TheShiningLight

Worldwatch News and Prophecy

First Samuel 1-16

Updated June 2016

First Samuel

The last Judge of Israel, Samuel

First and Second Samuel were originally (and still are in some Jewish bibles) a single book, but the Septuagint [LXX] translation, produced in the centuries immediately before Christ, divided Samuel into two books and this dividing of Samuel was adopted by other translators.

Like all of scripture, besides being a history the books of Judges, Samuel and Kings are filled with example for our instruction. Some people initially timid but growing into their calling like Gideon; others lacking interest in their calling like Samson and still others being faithful from birth like Samuel.

While both families were faithful to God and brought up their children in a godly manner, the faithful Samuel is a sharp contrast to the spiritually weak and lukewarm Samson.

The ever faithful, ever enduring Samuel, is an example of steadfast faithful righteousness which is too often overlooked, in comparison to the fascinating deeds of others.

Samuel was the last Judge before the establishment of the permanent line of kings in Israel; and as the transitional Judge Samuel is given his own Book and special place in the scriptures.

1 Samuel 1

The first two chapters of 1 Samuel cover the circumstances surrounding his birth and first introduction to Eli.

1 Samuel 1:1 Now there was a certain man of Ramathaimzophim, of mount Ephraim, and his name was Elkanah, the son of Jeroham, the son of Elihu, the son of Tohu, the son of Zuph, an Ephrathite: 1:2 And he had two wives; the name of the one was Hannah, and the name of the other Peninnah: and Peninnah had children, but Hannah had no children.

This is likely a reference to one of the three annual pilgrim feasts

1:3 And this man went up out of his city yearly to worship and to sacrifice unto the LORD of hosts in Shiloh. And the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, the priests of the LORD, were there.

Hannah was given more than Peninnah because she was childless and yet beloved of her husband. The implication here is that Elkanah was a fair and righteous man who deeply loved Hannah and knowing her sadness sought to be extra kind to her.

1:4 And when the time was that Elkanah offered, he gave to Peninnah his wife, and to all her sons and her daughters, portions: 1:5 But unto Hannah he gave a worthy portion; for he loved Hannah: but the LORD had shut up her womb.

It seems that Peninnah belittled Hannah because Hannah was childless; much like Hagar mocked Sarah and the rivalries between the wives of Jacob.

These kinds of rivalries where wives compete for their husband’s affections, and the often jealousies of this type of relationship, are only some of the evils of polygamy. On the opposite emotional side; frustrated polygamous wives are often driven to lesbianism with the other wives and tempted to adultery with other men.

1:6 And her adversary also provoked her sore, for to make her fret, because the LORD had shut up her womb.

Hannah could not eat because of her upset over the provocations of Peninnah and her grief over her childlessness. The situation is one of extreme sorrow, shame and upset for Hannah.

1:7 And as he did so year by year, when she went up to the house of the LORD, so she provoked her; therefore she wept, and did not eat [was so distraught that she could not rejoice at the Feast].

Then Elkanah her husband tried to comfort Hannah; being very kind to her and loving her more than many sons.

1:8 Then said Elkanah her husband to her, Hannah, why weepest thou? and why eatest thou not? and why is thy heart grieved? am not I better to thee than ten sons?

Hannah was very tortured in spirit for her situation and desired a son more than anything in the world.

1:9 So Hannah rose up after they had eaten in Shiloh, and after they had drunk. Now Eli the priest sat upon a seat by a post of the temple of the LORD. 1:10 And she was in bitterness of soul, and prayed unto the LORD, and wept sore.

Hannah then promised God that she would dedicate her son to be a Nazarite to serve God all his days; if God would only give her a son.

Hannah’s trial can be seen as typical of the trials of the spiritually called out person, who suffers much in this world and is often filled with many sorrows; yet will ultimately be delivered if we are faithful and put our trust in the Lord to faithfully live by every Word of God. 

1:11 And she vowed a vow, and said, O LORD of hosts, if thou wilt indeed look on the affliction of thine handmaid, and remember me, and not forget thine handmaid, but wilt give unto thine handmaid a man child, then I will give him unto the LORD all the days of his life, and there shall no razor come upon his head.

Hannah spoke quietly and privately before God.

1:12 And it came to pass, as she continued praying before the LORD, that Eli marked her mouth. 1:13 Now Hannah, she spake in her heart; only her lips moved, but her voice was not heard: therefore Eli thought she had been drunken.

Eli rebuked her for drunkenness not realizing the situation and the depth of Hannah’s despair.

1:14 And Eli said unto her, How long wilt thou be drunken? put away thy wine from thee. 1:15 And Hannah answered and said, No, my lord, I am a woman of a sorrowful spirit: I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but have poured out my soul before the LORD.

She explains herself and Eli sends her away with a blessing that God might grant her request.

1:16 Count not thine handmaid for a daughter of Belial: for out of the abundance of my complaint and grief have I spoken hitherto. 1:17 Then Eli answered and said, Go in peace: and the God of Israel grant thee thy petition that thou hast asked of him.

Hannah was encouraged and her spirit was revived.

1:18 And she said, Let thine handmaid find grace in thy sight. So the woman went her way, and did eat, and her countenance was no more sad.

They returned home and Hannah became pregnant.

1:19 And they rose up in the morning early, and worshipped before the LORD, and returned, and came to their house to Ramah: and Elkanah knew Hannah his wife; and the LORD remembered her.

Samuel is translated as “Heard of God” or “God has heard” (from ‘shama’, “heard,” and ‘El’, God)

1:20 Wherefore it came to pass, when the time was come about after Hannah had conceived, that she bare a son, and called his name Samuel, saying, Because I have asked him of the LORD.

The term “yearly sacrifice” pins this down as the Passover, since no other sacrifice was commanded of individuals in scripture. All other festival sacrifices were to be offered by the priesthood on behalf of the whole nation; only the Passover was a commanded personal annual “Feast of the Lord” sacrifice to be eaten by the people.

1:21 And the man Elkanah, and all his house, went up to offer unto the LORD the yearly sacrifice, and his vow.

Hannah remained at home until the child was weaned [natural weaning usually begins late in the first year and is completed at the age of approximately three years old]

1:22 But Hannah went not up; for she said unto her husband, I will not go up until the child be weaned, and then I will bring him, that he may appear before the LORD, and there abide for ever.

Elkanah allowed her to remain home and blessed her and the child.

1:23 And Elkanah her husband said unto her, Do what seemeth thee good; tarry until thou have weaned him; only the LORD establish his word. So the woman abode, and gave her son suck until she weaned him.

When the child was fully weaned he was taken with a sacrifice by his family.

1:24 And when she had weaned him, she took him up with her, with three bullocks, and one ephah of flour, and a bottle of wine, and brought him unto the house of the LORD in Shiloh: and the child was young. 1:25 And they slew a bullock, and brought the child to Eli.

Samuel was then presented to Eli

Consider the righteousness of Hannah that she kept her vow and gave up the son of her barrenness to Eli and the Eternal; and the righteousness and love of her husband, that he initially approved of her vow and then gave up his son by his beloved Hannah.

1:26 And she said, Oh my lord [Eli], as thy soul liveth, my lord, I am the woman that stood by thee here, praying unto the LORD. 1:27 For this child I prayed; and the LORD hath given me my petition which I asked of him: 1:28 Therefore also I have lent him to the LORD; as long as he liveth he shall be lent to the LORD. And he worshipped the LORD there.

1 Samuel 2

Hannah’s prayer of rejoicing for Samuel the gift of God

This could be the prayer of EVERY person who is faithful to keep the whole Word of God!  For Almighty God will deliver his zealous faithful followers; while correcting those who turn away from zeal for his Word!

1 Samuel 2:1 And Hannah prayed, and said, My heart rejoiceth in the LORD, mine horn is exalted in the LORD: my mouth [my words are fulfilled before my enemies] is enlarged over mine enemies;

because I rejoice in thy salvation. [Salvation is the gift of God to all those who follow and obey HIM!]

2:2 There is none holy as the LORD: for there is none beside thee: neither is there any rock like our God.

Let us repent of our proud arrogance, to do what we think is right in our own eyes; and turn to do what God teaches in his Word.

2:3 Talk no more so exceeding proudly; let not arrogancy come out of your mouth: for the LORD is a God of knowledge, and by him [all deeds are judged] actions are weighed.

2:4 The bows of the mighty men [enemy warriors; spiritually Satan and sin] are broken, and they [the faithful to God who stumble] that stumbled are girded with strength. 2:5 They that were full [the physically rich, who are spiritually poor; are driven to beg bread] have hired out themselves for bread; and they that were hungry ceased [the spiritually hungry are filled by our Mighty God]: so that the barren [we may think we are alone, but our faithfulness to the Eternal shall bear much fruit] hath born seven; and she that hath many children is waxed feeble.

Only the Eternal has the power of eternal death, and ONLY the Eternal has the power to give eternal life.

2:6 The LORD killeth, and maketh alive: he bringeth down to the grave, and bringeth up. 2:7 The LORD maketh poor, and maketh rich: he bringeth low, and lifteth up. 2:8 He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth up the beggar from the dunghill, to set them among princes, and to make them inherit the throne of glory: for the pillars of the earth are the LORD’s, [the earth will be given to the spiritual pillars that stand firm on the solid foundation of the whole word of God] and he hath set the world upon them.

Man cannot prevail by his own ways or his own strength.

2:9 He will keep the feet of his saints, and the wicked shall be silent in darkness [the unrepentant shall see eternal death ; for by strength shall no man prevail.

Those who condemn the zealous and who will not keep the Word of God faithfully, who are permissive and compromising and lukewarm for keeping the whole Word of God; are become his adversaries and shall be corrected and their pride crushed to contrition.

2:10 The adversaries of the LORD shall be broken to pieces; out of heaven shall he thunder upon them: the LORD shall judge the ends of the earth; and he [God the Father] shall give strength unto his king [Messiah the king], and exalt the horn [authority and power of Christ the Messiah the king] of his anointed.

These people knew of God by the family name of YHVH; they did not know of the difference between the Father and Son; and Judah does not understand that to this day. 

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Samuel was given to Eli to be taught the things of God, and to serve the Eternal.

2:11 And Elkanah went to Ramah to his house. And the child did minister unto the LORD before Eli the priest.

Eli had two sons who were wicked and selfish men: Like many church leaders of today,  they lusted after the very best for themselves and abused the brethren.

2:12 Now the sons of Eli were sons of Belial; they knew not the LORD.

These priests took for themselves the most and the best.

2:13 And the priest’s 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; 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.

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.

If a person insists on obeying God; the priests and modern elders insist that they must be obeyed instead of God, and today the faithful for God are often forced out of the assemblies [Synagogue].

2:16 And if any man said unto him, Let them not fail to burn the fat presently [as God commanded], 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.

These two priests abhorred to offer to the Eternal what was God’s, and instead took of the offerings for themselves, in their greed instead of doing God had commanded.

The same sin is committed wholesale in the Ekklesia today. 

2:17 Wherefore the sin of the young men was very great before the LORD: for men abhorred [to give the offerings to God and kept overmuch for themselves] the offering of the LORD.

