE ANY OF US!

But our Lord does work through humans!

Israel owed it’s entire existence to Jehovah God but they also owed Him their blessings and their sincere worship!

We seem to forget proper worship also comes with salvation.

God deserves our praise!

The Lord had given Samuel to Israel from his childhood and he had led them in the ways of the Lord and had not faulted in any way.

We need to remember all those who the Lord has placed in our lives to lead and guide us in the ways of salvation!

The Lord always knows who we need and what we need but He also knows where we need Him!

The Bible teaches us:

Php 4:19  But my God shall supply all your need "according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus".

You see, we all need Jesus Christ to be a complete Christian!

*****1Sa 12:8  When Jacob was come into Egypt, and your fathers cried unto the LORD, then the LORD sent Moses and Aaron, which brought forth your fathers out of Egypt, and made them dwell in this place.

Samuel reminds Israel that God had always raised up deliverers in their times of trouble.

They had been made slaves in Egypt.

They had suffered intensely under a tyrant who took all their personal freedoms and had broken their spirits.

But God had heard their cry and sent Moses and Aaron to deliver them.

Moses has led them to the land promised to Abraham  and Joshua had led them into that promised land.

But they had soon forgotten again what the Lord had done!

*****1Sa 12:9  And when they forgat the LORD their God, he sold them into the hand of Sisera, captain of the host of Hazor, and into the hand of the Philistines, and into the hand of the king of Moab, and they fought against them.
1Sa 12:10  And they cried unto the LORD, and said, We have sinned, because we have forsaken the LORD, and have served Baalim and Ashtaroth: but now deliver us out of the hand of our enemies, and we will serve thee.

They had forgotten God’s deliverance and had gone back to their old ways of worshiping idols and false gods and again they came under the control of foreign powers.

Many think America is too strong for this to ever happen but they have forgotten "Who Actually Sits On The Throne" just as Israel had forgotten!

Joshua had defeated Hazor, but while Israel fell into false worship, another king, King Jabin came into power and sent Sisera  to capture Israel.

BUT, Israel repented again and God sent Barak along with Deborah to deliver them.

God had delivered them many times from the hands of the Philistines.

And, God had delivered Israel out of the hands of King Eglon of Moab.

*****1Sa 12:11  And the LORD sent Jerubbaal, and Bedan, and Jephthah, and Samuel, and delivered you out of the hand of your enemies on every side, and ye dwelled safe.

In the time of the Judges, God had sent Gideon to deliver Israel.

God had sent Bedan. No one is sure if this was Samson, Barak, or Abdon but God sent another deliverer.

And, God sent Jephthah who again defeated the Ammonites, and now Samuel had been their deliverer until the time of King Saul.

*****1Sa 12:12  And when ye saw that Nahash the king of the children of Ammon came against you, ye said unto me, Nay; but a king shall reign over us: when the LORD your God was your king.
1Sa 12:13  Now therefore behold the king whom ye have chosen, and whom ye have desired! and, behold, the LORD hath set a king over you.

Samuel has reminded the children of Israel that it was God who had delivered them all these times, and Samuel drove home the point that it is the Lord who is ultimately Israel’s Savior and not any of these men he mentioned.

Israel’s security depends on the Lord and not on some human leader. It did then and it does now!

And Samuel says "behold"!

Samuel says since I have reminded you that God shall deliver, look upon your king that you have desired.

Samuel was saying that this king cannot do the things of God!

But because you have demanded him, the Lord has set a king over you.

During the time of  the Apostle Paul, he also reminded Israel of this day:

Act 13:19  And when he had destroyed seven nations in the land of Chanaan, he divided their land to them by lot.
Act 13:20  And after that he gave unto them judges about the space of four hundred and fifty years, until Samuel the prophet.
Act 13:21  And afterward they desired a king: and God gave unto them Saul the son of Cis, a man of the tribe of Benjamin, by the space of forty years.

Paul was telling Israel that they had not changed in their ways all these years!

The Lord Jehovah had chosen to be Israel’s king back in the Book of Exodus:

Exo 15:18  The LORD shall reign for ever and ever.

And the Prophet Hosea gave us these words:

Hos 13:9  O Israel, thou hast destroyed thyself; but in me is thine help.
Hos 13:10  "I will be thy king": where is any other that may save thee in all thy cities? and thy judges of whom thou saidst, Give me a king and princes?
Hos 13:11  I gave thee a king in mine anger, and took him away in my wrath.

The Lord will be the King of Israel on this earth but that time has not yet come!

King Jesus is coming!

But we can go ahead and sing His Praises now!

The Bible teaches us in the Book of Psalms with these words:

Psa 47:6  Sing praises to God, sing praises: "sing praises unto our King", sing praises.
Psa 47:7  "For God is the King of all the earth": sing ye praises with understanding.
Psa 47:8  God reigneth over the heathen: God sitteth upon the throne of his holiness.
Psa 47:9  The princes of the people are gathered together, even the people of the God of Abraham: for the shields of the earth belong unto God: he is greatly exalted.

*****1Sa 12:14  If ye will fear the LORD, and serve him, and obey his voice, and not rebel against the commandment of the LORD, then shall both ye and also the king that reigneth over you continue following the LORD your God:
1Sa 12:15  But if ye will not obey the voice of the LORD, but rebel against the commandment of the LORD, then shall the hand of the LORD be against you, as it was against your fathers.

Now Samuel gives God’s warning to Israel.

Samuel warned the people of Israel against substituting the honor and fear of Jehovah, their true King, with that of a man who was some earthly king.

Saul was just a human, just like everyone that met that day in Gilgal and they were encouraged to never forsake the fear of the Lord because that will always bring the judgment of the Lord!

God would bless Israel "in plain sight of their enemies" but if they forsake the Lord God would also punish Israel "in plain sight of their enemies" and they would be a great price!

AND, History has borne this out!

*****1Sa 12:16  Now therefore stand and see this great thing, which the LORD will do before your eyes.
1Sa 12:17  Is it not wheat harvest to day? I will call unto the LORD, and he shall send thunder and rain; that ye may perceive and see that your wickedness is great, which ye have done in the sight of the LORD, in asking you a king.

We know that throughout time Israel has required a sign!

Israel was born out of signs and wonders!

Israel became a national entity when God brought them out of Egypt, with many great signs and wonders that occurred at that time.

The Bible teaches us:

1Co 1:22  For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom:

The Jews had always been used to miracles to confirm the word of the prophets!

Samuel knew this and told them he would call on the Lord.

Today we would say that "thunder and rain" was not much of a sign.

But rain usually fell in Judea only twice a year and was called "the former rain" and "the latter rain" but rain never fell on the days of the harvest.

During harvest days the skies were clear and cloudless.

So, Israel did not question that this was a great miracle that could only have come form Jehovah at the request of Samuel!

*****1Sa 12:18  So Samuel called unto the LORD; and the LORD sent thunder and rain that day: and all the people greatly feared the LORD and Samuel.
1Sa 12:19  And all the people said unto Samuel, Pray for thy servants unto the LORD thy God, that we die not: for we have added unto all our sins this evil, to ask us a king.

This was such an unusual thing that came by the prayer of Samuel, that the people of Israel knew it was a miracle came from God.

The power of God has and is often shown in the elements!

God is the Creator and the Sustainer of this universe we live in!

The entire universe is under the control of our Lord!

It was possible that this one storm could have destroyed the entire wheat harvest of Israel.

The Bible does not say that God destroyed that wheat harvest but in that brief moment the people stood in awe of both Samuel and Jehovah God.

But Israel still had a reoccurring problem and the Book of Psalms describes this problem.

Psa 106:12  Then believed they his words; they sang his praise.
Psa 106:13  They soon forgat his works; they waited not for his counsel:

Israel believed the Word of God and gave Him Praise, BUT they soon forgot God’s "grace" and went back to doing things their own way!

This happened over and over again.

But for us to look upon Israel in judgment would be wrong because we that are saved have this same problem!

We soon forget how good the Lord has been to us in our salvation and many slip back into their old ways and all of us are still sinners being saved only by the "Grace" of God!

*****1Sa 12:20  And Samuel said unto the people, Fear not: ye have done all this wickedness: yet turn not aside from following the LORD, but serve the LORD with all your heart;
1Sa 12:21  And turn ye not aside: for then should ye go after vain things, which cannot profit nor deliver; for they are vain.

There is only one reason God will not abandon this people!

"For His Name’s Sake!

Psa 106:8  Nevertheless he saved them "for his name’s sake", that he might make his mighty power to be known.

Not because it was true that they were worthy, for they were not.

Not because they were righteous, because they were certainly a rebellious and disobedient people.

But  "For His Name’s Sake"!

Six times the Bible says that  Jehovah God is the God of the Hebrews!

God is still the God of the Hebrews but he is also the God of the Church!

Got had made Himself known to Israel by bringing them out of Egypt and He would not abandon them now because He is still the God of the Hebrews.

The "power of God" is in His grace and His mercy, and in His justice and His Holiness, and in His Almighty power, and in His goodness, and most important in His truth!

It is important for the world to understand that God will save His people!

BUT, Everything we put before God is a vain thing just as any idol.

*****1Sa 12:22  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.

We will make mistakes after our salvation but remember God will not abandon His people!

Let’s remember these words of Jesus:

Joh 15:16  Ye have not chosen me, "but I have chosen you", and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.

Jesus chooses all that believe upon Him to be saved!

The Apostle Paul wrote to the Saints in Rome these words:

Rom 11:29  For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.

Salvation is the free gift of God!

Rom 10:13  For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

And we have this promise:

Php 1:6  Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you "will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ":

But Israel also has this promise:

Rom 11:26  And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob:

During the time of the Church all that call of the Lord Jesus Christ shall be saved.

After the end of church age, or after the Rapture of the church, which is the same thing, Israel will be saved at the Second Coming of Christ.

God took great pleasure  in saving us:

Heb 12:2  Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; "who for the joy that was set before him" endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

And God will take great pleasure in coming after His chosen people, the Church and Israel.

*****1Sa 12:23  Moreover as for me, God forbid that I should sin against the LORD in ceasing to pray for you: but I will teach you the good and the right way:

What we should see here is  that we are in sin when we do not pray for all of God’s people!

We need to pray for the church, for the church is God’s people!

But we also need to pray for Israel as we have just proven, that they are still God’s people!

And we must not forget, we must pray for "the lost" that they will come to know the Lord Jesus Christ as their Savior and become God’s people.

It is a terrible sin to not pray!

God had been rejected by Israel and replaced by King Saul.

Samuel had been rejected by Israel and would no longer be judge of Israel but would still be God’s called prophet.

BUT, it was still Samuel’s job to teach the good and right way to reach the Lord!

And that will also, always be our number one job!

*****1Sa 12:24  Only fear the LORD, and serve him in truth with all your heart: for consider how great things he hath done for you.

The Bible says the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom!

But we must serve the Lord with all our heart.

We must serve the Lord faithfully! 

This was true for Israel then and this is true for the church today!

There is no guess work when it comes to serving the Lord!

God gives us His Bible, which is the Word of Truth.

2Pe 1:20  Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.

We are to obey the Word of the Lord for what it says and "not for what we think it says"!

*****1Sa 12:25  But if ye shall still do wickedly, ye shall be consumed, both ye and your king.

The people of Israel had sinned in desiring a King but God would help them if they feared Him and obeyed Him.

There is no king or ruler of any nation and no government that we should place before the Lord!

Israel had received what they asked for! 

Israel would now have to live with the request that they had made!

But God will not ever abandon Israel.

And, God will never abandon His Church!

We will make many mistakes as we serve the Lord! 

And God will sometimes give us things that are not in our best interest.

No matter how we fail Him, the Lord expects us to repent, take our chastisement, and get back in the fight because the work of the Lord must go on until He returns!

And He Will Return!

Questions?

Let’s Pray!

A Coveted King Israel Makes A Choice

A Coveted King – Israel Makes A Choice

Book of 1 Samuel Chapters 9-11

It would have been very easy to title this lesson the permissive will of God. The decisions we make can change our lives forever. In fact some people are in such a position that the decisions they make can affect the entire world.

In most cases we just do what we do without thinking of the consequences of our choices!

When we do not place our trust in the Lord God for every situation that comes into our lives then we will make the wrong decisions!

The people of Israel would get what they asked for through the permissive will of God.

The people of Israel have lived with this decision up until the day we live in right now!

In learning from these lessons we need to also acknowledge the "providence" of God!

God will guide His plan of "salvation" into a perfect ending!

Israel had a king, including the Herods for more than 570 years!

Israel’s first king was King Saul.

Let’s begin our lesson:

*****1Sa 9:1  Now there was a man of Benjamin, whose name was Kish, the son of Abiel, the son of Zeror, the son of Bechorath, the son of Aphiah, a Benjamite, a mighty man of power.

Benjamin was the last of the sons of Jacob. Of this tribe there was a man named Kish.

Kish was the father of the first King of Israel, Saul. The one thing that we know about Kish is that he was a mighty man of power.

Kish had great wealth and great substance and his family was regarded highly in the tribe of Benjamin.

And Kish was also a man of considerable physical strength.

*****1Sa 9:2  And he had a son, whose name was Saul, a choice young man, and a goodly: and there was not among the children of Israel a goodlier person than he: from his shoulders and upward he was higher than any of the people.

Saul was a man with a fine appearance according to the Bible. Saul was probably close to 7 feet tall and Saul had the body of an athlete.

There was none other like Saul throughout Israel!

Saul was a great physical specimen of a man.

The name Saul means "asked for".

We can see that Israel was far more interested "in the physical things of government" than in their spiritual relationship with God.

Saul came to the attention of Samuel as he was searching for the families lost donkeys. Saul and one of his servants had searched for these animals for a long period of time and when they can could not find them Saul’s servant persuaded him to consult the man of God, this would of been Samuel.

At this time of Samuel, the true prophets of God were called Seer’s.

Zadok and Gad were also called Seers.

Some have thought that a seer was only a recorder of the events of the king’s reign and a prophet was one who acted in the Lords name, and by the Lord’s authority.

Some Seers were also called prophets and some were not but the Hebrew word "raah" used here for Seer is used 1308 times in the Old Testament mostly concerning seeing or being seen.

Samuel was sought out by Saul, not because he was God’s "voice"  but because he was a "Seer".

We can see here that Saul had not observe the annual "feasts of the Lord" because he did not know Samuel.

It was probably evening time when Saul arrived at Ramah because the young ladies were going out to draw water as they did in the evening or the cool of the day.

By this time it is believed that Shiloh had been destroyed and we know that the Ark of the Covenant was not at Shiloh and therefore no worship services were held in Shiloh.

The name Ramah,  the home of Samuel,  actually means "high place" and it seems that this is the place were at least some sacrifices were offered.

And, we should remember that during the period when Shiloh had been destroyed it seems that that Tabernacle was moved to Nob and then to Gibeon, probably by Saul, and worship was in Gibeon until the time that Solomon built the Temple.

During this time of Samuel it seems that the people of Israel worshiped in high places because there was no house built for the Lord.

We should remember Noah built his altar to the Lord while he was still on Mount Ararat. Then did also Abraham and Jacob.

The Israelites were instructed to throw down the high places of the Canaanites.

This "high place" was built in Zuph which was the home region of Elkanah who was the earthly father of Samuel.

Some scripture that tells us of some things are found in the Book of Psalms:

Psa 78:60  So that he forsook the tabernacle of Shiloh, the tent which he placed among men;
Psa 78:61  And delivered his strength into captivity, and his glory into the enemy’s hand.

