Samuel Anoints David – 1 Sam 16: 1-13
The Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you grieve over Saul? I have rejected him from being king over Israel. Fill your horn with oil and set out; I will send you to Jesse the Bethlehemite, for I have provided for myself a king among his sons.”2 Samuel said, “How can I go? If Saul hears of it, he will kill me.” And the Lord said, “Take a heifer with you, and say, ‘I have come to sacrifice to the Lord.’3 Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you what you shall do; and you shall anoint for me the one whom I name to you.” 4 Samuel did what the Lord commanded, and came to Bethlehem. The elders of the city came to meet him trembling, and said, “Do you come peaceably?” 5 He said, “Peaceably; I have come to sacrifice to the Lord; sanctify yourselves and come with me to the sacrifice.” And he sanctified Jesse and his sons and invited them to the sacrifice.
6 When they came, he looked on Eliab and thought, “Surely the Lord’s anointed is now before the Lord.” 7 But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for theLord does not see as mortals see; they look on the outward appearance, but theLord looks on the heart.” 8 Then Jesse called Abinadab, and made him pass before Samuel. He said, “Neither has the Lord chosen this one.” 9 Then Jesse made Shammah pass by. And he said, “Neither has the Lord chosen this one.”10 Jesse made seven of his sons pass before Samuel, and Samuel said to Jesse, “The Lord has not chosen any of these.” 11 Samuel said to Jesse, “Are all your sons here?” And he said, “There remains yet the youngest, but he is keeping the sheep.” And Samuel said to Jesse, “Send and bring him; for we will not sit down until he comes here.” 12 He sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, and had beautiful eyes, and was handsome. The Lord said, “Rise and anoint him; for this is the one.” 13 Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the presence of his brothers; and the spirit of the Lord came mightily upon David from that day forward. Samuel then set out and went to Ramah.
What does the passage say?
V. 1-4 God is determined to have a new king of the Israelites. Israel is God’s kingdom, and even though God anointed Saul, it didn’t mean Saul could do whatever he wanted to do. Saul was only a vessel for God’s work. And from 1 Samuel 13, we see how Saul continued to do what he wanted to do. More so, he did all the work, because he feared the people more than God.
1 Samuel 13, Saul was preparing for worship. He waited for Samuel to come and perform the sacrifice, but when Samuel didn’t show up, he offered the sacrifice of himself. Not only that this was against the law, but the motivation behind this act was also because Saul feared the people, not God.
In 1 Samuel 15, Saul is accused of not following God’s command completely. He conquered the Amalekites but didn’t obey the commandment to destroy everything existing; he put aside some quality sheep and cattle. His claims he put aside these spoils so that they can Sacrifice the Lord.
It is interesting that Saul is justifying his act by using God, and also saying, “the best of the things devoted to destruction, to sacrifice to the Lord your God in Gilgal” (1 Sam. 15:21 NRSV). We already see the broken relationship, when Saul says, ‘your God.’ On top of that Saul says, “I have sinned; for I have transgressed the commandment of the Lord and your words because I feared the people and obeyed their voice” (1 Samuel 15:24 NRSV). He obeyed the people over God.
V. 5-13 We might be familiar with the story of David. Samuel thought Eliab, Jessi’s first son, would be the perfect candidate for being the next king. However, this was his personal view; God had a different standard. God saw the heart instead of outward appearance.
When Samuel saw David, he knew that he was the chosen one, and anointed David.
It says, “Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the presence of his brothers; and the spirit of the Lord came mightily upon David from that day forward” (v. 13 NRSV)
What does this mean to me/us
We remember Saul being the anointed one. Even though he was the chosen one, when he didn’t follow the Lord, we see how he is not fulfilling the purpose of God. We see the danger of fearing people, instead of God. We see that following the guidance of our Lord is a serious matter.
At the same time, we see how important the willingness to follow God’s will is essential. God saw the heart of David. David’s heart was to follow God, with all that he had.
God saw his heart and anointed him, and he was used to fulfilling the purpose God had for him.
Do we have the desire to follow our Lord, wholeheartedly?
Do we desire to see how God will rapidly grow us, as God anoints us?
May we live this day worthy of our call.
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