Samuel was faithful in serving the Eternal.

Consider that God may have inspired that whole situation surrounding the birth of Samuel, and that Hannah may have been barren and conceived Samuel by her supplication according to the plan and will of God!

2:18 But Samuel ministered before the LORD, being a child, girded with a linen ephod. 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.

Eli blessed Hannah for Samuel; implying that Samuel was a good and faithful lad. Here we see that despite any hardships in this life, if we overcome and are diligently faithful to keep the whole Word of God; we shall ultimately be blessed.

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. 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 waxed old and he heard of the evils of his sons and how they refused to obey the instructions of God and lusted after the chief seats and best things; and took advantage of the women.

Things are no different today as many leaders and elders do the same things. Remember that spiritually; women are references to relationships with false doctrine, false prophecy and false religions.  Without doubt many today compromise with the Word of God teaching many false things and seeking the best things and chief seats for themselves; and exalt personal gain above obedience to the whole Word of God.

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.

Eli then calls his sons to account.

2:23 And he said unto them, Why do ye such things? for I hear of your evil dealings by all this people. 2:24 Nay, my sons; for it is no good report that I hear: ye make the LORD’s people to transgress.

Then because they would not listen to their father and repent; YHVH who became Jesus Christ judged them to destroy them for their wickedness.

It is no different today, and very many elders and leaders of today will be rejected by Christ, because they have rejected living by every Word of God for their own evil ways, and they have been warned, just like the sons of Eli; and will be cast into great correction.

When they fall into the correction of Almighty God: Who can deliver them?

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 [of which] the LORD would slay them.

Samuel grew up faithful to the whole Word of God; in sharp contrast to these two men of Eli; and because of that difference in behavior there must have also been conflict between these wicked older men and the faithful young Samuel.

They must have made his life miserable; yet Samuel remained faithful to the Word of God.

2:26 And the child Samuel grew on, and was in favour both with the LORD, and also with men.

God sent a prophet to Eli the priest

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 [speaking of Eli as a descendant of Aaron], when they were in Egypt in Pharaoh’s house? 2:28 And did I choose him [Aaron] out of all the tribes of Israel to be my priest, to offer upon mine altar, to burn incense, to wear an ephod [priests garment] before me? and did I give unto the house of thy father all the offerings made by fire of the children of Israel?

Eli is rebuked for allowing his sons to reject his criticism, and continue to exercise the office of priests. Jesus Christ asks Eli why he honors his sons and not God.

The leaders and elders of spiritual Israel today, are also being warned and they are rejecting the warnings, to do what they think is right and to exalt themselves above what Almighty Gad says is right in his Word.

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?

Jesus Christ condemns those who are not faithful to God and do whatever they want instead of living by every Word of God.

2:30 Wherefore the LORD God of Israel saith, I said indeed that thy house, and the house of thy father [Aaron , should walk before me [as my priests] for ever: but now the LORD saith, Be it far from me [that the wicked should be called God’s priests and elders]; for them that honour me I will honour, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed.

Jesus Christ issues judgment that Eli’s descendants shall be cut off from the altar of the Lord forever.

This is also a spiritual judgment that all those in spiritual Israel who are not zealous and faithful to learn, keep and teach the whole Word of God shall have NO PART in the resurrection to eternal life as part of the collective bride of Christ.

Make NO mistake, all those who seek the chief seats and are willing to willfully compromise with the word of God: Are cut off from Almighty God and the resurrection to eternal life.

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.

All those who teach against a passionate zeal to learn and to live by every Word of God; are cut off from God!

2:32 And thou [speaking to Eli who would not rebuke sin, and to all wicked men]  shalt see an enemy in my habitation, in all the wealth which God shall give Israel: [the faithful to God shall be the enemies of the apostates and idolaters who insist on their own ways contrary to the Word of God] and there shall not be an old man [have eternal life] in thine house for ever. 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.

The two sons of Eli are condemned to die on the same day

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.

Here he prophesies of the resurrection of the zealously faithful to the eternal priesthood of Melchisedek.

2:35 And I will raise me up a faithful priest [Jesus the Messiah and High Priest of our salvation after the order of Melchisedek], 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.

Then shall the physical descendants of Aaron be repentant and beg to be reinstated into the physical priesthood and the faithful son’s of Zadok will yet serve in the Millennial Temple. This will be covered in the coming Ezekiel study.

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.

1 Samuel 3

Because of all the evil in the land, the Eternal departed from among the people.

1 Samuel 3:1 And the child Samuel ministered unto the LORD before Eli. And the word of the LORD was precious [very scarce] in those days; there was no open [public teaching of God’s Word] vision.

When Eli grew old and feeble and began to sleep in the early evening; YHVH spoke to Samuel in the night.

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; 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;

Samuel heard a voice calling him, and he ran to Eli supposing that Eli had called him.

3:4 That the LORD called Samuel: and he answered, Here am I. 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.

Samuel was called a second time and again he ran to Eli only to be told that he had not been called by Eli.

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.

The young Samuel did not know that God might call to him.

3:7 Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD, neither was the word of the LORD yet revealed unto him.

YHVH called to Samuel the third time and then Eli understood that God had called him.

God sometimes honors and speaks to those that are his and faithful to him; in dreams and visions and sometime in a still small voice. God does not do this lightly, but does so for his own good purpose.

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.

Eli then instructed Samuel in how to respond to God.

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.

God may not speak personally to many in this manner; but he definitely speaks to us through his Word. Are we sensitive and listening to the whole Word of God to be zealous learn it and to live by it?

Do we seek continually to fill ourselves with the nature of God becoming fully like him; by listening closely to his Word and keeping it, and by a continual prayerful consideration of all godliness?

3:10 And the LORD came, and stood, and called as at other times, Samuel, Samuel. Then Samuel answered, Speak; for thy servant heareth.

Jesus Christ then reveals directly to Samuel that the sons of Eli who had turned away from any zeal to keep the Word of God shall be destroyed as an example for us that we might learn to be zealously faithful to live by every Word of God.

Spiritual Israel has in this latter day forgotten the lesson and has turned aside from the Word of God to follow our own proud and selfish ways as did the sons of Eli.

Deuteronomy 5:32 Ye shall observe to do therefore as the Lord your God hath commanded you: ye shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left. 5:33 Ye shall walk in all the ways which the Lord your God hath commanded you, that ye may live, and that it may be well with you, and that ye may prolong your days in the land which ye shall possess.

1 Samuel 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. 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.

This is an example for us; that the Eternal will judge those of spiritual Israel who turn away from zeal for the Word of God; and that Jesus Christ will judge those leaders, teachers and elders who fail to rebuke and remove sin out of the assemblies of the Eternal!

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.

What a terrible curse for Eli simply because he did not exercise his authority to cast out the wicked.

The leaders, teachers and elders of spiritual Israel today are under the same curse, for they do not teach any zeal for keeping the whole Word of God; and instead teach the brethren to follow them as their idols in place of any zeal for the Word of God.

They say: “Follow God” but then they say that to follow us is to follow God, and so deceive the brethren away from zeal for God and into a certain zeal for idols of men.

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.

Samuel was afraid to tell Eli his beloved teacher and father figure, what God had said.

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.

Eli asked the word of the Lord from Samuel.

3:16 Then Eli called Samuel, and said, Samuel, my son. And he answered, Here am I. 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.

Eli then accepted the judgment of the Eternal. I find it so very strange that Eli did not weep and tear his garments in agony of spirit and repentance; and entreat the mercy of the Eternal.

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.

As he grew up Samuel became known for his wisdom and had the fruits of a prophet to the level that no man could deny that Samuel had been called to be a prophet of the Eternal.

What man ordained Samuel? Did not Jesus Christ personally call him and ordain him to the office of prophet?

My friends and brethren, in this latter day spiritual Israel, very many were ordained by men because of organizational loyalty or personal talent; who WERE NOT called by GOD to the office that they were ordained to by men.

Remember the words of Christ in Mat 7: We are to judge the words of all men by the Word of God; and to receive only those people who have the fruits of the office that God has called them to. Which fruits are consistent and continual zeal to learn and to live by every Word of God like Samuel.

3:19 And Samuel grew, and the LORD was with him, and did let none of his words fall to the ground. 3:20 And all Israel from Dan even to Beersheba knew that Samuel was established to be a prophet of the LORD.

The Eternal began to have a very close relationship with Samuel, and was with the faithful Samuel.

3:21 And the LORD appeared again in Shiloh: for the LORD revealed himself to Samuel in Shiloh by the word of the LORD.

1 Samuel 4

Samuel became famous for his godly life, his godly wisdom and for his relationship with God; as God’s called out prophet.

1 Samuel 4:1 And the word of Samuel came to all Israel.

Israel went forth to fight the Philistines and was defeated in battle.

Now Israel went out against the Philistines to battle, and pitched beside Ebenezer: and the Philistines pitched in Aphek. 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.

Israel then reasoned among themselves and forgot their God, making an idol out of the Ark of the Covenant itself!

My dear brethren, I ask you if we have not done the same thing ourselves in this latter day spiritual Israel? As they idolized the Ark [the throne of God] instead of the God who sat on that throne: Have we not made an idol out of our organizations, instead of using those organizations to help focus us on and teach us zeal for the Word of God?

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.

Then the two sons of Eli brought the Ark down to the battle without first enquiring of the Lord. Thus doing what they wanted to gain fame among the people for themselves, instead of inquiring what God would have them do.

It is even so in spiritual Israel today, that we do as we please; and do not inquire of the Eternal what he would have us do.

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.

The Philistines also feared the Ark and not God.

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. 4:6 And when the Philistines heard the noise of the shout, they said, What meaneth the noise of this great shout in the camp of the Hebrews? And they understood that the ark of the LORD was come into the camp.

The Philistines fear the Ark greatly seeing it as a mighty god in itself.

Even so we love and exalt our organizations and leaders as idols above the Word of God today. Being filled with pride in our leaders, elders and organizations and following them instead of the whole Word of God. We go forth to call God’s Sabbath holy and then pollute it because our idols have encouraged us to do so!

4:7 And the Philistines were afraid, for they said, God is come into the camp. And they said, Woe unto us! for there hath not been such a thing heretofore. 4:8Woe unto us! who shall deliver us out of the hand of these mighty Gods? these are the Gods that smote the Egyptians with all the plagues in the wilderness.

The Philistine leaders then encouraged their men to fight the good fight.

4:9 Be strong and quit yourselves like men, O ye Philistines, that ye be not servants unto the Hebrews, as they have been to you: quit yourselves like men, and fight.

Hophni and Phinehas, along with 30,000 were killed and the Ark was lost to the Philistines and the word of the Lord was fulfilled.

1 Samuel 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. 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.

1 Samuel 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. 4:11 And the ark of God was taken; and the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, were slain.

A messenger comes to tell of the battle

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.

Eli was sitting anxiously waiting for news

4:13 And when he came, lo, Eli sat upon a seat by the wayside watching: for his heart trembled for the ark of God. And when the man came into the city, and told it, all the city cried out. 4:14 And when Eli heard the noise of the crying, he said, What meaneth the noise of this tumult? And the man came in hastily, and told Eli.