The Ark had left the Tabernacle in Shiloh and had gone into the hands of the Philistines. It was finally recovered and after the wrath of God at Bethshemesh it had been placed in the house of Abinadab at Kirjathjearmim and stayed there until King David recovered it some 100 years later.

2Sa 6:2  And David arose, and went with all the people that were with him from Baale of Judah, to bring up from thence the ark of God, whose name is called by the name of the LORD of hosts that dwelleth between the cherubims.
2Sa 6:3  And they set the ark of God upon a new cart, and brought it out of the house of Abinadab that was in Gibeah: and Uzzah and Ahio, the sons of Abinadab, drave the new cart.
.
The Tabernacle was moved to Nob and then to Gibeon:

(Note) Nob is within eye sight of Jerusalem!

1Ch 16:39  And Zadok the priest, and his brethren the priests, before the tabernacle of the LORD in the high place that was at Gibeon,

It was probably  King Saul that moved the Tabernacle to Gibeon but the Lord refused this place:

Psa 78:67  Moreover he refused the tabernacle of Joseph, and chose not the tribe of Ephraim:

And the Lord chose the tribe of Judah:

Psa 78:68  But chose the tribe of Judah, the mount Zion which he loved.

(Note) the Ark was still at Kirjathjearmin which was part of Judah:

1Ch 21:25  So David gave to Ornan for the place six hundred shekels of gold by weight.
1Ch 21:26  And David built there an altar unto the LORD, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings, and called upon the LORD; and he answered him from heaven by fire upon the altar of burnt offering.
1Ch 21:27  And the LORD commanded the angel; and he put up his sword again into the sheath thereof.
1Ch 21:28  At that time when David saw that the LORD had answered him in the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite, then he sacrificed there.
1Ch 21:29  For the tabernacle of the LORD, which Moses made in the wilderness, and the altar of the burnt offering, were at that season in the high place at Gibeon.
1Ch 21:30  But David could not go before it to enquire of God: for he was afraid because of the sword of the angel of the LORD.

It can be said that the Lord chose Judah, in sight of Jerusalem. God did not follow the location of political power.

*****1Sa 9:15  Now the LORD had told Samuel in his ear a day before Saul came, saying,
1Sa 9:16  To morrow about this time I will send thee a man out of the land of Benjamin, and thou shalt anoint him to be captain over my people Israel, that he may save my people out of the hand of the Philistines: for I have looked upon my people, because their cry is come unto me.

We should immediately notice that even though Israel had rejected the Lord he had not rejected them.

It would also be good to notice that the word Captain is the Hebrew word "nagid" was not a word that’s used for king which is the Hebrew word "melek"

To be Captain at this point would be the commander of Israel’s military. In other words any king of Israel would be one who was officially chosen by the Lord and serve as the Lord’s Vice-regent.

This Captain will save the children of Israel out of the hand of the Philistines "as a tool in the hand of God".

So, even though the Lord was rejected by Israel He still recognized their need for security!

*****1Sa 9:17  And when Samuel saw Saul, the LORD said unto him, Behold the man whom I spake to thee of! this same shall reign over my people.

We must remember that Saul was close to 7 feet tall and when Samuel saw Saul, the Lord said unto him "Behold".

This was the man that the Lord would use, just as he did Samson, God would use Saul to begin to weaken the Philistines and prepare them for King David’s final conquest of this enemy of Israel.

The purpose of Saul was to stop Israel from walking in their own ways!

We must remember the theme of the Book of Judges.

Jdg 17:6  In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes.

King Saul would at least hold Israel together and keep them from going their separate ways.

*****1Sa 10:1  Then Samuel took a vial of oil, and poured it upon his head, and kissed him, and said, Is it not because the LORD hath anointed thee to be captain over his inheritance?

Saul had never met Samuel but Samuel knew a lot about Saul. The tribe of Benjamin had been almost wiped out completely not too many years ago and Saul had told Samuel  that his own family was nothing. This statement was not true because the Bible tells us that Kish,  the father of Saul was a mighty man of power.

Remember we read this in Vs 9:1

This anointing was private.  It was intended merely to assure Saul that God had chosen him as Israel’s first earthly king.

Saul’s commission was clear, the Lord had chosen him to lead the people and more specifically, to deliver them from their enemies.

This anointing of oil indicated that God was approving Saul as king.

But Samuel made it very clear to Saul, these people would never belong to any king they belong to the Lord, they were the Lord’s inheritance!

*****1Sa 10:17  And Samuel called the people together unto the LORD to Mizpeh;
1Sa 10:18  And said unto the children of Israel, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, I brought up Israel out of Egypt, and delivered you out of the hand of the Egyptians, and out of the hand of all kingdoms, and of them that oppressed you:

Samuel had given Saul three signs that would occur on his journey home to prove to him that God was with him.

1) Saul would meet two men at Rachel’s tomb and they would say that "the young donkeys are found but you father is looking for you".

2) Saul would meet three men, one carrying 3 kid goats, one carrying 3 three loaves of bread, and one carrying a skin of wine.

3) The Spirit of God would cause Saul to prophesy with the prophets.

All of the signs occurred just a Samuel spoke and in the places Samuel had said.

This encouraged Saul but it was at Mizpeh  where Israel had repented to the Lord and it would be at Mizpeh where Saul would be anointed.

Saul’s nomination to the throne of Israel is made public before the elders of Israel and representatives of all the tribes.

But, before this takes place the Lord reminds Israel that it was He that brought them out from Egypt and has delivered them up to this time.

It would be this day that Israel would got from being a theocracy to a monarchy!

A "Theocracy" is a government under the immediate direction of the Almighty God.

A "Monarchy" is a government in which the supreme power is lodged in the hands of a single individual, a man or in some cases throughout history some women have held this position.

*****1Sa 10:19  And ye have this day rejected your God, who himself saved you out of all your adversities and your tribulations; and ye have said unto him, Nay, but set a king over us. Now therefore present yourselves before the LORD by your tribes, and by your thousands.

Again it was not Samuel who was rejected, but Israel had rejected Jehovah God.

Saul reminded Israel that under the covenant made to Abraham they were to follow the Lord but they had disobeyed the Lord by asking for a King.

And, Samuel informed Israel that "it was a sin" to not obey the Lord.

But Israel was now to present themselves to the Lord so He could hear their request!

*****1Sa 10:20  And when Samuel had caused all the tribes of Israel to come near, the tribe of Benjamin was taken.

Only the Lord and Samuel knew that the king had already been selected and anointed but Samuel wanted Israel to realize that Jehovah was in charge of the selection process.

They drew lots and the tribe of Benjamin was selected.

*****1Sa 10:21  When he had caused the tribe of Benjamin to come near by their families, the family of Matri was taken, and Saul the son of Kish was taken: and when they sought him, he could not be found.

Nothing is known about the family of Matri except that Kish  the father of Saul was from that family.

Kish was also the son of Abiel. Abiel had another son by the name of Ner who had a son name Abner.

It was Abner who would be the General of Saul’s’ army.

But at this time Saul could not be found!

*****1Sa 10:22  Therefore they enquired of the LORD further, if the man should yet come thither. And the LORD answered, Behold, he hath hid himself among the stuff.

The Lord informed Samuel  that Saul was hiding.

That word "stuff" would mean that Saul was hiding among  the wagons and the baggage  that contained the necessary items to care for this group of people.

Saul was not concentrating on the glory of God but only on himself! 

In other words Saul was a reluctant king at this time!

*****1Sa 10:23  And they ran and fetched him thence: and when he stood among the people, he was higher than any of the people from his shoulders and upward.

Saul had been chosen by lot but when Israel saw him they realized that he was the tallest man in Israel.

And Israel was in awe of their new king.

You know the world will be in absolute awe of King Jesus when He returns to this earth!.

The Book of Revelation says:

Rev 6:15  And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains;
Rev 6:16  And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb:
Rev 6:17  For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?

*****1Sa 10:24  And Samuel said to all the people, See ye 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.

It was a true statement that there were no others like Saul throughout all Israel.

AND, this same statement "God save the king" has been used in the coronation of monarchy every since this day!

*****1Sa 10:25  Then Samuel told the people the manner 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.

And Samuel told the people how the kingdom would be now.

These are probably the same things that we read about in chapter 8.

How a King would take their sons and daughters for his own use.

How a King would take their sons and daughters for the military.

How a King would take their possessions, including their land, to finance his war machines.

How a King would take the best that they had and leave them with what was left.

How a King would make himself rich  off the backs of the poor.

How a king would take away their personal freedoms.

How a king would tax them into poverty.

And Samuel wrote these things down in the book so that they could not say they were not informed!

*****1Sa 10:26  And Saul also went home to Gibeah; and there went with him a band of men, whose hearts God had touched.

When this assembly was ended everyone went back home including King Saul. 

But there was a group of men who followed Saul because the Lord had moved them to do so.

Some people gave all gifts as tokens of their homage to the King but there were also those that disagreed with this choice of king!

*****1Sa 10:27  But the children of Belial said, How shall this man save us? And they despised him, and brought him no presents. But he held his peace.

There was a group of wicked and worthless men that said how can this man save us.

They despise their new king and gave him no presents.

They had no respect for this man that their nation had chosen.

And Saul should have dealt severely with them at this time but he held his peace.

Anyone who is truly called to do a work for God will surely encounter opposition from Satan!

Even when God regards His people’s lack of faith as a rejection of His authority, He still maintains His commitment to them.

The Lord will  always recognize the need for security and He will always intervene to prevent the destruction of Israel!

Israel did not need a king, they needed security and they still do!

When God’s people foolishly embraced the world and reject His authority, He will exercise His right to rule in a way that is best for them!

But when God’s people foolishly see false security and reject His authority He may discipline them by letting them experience the consequences of their behavior and their own choices!

That old saying "be careful what you asked for"  has real meaning in our relationship with the Lord!

Questions?

Let’s Pray!

A Dejected Leader-Samuel’s Sorrow

A Dejected Leader – Samuel’s Sorrow

Book of 1 Samuel Chapter 7-8

The theme of this lesson:

1Sa 8:7  And the LORD said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: [for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them].

Israel had a great desire to desire to have a king though God had demonstrated many times His capacity to protect His people.

God would soon allow a king but God had some rules for any king of Israel, They are not to be like those of the other nations!

God had already laid out His guidelines for any king of Israel and given them to Moses:

Deu 17:14  When thou art come unto the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, and shalt possess it, and shalt dwell therein, and shalt say, I will set a king over me, like as all the nations that are about me;
Deu 17:15  Thou shalt in any wise set him king over thee, whom the LORD thy God shall choose: one from among thy brethren shalt thou set king over thee: thou mayest not set a stranger over thee, which is not thy brother.
Deu 17:16  But he shall not multiply horses to himself, nor cause the people to return to Egypt, to the end that he should multiply horses: forasmuch as the LORD hath said unto you, Ye shall henceforth return no more that way.
Deu 17:17  Neither shall he multiply wives to himself, that his heart turn not away: neither shall he greatly multiply to himself silver and gold.
Deu 17:18  And it shall be, when he sitteth upon the throne of his kingdom, that he shall write him a copy of this law in a book out of that which is before the priests the Levites:
Deu 17:19  And it shall be with him, and he shall read therein all the days of his life: that he may learn to fear the LORD his God, to keep all the words of this law and these statutes, to do them:
Deu 17:20  That his heart be not lifted up above his brethren, and that he turn not aside from the commandment, to the right hand, or to the left: to the end that he may prolong his days in his kingdom, he, and his children, in the midst of Israel.

1) This king would have to be a Jew of the family of Jacob
2) He was not to multiply horses, this was a sign that he trusted in his flesh and not in God.
3) He was not ever to send Israel back to Egypt, for any reason.
4) He should have only one wife.
5) He was not seek riches for himself, only for the people.
6) He was have his own copy of the Word of God from the preserved text. (Such as we are today as KJV)
7) He was to read the Bible daily and not only learn God’s Word but be a doer of the Word of God.
8) He must teach his children to obey God’s Word.

Let’s begin:

*****1Sa 7:1  And the men of Kirjathjearim came, and fetched up the ark of the LORD, and brought it into the house of Abinadab in the hill, and sanctified Eleazar his son to keep the ark of the LORD.

When we left off last week the Ark was back in possession of Israel but it had not returned to Shiloh and it would never make it back to Shiloh.

Kirjathjearim was a city that belong to Benjamin. Eleazar was a priest of the Tabernacle and since he and all his house treated the Ark with reverence no harm came to him nor to his household during the years that the Ark remain there.

They knew what had happened to the men of Bethshemesh.

*****1Sa 7:2  And it came to pass, while the ark abode in Kirjathjearim, that the time was long; for it was twenty years: and all the house of Israel lamented after the LORD.

The Ark was not removed from Abinidab’s home until after the judgeship of Samuel, which was 40 years, the time of King Saul, which was 40 years, and probably at least eight or more years into the reign of King David.

This would be 90-100 years.

But, this is still not a mistake in the Bible!

This verse simply states that all the house of Israel lamented after the Lord for 20 more years after the Ark was in this place.

The 20 years mentioned in this verse represent the time until Samuel called the people together at Mizpeh, and their victory over the Philistines which we are about to read.

*****1Sa 7:3  And Samuel spake unto all the house of Israel, saying, If ye do return unto the LORD with all your hearts, then put away the strange gods and Ashtaroth from among you, and prepare your hearts unto the LORD, and serve him only: and he will deliver you out of the hand of the Philistines.

It had taken 20 years for Israel to come to this point of repentance.

But this could not be a symbolic gesture because it had to come from the heart.

We know that God looks into the heart!

In later years the prophet Joel reminded Israel of this same thing:

Joe 2:12  Therefore also now, saith the LORD, turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning:
Joe 2:13  "And rend your heart", and not your garments, and turn unto the LORD your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil.

Another thing we can see here, is that Samuel has now become the spiritual leader of the nation of Israel, something Eli had never been able to do.

And we will soon see that Samuel could also be the military leader of Israel.

And it is a fact that we must serve the Lord only!

There is no room in our lives to place any other god before our Lord!

The Bible teaches us with these words:

Exo 34:14  For thou shalt worship no other god: for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God:

We seem to forget these things that can cause us to have more bad days than good days sometimes!

*****1Sa 7:4  Then the children of Israel did put away Baalim and Ashtaroth, and served the LORD only.

The worship of Baal and Ashtaroth, who were the false gods of the Canaanites, had been a snare to Israel, since the death of Joshua.

Baalim is the plural of the title Baal and means that there were many such false gods, as was Baal.

Remember Baal was the supreme false god of the Middle East and today is remembered as Allah.

These things show us the need for a strong godly leader in every nation!

We can see that Israel, after Joshua, had not had such a leader until this time of Samuel, even though the worship of all idols would not be totally removed until Israel was carried into Babylon by Nebuchadnezzar.

We should also be able to see that what the Ark represented to Israel, Jesus represents to the Church!

Jesus Christ must be first in our lives to receive the blessings of God!

*****1Sa 7:5  And Samuel said, Gather all Israel to Mizpeh, and I will pray for you unto the LORD.
1Sa 7:6  And they gathered together to Mizpeh, and drew water, and poured it out before the LORD, and fasted on that day, and said there, We have sinned against the LORD. And Samuel judged the children of Israel in Mizpeh.

It is not enough just to put away the false idols that we place in front of The Lord Jesus Christ.

