Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Day 16: 1 Samuel 31 - 2 Samuel 1

Welcome back everyone. We are now officially in 2 Samuel. The ride is going to pick up some serious steam from this point on. From the time of Saul's death and David becoming king, the journey becomes fascinating. I can't wait to hear your thoughts.

Today's reading is from 1 Samuel 31- 2 Samuel 1

1 Samuel 31:
We have travelled with Saul for a while now. We were there when Samuel told him of his future and we saw how humbled by it he was. We were there as he made mistakes and trusted in himself rather than God. Now, we get to witness his last moment. This had to be a disheartening moment for Saul. He's in battle with his countrymen, their losing, and his sons have been killed in the battle. He is surrounded by the enemy and rather than facing shame and certain death by their hands, he falls on his sword. Saul is certainly one of those interesting people we meet in Scriptures. I think the general theme of his life is disobedience and acting from your own will instead of God's. In many ways, his life is a life of "what could have been." It is a challenge for us all to realize that we are called to lives of obedience and submission to the will of God.

2 Samuel 1:
If anything, David was a passionate man. I don't understand how he had compassion and love for Saul, but he did. Even when Saul had repeatedly attempted to kill David, he still loved him. I believe David's love for Saul had less to do with Saul and had everything to do with the fact that the LORD had anointed Saul to his position and that is what David respected. We too are called to this same level of respect for those the LORD has anointed into positions of leadership, whether it be the country, our local associations, or a church. I find myself having to check myself sometimes on this when I see something I believe to be bad or not the best decision someone has made. I get upset with some churches, especially when I believe their pastor is the problem. I have to remind myself that God has called some people into leadership and positions that I must respect, even though I don't have to agree with their actions.

What are your thoughts? What stood out to you from today's reading? What questions did it raise?


  1. 1.
    Wow. Jonathon seemed so important and he was erased from the story in one sentence. Kind of a reminder to not think so highly of ourselves! My other initial thought was this: Could you imagine if we treated enemies of war like Saul was treated upon the discovery of his body? We’d have the United Nations and everyone else up in arms over it! Was this the way he was to be ultimately humbled from his self-absorption?

    David never lost his respect for his King or Gods’ anointed one. I’m sure his personal mourning was more for the loss of Jonathon, but it is obvious he was still, in spite of all the horrible things Saul did to David, loyal to the man he knew God made king. What a testimony to honor God’s order of things, even if it doesn’t make sense to us.

    What I loved about this submission, however, is David wasn’t foolish in his respect. He was real about the danger, yet kept himself and his followers safe while never disrespecting or hurting his master. That is a HARD road to walk and Saul, in spite of knowing David had eluded him, never did stop loving David. He might have been jealous and threatened, but he also knew David was obedient to and loved by the Lord. This is a tragic and painful relationship. How much do we overcomplicate things in our own relationships? How often do we get in the way of the success God wants for us because of our own hang ups, be it jealousy or any other human emotion? My prayer is to, like David, always look to God for his plan for my personal and professional affiliations and not to myself and my earthly, distorted expectations.

  2. Erik- your words about summing up Saul's life are excellent. What worse can be said than someone had great potential. I pray we all look at our lives and see how much we may live like Saul. How often do we live doing what we think we should. How far away are we from true dependence on God? saul lived in disobedience and never knew what God could have done through him. I pray my life will become more marked by obedience and less lived in disobedience. It makes me sick to think about someone living so close to God, always around God but still missing it. I think we can get real comfortable sometimes in church life and our church culture and veer dangerously close to living like Saul rather than like David. This was a big reminder for me!

    One thing is certain though, when God cleans house, He cleans house!

  3. I have to agree with all who posted above me and the things they had to say...
    MY biggest take away: Was also like Erik...David's respect for Saul in the midst of everything Saul did against David....how many of us essentially could write a eulogy about some one who had tried to kill us multiple times!

  4. What history and to come to an end that virtually broke the hearts of many.

    Saul's pattern of life was quite a patchwork quilt. Obedience to disobedient.. from sorrow to hatred..it was a hard life

    He was not a man that one would want to pattern his or her life after, yet,,,he was greatly loved and I believe as Erik...said...it was because of the place of authority God had granted him. We must be quick to love and very short on judging....David simply loved Saul in a way that only God could sustain