Eli died hearing as his last words the fulfillment of the judgment of God.

4:15 Now Eli was ninety and eight years old; and his eyes were dim, that he could not see. 4:16 And the man said unto Eli, I am he that came out of the army, and I fled to day out of the army. And he said, What is there done, my son? 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.

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.

On hearing of the death of her husband, Phinehas wife delivered a son and died in childbirth.

4:19 And his daughter in law, Phinehas’ wife, was with child, near to be delivered: and when she heard the tidings that the ark of God was taken, and that her father in law and her husband were dead, she bowed herself and travailed; for her pains came upon her. 4:20 And about the time of her death the women that stood by her said unto her, Fear not; for thou hast born a son. But she answered not, neither did she regard it.

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.

The glory [presence of God] is removed from Israel; symbolized by the removal of the ark at the hands of God; because of the transgressions of the priesthood of Eli and his sons.

Where is the glory of the presence of God in the congregations of the greater church of God today?

The glory of the Eternal is his righteousness; and the glory of the son’s of God is their zeal to be like God their Father and to be righteous as HE is righteous; learning and living by every Word of God.

We have left off our zeal for learning and keeping the whole Word of God; we have rejected his glory to do what is right in our own eyes: How can we escape the judgment and correction of God?

4:22 And she said, The glory is departed from Israel: for the ark of God is taken.

1 Samuel 5

After the death and destruction of many worshipers of dagon by Samson in the book of Judges, the Philistines rebuilt the temple of their fertility fish god dagon; who was just another manifestation of baal.

The pagan pantheon was mainly established at Babel and the various families of man took these gods with them under new names in their new languages. Outside of the true God, all the gods are but different names for the same Adversary and his demons.

The ark was placed beside baal, in the temple of baal; and God revealed by miracles that he would not share his preeminent God-hood with any false god: Even as today the Eternal will not tolerate the idolatry of men and organizations in the spiritual Israel of the latter day church of God.

The Eternal is God and beside him there is NO OTHER!

As baal fell down before the throne of the Eternal; so the organizational idols of the church of God shall be cast down before the Eternal God today.

1 Samuel 5:1 And the Philistines took the ark of God, and brought it from Ebenezer unto Ashdod. 5:2When the Philistines took the ark of God, they brought it into the house of Dagon, and set it by Dagon. 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 was repeated the second day; only this time dagon the fish god broke in pieces before the throne of the Eternal; as today’s church of God organizations who exalt men and organizations above the Word of Almighty God, are being broken into many pieces and corrected by the Eternal.

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. 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.

When severe, this kind of affliction prevents normal activity and can be so severe as to prevent the hard physical work of cultivating the fields or any other physical work, causing hunger and severe distress to the nation.

5:6 But the hand of the LORD was heavy upon them of Ashdod, and he destroyed them, and smote them with emerods [Hemorrhoids; piles; tumors; boils], even Ashdod and the coasts thereof.

The Philistines then acknowledged the superiority of the Eternal, but sought to hide from him rather than to repent and turn to him.

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.

And they took the Ark to Gath, and Gath was nearly destroyed.

5:8 They sent therefore and gathered all the lords of the Philistines unto them, and said, What shall we do with the ark of the God of Israel? And they answered, Let the ark of the God of Israel be carried about unto Gath. And they carried the ark of the God of Israel about

thither. 5:9 And it was so, that, after they had carried it about, the hand of the LORD was against the city with a very great destruction: and he smote the men of the city, both small and great, and they had emerods in their secret parts.

And they took the Ark to Ekron, and Ekron was nearly destroyed.

5:10 Therefore they sent the ark of God to Ekron. And it came to pass, as the ark of God came to Ekron, that the Ekronites cried out, saying, They have brought about the ark of the God of Israel to us, to slay us and our people.

And so the cities of the Philistines were taught that the God of Israel was the supreme God; and they counseled to send the Ark back to Israel..

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.

Then the Philistines cried out in great agony because of the throne of God among them, which cast down any who would not repent and turn from their idols to bow before the Great and Mighty God; and to exalt him alone and to learn and keep his Word without compromise or turning aside to the right or to the left.

5:12 And the men that died not were smitten with the emerods: and the cry of the city went up to heaven.

1 Samuel 6

At the end of seven months of severe affliction the Philistines called all their wise men and the priests of their gods together to decide what to do; and instead of repenting from dagon to serve the Eternal; they rejected the Eternal and sent his throne out from among them.

1 Samuel 6:1 And the ark of the LORD was in the country of the Philistines seven months. 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.

The Philistines determined to offer an offering without repentance and without  turning to the Eternal; they decided to continue to worship their idols and then to send the throne [which represents the authority of a ruler] of God back to Israel.

6:3 And they said, If ye send away the ark of the God of Israel, send it not empty; but in any wise return him a trespass offering: then ye shall be healed, and it shall be known to you why his hand is not removed from you.

From this it appears that a plague of small rodents also fell on the Philistines which would have consumed their granaries. So they were unable to work their fields and their foodstocks seem to have been consumed by rodents.

6:4 Then said they, What shall be the trespass offering which we shall return to him? They answered, Five golden emerods, and five golden mice [small vermin; mice rats], according to the number of the lords of the Philistines: for one plague was on you all, and on your lords.

There was no thought of repentance at the correction and power of God; instead they thrust God out of their land.

The case is the same with most today, who reject any zeal for the whole Word of God and cling to their own ways; yet they cry out to the Eternal in prayers and fastings for deliverance from all their troubles.

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.

They KNEW their history and they KNEW who the Eternal was; yet they would not repent to follow HIM!

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?

This action of the Philistines later had a profound effect on David the king; for he followed their example [in ignorance, not having studied the scriptures on this point] in trying to transport the Ark contrary to the Word of God.

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: 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.

In this case the Philistines were using this as a test, a kind of casting of lots; to see if the Eternal had discomfited them, or if their trials were simply natural events.

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.

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: 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.

The test of the Philistines made it clear to them that the Eternal God of Jacob had discomfited them to reveal that he was God indeed and beside him there is NO OTHER.

As the Ark [a type of God’s throne] turned neither to the right nor to the left; we are to follow HIM and to KEEP the whole Word of God without any hint of turning aside.

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.

Israel rejoiced at the recovery of the Ark representing the Eternal and his authority over his Mosaic Covenant people.

Likewise the brethren should rejoice that the authority of the Eternal and the righteousness of HIS Word are being proclaimed and restored in spiritual Israel today!

6:13 And they of Bethshemesh were reaping their wheat harvest in the valley: and they lifted up their eyes, and saw the ark, and rejoiced to see it.

When the Ark stood still among them, the men called for Levites to teach them what to do.

We should also seek out to learn and to keep the whole Word of God today; we need to repent of doing what we think is right and turn to live by every Word of God to do what the Eternal teaches and commands is right! It is far past time that we turned to the Eternal in wholehearted repentance and service [the meaning of the burnt offering].

6:14 And the cart came into the field of Joshua, a Bethshemite, and stood there, where there was a great stone: and they clave the wood of the cart, and offered the kine a burnt offering unto the LORD.

6:15 And the Levites took down the ark of the LORD, and the coffer that was with it, wherein the jewels of gold were, and put them on the great stone: and the men of Bethshemesh offered burnt offerings and sacrificed sacrifices the same day unto the LORD.

The Philistines then returned home.

6:16 And when the five lords of the Philistines had seen it, they returned to Ekron the same day. 6:17 And these are the golden emerods which the Philistines returned for a trespass offering unto the LORD; for Ashdod one, for Gaza one, for Askelon one, for Gath one, for Ekron one; 6:18 And the golden mice, according to the number of all the cities of the Philistines belonging to the five lords, both of fenced cities, and of country villages, even unto the great stone of Abel, whereon they set down the ark of the LORD: which stone remaineth unto this day [the day that this was written] in the field of Joshua, the Bethshemite.

Now in their joy at receiving the Ark the people broke the commandment of God; and Jesus Christ destroyed then without mercy to 50,070 lives.

This is a mighty lesson that Jesus Christ is the Redeemer of the repentant who follow God’s Word in all things; NO, we are not to worship our God our own way. We are to worship the Eternal as he has commanded us to worship him.

Those of spiritual Israel are also to worship God only as he has commanded us in the whole Word of God. We are not to take pagan things and re-label them “Christian” and claim that we do these evils in honor of the Eternal God.

We are to worship the Eternal Father and Jesus Christ the son by doing what they require and by learning and living by every Word of God; We are NOT to worship our God by doing what we think is right and rejecting a wholehearted zeal to do what God has said is right.

NO, ABSOLUTELY NOT; Jesus Christ will not tolerate sin against the Word of God which he inspired!

6:19 And he smote the men of Bethshemesh, because they had looked into the ark of the LORD, even he smote of the people fifty thousand and threescore and ten men: and the people lamented, because the LORD had smitten many of the people with a great slaughter.

The Philistines feared God and would not turn to him, thrusting the Eternal out from among them. Then because God is consistent in requiring that he be obeyed as he has commanded and not worshiped as men think fit Israel also learned to fear God.

Today’s spiritual Israel should learn this lesson, that we are to follow the Eternal and keep his Word with a sincere and whole heart; doing what God says, and NOT doing what we think is right.

6:20 And the men of Bethshemesh said, Who is able to stand before this holy LORD God? and to whom shall he go up from us? 6:21 And they sent messengers to the inhabitants of Kirjathjearim, saying, The Philistines have brought again the ark of the LORD; come ye down, and fetch it up to you.

1 Samuel 7

The Ark was in Israel, yet the Philistines continued to oppress the nation because Israel was still filled with idols. Mosaic Israel feared God, but they would not obey him; even so it is with many today as they exalt their idols of men, organizations and false teachings of the past.

1 Samuel 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 [a priest of Aaron] to keep the ark of the LORD. 7:2 And it came to pass, while the ark abode in Kirjathjearim, that the time was long; for it was twenty years: [then they lamented over the oppression of the Philistines] and all the house of Israel lamented after the LORD.

Samuel rises up to teach the people to put away the idols that had come between then and the Eternal; and tells them to wholeheartedly follow the Eternal ONLY; as you have heard me teach for these past  eight and a half years.

As Samuel promised physical deliverance for wholeheartedly keeping the Mosaic Covenant; I tell you the truth; if spiritual Israel turns away from doing as we think right, to wholeheartedly, live by every Word of God; Our Mighty One will raise us up on that day, giving us his salvation and the gift eternal life.

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 [idols, obelisks; including steeples and Christmas trees] 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.

Finally Israel had had enough correction at the hands of the Philistines and put destroyed their idols, turning to the Eternal to keep his Word.

It is time that we did the same thing in the spiritual sense and began to prove the teachings of men by the whole Word of God!

1 Thessalonians 5:11 Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do.

Brethren, we know that the violence of today and the coming wars will reset the conditions so that a genuine peace can be made.  We know this because the Word of God tells us that “Peace and Safety” will be declared before the tribulation comes!  There will be an end to these wars which will bring a genuine peace deal; we have the Word of God telling us so!