We must also repent of our sin!

BUT, There can be no deliverance without repentance.

The Bible teaches us:

Psa 66:18  If I regard iniquity in my heart, "the Lord will not hear me":

Samuel understood this very well and he gathered Israel as a nation to Mizpeh.

Repentance must begin with sincere motives but "if there is no action that follows", then there has been no repentance!

Repentance is not only a change of mind but it is also a change of direction!

King or no king, there is no nation that can stand without the Lord Jesus Christ!

The drawing of the water and pouring out before the Lord was a sign of humility.

The Bible teaches us:

Isa 12:2  Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation.
Isa 12:3  "Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation".

Remember what Jesus said to the woman at the well:

Joh 4:14  But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; "but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life".

*****1Sa 7:12  Then Samuel took a stone, and set it between Mizpeh and Shen, and called the name of it Ebenezer, saying, Hitherto hath the LORD helped us.

We learned in chapter 4:1 that the place where Israel had battled and lost to the Philistines, would be named Ebenezer.

We learned in chapter 5:1 that in this same place the two sons of Eli and been killed and the Ark of the Covenant had been stolen by the Philistines.

We now learn that it was Samuel who had given this place the name of Ebenezer.

That word Ebenezer means "the stone of help"!

The people of Israel had put away their false gods and declared to serve the Lord only and God had helped them.

The Bible teaches the Church:

Act 10:36  The word which God sent unto the children of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ: (he is Lord of all:)

If Jesus is not your Lord of all, then He is not your Lord "at all"!

Who is Ebenezer to the Church?

1Co 10:4  And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.

Not only is Christ Jesus our "well of salvation", He is our "Rock of offense". Our stone of help.

The Philistines did not bother Israel anymore during the time of Samuel.

And there was even peace with all the Amorites which were all the people left in Canaan.

But every man, and every woman born on this earth has a short life time so time passed as it always does!

*****1Sa 8:1  And it came to pass, when Samuel was old, that he made his sons judges over Israel.

The people of Israel had again placed their faith in a man and not in the God of that man. This time it was Samuel.

They had again forgotten their Maker!

These years had passed quickly and at this time Samuel would have been about 75 years old

*****1Sa 8:2  Now the name of his firstborn was Joel; and the name of his second, Abiah: they were judges Beersheba.
1Sa 8:3  And his sons walked not in his ways, but turned aside after lucre, and took bribes, and perverted judgment.

Samuel had been allowing his sons to stay in Beersheba to see how they would judge Israel and they were not judging according to the Law of God, "which they would have known".

Deu 16:18  Judges and officers shalt thou make thee in all thy gates, which the LORD thy God giveth thee, throughout thy tribes: and they shall judge the people with just judgment.
Deu 16:19  Thou shalt not wrest judgment; thou shalt not respect persons, neither take a gift: for a gift doth blind the eyes of the wise, and pervert the words of the righteous.

These two sons neither served the Lord nor did they do justice to men as their father Samuel had done.

In fact that word "lucre" means they plundered the people and gained in personal wealth by being dishonest and in some cases by being violent toward the people.

They took bribes to sway truthful judgment!

They were crooked judges that were for hire!

This is much like the world is in our day!

*****1Sa 8:4  Then all the elders of Israel gathered themselves together, and came to Samuel unto Ramah,
1Sa 8:5  And said unto him, Behold, thou art old, and thy sons walk not in thy ways: now make us a king to judge us like all the nations.

Samuel was getting old but God had not removed him as judge and prophet of Israel.

A true servant of God serves until their death!

A God called prophet is God’s man until he dies!

The people came to the home of Samuel and demanded something be done, in fact they demanded a king.

Israel wanted to have a king like the nations that were around them!

Notice these people did not even ask Samuel to remove his two sons as judges.

They only acknowledged that Samuel was getting old and before he died they wanted a change in their government.

We usually get in serious trouble when we want to be like everybody else!

The Lord teaches us:

2Co 6:17  Wherefore come out from among them, "and be ye separate", saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,
2Co 6:18  And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.

God does not promise to be a "Father" to those in the world but only to those that separate themselves form the world.

The "world" refers to those that reject the Lord Jesus Christ!

Israel had always been different from all other nations because they had a special relationship with Jehovah God.

They depended on God for their existence!

They depended on God to defend them when their enemies approached!

Most of the time our strength "comes from our differences" and not by conforming to this world!

To be a Christian is to be totally unlike the world and we should never compromise on the Word of God.

To be Christian is to be like Jesus Christ!

1Pe 2:9  But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, "a peculiar people"; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:

*****1Sa 8:6  But the thing displeased Samuel, when they said, Give us a king to judge us. And Samuel prayed unto the LORD.

We do not read where Israel went to the Lord in prayer but we do read that is the first thing that Samuel did.

We must realize that it is not God’s will for us to get everything that we desire!

That word "displeased" means that they broke the heart of Samuel.

And, Samuel certainly was not going to approve this request!

The Apostle Paul had this same problem with the Galatians:

Gal 4:9  But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage?

Why would anyone that knows the truth want to be in bondage to some other form of government?

*****1Sa 8:7  And the LORD said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them.

Israel had not needed a king to judge them.

Israel had not needed a king to fight their battles.

We have already read that Moses had instructed them on how a king should rule and how he should be chosen.

We began our lesson with scripture from Deuteronomy 17.

God had plans for a future King of Israel but it was not at this time!

We will soon see as a result of their complaining, and instead of being grateful in obeying God, God would grant their request.

But that is not all God gave them!

The book of Psalms reads this way:

Psa 106:15  And he gave them their request; "but sent leanness into their soul".

In other words while God pampered them giving in to their request, their souls would be starving  for God’s guidance.

*****1Sa 8:8  According to all the works which they have done since the day that I brought them up out of Egypt even unto this day, wherewith they have forsaken me, and served other gods, so do they also unto thee.

Even until this day we live in now 2013 Israel has never fully trusted in the Lord.

In America our national motto has always been "In God We Trust" but  we know that there is a movement today to remove these words from everything that involves our government.

Foolish, America does not want God to rule over our government.

Just like Samuel, this breaks my heart!

In our Pledge of Allegiance we have always said  we are "One nation under God".

But there are those it want these words removed also.

America is headed in the same path that Israel took this day with Samuel!

America wants a King and we are getting a taste of what I King will be like today with our existing government!

Our Creator, and Our Maker, has been rejected and has been replaced by "evolutionary uniformitarianism" or also called The Evolutionary New Age Movement.

And this is the false theory that completely dominates the scientific and educational establishments of every nation in the world today.

*****1Sa 8:9  Now therefore hearken unto their voice: howbeit yet protest solemnly unto them, and shew them the manner of the king that shall reign over them.

God told Samuel to do what they had asked.

But God also told Samuel to do so under protest by showing them that "evilness" was behind their request.

Samuel laid out for Israel exactly what would happen.

1) Their sons would be drafted as soldiers for the military and for many other things, like slaves.

2) The military would be ruled by the king and not by the people.

3) The king would build his military war machines and weapons of mass destruction at his own discretion, n not influenced by the people.

4) A king would take their daughters for cooking, baking and other things in support of his government.

5) A king would take their own possessions to be his own and make them to be his own servants.

6.) A king would cause a great taxing to support the government.

7) A king would take whatever he thought would be necessary to run his government, this included personal freedoms and human rights.

8) He would control their means to make their own living.

9) A king would take away everything that rightfully belonged to the people, the will of the people would be ignored!

10) Kings are not for the people, kings are for their own selves and will do most anything to remain in power!

*****1Sa 8:18  And ye shall cry out in that day because of your king which ye shall have chosen you; and the LORD will not hear you in that day.

Many people say that this sounds harsh and God would not do such a thing.

But the Bible says that any nation that rejects the Lord and follows after man will then not be heard of God when they cry out.

In our day God deals with individuals!

We must have a personal relation with the Lord!

God will deal with individuals who trust in His holy name!

God will not deal with nations of communism or socialism or any nation that rejects His Word!

This is the age of the Laodicean church and Jesus is on the outside of the door knocking trying to get back in.

*****1Sa 8:19  Nevertheless the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel; and they said, Nay; but we will have a king over us;

Israel believes that a King will bring relief from injustice but instead they will experience oppression by his hand.

Remember God had just answered the prayer of Samuel and delivered Israel from the Philistines.

But God would no longer answer a rebellious Israel who cried out because of their king.

The people refused to listen to Samuel.

In other words when we read this portion of the Bible we should see that our Lord had no wrongdoing in this matter!

God only gave this people what they asked for!

*****1Sa 8:20  That we also may be like all the nations; and that our king may judge us, and go out before us, and fight our battles.

We read in this verse the underlying reason for the people’s demand.

In their minds the Ark had failed them in their battles with the Philistines!

They wanted a king to lead them into battle.

They had soon forgotten that it was the Lord that had led them in the time of Moses and the time of Joshua to victory in many battles.

*****1Sa 8:21  And Samuel heard all the words of the people, and he rehearsed them in the ears of the LORD.
1Sa 8:22  And the LORD said to Samuel, Hearken unto their voice, and make them a king. And Samuel said unto the men of Israel, Go ye every man unto his city.

These people wanted to be like their neighbors.

They want a king who would not only fight their battles but would also be there judge.

We never read in the Bible where an enemy of Israel had ever prevailed while they were following the Word of God!

To be quite honest this same thing would happen today if Israel would follow the complete Word of God!

Israel still has this promise from the Lord!

SO, God told Samuel to make Israel a King!

As Christians our first priority is to please the Lord!

Everything else has to be second in our lives and this includes family.

We can never turn our backs on the Lord and survive in this world!

You see, we can never influence the decisions that the Lord makes!

But in Israel’s mind they felt like they might be able to influence some king who they allowed to rule over them but they never could.

They wanted some input into their own government but they never got the opportunity.

We should be very careful when we pray because if our prayers are not in the will of God, He may actually allow some of the things we ask, so we can learn some valuable lesson!

Every prophecy of Samuel came to pass but the people of Israel did not even notice!

In our day most all the prophecies of the Bible have come to pass and there are some that time has not allowed them to happen but they will, but the world has not even noticed.

God is not through with Israel even in our day.

God has promised a True King for Israel but that King will not come until the time of Church Age has passed.

That King is our Savior, King Jesus!

Questions?

Let’s Pray!

A Dejected Leader-Samuel’s Sorrow

A Dejected Leader – Samuel’s Sorrow

Book of 1 Samuel Chapter 7-8

The theme of this lesson:

1Sa 8:7  And the LORD said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: [for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them].

Israel had a great desire to desire to have a king though God had demonstrated many times His capacity to protect His people.

God would soon allow a king but God had some rules for any king of Israel, They are not to be like those of the other nations!

God had already laid out His guidelines for any king of Israel and given them to Moses:

Deu 17:14  When thou art come unto the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, and shalt possess it, and shalt dwell therein, and shalt say, I will set a king over me, like as all the nations that are about me;
Deu 17:15  Thou shalt in any wise set him king over thee, whom the LORD thy God shall choose: one from among thy brethren shalt thou set king over thee: thou mayest not set a stranger over thee, which is not thy brother.
Deu 17:16  But he shall not multiply horses to himself, nor cause the people to return to Egypt, to the end that he should multiply horses: forasmuch as the LORD hath said unto you, Ye shall henceforth return no more that way.
Deu 17:17  Neither shall he multiply wives to himself, that his heart turn not away: neither shall he greatly multiply to himself silver and gold.
Deu 17:18  And it shall be, when he sitteth upon the throne of his kingdom, that he shall write him a copy of this law in a book out of that which is before the priests the Levites:
Deu 17:19  And it shall be with him, and he shall read therein all the days of his life: that he may learn to fear the LORD his God, to keep all the words of this law and these statutes, to do them:
Deu 17:20  That his heart be not lifted up above his brethren, and that he turn not aside from the commandment, to the right hand, or to the left: to the end that he may prolong his days in his kingdom, he, and his children, in the midst of Israel.

1) This king would have to be a Jew of the family of Jacob
2) He was not to multiply horses, this was a sign that he trusted in his flesh and not in God.
3) He was not ever to send Israel back to Egypt, for any reason.
4) He should have only one wife.
5) He was not seek riches for himself, only for the people.
6) He was have his own copy of the Word of God from the preserved text. (Such as we are today as KJV)
7) He was to read the Bible daily and not only learn God’s Word but be a doer of the Word of God.
8) He must teach his children to obey God’s Word.

Let’s begin:

*****1Sa 7:1  And the men of Kirjathjearim came, and fetched up the ark of the LORD, and brought it into the house of Abinadab in the hill, and sanctified Eleazar his son to keep the ark of the LORD.

When we left off last week the Ark was back in possession of Israel but it had not returned to Shiloh and it would never make it back to Shiloh.

Kirjathjearim was a city that belong to Benjamin. Eleazar was a priest of the Tabernacle and since he and all his house treated the Ark with reverence no harm came to him nor to his household during the years that the Ark remain there.

They knew what had happened to the men of Bethshemesh.

*****1Sa 7:2  And it came to pass, while the ark abode in Kirjathjearim, that the time was long; for it was twenty years: and all the house of Israel lamented after the LORD.

The Ark was not removed from Abinidab’s home until after the judgeship of Samuel, which was 40 years, the time of King Saul, which was 40 years, and probably at least eight or more years into the reign of King David.

This would be 90-100 years.

But, this is still not a mistake in the Bible!

This verse simply states that all the house of Israel lamented after the Lord for 20 more years after the Ark was in this place.

The 20 years mentioned in this verse represent the time until Samuel called the people together at Mizpeh, and their victory over the Philistines which we are about to read.

*****1Sa 7:3  And Samuel spake unto all the house of Israel, saying, If ye do return unto the LORD with all your hearts, then put away the strange gods and Ashtaroth from among you, and prepare your hearts unto the LORD, and serve him only: and he will deliver you out of the hand of the Philistines.

It had taken 20 years for Israel to come to this point of repentance.

But this could not be a symbolic gesture because it had to come from the heart.

We know that God looks into the heart!

In later years the prophet Joel reminded Israel of this same thing:

Joe 2:12  Therefore also now, saith the LORD, turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning:
Joe 2:13  "And rend your heart", and not your garments, and turn unto the LORD your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil.

Another thing we can see here, is that Samuel has now become the spiritual leader of the nation of Israel, something Eli had never been able to do.

And we will soon see that Samuel could also be the military leader of Israel.

And it is a fact that we must serve the Lord only!

There is no room in our lives to place any other god before our Lord!

The Bible teaches us with these words:

Exo 34:14  For thou shalt worship no other god: for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God:

We seem to forget these things that can cause us to have more bad days than good days sometimes!

*****1Sa 7:4  Then the children of Israel did put away Baalim and Ashtaroth, and served the LORD only.

The worship of Baal and Ashtaroth, who were the false gods of the Canaanites, had been a snare to Israel, since the death of Joshua.

Baalim is the plural of the title Baal and means that there were many such false gods, as was Baal.

Remember Baal was the supreme false god of the Middle East and today is remembered as Allah.

These things show us the need for a strong godly leader in every nation!

We can see that Israel, after Joshua, had not had such a leader until this time of Samuel, even though the worship of all idols would not be totally removed until Israel was carried into Babylon by Nebuchadnezzar.

We should also be able to see that what the Ark represented to Israel, Jesus represents to the Church!

Jesus Christ must be first in our lives to receive the blessings of God!

