March 12, 2008

Lay Speaking Message #2

Here is the second short message prepared for my Lay Speaking class.

1 Samuel 15:34-16:13

Before we read the scripture, I want to provide some background. Saul is King during this time and is sent by Samuel to “utterly destroy” the Amalekites. But Saul spared the life of Agag and kept the best goods (sheep, ox, lambs).

God tells Samuel the things Saul did in direct disobedience to God. When Saul sees Samuel, he greets him by telling him that he obeying God’s command. In the background Samuel could hear the bleating of the sheep. Samuel has Agag brought to him and Samuel “hacked Agag in pieces before the Lord.” (1 Samuel 15:33)

God then tells Samuel to go to Bethlehem and anoint a new king.

(Read verse 16:4-7)

So we see Samuel going to the house of Jesse in Bethlehem and anointing David. This is the first of three anointings for David, with his family here, later before his tribe of Judah (2 Samuel 2:7) and finally before the nation Israel (2 Samuel 5:3).

Looking at the process though, Samuel thought the first son he saw, Eliab, was the one. He must have appeared strong and “kingly” looking. But God reminds his prophet Samuel that He knows the heart of a person. The heart embodies your will, your desires, emotions, and intelligence.

A good heart does good things and an evil heart does evil things. Now that doesn’t mean a person with a good heart is perfect. Look at David’s life while he was King. Sure, he had some great victories, but he also sinned. He had an innocent man (Uriah) killed so he could take his wife (Bathsheba). David confessed his sin, he did not make excuses like Saul. God forgave him, but he had to suffer the consequences of his actions.

Forgiveness does not always remove the earthly consequences of your sin, only the eternal consequences.

But what about Saul? He confessed his sin too right? Well yes, but he blamed the people and his confession sounds more like regret or sorry that he got caught, not necessarily sorry for what he did by disobeying the Lord. See the difference?

What does your heart say? When you get caught sinning by others or have wronged others are you sorry because you got caught or does your heart truly and genuinely ache for forgiveness from your sin?

Prayer:Lord, we ask that you cleanse our minds, bodies and souls, so that we may have a pure heart. Enable us to forgive others as you have forgiven us. AMEN

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