As you see these things being fulfilled; as you see these wars come and go and a genuine dialogue for peace take place; as you see a peace deal ratified and peacekeepers being deployed; as you see the abomination, that man of sin, being set up in the Vatican and bringing a new Europe to life: You can know that the great tribulation WILL begin when he goes to the Holy Place, for it is the very Word of Jesus Christ himself!

We are NOT to esteem any person; who rejects and teaches others to reject any zeal to learn and to keep the whole Word of God.  We are to reject all those who teach us to make idols of men and false traditions and who compromise with God’s Word.  They are the children of darkness, refusing the light of God for their own folly.

Those faithful to God and his commandments should look about and mark out those who labor to turn the brethren to God, and who admonish all the brethren to turn with zeal to their God! 

5:12 And we beseech you, brethren, to know them which labour among you, and are over you in the Lord, and admonish you; 5:13 And to esteem them very highly in love for their work’s sake. And be at peace among yourselves.

2 Timothy 4:1 I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; 4:2  Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine.

1 Thessalonians  5:14 Now we exhort you, brethren, warn them that are unruly [contentious against sound doctrine and conduct], comfort the feebleminded [the weak in understanding], support the [spiritually weak with sound doctrine] weak, be patient toward all men.

When we are abused or rejected, always follow godliness and do not give place to anger, but do good by teaching and living godliness.

5:15 See that none render evil for evil unto any man; but ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves, and to all men. 5:16 Rejoice evermore.

Rejoice in your calling and pray without ceasing for God’s help through his Spirit, so that we may endure to the very end and overcome all things. Rejoice in your trials knowing that the Master Potter is molding us into a precious eternal vessel according to his will!

5:17 Pray without ceasing. 5:18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

Be grateful to God for your calling and his many blessings and promises; which are sure and will be fulfilled for us if we faint not. Do not quench the Spirit by compromising with God’s Word.

5:19 Quench not the Spirit.

5:20 Despise not prophesyings.

Do not have the attitude that we cannot know, so we should not even bother with prophecy.  God reveals his will to those who are diligent to live by his Word when the time is at hand. Let us learn from past mistakes and embrace the truth discarding error and grow in knowledge, progressing in understanding. Watch diligently as these things unfold and remember the signs and warnings that God has given to those who love him and do that which is pleasing in his sight.

5:21 Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.

Prove all things by the Word of God!  Utterly reject any compromise with God’s Word and reject all toleration of sin. In the same manner that God our Father in heaven utterly rejects any spiritual uncleanness in his temple [his people]!  Avoid even the mere appearance of evil so that the light of your example may shine brightly

5:22 Abstain from all appearance of evil.

5:23 And the very God of peace sanctify [set you apart from all worldliness and sin] you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless [without any willful sin] unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Become blameless as touching the Word of God, and fully internalize the mind and nature of God the Father and the Son, so that you will come into a complete unity of mind, spirit, attitude and deeds with Almighty God!

5:24 Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it.

God brought a great repentance by the word and teaching of Samuel. Oh, how the spiritual Church of God needs such repentance today.

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

The people gathered together with Samuel, fasting the true fast of sincere repentance, and water was poured out; picturing the Word and Spirit of God being poured out like water.

This was done long before Ezra established the water pouring service at the Feast of Tabernacles. 

7:5 And Samuel said, Gather all Israel to Mizpeh, and I will pray for you unto the LORD. 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 [taught] the children of Israel in Mizpeh.

The Philistines hearing of this massing of people went out against them.

7:7 And when the Philistines heard that the children of Israel were gathered together to Mizpeh, the lords of the Philistines went up against Israel. And when the children of Israel heard it, they were afraid of the Philistines.

These people now repentant cried out to the Eternal for deliverance; just like those of spiritual Israel today need to cry out in sincere repentance from sin for deliverance from the forces of evil.

7:8 And the children of Israel said to Samuel, Cease not to cry unto the LORD our God for us, that he will save us out of the hand of the Philistines. 7:9 And Samuel took a sucking lamb, and offered it for a burnt offering wholly unto the LORD: and Samuel cried unto the LORD for Israel; and the LORD heard him.

Then Jesus Christ stood up to deliver his sincerely repentant children.

7:10 And as Samuel was offering up the burnt offering, the Philistines drew near to battle against Israel: but the LORD thundered with a great thunder on that day upon the Philistines, and discomfited them; and they were smitten before Israel.

When the Philistines fled at the thundering of the Eternal; Israel pursued them and a great victory was won.

Brethren, if you sincerely take a stand to learn and live by every Word of God continually; then we may have problems in this physical life so that we may learn and be molded into what God has in mind for us: but God will go forth to deliver his faithful and chosen on that day.

7:11 And the men of Israel went out of Mizpeh, and pursued the Philistines, and smote them, until they came under Bethcar.

Samuel then set up a memorial stone which stone represents the ROCK of our Salvation, YHVH, who became Jesus Christ the Messiah.

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 Philistines were subdued all the days of Samuel.

7:13 So the Philistines were subdued, and they came no more into the coast of Israel: and the hand of the LORD was against the Philistines all the days of Samuel. 7:14 And the cities which the Philistines had taken from Israel were restored to Israel, from Ekron even unto Gath; and the coasts thereof did Israel deliver out of the hands of the Philistines. And there was peace between Israel and the Amorites.

Samuel became a kind of circuit judge or evangelist; and continually taught the people to be faithful to the whole Word of God and during this time, beginning after the famine in Israel and the defeat of the Philistines there was peace; and near the beginning of that time of peace as Samuel was just beginning as an accepted Judge over Israel, Ruth came to Judah and married Boaz.

7:15 And Samuel judged Israel all the days of his life. 7:16 And he went from year to year in circuit to Bethel, and Gilgal, and Mizpeh, and judged Israel in all those places. 7:17 And his return was to Ramah; for there was his house; and there he judged Israel; and there he built an altar unto the LORD

1 Samuel 8

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

The sons of Samuel also turned aside like the sons of Eli.

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

The people then sought stability for the nation in a dynastic kingdom. This is a lesson for us in governance that it does not matter what form of governance is in an organization; it is faithfulness to God and zeal for the whole Word of God that is the important thing in any ruler.

Any organization regardless of its governance structure; is only God’s government if it is zealous and faithful to the HEAD which is God the Father, Jesus Christ and their Word.

It is a fact that the authoritative government is powerful as an entity, but it is the easiest to subvert and turn aside from God, because only a handful of men need be perverted to lead teh others astray. That is why God’s government is for each person to obey and follow their HEAD [God the Father and Jesus Christ] by proving all the words of men by the Word of God and following men ONLY as they follow Christ.

8:4 Then all the elders of Israel gathered themselves together, and came to Samuel unto Ramah, 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 offended because he thought they were rejecting him.

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

This very thing was prophesied by Moses.

God prophecies of a coming king by Moses

Deuteronomy 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;

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.

In the New Covenant, the faithfully obedient to God brethren,  must choose to follow the man who demonstrates by his fruits that God has chosen him! That person MUST be a person who is a brother in the faith and proven by his fruits to be the choice of God (Mat 7). We have been led far astray because we have not questioned and proved by their fruits from the scriptures the men that we follow!  We have broken this commandment of Deuteronomy as well as the many commandments on the subject in the New Testament. A great many of the leaders in the various groups have proven by their fruits, lack of zeal for God and his law, and their compromising with God’s commandments that they are NOT godly men.

We have been led astray because we have been willing to blindly and without question follow anyone who makes some grand claim and gives lip service to the faith, while doing whatever they please instead of doing as God has commanded.

Neither Physical nor Spiritual leaders are to use their positions to feed themselves and not the flock. They are NOT to take the best things for themselves nor seek the exaltation of the people. They are to be faithful to the Eternal in all things; to exalt the Eternal and to obey him in all things; to faithfully serve the Eternal by feeding the flock sound doctrine and a good knowledge of TRUTH; and to speak the Word of God without fear or compromise before all peoples.

17:16 But he shall not multiply horses [make himself rich] to himself, nor cause the people to return to Egypt [shall not lead the people into sin and bondage to enrich himself], to the end that he should multiply horses: forasmuch as the LORD hath said unto you, Ye shall henceforth return no more that way.

The ruler or leader must not exercise his office for personal gain.

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.

The leader of the people both secular and spiritual and the elders; must have a personal copy of the Word of God and study in it every day of their lives to learn it and to keep it. 

Every one of is called to become a priest and or king, and we are all to have personal copies of God’s Word and to study it to learn it and to keep it all the days of our lives.

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:

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:

17:20 That his heart be not lifted up  [in pride] 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.

 Brethren, those who set themselves up as leaders and elders [kings, rulers] of the spiritual Church of God, must also follow these instructions!

1 Samuel 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.

YHVH then goes on to say that they are turned away from God.

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.

God tells Samuel to proclaim what kings do to their subjects and then tells him to follow the wishes of the people.

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.

8:10 And Samuel told all the words of the LORD unto the people that asked of him a king.

This is the manner of all physical rulers including business and corporate leaders.  The king will make himself officials and administrators and accrue power and wealth to himself.

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. 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. 8:13 And he will take your daughters to be confectionaries, and to be cooks, and to be bakers.

The king will take as he chooses; today we call that taxes.

8:14 And he will take your fields, and your vineyards, and your oliveyards, even the best of them, and give them to his servants. 8:15 And he will take the tenth of your seed, and of your vineyards, and give to his officers, and to his servants. 8:16 And he will take your menservants, and your maidservants, and your goodliest young men, and your asses, and put them to his work. 8:17 He will take the tenth of your sheep: and ye shall be his servants.

And when we cry out because of the oppression, God will neither hear nor answer, because we have only received what we asked for by serving men and not God.

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.

The people insisted and Samuel prayed to the Eternal.

8:19 Nevertheless the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel; and they said, Nay; but we will have a king over us; 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. 8:21 And Samuel heard all the words of the people, and he rehearsed them in the ears of the LORD.

So God said: go and make them a king as they desire.

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 a king to take responsibility for them, and rule over them: instead of being loyal to the whole word of God they would rather by loyal to the words of a man.

It is the same in the called out of spiritual Israel today!

We look to men to rule over us and to lead us; and we reject following the whole Word of God, to follow these men away from any zeal for living by every Word of God. We have a zeal for keeping the words of the men that we can see, and no zeal to learn and keep the whole Word of God.

1 Samuel 9

Kish was a powerful man in Israel and his son Saul a big and impressive man.

1 Samuel 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. 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 [impressive and handsome] person than he: from his shoulders and upward he was higher than any of the people.

Saul goes to seek the lost animals of his father

9:3 And the asses of Kish Saul’s father were lost. And Kish said to Saul his son, Take now one of the servants with thee, and arise, go seek the asses. 9:4 And he passed through mount Ephraim, and passed through the land of Shalisha, but they found them not: then they passed through the land of Shalim, and there they were not: and he passed through the land of the Benjamites, but they found them not. 9:5 And when they were come to the land of Zuph, Saul said to his servant that was with him, Come, and let us return; lest my father leave caring for the asses, and take thought for us.