*****1Sa 7:5  And Samuel said, Gather all Israel to Mizpeh, and I will pray for you unto the LORD.
1Sa 7:6  And they gathered together to Mizpeh, and drew water, and poured it out before the LORD, and fasted on that day, and said there, We have sinned against the LORD. And Samuel judged the children of Israel in Mizpeh.

It is not enough just to put away the false idols that we place in front of The Lord Jesus Christ.

We must also repent of our sin!

BUT, There can be no deliverance without repentance.

The Bible teaches us:

Psa 66:18  If I regard iniquity in my heart, "the Lord will not hear me":

Samuel understood this very well and he gathered Israel as a nation to Mizpeh.

Repentance must begin with sincere motives but "if there is no action that follows", then there has been no repentance!

Repentance is not only a change of mind but it is also a change of direction!

King or no king, there is no nation that can stand without the Lord Jesus Christ!

The drawing of the water and pouring out before the Lord was a sign of humility.

The Bible teaches us:

Isa 12:2  Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation.
Isa 12:3  "Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation".

Remember what Jesus said to the woman at the well:

Joh 4:14  But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; "but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life".

*****1Sa 7:12  Then Samuel took a stone, and set it between Mizpeh and Shen, and called the name of it Ebenezer, saying, Hitherto hath the LORD helped us.

We learned in chapter 4:1 that the place where Israel had battled and lost to the Philistines, would be named Ebenezer.

We learned in chapter 5:1 that in this same place the two sons of Eli and been killed and the Ark of the Covenant had been stolen by the Philistines.

We now learn that it was Samuel who had given this place the name of Ebenezer.

That word Ebenezer means "the stone of help"!

The people of Israel had put away their false gods and declared to serve the Lord only and God had helped them.

The Bible teaches the Church:

Act 10:36  The word which God sent unto the children of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ: (he is Lord of all:)

If Jesus is not your Lord of all, then He is not your Lord "at all"!

Who is Ebenezer to the Church?

1Co 10:4  And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.

Not only is Christ Jesus our "well of salvation", He is our "Rock of offense". Our stone of help.

The Philistines did not bother Israel anymore during the time of Samuel.

And there was even peace with all the Amorites which were all the people left in Canaan.

But every man, and every woman born on this earth has a short life time so time passed as it always does!

*****1Sa 8:1  And it came to pass, when Samuel was old, that he made his sons judges over Israel.

The people of Israel had again placed their faith in a man and not in the God of that man. This time it was Samuel.

They had again forgotten their Maker!

These years had passed quickly and at this time Samuel would have been about 75 years old

*****1Sa 8:2  Now the name of his firstborn was Joel; and the name of his second, Abiah: they were judges Beersheba.
1Sa 8:3  And his sons walked not in his ways, but turned aside after lucre, and took bribes, and perverted judgment.

Samuel had been allowing his sons to stay in Beersheba to see how they would judge Israel and they were not judging according to the Law of God, "which they would have known".

Deu 16:18  Judges and officers shalt thou make thee in all thy gates, which the LORD thy God giveth thee, throughout thy tribes: and they shall judge the people with just judgment.
Deu 16:19  Thou shalt not wrest judgment; thou shalt not respect persons, neither take a gift: for a gift doth blind the eyes of the wise, and pervert the words of the righteous.

These two sons neither served the Lord nor did they do justice to men as their father Samuel had done.

In fact that word "lucre" means they plundered the people and gained in personal wealth by being dishonest and in some cases by being violent toward the people.

They took bribes to sway truthful judgment!

They were crooked judges that were for hire!

This is much like the world is in our day!

*****1Sa 8:4  Then all the elders of Israel gathered themselves together, and came to Samuel unto Ramah,
1Sa 8:5  And said unto him, Behold, thou art old, and thy sons walk not in thy ways: now make us a king to judge us like all the nations.

Samuel was getting old but God had not removed him as judge and prophet of Israel.

A true servant of God serves until their death!

A God called prophet is God’s man until he dies!

The people came to the home of Samuel and demanded something be done, in fact they demanded a king.

Israel wanted to have a king like the nations that were around them!

Notice these people did not even ask Samuel to remove his two sons as judges.

They only acknowledged that Samuel was getting old and before he died they wanted a change in their government.

We usually get in serious trouble when we want to be like everybody else!

The Lord teaches us:

2Co 6:17  Wherefore come out from among them, "and be ye separate", saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,
2Co 6:18  And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.

God does not promise to be a "Father" to those in the world but only to those that separate themselves form the world.

The "world" refers to those that reject the Lord Jesus Christ!

Israel had always been different from all other nations because they had a special relationship with Jehovah God.

They depended on God for their existence!

They depended on God to defend them when their enemies approached!

Most of the time our strength "comes from our differences" and not by conforming to this world!

To be a Christian is to be totally unlike the world and we should never compromise on the Word of God.

To be Christian is to be like Jesus Christ!

1Pe 2:9  But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, "a peculiar people"; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:

*****1Sa 8:6  But the thing displeased Samuel, when they said, Give us a king to judge us. And Samuel prayed unto the LORD.

We do not read where Israel went to the Lord in prayer but we do read that is the first thing that Samuel did.

We must realize that it is not God’s will for us to get everything that we desire!

That word "displeased" means that they broke the heart of Samuel.

And, Samuel certainly was not going to approve this request!

The Apostle Paul had this same problem with the Galatians:

Gal 4:9  But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage?

Why would anyone that knows the truth want to be in bondage to some other form of government?

*****1Sa 8:7  And the LORD said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them.

Israel had not needed a king to judge them.

Israel had not needed a king to fight their battles.

We have already read that Moses had instructed them on how a king should rule and how he should be chosen.

We began our lesson with scripture from Deuteronomy 17.

God had plans for a future King of Israel but it was not at this time!

We will soon see as a result of their complaining, and instead of being grateful in obeying God, God would grant their request.

But that is not all God gave them!

The book of Psalms reads this way:

Psa 106:15  And he gave them their request; "but sent leanness into their soul".

In other words while God pampered them giving in to their request, their souls would be starving  for God’s guidance.

*****1Sa 8:8  According to all the works which they have done since the day that I brought them up out of Egypt even unto this day, wherewith they have forsaken me, and served other gods, so do they also unto thee.

Even until this day we live in now 2013 Israel has never fully trusted in the Lord.

In America our national motto has always been "In God We Trust" but  we know that there is a movement today to remove these words from everything that involves our government.

Foolish, America does not want God to rule over our government.

Just like Samuel, this breaks my heart!

In our Pledge of Allegiance we have always said  we are "One nation under God".

But there are those it want these words removed also.

America is headed in the same path that Israel took this day with Samuel!

America wants a King and we are getting a taste of what I King will be like today with our existing government!

Our Creator, and Our Maker, has been rejected and has been replaced by "evolutionary uniformitarianism" or also called The Evolutionary New Age Movement.

And this is the false theory that completely dominates the scientific and educational establishments of every nation in the world today.

*****1Sa 8:9  Now therefore hearken unto their voice: howbeit yet protest solemnly unto them, and shew them the manner of the king that shall reign over them.

God told Samuel to do what they had asked.

But God also told Samuel to do so under protest by showing them that "evilness" was behind their request.

Samuel laid out for Israel exactly what would happen.

1) Their sons would be drafted as soldiers for the military and for many other things, like slaves.

2) The military would be ruled by the king and not by the people.

3) The king would build his military war machines and weapons of mass destruction at his own discretion, n not influenced by the people.

4) A king would take their daughters for cooking, baking and other things in support of his government.

5) A king would take their own possessions to be his own and make them to be his own servants.

6.) A king would cause a great taxing to support the government.

7) A king would take whatever he thought would be necessary to run his government, this included personal freedoms and human rights.

8) He would control their means to make their own living.

9) A king would take away everything that rightfully belonged to the people, the will of the people would be ignored!

10) Kings are not for the people, kings are for their own selves and will do most anything to remain in power!

*****1Sa 8:18  And ye shall cry out in that day because of your king which ye shall have chosen you; and the LORD will not hear you in that day.

Many people say that this sounds harsh and God would not do such a thing.

But the Bible says that any nation that rejects the Lord and follows after man will then not be heard of God when they cry out.

In our day God deals with individuals!

We must have a personal relation with the Lord!

God will deal with individuals who trust in His holy name!

God will not deal with nations of communism or socialism or any nation that rejects His Word!

This is the age of the Laodicean church and Jesus is on the outside of the door knocking trying to get back in.

*****1Sa 8:19  Nevertheless the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel; and they said, Nay; but we will have a king over us;

Israel believes that a King will bring relief from injustice but instead they will experience oppression by his hand.

Remember God had just answered the prayer of Samuel and delivered Israel from the Philistines.

But God would no longer answer a rebellious Israel who cried out because of their king.

The people refused to listen to Samuel.

In other words when we read this portion of the Bible we should see that our Lord had no wrongdoing in this matter!

God only gave this people what they asked for!

*****1Sa 8:20  That we also may be like all the nations; and that our king may judge us, and go out before us, and fight our battles.

We read in this verse the underlying reason for the people’s demand.

In their minds the Ark had failed them in their battles with the Philistines!

They wanted a king to lead them into battle.

They had soon forgotten that it was the Lord that had led them in the time of Moses and the time of Joshua to victory in many battles.

*****1Sa 8:21  And Samuel heard all the words of the people, and he rehearsed them in the ears of the LORD.
1Sa 8:22  And the LORD said to Samuel, Hearken unto their voice, and make them a king. And Samuel said unto the men of Israel, Go ye every man unto his city.

These people wanted to be like their neighbors.

They want a king who would not only fight their battles but would also be there judge.

We never read in the Bible where an enemy of Israel had ever prevailed while they were following the Word of God!

To be quite honest this same thing would happen today if Israel would follow the complete Word of God!

Israel still has this promise from the Lord!

SO, God told Samuel to make Israel a King!

As Christians our first priority is to please the Lord!

Everything else has to be second in our lives and this includes family.

We can never turn our backs on the Lord and survive in this world!

You see, we can never influence the decisions that the Lord makes!

But in Israel’s mind they felt like they might be able to influence some king who they allowed to rule over them but they never could.

They wanted some input into their own government but they never got the opportunity.

We should be very careful when we pray because if our prayers are not in the will of God, He may actually allow some of the things we ask, so we can learn some valuable lesson!

Every prophecy of Samuel came to pass but the people of Israel did not even notice!

In our day most all the prophecies of the Bible have come to pass and there are some that time has not allowed them to happen but they will, but the world has not even noticed.

God is not through with Israel even in our day.

God has promised a True King for Israel but that King will not come until the time of Church Age has passed.

That King is our Savior, King Jesus!

Questions?

Let’s Pray!

A Departed Glory-God’s Judgment

A Departed Glory, God’s Judgment

Book of 1 Samuel Chapters 4-6

The theme of this passage is found in Chapter 4:21:

1Sa 4:21  And she named the child Ichabod, saying, [The glory is departed from Israel]: because the ark of God was taken, and because of her father in law and her husband.

That name Ichabod in translation actually ask a question which is "Where is the glory of God?"

And this question is answered by saying "The glory of God is departed out of Israel"!

When we left off last week Samuel was in the presence of the Lord, Samuel was God’s Seer or God’s Prophet.

We should also keep this verse in mind:

Heb 1:1  God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers "by the prophets",
Heb 1:2  Hath in these last days "spoken unto us by his Son", whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;

We must never make the mistake of thinking that just because some time has passed that God has forgotten His Word or His Promises!

God will do everything He says He will do BUT in His own "appointed time"!

*****1Sa 4:1  And the word of Samuel came to all Israel. Now Israel went out against the Philistines to battle, and pitched beside Ebenezer: and the Philistines pitched in Aphek.

Israel clearly understood that Samuel was God’s man in this day, yet we see that Israel went into battle without even consulting with Him.

It had been 40 years since Samson had brought down a house of Dagon, the false god of the Philistines, upon their heads but they consistently wanted to rule over Israel and still do even unto this day.

Here again we see them gather in a place called Aphek. This Aphek was north east of Jerusalem with Shiloh being more north of Jerusalem.

It was Samuel who set up a stone to mark this place called called "Ebenezer" but this was not it’s name on the day of this battle but this will give us the location of this placed that is later called Ebenezer.

This also gives us the assurance that it was Samuel that wrote this part of the Books called Samuel.

This stone was actually set up and that name given on a later date. (Note 1 Samuel 7:12)

1Sa 7:12  Then Samuel took a stone, and set it between Mizpeh and Shen, and called the name of it Ebenezer, saying, Hitherto hath the LORD helped us.

The Lord did not help them on this day of Eli’s judgment!

*****1Sa 4:2  And the Philistines put themselves in array against Israel: and when they joined battle, Israel was smitten before the Philistines: and they slew of the army in the field about four thousand men.

Who were the Philistines which actually means "immigrants"?

The Bible teaches us that Noah had three sons. One son named Ham had a son named Mizraim and he then had many sons one being named Casluhim.

The Bible says out of this man began the Philistines:

Gen 10:14  And Pathrusim, and Casluhim, (out of whom came Philistim,) and Caphtorim.

The Bible goes on to say that the Philistines come from the country of Caphtor:

Jer 47:4  Because of the day that cometh to spoil all the Philistines, and to cut off from Tyrus and Zidon every helper that remaineth: for the LORD will spoil the Philistines, "the remnant of the country of Caphtor".

Caphtor in all probability was the island of Crete or at least a part of it because the Bible also calls the Philistines by the name of Cherethites which would be Cretes though some do argue against this.

Zep 2:5  Woe unto the inhabitants of the sea coast, the nation of the Cherethites! the word of the LORD is against you; O Canaan, the land of the Philistines, I will even destroy thee, that there shall be no inhabitant.

What is known is that this group of people overcame the Hittite Empire and after this they attacked Egypt whom they could not over come and then settled in the five cities of Canaan Land and occupied the coastal plain.

It was the fact that these Philistines had learned how to work with "iron" earlier than many others, that gave them some advantage in war. Most other nations were still working with "brass".

The Israelites encountered the Philistines in Canaan and they have been the most treacherous of the enemies of Israel throughout the entire Bible.

The Philistines are mentioned  nearly 150 times in the Bible and because of them the area of Israel, Judah, Edom, Phoenica and Lebanon have been called Palestine. Palestine is a designated area and has never been a nation as such in all history.

The Philistines have always been "immigrants" trying to steal the land in Palestine and still do!

They now call themselves "Palestinians" in hope the world will associate them as owners of that land, "which they are not", and most of the world has succumbed to this falsehood!

They still have their warlike ways, "always" refusing to live in peace and history has also proven this to be true!

They are still the biggest enemies of Israel and God promises a final judgment upon them.

But, on this day they slew 4000 Hebrew soldiers!

*****1Sa 4:3  And when the people were come into the camp, the elders of Israel said, Wherefore hath the LORD smitten us to day before the Philistines? Let us fetch the ark of the covenant of the LORD out of Shiloh unto us, that, when it cometh among us, it may save us out of the hand of our enemies.
1Sa 4:4  So the people sent to Shiloh, that they might bring from thence the ark of the covenant of the LORD of hosts, which dwelleth between the cherubims: and the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, were there with the ark of the covenant of God.
1Sa 4:5  And when the ark of the covenant of the LORD came into the camp, all Israel shouted with a great shout, so that the earth rang again.

