• William T. Howe Ph.D.

April 1, 2021

Daily Reading: I Samuel 18-20

1 Samuel 18:9 And Saul eyed David from that day and forward.

Saul's problem was the same problem that many have today. His problem was not with Jonathan his son, or with Samuel the prophet, or even with David his rival. His problem was with the will of God. All was fine in Saul's life when it was the will of God for him to become the king of Israel. But now, it is the will of God that the kingship be passed from him to David. Now, it's not all fine. Saul's plan was that the monarchy stay in his family. He wanted Jonathan to be the next king.

Yet, Saul disobeyed the Lord, the Lord then displaced Saul and, in extension, his family from the throne. Saul knew that it was the will of God for David to be the next king, his comments to Jonathan in I Samuel 20:30-31 indicates this. But Saul, eaten up with jealousy, had an evil intent and murderous eye aimed at the future king. He tried all he could to circumvent the will of God for Israel.

Saul did not have the counsel of the man named Gamaliel. Remember him? He was the one that stood up to the counsel when they determined to kill the apostles. He told them to be careful how they treated the disciples giving this timeless and well said advice: But if it be of God, ye cannot overthrow it; lest haply ye be found even to fight against God. Acts 5:39 This advice should be considered each and every time a person is tempted to enter into conflict with another. However, it is advice that Saul did not have. But we do! If it is not of God, we don't have to fight, it will come to naught. If it is of God, we must not fight. For who has been victorious over Him? Ask, Pharaoh, ask Jericho, ask the Amorites, ask Goliath.

There is a song I love to sing titled "Stand by me."

"When the storms of life are raging stand by me,

When the storms of life are raging stand by me,

When the world is tossing me,

Like a ship upon the sea,

Thou Who rulest wind and water, Stand by me.

In the midst of tribulation, Stand by me:

In the midst of tribulation, Stand by me:

When the hosts of hell assail,

And my strength begins to fail,

Thou Who never lost a battle, Stand by me."

Saul's problem was his reluctance to accept the will of God. Because of this many were hurt and even lost their lives. This is a sad chapter in his life. May we learn from it.

Until tomorrow, live for Christ today.

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