Saul decides to return home empty, but his servant tells Saul to enquire of God.

9:6 And he said unto him, Behold now, there is in this city a man of God, and he is an honourable man; all that he saith cometh surely to pass: now let us go thither; peradventure he can shew us our way that we should go.

The servant is willing to pay Samuel for his advice

9:7 Then said Saul to his servant, But, behold, if we go, what shall we bring the man? for the bread is spent in our vessels, and there is not a present to bring to the man of God: what have we? 9:8 And the servant answered Saul again, and said, Behold, I have here at hand the fourth part of a shekel of silver: that will I give to the man of God, to tell us our way.

Saul then goes to seek out Samuel

9:9 (Beforetime in Israel, when a man went to enquire of God, thus he spake, Come, and let us go to the seer: for he that is now called a Prophet was beforetime called a Seer.) 9:10 Then said Saul to his servant, Well said; come, let us go. So they went unto the city where the man of God was. 9:11 And as they went up the hill to the city, they found young maidens going out to draw water, and said unto them, Is the seer here?

The maids told Saul to make haste and find Samuel, before Samuel becomes occupied with the sacrifice.

9:12 And they answered them, and said, He is; behold, he is before you: make haste now, for he came to day to the city; for there is a sacrifice of the people to day in the high place: 9:13 As soon as ye be come into the city, ye shall straightway find him, before he go up to the high place to eat: for the people will not eat until he come, because he doth bless the sacrifice; and afterwards they eat that be bidden. Now therefore get you up; for about this time ye shall find him.

Rushing into the city they catch up to Samuel as he is going to the sacrifice.

9:14 And they went up into the city: and when they were come into the city, behold, Samuel came out against them, for to go up to the high place.

YHVH who became Jesus Christ told Samuel to anoint Saul king in a clear small voice in his ear.

9:15 Now the LORD had told Samuel in his ear a day before Saul came, saying, 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.

God opened the eyes of Samuel to recognize the man that he should anoint king.

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.

Saul not recognizing Samuel sought of him the house of the prophet.

9:18 Then Saul drew near to Samuel in the gate, and said, Tell me, I pray thee, where the seer’s house is.

Samuel identifies himself and bids Saul go up to the tabernacle for the sacrifice.

9:19 And Samuel answered Saul, and said, I am the seer: go up before me unto the high place; for ye shall eat with me to day, and to morrow I will let thee go, and will tell thee all that is in thine heart.

Samuel tells Saul that the lost animals are found and then tells Saul that the desire and heart of Israel is on him and his father’s house.  Saul was the people’s choice.

9:20 And as for thine asses that were lost three days ago, set not thy mind on them; for they are found. And on whom is all the desire of Israel? Is it not on thee, and on all thy father’s house?

Saul was humble and bewildered before the man of God.

9:21 And Saul answered and said, Am not I a Benjamite, of the smallest of the tribes of Israel? and my family the least of all the families of the tribe of Benjamin? wherefore then speakest thou so to me?

Samuel sets Saul in the chief seat at the sacrificial meal.

9:22 And Samuel took Saul and his servant, and brought them into the parlour, and made them sit in the chiefest place among them that were bidden, which were about thirty persons.

The choicest portion was then given to Saul as a mark of great honor.

9:23 And Samuel said unto the cook, Bring the portion which I gave thee, of which I said unto thee, Set it by thee. 9:24 And the cook took up the shoulder, and that which was upon it, and set it before Saul. And Samuel said, Behold that which is left! set it before thee, and eat: for unto this time hath it been kept for thee since I said, I have invited the people. So Saul did eat with Samuel that day.

Then afterwards Samuel spoke with Saul for some time.

9:25 And when they were come down from the high place into the city, Samuel communed with Saul upon the top of the house.

Then in the early morning Saul is sent on his way and Samuel walks with him to the city gate conversing as they went.

9:26 And they arose early: and it came to pass about the spring of the day, that Samuel called Saul to the top of the house, saying, Up, that I may send thee away. And Saul arose, and they went out both of them, he and Samuel, abroad.

Then Samuel tells Saul to send his servant on ahead while Samuel tells Saul the Word of the Eternal.

9:27 And as they were going down to the end of the city, Samuel said to Saul, Bid the servant pass on before us, (and he passed on), but stand thou still a while, that I may shew thee the word of God.

1 Samuel 10

Samuel anoints Saul king and then gives him a string of prophecies to help him gain faith and confidence.

1 Samuel 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?

10:2When thou art departed from me to day, then thou shalt find two men by Rachel’s sepulchre in the border of Benjamin at Zelzah; and they will say unto thee, The asses which thou wentest to seek are found: and, lo, thy father hath left the care of the asses, and sorroweth for you, saying, What shall I do for my son? 10:3 Then shalt thou go on forward from thence, and thou shalt come to the plain of Tabor, and there shall meet thee three men going up to God to Bethel, one carrying three kids, and another carrying three loaves of bread, and another carrying a bottle of wine: 10:4 And they will salute thee, and give thee two loaves of bread; which thou shalt receive of their hands.

Saul was given the Spirit of God

Saul should be a graphic example for us that not every called out person or ordained man who starts out with God’s Spirit; continues in the path of his calling. I have no doubt that God chose Saul for the express purpose of teaching us this lesson. Saul was an example to the people of his day [and especially to David] of how NOT to lead; so that we could learn that absolute loyalty to God and the Word o0f God is required from all of the called out.

In the recent past we have a major example of the same thing: A man starting off full of zeal for God, even if he was on a learning curve and made mistakes; and then fell away because the thorns of deceitful riches and a deep desire to please men, turned him away from his zeal for God. Remember the parable of the sower!

Even that was by God to teach the end time called out a powerful lesson in loyalty to God and his Word!

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: 10:6 And the Spirit of the LORD will come upon thee, and thou shalt prophesy with them, and shalt be turned into another man.

This series of signs was to demonstrate to Saul that God would be with him as long as he did not depart from God.

10:7 And let it be, when these signs are come unto thee, that thou do as occasion serve thee; for God is with thee.

Saul was told to wait at Gilgal seven days for Samuel to come and give him instructions from God.

10:8 And thou shalt go down before me to Gilgal; and, behold, I will come down unto thee, to offer burnt offerings, and to sacrifice sacrifices of peace offerings: seven days shalt thou tarry, till I come to thee, and shew thee what thou shalt do.

All these signs came in one day and Saul was given God’s Spirit

10:9 And it was so, that when he had turned his back to go from Samuel, God gave him another heart: and all those signs came to pass that day.

10:10 And when they came thither to the hill, behold, a company of prophets met him; and the Spirit of God came upon him, and he prophesied among them.

Saul is recognized by the people as a man chosen of God to be king

10:11 And it came to pass, when all that knew him beforetime saw that, behold, he prophesied among the prophets, then the people said one to another, What is this that is come unto the son of Kish? Is Saul also among the prophets? 10:12 And one of the same place answered and said, But who is their father? Therefore it became a proverb, Is Saul also among the prophets? 10:13 And when he had made an end of prophesying, he came to the high place.

Saul’s uncle inquires of Saul about all that he had done.

10:14 And Saul’s uncle said unto him and to his servant, Whither went ye? And he said, To seek the asses: and when we saw that they were no where, we came to Samuel. 10:15 And Saul’s uncle said, Tell me, I pray thee, what Samuel said unto you.

10:16 And Saul said unto his uncle, He told us plainly that the asses were found. But of the matter of the kingdom, whereof Samuel spake, he told him not.

Saul told no one of the anointing of Samuel to make him king.

Samuel called the people to Mizpeh to present Saul to them as the king that God had chosen to rule over them. Samuel rebuked the people for desiring a hereditary king instead of the Eternal; he rebuked them for desiring to follow a man instead of directly following the God and Husband of their covenant.

Many have done this exact thing; turning away from any zeal to learn and live by every Word of God and a direct personal responsible relationship with God, proving the words of men by the whole Word of God: into zealously following men and corporate entities and exalting them above the Word of God.

Our King is God the Father and our Head is Jesus Christ; to follow any other is spiritual treason, or to turn away from their Word is insurrection against the God of our calling.

10:17 And Samuel called the people together unto the LORD to Mizpeh; 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: 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.

The tribe of Benjamin was placed by Samuel and they sought for Saul

10:20 And when Samuel had caused all the tribes of Israel to come near, the tribe of Benjamin was taken. 10:21When 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.

Samuel then asked YHVH where Saul was and was told that Saul had hidden himself.

Many elders have wrongfully taught that this was some kind of humility or youthful timidity. Instead this indicated very early on, that Saul feared the people more than he feared to obey God; for Saul knew that he had been chosen by God and anointed king, yet he shrank back for fear of men.

There are two separate issues:  Fear of men and humility before God.  In the beginning Saul was somewhat humble before God but was more afraid of the people; shrinking back from what God had called him to do for fear of the people. Saul was too afraid of the people to fulfill his God given anointing.

Then as time passed Saul became more and more proud against God while continuing to fear the people, which is what Samuel later rebuked him for.

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.

Then Saul was presented to the people who looked at his physical stature and not at his spiritual stature.

So today, many are greatly impressed by the outward appearance of skilled and talented elders and leaders, without considering their spiritual stature and whether they were zealous to live by every Word of God. The Eternal sometimes chooses spiritually weak leaders like Saul to TEST the loyalty of his people to God. Moses warned us of this very thing in Deuteronomy 13.

Deuteronomy 13:1 If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder, 13:2 And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them;

13:3 Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the Lord your God proveth [TESTS us] you, to know whether ye love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul. 13:4 Ye shall walk after the Lord your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him.

13:5 And that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams, shall be put to death; because he hath spoken to turn you away from the Lord your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, and redeemed you out of the house of bondage, to thrust thee out of the way which the Lord thy God commanded thee to walk in. So shalt thou put the evil away from the midst of thee.

Equating loyalty to men with loyalty to God is idolatry and an abomination to Almighty God.

1 Samuel 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. 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.

Samuel then informed the king and the people what God had commanded for the kingdom.

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.

A band of men were inspired by God to gather around and support Saul, while others were contrary to him.

10:26 And Saul also went home to Gibeah; and there went with him a band of men, whose hearts God had touched. 10:27 But the children of Belial said, How shall this man save us? And they despised him, and brought no presents. But he held his peace.

1 Samuel 11

Saul is given a small challenge so that God could begin to establish his name as king over Israel. Those who would be godly have always faced problems to build up their character.

An Ammonite seeks to take away a city and the people not yet trusting Saul agree to serve him in tribute, but a very heavy tribute is laid upon them forcing them to appeal to Saul.

1 Samuel 11:1 Then Nahash the Ammonite came up, and encamped against Jabeshgilead: and all the men of Jabesh said unto Nahash,

Make a covenant with us, and we will serve thee. 11:2 And Nahash the Ammonite answered them, On this condition will I make a covenant with you, that I may thrust out all your right eyes, and lay it for a reproach upon all Israel.