The Ark of the Covenant was a chest made of acacia wood. It measured 2 1/2 cubits long by 2 1/2 cubits wide and 1 1/2 cubits high.

It was covered with gold inside and out. It had an ornamental molding of gold that ran like a crown around it.

It had gold rings in which golden stays were placed so that it could be properly carried by those appointed to do so by God, which could only be priests that were assigned in the Laws of Moses.

There was also a lid placed on top of the Ark that was called the Mercy Seat.

The elders of Israel wrongly assumed that God would be present with them if they brought the Ark of the covenant from Shiloh!

When Hophni and Phinehas appeared in the camp carrying the Ark it brought shouts of joy.

BUT, The presence of the Ark did not mean that the Lord was with them!

God cannot be carried place to place!

In fact God says:

Pro 15:3  The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.

And the presence of the Ark did not guarantee any military victory!

AND, It would be well to remember that after nearly 400 years these Philistines were still aware of how God had delivered Israel from Egypt.

And we can also see that these elders of Israel totally understood that defeat would certainly come if the Lord was not with them.

The pure fact is that "The Hand Of God Cannot Be Manipulated!

God had promised judgment and judgment would still come!

*****1Sa 4:10  And the Philistines fought, and Israel was smitten, and they fled every man into his tent: and there was a very great slaughter; for there fell of Israel thirty thousand footmen.

The Philistines looked upon the Ark as no more than "an idol" as those they had of their false god Dagon!

The children of Israel looked on the Ark as "an object", the seat of mercy that God set upon!

Job can give us some wisdom here:

Job 20:5  That the triumphing of the wicked is short, and the joy of the hypocrite but for a moment?

And the Bible teaches us of God’s judgment:

Psa 78:60  So that he forsook the tabernacle of Shiloh, the tent which he placed among men;
Psa 78:61  And delivered his strength into captivity, and his glory into the enemy’s hand.
Psa 78:62  He gave his people over also unto the sword; and was wroth with his inheritance.
Psa 78:63  The fire consumed their young men; and their maidens were not given to marriage.
Psa 78:64  Their priests fell by the sword; and their widows made no lamentation.

And, 30,000 Hebrew soldiers were killed that day because Israel had abandoned Jehovah God!

*****1Sa 4:11  And the ark of God was taken; and the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, were slain.
1Sa 4:12  And there ran a man of Benjamin out of the army, and came to Shiloh the same day with his clothes rent, and with earth upon his head.

Never in the history of Israel had the Ark of God ever fallen into enemy hands.

So holy was the Ark that it was kept behind the Veil in the Tabernacle and seen only by the High Priest and only on one day a year, "the day of atonement".

When the Jews moved during their 40 years of wandering, the first thing the High Priest did was to cover the Ark with the Veil and only then could he attend to the other pieces of furniture.

The Ark was the throne of God but now God’s throne was in enemy territory!

Now, It was not a sin to take the Ark into the battle "if the people were truly devoted to the Lord".

But the Ark of God was not some good luck charm!

So now God would use the Ark to teach both the Jews and the Philistines some important lessons!

And God fulfilled the Words He had spoken to Samuel.

So Samuel also would learn some valuable lessons here!

*****1Sa 4:17  And the messenger answered and said, Israel is fled before the Philistines, and there hath been also a great slaughter among the people, and thy two sons also, Hophni and Phinehas, are dead, and the ark of God is taken.

Eli’s whole world was bound up in the outcome of the battle!

His two sons were involved in the fighting. His two sons were evil but he still had their father’s love.

Over 30,000 of Israel’s young men were also risking their lives, but to Eli the most important thing was the Ark and its safety.

To much to many of Israel’s leaders the Ark was just "a religious object" that might have psychological and magical powers!

Eli was very old at this time but he had devoted his entire life to the service of the Lord, and the Ark symbolized the presence of the Lord and its loss was more than the old man could stand!

*****1Sa 4:18  And it came to pass, when he made mention of the ark of God, that he fell from off the seat backward by the side of the gate, and his neck brake, and he died: for he was an old man, and heavy. And he had judged Israel forty years.

Eli was 98 years old and nearly blind and this news upset him so much that he fell over and the weight of his body caused his neck to break as it struck the side of that gate and Eli died.

This was the end of an era in the nation of Israel!

This death symbolized the transition from the days of judges to the days of kings was about to take place.

Eli had governed Israel both as a high priest and a judge.

Our lesson here is obvious, when we place our faith in "the rituals of religion" we find that we may have a form of godliness but we do not and cannot have the true power of God, which is by Faith!

The Bible describes these things that we see today:

2Ti 3:1  This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
2Ti 3:2  For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
2Ti 3:3  Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,
2Ti 3:4  Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
2Ti 3:5  "Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof": from such turn away.

These things describe how it was in Israel at this time of Eli.

Now Israel will begin a transition to a king.

Our lesson here is that we all must also make that transition to King Jesus!

*****1Sa 5:1  And the Philistines took the ark of God, and brought it from Ebenezer unto Ashdod.
1Sa 5:2  When the Philistines took the ark of God, they brought it into the house of Dagon, and set it by Dagon.

Ashdod was the most central city of the 5 cities of the Philistines and the closest to the place called Ebenezer.

At Ashdod was a well known House of Dagon!

Dagon was the chief false god of the Philistines and they had worshipped him from their seafaring days. At some time he had been considered the fish god but was now represented as a half man and half fish.

It was their religious belief that all life began in the waters!

They believed that the Earth was flat and floating on the life giving waters of the seas.

We can see how this false religion has become what we now call evolution and that life began in a primeval soup.

Dagon to them was the father of Baal, who was also the chief of the false gods of the Canaanites.

They believed it was Dagon that supplied fish for food but was also the provider of their grain. Many scholars today even say that Dagon was the false god of grain.

All of these pagan false deities were essentially nature gods that represented the natural forces which they believed had produced all things while rejecting the God of Israel, Jehovah.

*****1Sa 5:3  And when they of Ashdod arose early on the morrow, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the earth before the ark of the LORD. And they took Dagon, and set him in his place again.

This day these Philistine had no idea what had happened to Dagon but the picture we get here is a false deity lying prostrate before the Lord in humility, subject to Him, giving adoration to Him.

This was a look of superior power to the Lord to all those that trusted in Dagon.

*****1Sa 5:4  And when they arose early on the morrow morning, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the ground before the ark of the LORD; and the head of Dagon and both the palms of his hands were cut off upon the threshold; only the stump of Dagon was left to him.

This time the Lord got their attention. By removing the head of Dagon the Lord was showing these Philistine that Dagon had no wisdom that was recognized by the Lord and we know that:

Pro 21:30  There is no wisdom nor understanding nor counsel against the LORD.

And by removing the hands of this false deity, the Lord was showing these Philistine that this idol of false worship had no strength and no power to defend it self against the Lord.

This is picture of man’s righteousness that simply cannot stand up to the righteousness of our Holy God!

Isa 64:6  But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.

*****1Sa 5:5  Therefore neither the priests of Dagon, nor any that come into Dagon’s house, tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod unto this day.

In other words these actions of the Lord completely shut down this false house of worship!

But instead of accepting that their false god was defeated these people wanted to send the Ark back to Israel.

1Sa 5:7  And when the men of Ashdod saw that it was so, they said, The ark of the God of Israel shall not abide with us: "for his hand is sore upon us, and upon Dagon our god."

*****1Sa 5:11  So they sent and gathered together all the lords of the Philistines, and said, Send away the ark of the God of Israel, "and let it go again to his own place", that it slay us not, and our people: for there was a deadly destruction throughout all the city; the hand of God was very heavy there.

The entire government of the Philistine got involved in removing the Ark from their land. This also shows us that these Philistine knew they did not actually own the land of Israel, it belonged to the God of Israel.

But, the Ark never made it back to Shiloh where the Tabernacle had been located.

God did not need any army to destroy these people and "the Hand of God was everywhere"!

Peter wrote:

1Pe 5:6  Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:

There is no power on Earth that can stand against the Mighty Hand Of God!

There was destruction in all the land of the Philistine and you would think they would learn this lesson but as we know history repeats itself over and over because we simply do not learn from our mistakes.

"There is pleasure in sin for a season" and Satan will give us thoughts of that pleasure but we never remember the results of our sin and the pain that comes from it.

Shame, Shame, Shame on us all!

*****1Sa 6:1  And the ark of the LORD was in the country of the Philistines seven months.

AND, these people experienced 7 months of misery and pain!

*****1Sa 6:2  And the Philistines called for the priests and the diviners, saying, What shall we do to the ark of the LORD? tell us wherewith we shall send it to his place.

Dagon could not stand up to the Ark of God.

The land of the Philistine was being destroyed before their eyes.

Pharaoh of Egypt had also been this foolish.

But what do we see they place their trust in, false priests and divination!

God says:

Deu 18:9  When thou art come into the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, thou shalt not learn to do after the abominations of those nations.
Deu 18:10  There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch,
Deu 18:11  Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer.
Deu 18:12  For all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD: and because of these abominations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee.

There is no abomination that can stand before the Lord!

*****1Sa 6:5  Wherefore ye shall make images of your emerods, and images of your mice that mar the land; and ye shall give glory unto the God of Israel: peradventure he will lighten his hand from off you, and from off your gods, and from off your land.
1Sa 6:6  Wherefore then do ye harden your hearts, as the Egyptians and Pharaoh hardened their hearts? when he had wrought wonderfully among them, did they not let the people go, and they departed?

All of a sudden the Philistines decide they better show the proper respect for the God of Israel.

They remembered the stories of Israel’s escape from Egypt and they now believed them.

They realized that they would receive no mercy but they already had, "because God was teaching at this time" and not judging them.

They realized that they could not force God to lift His chastisement. They realized they were dealing with something much more powerful than their false god Dagon.

THESE ARE LESSONS WE ALL HAVE TO LEARN!

These people had a complete change in attitude!

They realized that the Ark of God needed to go back to Israel and they devised a plan not only to remove the Ark from their lands but also to test the God of Israel.

They made a brand new and unused cart.

*****1Sa 6:7  Now therefore make a new cart, and take two milch kine, on which there hath come no yoke, and tie the kine to the cart, and bring their calves home from them:
1Sa 6:8  And take the ark of the LORD, and lay it upon the cart; and put the jewels of gold, which ye return him for a trespass offering, in a coffer by the side thereof; and send it away, that it may go.
1Sa 6:9  And see, if it goeth up by the way of his own coast to Bethshemesh, then he hath done us this great evil: but if not, then we shall know that it is not his hand that smote us: it was a chance that happened to us.
1Sa 6:10  And the men did so; and took two milch kine, and tied them to the cart, and shut up their calves at home:
1Sa 6:11  And they laid the ark of the LORD upon the cart, and the coffer with the mice of gold and the images of their emerods.

They took this new cart and tied two milch cows to the cart. Those jewels of gold were the five golden mice and the five tumors which are called "emerods".

This is the word from which we get our word hemorrhoids or sometimes called "piles".

Now there was nothing special about these cows except they had just had calves and would normally be kept for milkers after that. They were just ordinary cows!

These were cows that had had their first calves. They had never pulled a cart or even been trained to the yoke. No one could tell just exactly what direction they would go. They were still giving milk to their calves and would want to return to them, here again the Philistine were testing God.

These people may not have known God but those cows certainly did!

The Bible says:

Isa 1:3  The ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master’s crib: but Israel doth not know, my people doth not consider.

You see these cows did not go running for their calves and they did not just stand still.

*****1Sa 6:12  And the kine took the straight way to the way of Bethshemesh, and went along the highway, lowing as they went, and turned not aside to the right hand or to the left; and the lords of the Philistines went after them unto the border of Bethshemesh.

These cows were separated from their calves so they did keep up a perpetual lowing. Lowing is described as the cries of cattle. But in spite of all these things they headed straight to Bethshemesh.

This was the first town in the territory of Israel. It was in a valley known well for it’s wheat fields and about 7 miles from the Philistine city of Ekron.

Bethshemesh was also a city set aside for the priest of Israel:

Jos 21:13  Thus they gave to the children of Aaron the priest Hebron with her suburbs, to be a city of refuge for the slayer; and Libnah with her suburbs,

Jos 21:16  And Ain with her suburbs, and Juttah with her suburbs, and Bethshemesh with her suburbs; nine cities out of those two tribes.

These Philistine were humbled by what they had just witnessed!

God showed these Philistine that He could do things that their false god Dagon could never do.

It is the Lord Jesus Christ that rules all the things of this world!

Heb 1:3  Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, [and upholding all things by the word of his power], when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;

And Our Lord’s providence extends to all the natural world!

Psa 135:5  For I know that the LORD is great, and that our Lord is above all gods.
Psa 135:6  Whatsoever the LORD pleased, that did he in heaven, and in earth, in the seas, and all deep places.
Psa 135:7  He causeth the vapours to ascend from the ends of the earth; he maketh lightnings for the rain; he bringeth the wind out of his treasuries.

Even the little things God does in this world are sometimes more noticed by His enemies than His believers!

Questions?

Let’s Pray!

A Departed Glory-God’s Judgment

A Departed Glory, God’s Judgment

Book of 1 Samuel Chapters 4-6

The theme of this passage is found in Chapter 4:21:

1Sa 4:21  And she named the child Ichabod, saying, [The glory is departed from Israel]: because the ark of God was taken, and because of her father in law and her husband.

That name Ichabod in translation actually ask a question which is "Where is the glory of God?"

And this question is answered by saying "The glory of God is departed out of Israel"!

When we left off last week Samuel was in the presence of the Lord, Samuel was God’s Seer or God’s Prophet.

We should also keep this verse in mind:

Heb 1:1  God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers "by the prophets",
Heb 1:2  Hath in these last days "spoken unto us by his Son", whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;

We must never make the mistake of thinking that just because some time has passed that God has forgotten His Word or His Promises!

God will do everything He says He will do BUT in His own "appointed time"!

*****1Sa 4:1  And the word of Samuel came to all Israel. Now Israel went out against the Philistines to battle, and pitched beside Ebenezer: and the Philistines pitched in Aphek.

Israel clearly understood that Samuel was God’s man in this day, yet we see that Israel went into battle without even consulting with Him.

It had been 40 years since Samson had brought down a house of Dagon, the false god of the Philistines, upon their heads but they consistently wanted to rule over Israel and still do even unto this day.

Here again we see them gather in a place called Aphek. This Aphek was north east of Jerusalem with Shiloh being more north of Jerusalem.

It was Samuel who set up a stone to mark this place called called "Ebenezer" but this was not it’s name on the day of this battle but this will give us the location of this placed that is later called Ebenezer.

This also gives us the assurance that it was Samuel that wrote this part of the Books called Samuel.

This stone was actually set up and that name given on a later date. (Note 1 Samuel 7:12)

1Sa 7:12  Then Samuel took a stone, and set it between Mizpeh and Shen, and called the name of it Ebenezer, saying, Hitherto hath the LORD helped us.

The Lord did not help them on this day of Eli’s judgment!

*****1Sa 4:2  And the Philistines put themselves in array against Israel: and when they joined battle, Israel was smitten before the Philistines: and they slew of the army in the field about four thousand men.

Who were the Philistines which actually means "immigrants"?

The Bible teaches us that Noah had three sons. One son named Ham had a son named Mizraim and he then had many sons one being named Casluhim.

The Bible says out of this man began the Philistines:

Gen 10:14  And Pathrusim, and Casluhim, (out of whom came Philistim,) and Caphtorim.

The Bible goes on to say that the Philistines come from the country of Caphtor:

Jer 47:4  Because of the day that cometh to spoil all the Philistines, and to cut off from Tyrus and Zidon every helper that remaineth: for the LORD will spoil the Philistines, "the remnant of the country of Caphtor".

Caphtor in all probability was the island of Crete or at least a part of it because the Bible also calls the Philistines by the name of Cherethites which would be Cretes though some do argue against this.

Zep 2:5  Woe unto the inhabitants of the sea coast, the nation of the Cherethites! the word of the LORD is against you; O Canaan, the land of the Philistines, I will even destroy thee, that there shall be no inhabitant.

What is known is that this group of people overcame the Hittite Empire and after this they attacked Egypt whom they could not over come and then settled in the five cities of Canaan Land and occupied the coastal plain.

It was the fact that these Philistines had learned how to work with "iron" earlier than many others, that gave them some advantage in war. Most other nations were still working with "brass".

The Israelites encountered the Philistines in Canaan and they have been the most treacherous of the enemies of Israel throughout the entire Bible.

The Philistines are mentioned  nearly 150 times in the Bible and because of them the area of Israel, Judah, Edom, Phoenica and Lebanon have been called Palestine. Palestine is a designated area and has never been a nation as such in all history.

The Philistines have always been "immigrants" trying to steal the land in Palestine and still do!

They now call themselves "Palestinians" in hope the world will associate them as owners of that land, "which they are not", and most of the world has succumbed to this falsehood!

They still have their warlike ways, "always" refusing to live in peace and history has also proven this to be true!

They are still the biggest enemies of Israel and God promises a final judgment upon them.

But, on this day they slew 4000 Hebrew soldiers!

*****1Sa 4:3  And when the people were come into the camp, the elders of Israel said, Wherefore hath the LORD smitten us to day before the Philistines? Let us fetch the ark of the covenant of the LORD out of Shiloh unto us, that, when it cometh among us, it may save us out of the hand of our enemies.
1Sa 4:4  So the people sent to Shiloh, that they might bring from thence the ark of the covenant of the LORD of hosts, which dwelleth between the cherubims: and the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, were there with the ark of the covenant of God.
1Sa 4:5  And when the ark of the covenant of the LORD came into the camp, all Israel shouted with a great shout, so that the earth rang again.

The Ark of the Covenant was a chest made of acacia wood. It measured 2 1/2 cubits long by 2 1/2 cubits wide and 1 1/2 cubits high.

It was covered with gold inside and out. It had an ornamental molding of gold that ran like a crown around it.

It had gold rings in which golden stays were placed so that it could be properly carried by those appointed to do so by God, which could only be priests that were assigned in the Laws of Moses.

There was also a lid placed on top of the Ark that was called the Mercy Seat.

The elders of Israel wrongly assumed that God would be present with them if they brought the Ark of the covenant from Shiloh!

When Hophni and Phinehas appeared in the camp carrying the Ark it brought shouts of joy.

BUT, The presence of the Ark did not mean that the Lord was with them!

God cannot be carried place to place!

In fact God says:

Pro 15:3  The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.

And the presence of the Ark did not guarantee any military victory!

AND, It would be well to remember that after nearly 400 years these Philistines were still aware of how God had delivered Israel from Egypt.

And we can also see that these elders of Israel totally understood that defeat would certainly come if the Lord was not with them.

The pure fact is that "The Hand Of God Cannot Be Manipulated!

God had promised judgment and judgment would still come!

*****1Sa 4:10  And the Philistines fought, and Israel was smitten, and they fled every man into his tent: and there was a very great slaughter; for there fell of Israel thirty thousand footmen.

The Philistines looked upon the Ark as no more than "an idol" as those they had of their false god Dagon!

The children of Israel looked on the Ark as "an object", the seat of mercy that God set upon!

Job can give us some wisdom here:

Job 20:5  That the triumphing of the wicked is short, and the joy of the hypocrite but for a moment?

And the Bible teaches us of God’s judgment:

Psa 78:60  So that he forsook the tabernacle of Shiloh, the tent which he placed among men;
Psa 78:61  And delivered his strength into captivity, and his glory into the enemy’s hand.
Psa 78:62  He gave his people over also unto the sword; and was wroth with his inheritance.
Psa 78:63  The fire consumed their young men; and their maidens were not given to marriage.
Psa 78:64  Their priests fell by the sword; and their widows made no lamentation.

And, 30,000 Hebrew soldiers were killed that day because Israel had abandoned Jehovah God!

*****1Sa 4:11  And the ark of God was taken; and the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, were slain.
1Sa 4:12  And there ran a man of Benjamin out of the army, and came to Shiloh the same day with his clothes rent, and with earth upon his head.

Never in the history of Israel had the Ark of God ever fallen into enemy hands.

So holy was the Ark that it was kept behind the Veil in the Tabernacle and seen only by the High Priest and only on one day a year, "the day of atonement".

When the Jews moved during their 40 years of wandering, the first thing the High Priest did was to cover the Ark with the Veil and only then could he attend to the other pieces of furniture.

The Ark was the throne of God but now God’s throne was in enemy territory!

Now, It was not a sin to take the Ark into the battle "if the people were truly devoted to the Lord".

But the Ark of God was not some good luck charm!

So now God would use the Ark to teach both the Jews and the Philistines some important lessons!

And God fulfilled the Words He had spoken to Samuel.

So Samuel also would learn some valuable lessons here!

*****1Sa 4:17  And the messenger answered and said, Israel is fled before the Philistines, and there hath been also a great slaughter among the people, and thy two sons also, Hophni and Phinehas, are dead, and the ark of God is taken.

Eli’s whole world was bound up in the outcome of the battle!

His two sons were involved in the fighting. His two sons were evil but he still had their father’s love.

Over 30,000 of Israel’s young men were also risking their lives, but to Eli the most important thing was the Ark and its safety.

To much to many of Israel’s leaders the Ark was just "a religious object" that might have psychological and magical powers!

Eli was very old at this time but he had devoted his entire life to the service of the Lord, and the Ark symbolized the presence of the Lord and its loss was more than the old man could stand!

*****1Sa 4:18  And it came to pass, when he made mention of the ark of God, that he fell from off the seat backward by the side of the gate, and his neck brake, and he died: for he was an old man, and heavy. And he had judged Israel forty years.

Eli was 98 years old and nearly blind and this news upset him so much that he fell over and the weight of his body caused his neck to break as it struck the side of that gate and Eli died.

This was the end of an era in the nation of Israel!

This death symbolized the transition from the days of judges to the days of kings was about to take place.

Eli had governed Israel both as a high priest and a judge.

Our lesson here is obvious, when we place our faith in "the rituals of religion" we find that we may have a form of godliness but we do not and cannot have the true power of God, which is by Faith!

The Bible describes these things that we see today:

2Ti 3:1  This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
2Ti 3:2  For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
2Ti 3:3  Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,
2Ti 3:4  Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
2Ti 3:5  "Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof": from such turn away.

These things describe how it was in Israel at this time of Eli.

Now Israel will begin a transition to a king.

Our lesson here is that we all must also make that transition to King Jesus!

*****1Sa 5:1  And the Philistines took the ark of God, and brought it from Ebenezer unto Ashdod.
1Sa 5:2  When the Philistines took the ark of God, they brought it into the house of Dagon, and set it by Dagon.

Ashdod was the most central city of the 5 cities of the Philistines and the closest to the place called Ebenezer.

At Ashdod was a well known House of Dagon!

Dagon was the chief false god of the Philistines and they had worshipped him from their seafaring days. At some time he had been considered the fish god but was now represented as a half man and half fish.

It was their religious belief that all life began in the waters!

They believed that the Earth was flat and floating on the life giving waters of the seas.

We can see how this false religion has become what we now call evolution and that life began in a primeval soup.

Dagon to them was the father of Baal, who was also the chief of the false gods of the Canaanites.

They believed it was Dagon that supplied fish for food but was also the provider of their grain. Many scholars today even say that Dagon was the false god of grain.

All of these pagan false deities were essentially nature gods that represented the natural forces which they believed had produced all things while rejecting the God of Israel, Jehovah.

*****1Sa 5:3  And when they of Ashdod arose early on the morrow, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the earth before the ark of the LORD. And they took Dagon, and set him in his place again.

This day these Philistine had no idea what had happened to Dagon but the picture we get here is a false deity lying prostrate before the Lord in humility, subject to Him, giving adoration to Him.

This was a look of superior power to the Lord to all those that trusted in Dagon.

*****1Sa 5:4  And when they arose early on the morrow morning, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the ground before the ark of the LORD; and the head of Dagon and both the palms of his hands were cut off upon the threshold; only the stump of Dagon was left to him.

This time the Lord got their attention. By removing the head of Dagon the Lord was showing these Philistine that Dagon had no wisdom that was recognized by the Lord and we know that:

Pro 21:30  There is no wisdom nor understanding nor counsel against the LORD.

And by removing the hands of this false deity, the Lord was showing these Philistine that this idol of false worship had no strength and no power to defend it self against the Lord.

This is picture of man’s righteousness that simply cannot stand up to the righteousness of our Holy God!

Isa 64:6  But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.

*****1Sa 5:5  Therefore neither the priests of Dagon, nor any that come into Dagon’s house, tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod unto this day.

In other words these actions of the Lord completely shut down this false house of worship!

But instead of accepting that their false god was defeated these people wanted to send the Ark back to Israel.

1Sa 5:7  And when the men of Ashdod saw that it was so, they said, The ark of the God of Israel shall not abide with us: "for his hand is sore upon us, and upon Dagon our god."

*****1Sa 5:11  So they sent and gathered together all the lords of the Philistines, and said, Send away the ark of the God of Israel, "and let it go again to his own place", that it slay us not, and our people: for there was a deadly destruction throughout all the city; the hand of God was very heavy there.

The entire government of the Philistine got involved in removing the Ark from their land. This also shows us that these Philistine knew they did not actually own the land of Israel, it belonged to the God of Israel.

But, the Ark never made it back to Shiloh where the Tabernacle had been located.

God did not need any army to destroy these people and "the Hand of God was everywhere"!

Peter wrote:

1Pe 5:6  Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:

There is no power on Earth that can stand against the Mighty Hand Of God!

There was destruction in all the land of the Philistine and you would think they would learn this lesson but as we know history repeats itself over and over because we simply do not learn from our mistakes.

"There is pleasure in sin for a season" and Satan will give us thoughts of that pleasure but we never remember the results of our sin and the pain that comes from it.

Shame, Shame, Shame on us all!

*****1Sa 6:1  And the ark of the LORD was in the country of the Philistines seven months.

AND, these people experienced 7 months of misery and pain!

*****1Sa 6:2  And the Philistines called for the priests and the diviners, saying, What shall we do to the ark of the LORD? tell us wherewith we shall send it to his place.

Dagon could not stand up to the Ark of God.

The land of the Philistine was being destroyed before their eyes.

Pharaoh of Egypt had also been this foolish.

But what do we see they place their trust in, false priests and divination!

God says:

Deu 18:9  When thou art come into the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, thou shalt not learn to do after the abominations of those nations.
Deu 18:10  There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch,
Deu 18:11  Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer.
Deu 18:12  For all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD: and because of these abominations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee.

There is no abomination that can stand before the Lord!

*****1Sa 6:5  Wherefore ye shall make images of your emerods, and images of your mice that mar the land; and ye shall give glory unto the God of Israel: peradventure he will lighten his hand from off you, and from off your gods, and from off your land.
1Sa 6:6  Wherefore then do ye harden your hearts, as the Egyptians and Pharaoh hardened their hearts? when he had wrought wonderfully among them, did they not let the people go, and they departed?

All of a sudden the Philistines decide they better show the proper respect for the God of Israel.

They remembered the stories of Israel’s escape from Egypt and they now believed them.

They realized that they would receive no mercy but they already had, "because God was teaching at this time" and not judging them.

They realized that they could not force God to lift His chastisement. They realized they were dealing with something much more powerful than their false god Dagon.

THESE ARE LESSONS WE ALL HAVE TO LEARN!

These people had a complete change in attitude!

They realized that the Ark of God needed to go back to Israel and they devised a plan not only to remove the Ark from their lands but also to test the God of Israel.

They made a brand new and unused cart.

*****1Sa 6:7  Now therefore make a new cart, and take two milch kine, on which there hath come no yoke, and tie the kine to the cart, and bring their calves home from them:
1Sa 6:8  And take the ark of the LORD, and lay it upon the cart; and put the jewels of gold, which ye return him for a trespass offering, in a coffer by the side thereof; and send it away, that it may go.
1Sa 6:9  And see, if it goeth up by the way of his own coast to Bethshemesh, then he hath done us this great evil: but if not, then we shall know that it is not his hand that smote us: it was a chance that happened to us.
1Sa 6:10  And the men did so; and took two milch kine, and tied them to the cart, and shut up their calves at home:
1Sa 6:11  And they laid the ark of the LORD upon the cart, and the coffer with the mice of gold and the images of their emerods.

They took this new cart and tied two milch cows to the cart. Those jewels of gold were the five golden mice and the five tumors which are called "emerods".

This is the word from which we get our word hemorrhoids or sometimes called "piles".

Now there was nothing special about these cows except they had just had calves and would normally be kept for milkers after that. They were just ordinary cows!

These were cows that had had their first calves. They had never pulled a cart or even been trained to the yoke. No one could tell just exactly what direction they would go. They were still giving milk to their calves and would want to return to them, here again the Philistine were testing God.

These people may not have known God but those cows certainly did!

The Bible says:

Isa 1:3  The ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master’s crib: but Israel doth not know, my people doth not consider.

You see these cows did not go running for their calves and they did not just stand still.

*****1Sa 6:12  And the kine took the straight way to the way of Bethshemesh, and went along the highway, lowing as they went, and turned not aside to the right hand or to the left; and the lords of the Philistines went after them unto the border of Bethshemesh.

These cows were separated from their calves so they did keep up a perpetual lowing. Lowing is described as the cries of cattle. But in spite of all these things they headed straight to Bethshemesh.

This was the first town in the territory of Israel. It was in a valley known well for it’s wheat fields and about 7 miles from the Philistine city of Ekron.

Bethshemesh was also a city set aside for the priest of Israel:

Jos 21:13  Thus they gave to the children of Aaron the priest Hebron with her suburbs, to be a city of refuge for the slayer; and Libnah with her suburbs,

Jos 21:16  And Ain with her suburbs, and Juttah with her suburbs, and Bethshemesh with her suburbs; nine cities out of those two tribes.

These Philistine were humbled by what they had just witnessed!

God showed these Philistine that He could do things that their false god Dagon could never do.

It is the Lord Jesus Christ that rules all the things of this world!

Heb 1:3  Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, [and upholding all things by the word of his power], when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;

And Our Lord’s providence extends to all the natural world!

Psa 135:5  For I know that the LORD is great, and that our Lord is above all gods.
Psa 135:6  Whatsoever the LORD pleased, that did he in heaven, and in earth, in the seas, and all deep places.
Psa 135:7  He causeth the vapours to ascend from the ends of the earth; he maketh lightnings for the rain; he bringeth the wind out of his treasuries.

Even the little things God does in this world are sometimes more noticed by His enemies than His believers!

Questions?

Let’s Pray!

A Submissive Child God Calls Samuel

A Submissive Child, God Calls Samuel

Book of I Samuel Chapter 3

When we left off last week we saw that Eli had lost favor with God. We also saw that Samuel was gaining favor with the Lord.