The elders sought out help before agreeing to the terrible terms of Ammon. This is clearly allowed by God to establish Saul as king; since the demands were totally irrational.

11:3 And the elders of Jabesh said unto him, Give us seven days’ respite, that we may send messengers unto all the coasts of Israel: and then, if there be no man to save us, we will come out to thee.

The messengers arrived in Gibeah, and Saul arriving from work in the fields hears their story.

11:4 Then came the messengers to Gibeah of Saul, and told the tidings in the ears of the people: and all the people lifted up their voices, and wept. 11:5 And, behold, Saul came after the herd out of the field; and Saul said, What aileth the people that they weep? And they told him the tidings of the men of Jabesh.

Saul became furious at this terrible outrage being planned against the people and God’s Spirit fell upon him to inspire him as to what to do.

11:6 And the Spirit of God came upon Saul when he heard those tidings, and his anger was kindled greatly.

Saul then summoned the men of war and threatened them with the pieces of oxen to arouse them to action.

11:7 And he took a yoke of oxen, and hewed them in pieces, and sent them throughout all the coasts of Israel by the hands of messengers, saying, Whosoever cometh not forth after Saul and after Samuel, so shall it be done unto his oxen. And the fear of the LORD fell on the people, and they came out with one consent.

Then 330,000 men gathered to Saul to help against this evil.

11:8 And when he numbered them in Bezek, the children of Israel were three hundred thousand, and the men of Judah thirty thousand.

Then messengers were sent to the threatened city that help was on the way.

11:9 And they said unto the messengers that came, Thus shall ye say unto the men of Jabeshgilead, To morrow, by that time the sun be hot, ye shall have help. And the messengers came and shewed it to the men of Jabesh; and they were glad.

The people of Jabesh then told the Ammonites that they would come out to them the next day; and eased them into thinking that there was no danger of battle..

11:10 Therefore the men of Jabesh said, To morrow we will come out unto you, and ye shall do with us all that seemeth good unto you.

In the cool of the early morning Saul sets upon the Ammonites in three companies of men; totally destroying them and saving Jabesh from a cruel fate.

11:11 And it was so on the morrow, that Saul put the people in three companies; and they came into the midst of the host in the morning watch, and slew the Ammonites until the heat of the day: and it came to pass, that they which remained were scattered, so that two of them were not left together.

The people then rejoiced in Saul and he was established as king; the people even thinking to kill all who opposed Saul as king.

11:12 And the people said unto Samuel, Who is he that said, Shall Saul reign over us? bring the men, that we may put them to death.

Saul starts off well issuing a general amnesty and giving the glory to the Eternal.

11:13 And Saul said, There shall not a man be put to death this day: for to day the LORD hath wrought salvation in Israel.

Then Saul who was ordained by God and anointed by Samuel was made king by all the people.

11:14 Then said Samuel to the people, Come, and let us go to Gilgal, and renew the kingdom there. 11:15 And all the people went to Gilgal; and there they made Saul king before the LORD in Gilgal; and there they sacrificed sacrifices of peace offerings before the LORD; and there Saul and all the men of Israel rejoiced greatly.

In the beginning Saul did not exalt himself but remained working in his father’s fields, until God opened up the way for him to be established as king over Israel; and then Saul forgave his foes in Israel and gave God the glory.

Saul started off well, but he would later be choked from the way of God by his fear of the people, and his desire for the adulation of the people.

Many have done this exact same thing; being filled with zeal for God in the beginning; and later turning aside, watering down the outreach into a business model instead of the early messages of solid doctrine and warning.

1 Samuel 12

Samuel reasons with the people

1 Samuel 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. 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 asks the people why they have rejected him and demanded a king.

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.

12:4 And they said, Thou hast not defrauded us, nor oppressed us, neither hast thou taken ought of any man’s hand. 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.

Samuel then rehearses that it is the Eternal who delivers his people; and that we are to follow ONLY those men who are faithful servants of the Eternal God.

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.

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.

12:8When 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. 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.

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.

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.

Then they said nay to Samuel and demanded a king; choosing to follow a man instead of following the Eternal God. 

Today we also want men to come between us and God to follow and obey men and not God directly; out of a desire to shirk personal responsibility for our actions: not understanding that following men contrary to God is idolatry and brings destruction upon us.

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.

They desired a king and the Eternal gave them a king

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.

The spiritual Church of God brethren decided to have corporate organizations rule over them; just like physical Israel wanted a king.

God warned physical Israel that if they remained faithful to his Word, he would remain faithful to them, but if they turned away from whole hearted zeal to live by every Word of God to follow apostate rulers, he would turn against them.

The very same warning holds fast for today’s called out of spiritual Israel! Each individual must be absolutely zealously whole heartedly faithful to the Eternal and every Word of God; no matter what any other human being says.

When a person stands before God and answers for his sins by saying that he was faithful to the king or to a certain leader or elder; what do you think God will answer? Will God not ask why we followed a man and were not faithful to HIM?

Now hear the Word of the Eternal Almighty God of Jacob:

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:

Brethren, we are to test every word of men, and compare them with the Word of God; and keep only what is absolutely consistent with the whole Word of God. And if we follow men contrary to the Word of God, regardless of whatever title such men claim: Almighty God will surely be against us!

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.

Samuel then gives a sign that out of season in the summer, God would demonstrate his power in thunder and rain.

12:16 Now therefore stand and see this great thing, which the LORD will do before your eyes. 12:17 Is it not wheat harvest [summer] 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.

I expect that this was no ordinary thunder storm but one of great and awesome intensity; and as we know great thunder is accompanied by great lightening.

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.

Then the people asked for forgiveness for seeking a king to come between them and God and resolved to obey God first and the man second.

We of the spiritual called out, need to repent of this very same thing; we need to repent of following men and exalting those men as equal to or above Almighty God in our hearts: so that we live by the words of men, and have not been zealous to live by every Word of God; which is idolatry.

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.

Samuel then adjures the people to follow God above all else and to respect authorities as they are faithful to godliness.

Never follow any leader, king or elder, away from a zealous keeping of the whole Word of God! This is idolatry and it is the mark of the beast!

Always follow a leader, king or elder and all authorities over you; when they are consistent with the whole Word of God!

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; 12:21 And turn ye not aside: for then should ye go after vain things, which cannot profit nor deliver; for they are vain.

Do not forsake the Word of God for the words of men; for God has called us to him.

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.

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: 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.

Those who lack uncompromising zeal for learning and living by every Word of God, will be destroyed; both them and the leaders, rulers and elders who have led them astray.

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

1 Samuel 13

Saul establishes a core standing army of three thousand

1 Samuel 13:1 Saul reigned one year; and when he had reigned two years over Israel, 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.

Jonathan then attacked and destroyed a garrison of the Philistines, provoking war.  After which Saul called all Israel to him for the impending war.

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. 13:4 And all Israel heard say that Saul had smitten a garrison of the Philistines, and that Israel also was had in abomination with the Philistines. And the people were called together after Saul to Gilgal.

The Philistines massed a huge army against Israel to respond to the attack by Jonathan.

13:5 And the Philistines gathered themselves together to fight with Israel, thirty thousand chariots, and six thousand horsemen, and people as the sand which is on the sea shore in multitude: and they came up, and pitched in Michmash, eastward from Bethaven.

Israel then fled before the army of the Philistines.

13:6When 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. 13:7 And some of the Hebrews went over Jordan to the land of Gad and Gilead. As for Saul, he was yet in Gilgal, and all the people followed him trembling.

It had been appointed that Samuel would join Saul in seven days as the representative of God to go with the army, because the battle was the Lord’s; but Samuel was delayed and the people left Saul, God desiring to TEST Saul.

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.

Then Saul fearing that the people would leave him and that he would be overwhelmed by the Philistines offered sacrifices contrary to the Word of God.

13:9 And Saul said, Bring hither a burnt offering to me, and peace offerings. And he offered the burnt offering.

Then Samuel arrived and corrected Saul

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.

13:11 And Samuel said, What hast thou done? And Saul said, Because I saw that the people were scattered from me, and that thou camest not within the days appointed, and that the Philistines gathered themselves together at Michmash; 13:12 Therefore said I, The Philistines will come down now upon me to Gilgal, and I have not made supplication unto the LORD: I forced myself therefore, and offered a burnt offering.

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 failed the test of zeal to keep the Word of God and his kingdom was given to another.

The same thing will happen to the called out of spiritual Israel who have been promised kingdoms for their faithful uncompromising obedience to God; if they also depart from the Word of God to do as they think is right, instead of doing what the Eternal says is right.

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 was left with only 600 out of all his thousands

Spiritually many are called out, but very few will remain steadfast in uncompromising faithful loyalty and zeal to the Eternal King and his Word. Many are called and few will overcome and be chosen for a part in the resurrection to spirit as kings and priests of the High Priesthood and Kingdom of Jesus Christ.

13:15 And Samuel arose, and gat him up from Gilgal unto Gibeah of Benjamin. And Saul numbered the people that were present with him, about six hundred men.

13:16 And Saul, and Jonathan his son, and the people that were present with them, abode in Gibeah of Benjamin: but the Philistines encamped in Michmash.

Then the Philistines came to the attack in three parts.

13:17 And the spoilers came out of the camp of the Philistines in three companies: one company turned unto the way that leadeth to Ophrah, unto the land of Shual: 13:18 And another company turned the way to Bethhoron: and another company turned to the way of the border that looketh to the valley of Zeboim toward the wilderness.

God was about to deliver Israel by the hand of Saul.

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: 13:20 But all the Israelites went down to the Philistines, to sharpen every man his share, and his coulter, and his axe, and his mattock. 13:21 Yet they had a file for the mattocks, and for the coulters, and for the forks, and for the axes, and to sharpen the goads.

Israel went out to fight with only 600 lightly armed men, against a huge army of men and chariots with weapons of war. Yet they would be invincible as long as they followed the Eternal!

God may allow trials and sufferings in this physical life to build our character and make us what he wants us to become; but we will be spiritually invincible, as long as we are zealously faithful to live by every Word of God and to follow our espoused Husband wherever he goes. He will give his faithful servants the kingdom and they shall be priests and kings in the Priesthood of Jesus Christ; FOREVER!

13:22 So it came to pass in the day of battle, that there was neither sword nor spear found in the hand of any of the people that were with Saul and Jonathan: but with Saul and with Jonathan his son was there found.

13:23 And the garrison of the Philistines went out to the passage of Michmash.

1 Samuel 14

Jonathon launches an independent raid on the Philistines

1 Samuel 14:1 Now it came to pass upon a day, that Jonathan the son of Saul said unto the young man that bare his armour, Come, and let us go over to the Philistines’ garrison, that is on the other side. But he told not his father.

14:2 And Saul tarried in the uttermost part of Gibeah under a pomegranate tree which is in Migron: and the people that were with him were about six hundred men; 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.

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.

14:5 The forefront of the one was situate northward over against Michmash, and the other southward over against Gibeah.

Jonathon is very bold and full of faith in God; and it is a true thing that God saves by either many or by few. Very often God accomplishes his purpose by the weak and small so that all will know that the deliverance was from God and not from any man, that no flesh may glory. Today many wrongly look to men and not to God.

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. 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.

Jonathon decides to reveal their presence to a group of Philistines. Jonathon then seeks a sign from God through the words of the Philistines.

14:8 Then said Jonathan, Behold, we will pass over unto these men, and we will discover ourselves unto them. 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. 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.

God inspires the Philistines to challenge Jonathon and his bearer to come up to fight, fulfilling the sign that Jonathon sought that God had given him the victory.

14:11 And both of them discovered themselves unto the garrison of the Philistines: and the Philistines said, Behold, the Hebrews come forth out of the holes where they had hid themselves. 14:12 And the men of the garrison answered Jonathan and his armourbearer, and said, Come up to us, and we will shew you a thing [in modern parlance: we will teach you a lesson]. And Jonathan said unto his armourbearer, Come up after me: for the LORD hath delivered them into the hand of Israel.

Jonathon and his bearer went up in absolute faith in God and slew many Philistines filling Israel with fear concerning a Philistine response. When we trust in God there is no reason to fear any man.

Daniel 3:16 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful [afraid to answer or to stand up to kings and rulers of men] to answer thee in this matter.

Our mighty God is able to deliver his faithful even in this physical life, but if he chooses not to; in order to prove our loyalty to him to the death; then the faithful will still assuredly serve the God of Jacob and not any other.

3:17 If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king.

Oh, how far the Ekklesia has fallen away from the Word of God and the example of his faithful; to exalt and serve men and their corporate entities above the Word of God!

3:18 But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image [Representing all idolatry, including following ANY man, contrary to the whole word of God.] which thou hast set up.

1 Samuel 14:13 And Jonathan climbed up upon his hands and upon his feet, and his armourbearer after him: and they fell before Jonathan; and his armourbearer slew after him. 14:14 And that first slaughter, which Jonathan and his armourbearer made, was about twenty men, within as it were an half acre of land, which a yoke of oxen might plow.

The remaining army of Saul melted away for fear, not having the faith of Jonathon who went to battle with his bearer and faith in God.

14:15 And there was trembling in the host, in the field, and among all the people: the garrison, and the spoilers, they also trembled, and the earth [seemed to quake for their fears] quaked: so it was a very great trembling. 14:16 And the watchmen of Saul in Gibeah of Benjamin looked; and, behold, the multitude melted away, and they went on beating down one another.

Saul numbers the people to see how many have fled and who remains, but Jonathon was missing, being out fighting the Philistines.

14:17 Then said Saul unto the people that were with him, Number now, and see who is gone from us. And when they had numbered, behold, Jonathan and his armourbearer were not there.

Saul asked for the Ark of God and the high priest, to consult with God.

14:18 And Saul said unto Ahiah [the high priest], Bring hither the ark of God. For the ark of God was at that time with the children of Israel.

Then the Philistines attack over the slaughter by Jonathon; and Saul tells the priest to remove the Ark for safe keeping.

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.

Saul then assembled what was left of his army and a great victory was won over the Philistines; and even the collaborators with the Philistines changed sides and fought for Israel.

14:20 And Saul and all the people that were with him assembled themselves, and they came to the battle: and, behold, every man’s sword was against his fellow, and there was a very great discomfiture. 14:21 Moreover the Hebrews that were with the Philistines before that time, which went up with them into the camp from the country round about, even they also turned to be with the Israelites that were with Saul and Jonathan.

Now when those of the army of Israel who had fled heard of the victory they turned back and joined Saul to finish off the Philistine army.

14:22 Likewise all the men of Israel which had hid themselves in mount Ephraim, when they heard that the Philistines fled, even they also followed hard after them in the battle.

14:23 So the LORD saved Israel that day: and the battle passed over unto Bethaven.

Saul had made a foolish vow to God that distressed Israel greatly, for Saul had vowed to kill any person that did not fast that day and Israel had to fight fasting.

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.

Thus was Saul great in war and very weak and foolish spiritually.

14:25 And all they of the land came to a wood; and there was honey upon the ground. 14:26 And when the people were come into the wood, behold, the honey dropped; but no man put his hand to his mouth: for the people feared the oath.

Jonathon mistakenly breaks his father’s vow out of ignorance

14:27 But Jonathan heard not when his father charged the people with the oath: wherefore he put forth the end of the rod that was in his hand, and dipped it in an honeycomb, and put his hand to his mouth; and his eyes were enlightened [he was strengthened].

Then the people warned Jonathon, but the deed was done

14:28 Then answered one of the people, and said, Thy father straitly charged the people with an oath, saying, Cursed be the man that eateth any food this day. And the people were faint.

Jonathon then rebukes his father’s vow, pointing how much greater a victory they might have had had every man been strong.

God’s Word is sweeter than honey to those that truly love the Eternal; let us never leave off from true zeal for the whole Word of God to eat it [To learn and to internalize the Word of God] and to keep it; for therein is our spiritual strength!

Psalm 119:103 How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!

It is through following and living by every Word of God that spiritual victory will be won and sin is be overcome; resulting in entry into the Promised Land of eternal life!

Psalm 19:7 The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.

19:8 The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes.

19:9 The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.

19:10 More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb.

19:11 Moreover by them is thy servant warned [to depart from evil]: and in keeping of them there is great reward.

19:12 Who can understand his errors? cleanse thou me from secret faults.

19:13 Keep back thy servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me: then shall I be upright, and I shall be innocent from the great transgression.

19:14 Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer.

1 Samuel 14:29 Then said Jonathan, My father hath troubled the land: see, I pray you, how mine eyes have been enlightened, because I tasted a little of this honey. 14:30 How much more, if haply the people had eaten freely to day of the spoil of their enemies which they found? for had there not been now a much greater slaughter among the Philistines? 14:31 And they smote the Philistines that day from Michmash to Aijalon: and the people were very faint.

At the setting sun the people made haste to eat without properly bleeding and preparing that flesh for consumption.

Physically blood is the life of all higher creatures, and the shedding of blood carries with it the thought of death; which is the wages of sin.

Spiritually, blood is to be shed for sin; [The wages of sin being death, Romans 6:23] and therefore eating blood carries with it, the thought of partaking of sin and death.

14:32 And the people flew upon the spoil, and took sheep, and oxen, and calves, and slew them on the ground: and the people did eat them with the blood.

Saul sought to correct the people for this sin, and made a place for them to properly kill for food. This is one of the few times that Saul stood up for godliness against the people.

14:33 Then they told Saul, saying, Behold, the people sin against the LORD, in that they eat with the blood. And he said, Ye have transgressed: roll a great stone unto me this day. 14:34 And Saul said, Disperse yourselves among the people, and say unto them, Bring me hither every man his ox, and every man his sheep, and slay them here, and eat; and sin not against the LORD in eating with the blood. And all the people brought every man his ox with him that night, and slew them there.

Saul quickly built an altar and corrected the people, lest they be struck down for their sins.

14:35 And Saul built an altar unto the LORD: the same was the first altar that he built unto the LORD.

Sauk asked God if he should go to fight the Philistines and God would not answer him that day.

14:36 And Saul said, Let us go down after the Philistines by night, and spoil them until the morning light, and let us not leave a man of them. And they said, Do whatsoever seemeth good unto thee. Then said the priest, Let us draw near hither unto God. 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.

Then Saul thought that God did not answer because of his broken vow.

14:38 And Saul said, Draw ye near hither, all the chief of the people: and know and see wherein this sin hath been this day. 14:39 For, as the LORD liveth, which saveth Israel, though it be in Jonathan my son, he shall surely die. But there was not a man among all the people that answered him.

Saul then cast lots by the high priest between himself and the people to find the guilty persons.

14:40 Then said he unto all Israel, Be ye on one side, and I and Jonathan my son will be on the other side. And the people said unto Saul, Do what seemeth good unto thee.

The lot fell on the guilty one, Jonathon the son of Saul.

14:41 Therefore Saul said unto the LORD God of Israel, Give a perfect lot. And Saul and Jonathan were taken: but the people

escaped. 14:42 And Saul said, Cast lots between me and Jonathan my son. And Jonathan was taken. 14:43 Then Saul said to Jonathan, Tell me what thou hast done. And Jonathan told him, and said, I did but taste a little honey with the end of the rod that was in mine hand, and, lo, I must die. 14:44 And Saul answered, God do so and more also: for thou shalt surely die, Jonathan.

The people rose up and saved Jonathon, and the army of Israel was stopped from pursuing the Philistines.

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. 14:46 Then Saul went up from following the Philistines: and the Philistines went to their own place.

Saul was then fully established as king of Israel and he became a great warrior king; destroying the enemies of Israel; which helped to prepare the kingdom for David his successor.

14:47 So Saul took the kingdom over Israel, and fought against all his enemies on every side, against Moab, and against the children of Ammon, and against Edom, and against the kings of Zobah, and against the Philistines: and whithersoever he turned himself, he vexed them. 14:48 And he gathered an host, and smote the Amalekites, and delivered Israel out of the hands of them that spoiled them.

Saul’s family and his army captain Abner. After the death of Saul, Abner later joined David.

14:49 Now the sons of Saul were Jonathan, and Ishui, and Melchishua: and the names of his two daughters were these; the name of the firstborn Merab, and the name of the younger Michal: 14:50 And the name of Saul’s wife was Ahinoam, the daughter of Ahimaaz: and the name of the captain of his host was Abner, the son of Ner, Saul’s uncle.

Abner (Hebrew רנבא “Avner” meaning “father of [or is a] light”), was first cousin to Saul and commander-in-chief of his army (1 Samuel 14:50, 20:25). He is often referred to as the son of Ner.

14:51 And Kish was the father of Saul; and Ner the father of Abner was the son of Abiel.

Saul fought continually throughout the days of his kingship to destroy the enemies of Israel and to establish his dynasty.

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.

1 Samuel 15

Samuel instructs Saul to attack the Amalekites, who were a vicious and cruel people like today’s Islamic State.

1 Samuel 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.

Jesus Christ commands Saul to destroy Amalek and leave not so much as a lamb alive. This is the Real Jesus, not the false tolerant of sin Jesus of the permissive set.

These Amalekites were a type of sin, and their destruction was to be an example of the total destruction in the lake of fire, that will befall all those who compromise with the Word of God.

Do you buy food and drink, or anything else on Sabbath because some man told you to; when God’s Word condemns all who do so? If you remain unrepentant of that idolatry of men and the sin that they lead you into; you will face strong correction and if still unrepentant; total destruction.

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. 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.

Saul then gathered 210,000 men for the fight. Up to this point he had obeyed God and Samuel on this occasion.

All of the spiritually called out are to fight the good fight against sin; to continually grow and overcome by the power of God dwelling in us.

15:4 And Saul gathered the people together, and numbered them in Telaim, two hundred thousand footmen, and ten thousand men of Judah.

Saul sent the Bedouin away and then attacked the Amalekites destroying them as commanded by God, except that he disobeyed in regard to the animals.  This was a TEST from God as to whether they would obey God even when it did not make sense to them and was to their apparent hurt. 