It is stated that as Samuel grew he was in favor both with the Lord and also with men.

It is at this time in Samuel’s life God made Himself known. The Lord revealed Himself in different ways to Samuel and his fame and his influence increased throughout the land as people realized that Samuel had been divinely called to be a prophet.

So let’s begin:

*****1Sa 3:1  And the child Samuel ministered unto the LORD before Eli. And the word of the LORD was precious in those days; there was no open vision.

Samuel was still a child.

The Hebrew word "naar" used here means that Samuel was not yet a teenager.

Hebrew children were taught in stages. At the age of five they were ready for the Scriptures and they began with the book of Leviticus.

At the age of 10 they were ready to study all of God’s Word.

At the age of 13 they were expected to uphold the commandments of God. This included the 10 Commandments while beginning to learn the other 603 commandments.

At the age of 15 they were expected to show wisdom in God’s Word and make sound judgments.

At the age of 18 they could marry.

At the age of 20 they were expected to seek an occupation to provide for themselves.

At the age of 30 they could go into the ministry and were expected to do so.

At the age of 40 they were expected to go about the ministry without supervision.

And at the age of 50 they were considered to be wise enough to counsel others.

Samuel was probably at least 12 years old at this time.

But without a doubt our age should never be a factor in our service to the Lord!

We are never too young and certainly never too old to serve the Lord Jesus Christ!

There will be no honor from the Father in Heaven unless we serve the Son:

Joh 12:26  If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour.

That phrase "no open vision" along with "the Word of the Lord was precious in those days" indicates that God had not given any direct revelation to His people as He had in former times.

Since Moses, there had not been a Prophet!

That word "precious" means that many desired the Word of God but they were not receiving it!

There was a great need for a true prophet of God!

*****1Sa 3:2  And it came to pass at that time, when Eli was laid down in his place, and his eyes began to wax dim, that he could not see;
1Sa 3:3  And ere the lamp of God went out in the temple of the LORD, where the ark of God was, and Samuel was laid down to sleep;
1Sa 3:4  That the LORD called Samuel: and he answered, Here am I.

We know that when the Temple was built that there were chambers where theTemple priest could sleep.

And it is most probable at this time it Shiloh, since the Tabernacle was not moving from place to place, that a place had been built for the high priest and those that worked at the Tabernacle perhaps even under the same roof.

Wherever Eli was sleeping, Samuel had his own bed very close because of the near blindness of Eli.

No doubt Eli called on Samuel many times during the night.

The Lamp of God was a seven branched golden candlestick that stood in the Holy place before the Veil. (Note Rev. 1:20)

Eli was so old that, he had his place near this Candlestick.

It was the only source of light in that place and the priests were ordered to keep it burning.

Exo 27:20  And thou shalt command the children of Israel, that they bring thee pure oil olive beaten for the light, to cause the lamp to burn always.

These lamps were to trimmed, filled with oil, and lit at twilight every single night and they were to remain burning until morning.

To allow this lamp go out showed laziness and to put it out showed disobedience and contempt for the Word of God.

But this also shows us the place that Eli and Samuel slept were very near this Candlestick.

And the Lord called Samuel.

Samuel’s answer was not intended to declare the place where he was sleeping.

Samuel’s answer shows us his readiness and his cheerfulness to do anything that was required of him.

*****1Sa 3:5  And he ran unto Eli, and said, Here am I; for thou calledst me. And he said, I called not; lie down again. And he went and lay down.
1Sa 3:6  And the LORD called yet again, Samuel. And Samuel arose and went to Eli, and said, Here am I; for thou didst call me. And he answered, I called not, my son; lie down again.
1Sa 3:7  Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD, neither was the word of the LORD yet revealed unto him.

We know that Samuel answered the first call but he did not understand who was calling.

And he ran to Eli. It is always important that we understand who is calling and what we are being asked to do!

Salvation and the Lord’s service are too important to be misunderstood and taken wrongfully.

Samuel also misunderstood the second call.

We can see that Samuel did not know the Lord at this time. Even the third call by the Lord was still misunderstood but Samuel was certain that he was being called by some one.

*****1Sa 3:8  And the LORD called Samuel again the third time. And he arose and went to Eli, and said, Here am I; for thou didst call me. And Eli perceived that the LORD had called the child.
1Sa 3:9  Therefore Eli said unto Samuel, Go, lie down: and it shall be, if he call thee, that thou shalt say, Speak, LORD; for thy servant heareth. So Samuel went and lay down in his place.

Our lesson here is that we may not always recognize the call of God at first!

Think back to the first time you came under conviction, did you really know it was the Holy Ghost?

Eli never scolded Samuel and did finally give him the right instructions.

God deserves an answer every time He calls!

We cannot be like Jonah and try to run away from God. We will certainly learn some of the same lessons Jonah had to learn, the hard way!

There is another great lesson we will learn in these passages.

"God will never be without someone to teach the truth of the Gospel no matter what preachers who have strayed from the truth are teaching!"

*****1Sa 3:10  "And the LORD came", and stood, and called as at other times, Samuel, Samuel. Then Samuel answered, Speak; for thy servant heareth.

When we see where a name is spoken twice, especially by the Lord, then the message is very important and the action is coming very soon.

It happened to Moses at the burning bush:

Exo 3:4  And when the LORD saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses. And he said, Here am I.

It happened to Abraham when he was about to slay Isaac:

Gen 22:11  And the angel of the LORD called unto him out of heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham: and he said, Here am I.

We see Jesus speak to Jerusalem:

Mat 23:37  O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!

And the calling of the Apostle Paul:

Act 9:4  And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?

And also the Apostle Peter:

Luk 22:31  And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat:

Samuel understood and replied that he was listening and we must always listen patiently to the Lord when He calls.

Every message of the Lord is important and sometimes requires our "immediate" attention!

*****1Sa 3:11  And the LORD said to Samuel, Behold, I will do a thing in Israel, at which both the ears of every one that heareth it shall tingle.
1Sa 3:12  In that day I will perform against Eli all things which I have spoken concerning his house: when I begin, I will also make an end.
1Sa 3:13  For I have told him that I will judge his house for ever for the iniquity which he knoweth; because his sons made themselves vile, and he restrained them not.
1Sa 3:14  And therefore I have sworn unto the house of Eli, that the iniquity of Eli’s house shall not be purged with sacrifice nor offering for ever.

God’s message to Samuel was a message of "Judgment"!

It was inexcusable for the sons of Eli to behave as they had!

It had been Eli’s duty to force them to behave in God’s House!

Their crimes were crimes punishable by death according to God’s commandments and it was Eli’s duty to have them executed them and all of Israel knew these things.

But Eli honored his sons more than the Word of God!

So, God said His judgment would shock this nation of Israel!

God said this judgment would be so intense that the ears of every citizen in Israel would tingle!

God had already told Eli that he and his sons had forfeited their right to the priests’ office.

Brother Johnny explained that last week in chapter 2.

In our next chapter we will see Eli, Hophni, and Phinehas will all die the on same day.

And later, when Saul is king, he slew Ahimelech, who was the grandson of Phinehas.

And even later, Abiathar was removed by Solomon who was the last of the priesthood of the family of Eli.

From that point on it was the family of Zadok. This would fulfill the promise God had made to Moses about "another Phinehas" the son of Eleazar, the third born son of Aaron, which was the true line of the High Priest of Israel.

Num 25:12  Wherefore say, Behold, I give unto him my covenant of peace:
Num 25:13  And he shall have it, and his seed after him, even the covenant of an everlasting priesthood; because he was zealous for his God, and made an atonement for the children of Israel.

But not only would this happen to the family of Eli, the Ark of God would fall into the hands of the Philistines and would not be totally recovered to it’s place, until the time of King David.

And also we know that Shiloh was completely destroyed:

The Bible says:

Jer 7:11  Is this house, which is called by my name, become a den of robbers in your eyes? Behold, even I have seen it, saith the LORD.
Jer 7:12  But go ye now unto my place which was in Shiloh, where I set my name at the first, and see "what I did to it" for the wickedness of my people Israel.

God was serious then about the things that went on in the House of God!

And God is serious now about what goes on in the House of God!

Notice those words "that the iniquity of Eli’s house shall not be purged"

God did not forgive Eli nor those of his family!

And God will not always forgive those that try to rule in the House of God!

It’s God’s House and He will rule by His Own Word or that house will cease to exist as a house of God and become Satan’s house! (Note Rev 3:20)

*****1Sa 3:15  And Samuel lay until the morning, and opened the doors of the house of the LORD. And Samuel feared to shew Eli the vision.

We do not know how much Samuel understood of the things of Eli and his sons but Samuel did not get anymore sleep that night.

Eli was like a father to Samuel and he did not want to tell Eli what the Lord had said.

But we should remember these words to Jeremiah who was also called as a child:

Jer 1:6  Then said I, Ah, Lord GOD! behold, I cannot speak: for I am a child.
Jer 1:7  But the LORD said unto me, Say not, I am a child: for thou shalt go to all that I shall send thee, and whatsoever I command thee thou shalt speak.
Jer 1:8  Be not afraid of their faces: for I am with thee to deliver thee, saith the LORD.

Can God talk to children and they understand Him? Sure He can!

*****1Sa 3:16  Then Eli called Samuel, and said, Samuel, my son. And he answered, Here am I.
1Sa 3:17  And he said, What is the thing that the LORD hath said unto thee? I pray thee hide it not from me: God do so to thee, and more also, if thou hide any thing from me of all the things that he said unto thee.
1Sa 3:18  And Samuel told him every whit, and hid nothing from him. And he said, It is the LORD: let him do what seemeth him good.

Samuel did not want to tell Eli what God had said. This was out of respect for Eli but Eli did not show the same respect for this 12 year old but actually had to threaten him.

A true Prophet of God takes no pleasure in delivering a message of judgment!

But the truth is always still the truth!

Eli insisted that Samuel swear that he would tell everything and even told him that the Lord would bring the same judgment upon him if he did not.

Samuel understood what Eli was saying and told him everything the Lord had said.

*****1Sa 3:19  And Samuel grew, and the LORD was with him, and did let none of his words fall to the ground.

Three things here:

1) Samuel grew, in other words he increased in manhood.

2) It was the Lord who became Samuel’s teacher and not Eli, filling him with grace and holiness.

3) And Whatever this young prophet said, God fulfilled it and the words of Samuel were received "as coming from the Lord".

The Bible says:

2Pe 1:20  Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.
2Pe 1:21  For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.

We must not forget that Samuel was also a priest of the family of Kohath a son of Levi.

So we see that it was Samuel that brought reform to the priestly order:

1Ch 9:22  All these which were chosen to be porters in the gates were two hundred and twelve. These were reckoned by their genealogy in their villages, whom David "and Samuel" the seer did ordain in their set office.

*****1Sa 3:20  And all Israel from Dan even to Beersheba knew that Samuel was established to be a prophet of the LORD.

Israel may have not been unified politically at this time but all of Israel were unified in the knowledge that Samuel was the voice of God!

Dan was the most northern border and Beersheba was the most southern border.

*****1Sa 3:21  And the LORD appeared again in Shiloh: for the LORD revealed himself to Samuel in Shiloh by the word of the LORD.

In Chapter 4 we will read of the war with the Philistines but just before this takes place we read that the Lord appears again to Samuel.

In the Book of John we read these words:

Joh 1:1  In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
Joh 1:2  The same was in the beginning with God.
Joh 1:3  All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

I believe that none other than the Lord was with Samuel this night in Shiloh.

Again God can take one man and bring change to Israel.

And God has taken one man "Jesus" and has changed this world we live in!

Samuel was about to have "a new beginning" even at such a young age!

Eli’s sons showed nothing but contempt to the house of God, the sacrifice, and the women of the church, but worst of all toward the Lord.

They were greedy, immoral and worthless sons of Belial!

Next week we will see God’s judgment on the house of Eli.

But, we must also remember these words of Peter:

1Pe 4:17  For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?
1Pe 4:18  And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?
1Pe 4:19  Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.

We owe it to the Lord to know how to act in the House of God!

Questions?

Let’s Pray!

Eli’s Negligence A Derelict Father

Eli’s Negligence—-A Derelict Father

Book of 1 Samuel Chapter 2 (Note: 1 Chronicles 2)

What is a derelict father?

The word derelict means to abandon or to throw away or to have left.

Therefore a derelict father is one who has thrown away his children or left them to themselves!

Spiritual instruction is absolutely vital to our well-being, though most reject this idea.

BUT, not just any spiritual instruction, it must come from the Word of God, the Gospel of Jesus Christ!

Our nations are failing because our morals have sunk to such a low estate.

Remembered the theme of the Book of Judges.

Jdg 21:25  In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes.

This verse says that Israel had no King. Israel did not need a King, what Israel needed was God.

This the same for any nation. Does a nation need a government? Sure, but that government needs God’s direction!

We will see again that through Samuel, God would save this nation of Israel.

Our lesson today does not cover the first eleven verses in this chapter. This passage is known as the "Song of Hannah". This passage is not only a song of praise but it is also a song of prophecy and should be studied on its own.

*****1Sa 2:11  And Elkanah went to Ramah to his house. And the child did minister unto the LORD before Eli the priest.

Hannah and Elkanah returned to Ramah, leaving their son in Shiloh. Their hearts were full of joy and they had great expectations to see what the Lord would do with Samuel.

These parents were dedicated to the Lord, and worshiped Him together, and prayed to Him together, and trusted in His Word.

Hannah had once had a broken heart but the Lord gave her peace because she prayed and submitted to His will.

We will now see the contrast in Eli, who was High Priest and judge of Israel, but not so much a parent.

*****1Sa 2:12  Now the sons of Eli were sons of Belial; they knew not the LORD.

We will read in the next few passages just how evil these priestly sons of Eli were.

1) They were lost and unsaved.

2) They regarded Belial, (which is wickedness), as compared to the true God.

They were "worthless" in God’s ministry!

Jesus said in the Book of Matthew:

Mat 13:38  The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; [but the tares are the children of the wicked one]

Hophni and Phinehas were "tares"!

3) They were stealing those offerings from God not the people.

4) They bullied the people of God, rather than assist them with their sacrifice to the Lord.

5) They committed adultery inside the tabernacle showing disdain for the House of God.

6) They ultimately caused God’s people to sin.

They were servants of Satan but inside God’s House!

No one can ignore or violate God’s Word and escape the consequences of their actions!

*****1Sa 2:13  And the priests’ custom with the people was, that, when any man offered sacrifice, the priest’s servant came, while the flesh was in seething, with a fleshhook of three teeth in his hand;
1Sa 2:14  And he struck it into the pan, or kettle, or caldron, or pot; all that the fleshhook brought up the priest took for himself. So they did in Shiloh unto all the Israelites that came thither.

First we see this phrase "the priests’ custom". This means that this was not according to the law of God given to Moses.

The priests’ servants in this case would be the sons of Eli.

There were 5 offerings made to the Lord. Each offering is actually a "type" of Christ.

The "Peace Offering" was the only offering where the sacrifice could be eaten by the people and may be the least understood of the 5!

We need to understand the order followed here:

The offerer brought his offering to the altar, laid his hand on it, and slew it.

Laying his hand on the animal showed his affection for the animal and its worthiness. It also represented a transfer of the sin of the one who offered onto the animal of sacrifice.

The priest then sprinkled the blood upon the altar and around it.

The animal was then cut up, and God’s portion (almost entirely fat, besides the two kidneys) was placed on top of the already burning "Burnt Offering" and "Meal Offerings".

Then the priest received the breast and right shoulder for himself and his own children.

The offerer received the remainder of the animal to eat. However, it had to be eaten within one day if it was a thanksgiving offering or within two days if it was a vow or voluntary offering.

If any remained on the third day, it had to be burned.

In this process, the major teaching of the peace offering is revealed.

This was the only offering that the animal did not have to be perfect and it represented complete peace with God.

In addition, since all parties (God, priest, and man) share the same meal and satisfaction, it shows that all are in a peaceful communion or fellowship together.

Because it was placed in sequence on top of the other two offerings, the peace offering is directly connected to them, and thus it depicts the effect of perfect devotion to God and man: peaceful satisfaction and fellowship, the fruit of devotedly keeping the two great commandments of the law.

What are those two commandments?

Jesus said it this way to the Pharisees:

Mat 22:36  Master, which is the great commandment in the law?
Mat 22:37  Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
Mat 22:38  This is the first and great commandment.
Mat 22:39  And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
Mat 22:40  On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

In this sacrifice Christ, "in type", plays all three parts:

Christ is the offering, sacrificing His life in service;

Christ is the priest, serving mankind at the altar as Mediator;

Christ is the offerer, bringing His sacrifice to the altar.

The altar, the place of meeting for all three, represents sacrificial services and devotion to God that gave Him satisfaction and resulted in our acceptance.

The peace offering shows man, as Christ: accepted, fed, strengthened, and satisfied by sacrifice.

This teaches that sacrifice is indeed the essence, the heart and core, the essential element, of "Love" whether to God or man!

More specifically, it shows us that sacrifice plays a major role in acceptance before God.

In other words, spiritual feeding and therefore spiritual strength, and spiritual satisfaction!

Devoted people sacrifice for those they love!

Thus, sacrifice indicates devotion to God (burnt offering) and devotion in service to man (meal offering).

Another aspect of this offering is important for us to consider more closely: The priest’s children are also specifically named to receive of the peace offering!

Whom do the priest’s children "in type" represent?

This is important because they were also to eat directly of the offering and be satisfied!

We have already seen that Christ is symbolically portrayed in several ways here, as the Offerer, the Offering, and the Priest.

We must remember that Christ is one with His church.

We are parts of His body; we are "in Him!"

Knowing these things we can see that all the meat in the flesh pot belonged to the offerer that brought the offering, as God had already provided the breast and the right quarter for the priests.

These 2 sons of Eli made a mockery of this special offering designed by the Lord to simulate His "Grace" and the Church in complete fellowship with Our Maker!

*****1Sa 2:15  Also before they burnt the fat, the priest’s servant came, and said to the man that sacrificed, Give flesh to roast for the priest; for he will not have sodden flesh of thee, but raw.

So before the burnt offering was made, which symbolizes Christ, and belonged to the Lord, and should be made before all other offerings.

Before God got His required offering, these sons of Eli came and demanded a share of what did not belong to them!

They liked roasted meat better than boiled meat and the flesh hook did not always bring up the best piece of meat.

They wanted the best pieces of meat for themselves! This was not God’s plan!

*****1Sa 2:16  And if any man said unto him, Let them not fail to burn the fat presently, and then take as much as thy soul desireth; then he would answer him, Nay; but thou shalt give it me now: and if not, I will take it by force.

The priest of the tabernacle were entitled to receive the breast and the right thigh of the animal being sacrificed.

Lev 7:34  For the wave breast and the heave shoulder have I taken of the children of Israel from off the sacrifices of their peace offerings, and have given them unto Aaron the priest and unto his sons by a statute for ever from among the children of Israel.

But this could only happen after the fat had been burned on the altar!

Lev 3:3  And he shall offer of the sacrifice of the peace offering an offering made by fire unto the LORD; the fat that covereth the inwards, and all the fat that is upon the inwards,
Lev 3:4  And the two kidneys, and the fat that is on them, which is by the flanks, and the caul above the liver, with the kidneys, it shall he take away.
Lev 3:5  And Aaron’s sons shall burn it on the altar upon the burnt sacrifice, which is upon the wood that is on the fire: it is an offering made by fire, of a sweet savour unto the LORD.

Eli’s sons ignored both of these requirements!

Notice that the people were more concerned for the honor and glory of God than the priests. They were willing to lose their own property but could not bear the fact that the Lord should be dishonored and so rudely treated.

They were willing that these priest should take what they pleased of theirs but they desired that the Lord be served first as it always should be.

To take the flesh of the sacrificial animal and roast it before this offering had been made was a crime which was equivalent to robbing God and therefore the worst crime that the sons of Eli committed.

It was a crime that would result in capitol punishment under Mosaic Law.

We should remember that the people did what they thought was right in their own eyes and rejected the Word of God, even the priests.

Jeremiah wrote of these things:

Jer 5:31  The prophets prophesy falsely, [and the priests bear rule by their means]; and my people love to have it so: and what will ye do in the end thereof?

*****1Sa 2:17  Wherefore the sin of the young men was very great before the LORD: for men abhorred the offering of the LORD.

This was a very great sin in the sight of God. But even robbing God was a small sin in comparison with causing hatred of the sacrifice themselves.

It caused the people to despise making an offering to the Lord.

*****1Sa 2:18  But Samuel ministered before the LORD, being a child, girded with a linen ephod.
1Sa 2:19  Moreover 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.

In verse 11, we read were Samuel did minister unto the Lord but before it Eli the priest.

But now in this verse we read that Samuel ministered before the Lord.

Samuel had not been corrupted by seeing these evil practices and was now involved in higher services which he could perform without the assistance of Eli.

The linen ephod meant that Samuel was dressed as a priest but not as the High Priest.

It was made of fine linen and consisted of two pieces, which hung from the neck and covered both the back and front over the outer garment.

That outer garment, was a coat made by Samuel’s mother that was a long garment and had sleeves and Hannah made her son a new one every year while he was serving at the Tabernacle.

*****1Sa 2:20  And Eli blessed Elkanah and his wife, and said, The LORD give thee seed of this woman for the loan which is lent to the LORD. And they went unto their own home.
1Sa 2:21  And the LORD visited Hannah, so that she conceived, and bare three sons and two daughters. And the child Samuel grew before the LORD.

Eli had taken Samuel under his wing and had pronounce God’s blessings upon Elkanah and Hannah for their faithfulness and willingness to surrender their son to the Lord’s service.

God will always bless us when we keep our vows before him.

So Samuel was the first of six children God that granted to Hannah.

*****1Sa 2:22  Now Eli was very old, and heard all that his sons did unto all Israel; and how they lay with the women that assembled at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
1Sa 2:23  And he said unto them, Why do ye such things? for I hear of your evil dealings by all this people.

The women mentioned here were those women who have dedicated themselves to the service of the tabernacle. They had renounced worldly things and had given themselves to the Lord service.

There were some women that gave themselves to the Lord this continued even until the days of Jesus:

Luk 2:36  And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Aser: she was of a great age, and had lived with an husband seven years from her virginity;
Luk 2:37  And she was a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day.

But, Hophni and Phinehas were guilty of fornication with these young women even causing them great sin.

All these things were terrible sin in the eyes of God. To the Canaanites that were left in the land this was an acceptable practice because they were accustomed to presence of sacred prostitutes in their temple worship.

The Tabernacle of God was to be considered "holy"!

The Tabernacle of the congregation was the appointed place where the Lord would meet with His people!

Hophni and Phinehas committed their most heinous sins at the entrance of God’s courtyard that was set aside for God’s people to come and meet Him!

Eli was very old and had lost control of his sons but their sins were well known to the people of Israel.

AND, No amount of rebuke of Eli could change the actions of his sons.

All Israel saw these things go on continuously!

*****1Sa 2:24  Nay, my sons; for it is no good report that I hear: ye make the LORD’S people to transgress.
1Sa 2:25  If one man sin against another, the judge shall judge him: but if a man sin against the LORD, who shall intreat for him? Notwithstanding they hearkened not unto the voice of their father, because the LORD would slay them.

The fact that Eli was old was no excuse for his easy-going attitude toward his sons.

We have already seen how quick he was to judge Hannah and there were probably many others.

Eli was the High Priest!

Eli was the judge of all Israel.

Any other man of Israel guilty of these things could be sentenced to death but his two sons paid him no attention.

Eli warned that since they had sinned against God that they were left without an advocate who could plead their case in his presence.

Even this fell on deaf ears!

Eli had not been a godly father nor a spiritual leader to his sons and nor to Israel.

Remember our word "derelict" meant to throw away or dispose of and Eli had done this to his own sons.

It’s a tragic thing when an earthly father loses his influence over his own family because in the end they can only wait for God’s hand of judgment to fall.

Remember Lot’s wife, Lot lost his influence with his family.

Remember King David, after David sinned with Bathsheba he lost influence over his sons.

Hophni and Phinehas had no respect for the Lord!

They had no respect for God’s house!

They had no respect for the office of High Priest!

And they had no respect for Israel!

And they had no respect for their earthly father nor their Heavenly Father!

So all God could do was to judge them for their sin.

Sin against God and His Word are more dangerous than sin against people!

*****1Sa 2:26  And the child Samuel grew on, and was in favour both with the LORD, and also with men.

But Samuel not only grew in his stature but he also grew in grace and in all aspects toward the Lord.

He grew better while Eli sons grew worse!

These things were noticed by all of Israel.

And Samuel also grew in favor with the Lord!

*****1Sa 2:27  And there came a man of God unto Eli, and said unto him, Thus saith the LORD, Did I plainly appear unto the house of thy father, when they were in Egypt in Pharaoh’s house?
1Sa 2:28  And did I choose him out of all the tribes of Israel to be my priest, to offer upon mine altar, to burn incense, to wear an ephod before me? and did I give unto the house of thy father all the offerings made by fire of the children of Israel?

That phrase "the man of God" is used 76 times in the King James Bible and usually refers to a prophet.

This man of God appeared in Shiloh to declare God’s judgment on Eli and his family.

This man of God first reminded Eli of the past and how he had chosen the tribe of Levi above all the other tribes of Israel to be his priestly family.

Eli had to bear the blame for coddling his sons rather than protecting the offerings of God, the Tabernacle, and those that brought sacrifices by the commandment of the Lord.

*****1Sa 2:29  Wherefore kick ye at my sacrifice and at mine offering, which I have commanded in my habitation; and honourest thy sons above me, to make yourselves fat with the chiefest of all the offerings of Israel my people?

God, through this prophet, asked Eli why he was trampling on the sacrifices.

In other words why had he allowed the sacrifices to be despised by the children of Israel?

All the sacrifices are "types" of Christ.

The Apostle Paul taught us all that the Old Testament was our schoolmaster until Christ came.

Eli had honored his sons above the Lord.

It was a privilege for the high priest and his sons to offer sacrifices on the brazen altar and to wear the sacred garments and to eat of the holy offerings.

As a father Eli had the authority to discipline his sons.

But as High Priest, Eli not only had the authority but was commanded by the Lord to do so and Eli knew all these things.

And as judge, the judgment of Eli would not have been questioned if he had followed the Word of God!

Eli had done none of these things but had made himself rich, through his two sons, with the best of all the offerings of Israel.

Remember these words of Jesus:

Luk 16:13  No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.

*****1Sa 2:30  Wherefore the LORD God of Israel saith, I said indeed that thy house, and the house of thy father, should walk before me for ever: but now the LORD saith, Be it far from me; for them that honour me I will honour, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed.

That word "wherefore" means "because of these things", judgment was set for the family and house of Eli.

By the anointing of Aaron a right was given to him and his family to be high priest among the Jews forever.

But now God says since you have walked unworthily this would no longer happen.

God told Jeremiah to write these words:

Jer 18:10  If it do evil in my sight, that it obey not my voice, then I will repent of the good, wherewith I said I would benefit them.

God will not allow His Word to be trampled on!

Since the house of the high priest had lightly esteemed the things of the Lord, they too would be esteemed as nothing!

This is a plan from which God will never depart!

Every promise that is ever made is in reference to these words,

"They that honor God will be honored; they who despise him shall be lightly esteemed!"

*****1Sa 2:31  Behold, the days come, that I will cut off thine arm, and the arm of thy father’s house, that there shall not be an old man in thine house.
1Sa 2:32  And thou shalt see an enemy in my habitation, in all the wealth which God shall give Israel: and there shall not be an old man in thine house for ever.

God said, "I will destroy the strength, the power, and the influence, of the family of Aaron".

We know when this happened:

Heb 5:4  And no man taketh this honour unto himself, but he that is called of God, as was Aaron.

Heb 5:5  So also Christ glorified not himself to be made an high priest; but he that said unto him, Thou art my Son, to day have I begotten thee.

Eli’s house, by its own actions, had proved itself unworthy of continuing the priestly office!

Part of this prophecy was fulfilled when Solomon banished Abiathar and replaced him with Zadok.

1Ki 2:27  So Solomon thrust out Abiathar from being priest unto the LORD; that he might fulfil the word of the LORD, which he spake concerning the house of Eli in Shiloh.

Eli witnessed the defeat of the Israelites, the capture of the Ark, and the death of his wicked sons.

He witnessed these things before he met his own tragic death!

Eli did not get to witness the wealth of Israel during the time of Solomon.

It was during this time of Israel’s riches that Eli’s family was turned away from the priesthood.

*****1Sa 2:33  And the man of thine, whom I shall not cut off from mine altar, shall be to consume thine eyes, and to grieve thine heart: and all the increase of thine house shall die in the flower of their age.

Of Eli’s family they could now only become common priest.

This verse is better explained in verse 36.

1Sa 2:36  And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left in thine house shall come and crouch to him for a piece of silver and a morsel of bread, and shall say, Put me, I pray thee, into one of the priests’ offices, that I may eat a piece of bread.

Those who are not cut off in the flower of their youth shall be worse off than those who are, because they will have to beg for their bread or their food.

*****1Sa 2:34  And this shall be a sign unto thee, that shall come upon thy two sons, on Hophni and Phinehas; in one day they shall die both of them.

Eli would live long enough to see his own two sons die, both of them in one day.

The proof of this is in chapter 4:

1Sa 4:11  And the ark of God was taken; and the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, were slain.

*****1Sa 2:35  And I will raise me up a faithful priest, that shall do according to that which is in mine heart and in my mind: and I will build him a sure house; and he shall walk before mine anointed for ever.

Although the priesthood had been promised to Aaron’s descendants perpetually, this promise was conditioned on faithfulness, and Eli and his sons had forfeited this claim.

This promise of a faithful priest, with a sure house, is fulfilled in Jesus Christ.

Heb 2:7  Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedst him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of thy hands:

Jesus had these word for the Apostle Peter:

Mat 16:18  And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

Jesus was not talking about Peter, He was talking about the truth of the Gospel, The Word of God

Sin has a far-reaching and deadly consequence!

Because Israel had not been taught properly they did not behave properly!

Hophni and Phineas did not know the Lord and their behavior brought disgrace to their families and failure to their nation.

We must realize that we will reap what we have sown.

We see in our own nation today that sin still has a far-reaching and a deadly consequence and it does in every nation!

When our preachers do not preached the truth, nor stand on the Word of God, it will bring disgrace to our nation and it has.

What is the duty of a father?

Eph 6:4  And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

Though we fail as earthly fathers.

We have a Father in Heaven who can never fail!

Questions?

Let’s Pray!