How many of us fail the same kind of test today, failing to obey because some point does not make sense to us at the time? 

15:5 And Saul came to a city of Amalek, and laid wait in the valley. 15:6 And Saul said unto the Kenites [Bedouins in the Amalekite area.], Go, depart, get you down from among the Amalekites, lest I destroy you with them: for ye shewed kindness to all the children of Israel, when they came up out of Egypt. So the Kenites departed from among the Amalekites.

15:7 And Saul smote the Amalekites from Havilah until thou comest to Shur, that is over against Egypt. 15:8 And he took Agag the king of the Amalekites alive, and utterly destroyed all the people with the edge of the sword.

Always the politician who sought to please the people above obeying God, [Like today’s Ekklesia seek to please the worldly in their outreach programs instead of pleasing God by preaching the true gospel of warning and zeal to learn and to live by every Word of God.] Saul allowed Israel to keep the good things of the spoil contrary to the Word of God. 

The physical sin here was direct rebellion and disobedience to a clear command of God. 

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.

Then Jesus Christ repented of making Saul king for his repeated disobedience [as large numbers of today’s leaders, elders and brethren also apostatize from living by every Word of God, into trying to please men.]

15:10 Then came the word of the LORD unto Samuel, saying, 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.

Then Samuel prayed for Saul and agonized over Saul’s sins, before going up to meet him.

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. 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.

Saul blamed the people and did not take up his responsibility for his actions.  Just as many today think that they can stand before God and shirk the responsibility for their own actions by blaming their sins on others and saying: ”I was just obeying church leaders”.

The Nazi’s made the same excuse and “I had to obey my boss”. NO you didn’t! You could have resigned or even died rather than sin! Saul and thousands of Brethren; prove that they will willingly commit sin if they regard it as in their personal advantage! and Almighty God will reject their excuses just like he rejected the same excuse from king Saul!

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? 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.

Samuel then tells Saul the judgment of YHVH who became Jesus Christ.

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.

Spiritually this very thing could be said to many of us.

Were we not called and anointed to be kings and priests; of the Great King and eternal High Priest of humanity?

Were we not anointed to drive all sin and disobedience to God and all compromise with the word of God out of ourselves; and to prepare ourselves to do the same thing in future for all of humanity?

Were we not called and anointed to fully internalize the very nature of Christ the King and God the Mighty Father; by uncompromisingly overcoming and destroying all sin from within us?

Have most of our leaders and very many of the brethren followed their idols of men and corporations, away from any zeal for the learning and the keeping of the whole Word of God in passionate zeal; and into a zeal for their idols of men, to follow them contrary to the Word of God?

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? 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.

We are called to be kings and priests of our Mighty Father and the Great King and High Priest,  Jesus Christ! How is it then that we dare to turn aside from any zeal for him, to follow in dedicated service our idols of men, contrary to the Word of God?

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? 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.

Saul then interjects his defense; blaming the people and saying that the animals were taken to sacrifice to God.

God desires obedience much more than sacrifice; and he forbids us to worship him by pagan or our own methods, instead of worshiping him according to HIS instructions.

Jesus was trying to teach us by the destruction of the unrepentant sinners of the Amalekites; that all unrepentant sinners will also be destroyed along with all their possessions; for the whole earth itself and all that is on it, will be cleansed by fire.

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.

Then Samuel continues with a lesson that was meant for us as well as Saul. We are called to OBEY the voice of our God, so that we may learn to be LIKE HIM!

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.

Calling the Sabbath holy and then polluting it by transgressing God’s commandments on how to keep the Sabbath holy, because some mere mortal man said polluting the Sabbath is acceptable; is no different than open witchcraft!

Brethren, we reject God when we reject any zeal to learn and to keep his Word in favor of zeal to follow and obey men: That is the sin of Idolatry!

Make no mistake this is about eternal life in spirit as kings over the earth.

If we are not zealous to faithfully learn and to uncompromisingly keep the whole Word of God, no matter what any man says [regardless of the title he claims for himself]; we will be rejected from being kings and priests for eternity.

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.

Saul remorsefully admits the sin of disobedience; and the sin of exalting people above the Word of God.

Do you fear men more than you fear God, so that you exalt the words of men above the Word of God? Or will you keep God’s Word above the words of men?

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.

Saul then asks Samuel to accompany him to worship God. This is a political act because Samuel going up to the tabernacle with Saul would imply Samuel’s approval of Saul before the people.

15:25 Now therefore, I pray thee, pardon my sin, and turn again [go with me] with me, that I may worship the LORD.

Samuel rejects this loaded invitation and Saul begins to beg, for he knows what the people will think if Samuel turns his back on him.

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. 15:27 And as Samuel turned about to go away, he laid hold upon the skirt of his mantle, and it rent.

Samuel informs Saul that the Judgment of Christ is final.

When we [Yes, even the spiritually called out!] repeatedly turn aside from the faithful keeping of the Word of God; to do what we, or other men think is right; the time will come when the patience of Christ will run out; and he will reject us, because we have repeatedly rejected any love for him by refusing to do those things that please him (Rev 3:16).

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.

Jesus Christ will not change his mind.

Many who have been called to become pillars in the kingdom will not be there!

Many other who have been called to be pillars and gone astray for a time will be in the resurrection; IF they learn their lesson and repent, yet they will NOT be the pillars they were called to be, but will be at a lower level for all eternity.

15:29 And also the Strength of Israel [Jesus Christ] will not lie nor repent: for he is not a man, that he should repent.

Saul begs Samuel again to worship God with him and this time Samuel assents.

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. 15:31 So Samuel turned again after Saul; and Saul worshipped the LORD.

Then Samuel does what God commanded Saul to do and kills Agag.

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. 15:33 And Samuel said, As the sword hath made women childless, so shall thy mother be childless among women. And Samuel hewed Agag in pieces before the LORD in Gilgal.

Samuel continually mourned for Saul the mighty warrior king, but did not visit him again.

15:34 Then Samuel went to Ramah; and Saul went up to his house to Gibeah of Saul. 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.

1 Samuel 16

YHVH sent Samuel to anoint a new king.

1 Samuel 16:1 And the LORD said unto Samuel, How long wilt thou mourn for Saul, seeing I have rejected him from reigning over Israel? fill thine horn with oil, and go, I will send thee to Jesse the Bethlehemite: for I have provided me a king among his sons.

Christ reveals to Samuel what he should do.

16:2 And Samuel said, How can I go? if Saul hear it, he will kill me. And the LORD said, Take an heifer [A virgin cow, usually a year or two old] with thee, and say, I am come to sacrifice to the LORD. 16:3 And call Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will shew thee what thou shalt do: and thou shalt anoint unto me him whom I name unto thee.

Samuel came to Bethlehem and called Jesse and his sons to the sacrifice. Jesse being the son of Obed the son of Boaz and Ruth; a man of great wealth and reputation for godliness.

16:4 And Samuel did that which the LORD spake, and came to Bethlehem. And the elders of the town trembled at his coming, and said, Comest thou peaceably? 16:5 And he said, Peaceably: I am come to sacrifice unto the LORD: sanctify yourselves, and come with me to the sacrifice. And he sanctified Jesse and his sons, and called them to the sacrifice.

Christ teaches us not to look on outward appearances; of impressive goodly features, or talents and skills; but on the fruits of a wholehearted dedication to love and live by every Word of God.

16:6 And it came to pass, when they were come, that he looked on Eliab, and said, Surely the LORD’s anointed is before him. 16:7 But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the

LORD seeth not as man seeth; forman looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.

All seven sons of Jesse were seen by Samuel and God rejected them all, even though they were all impressive in appearance.

Why did Christ not just chose David first?

Because Jesus was teaching a lesson to US, that very many impressive men with excellent speaking ability, are not godly in their hearts. WE must learn to judge Mat 7, Mat 24, who we choose to follow, by their whole hearted zeal for the whole Word of God and not by their persuasive tongues or impressive appearance or leadership skills.

16:8 Then Jesse called Abinadab, and made him pass before Samuel. And he said, Neither hath the LORD chosen this. 16:9 Then Jesse made Shammah to pass by. And he said, Neither hath the LORD chosen this. 16:10 Again, Jesse made seven of his sons to pass before Samuel. And Samuel said unto Jesse, The LORD hath not chosen these.

Then David is called from keeping the sheep

Jesse was a rich man with fields and flocks and it is quite reasonable that David as the owners son, had charge over several if not many shepherds. David doubtless had experience in leadership as well as in caring for sheep. This is also a lesson for us that we can draw and learn spiritual lessons from any situation if our minds are continually carefully considering the Word and Will of God.

Samuel tells Jesse to fetch David in haste

16:11 And Samuel said unto Jesse, Are here all thy children? And he said, There remaineth yet the youngest, and, behold, he keepeth the sheep. And Samuel said unto Jesse, Send and fetch him: for we will not sit down till he come hither.

Here we see that Samuel did not choose David; David was chosen by Jesus Christ. In the Ekklesia today, we can know who Jesus Christ has sent by their zeal to keep the whole Word of God!

16:12 And he sent, and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, and withal of a beautiful countenance, and goodly to look to. And the LORD said, Arise, anoint him: for this is he.

We are to ordain those that Jesus Christ has called and those who are known by their long term fruits of godliness. We are NOT to ordain men because they passed a course or are organizationally loyal.

16:13 Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the midst of his brethren: and the Spirit of the LORD came upon David from that day forward. So Samuel rose up, and went to Ramah.

At that moment God’s Spirit departed from Saul, yet he remained king until God had fully trained his replacement.

As physical Israel could have bad kings, and there were many bad kings; so spiritual Israel can have bad leaders and elders in their assemblies. Remember the many New Testament warnings, that many evil men would infiltrate the assemblies and persecute the faithful.

16:14 But the Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the LORD troubled him.

Even Saul’s servants noticed the change and recognized the presence of evil. How is it that so many of us are so blind to the present reality?

16:15 And Saul’s servants said unto him, Behold now, an evil spirit from God troubleth thee.

Saul would have been greatly troubled over the end of his dynasty before it really began; and also would have feared insurrection against himself.

His personal fears would have driven him to distraction, finding terrors in every shadow as an enemy out to destroy him. Like Herod during his rule, no person, no matter how loyal; was safe from suspicion and possible insane enraged personal attacks on themselves.

This kind of mental affliction has plagued many leaders throughout history.

Saul’s servants seek out a man of music to calm the king.

16:16 Let our lord now command thy servants, which are before thee, to seek out a man, who is a cunning player on an harp: and it shall come to pass, when the evil spirit from God is upon thee, that he shall play with his hand, and thou shalt be well. 16:17 And Saul said unto his servants, Provide me now a man that can play well, and bring him to me.

Then David is appointed as Saul’s musician; and he learns much in the household of Saul. Saul sees David as a valiant courageous man and also enjoys his music, and makes David his armour bearer; and David always an avid student, would have watched and learned from everything in the household.

16:18 Then answered one of the servants, and said, Behold, I have seen a son of Jesse the Bethlehemite, that is cunning in playing, and a mighty valiant man, and a man of war, and prudent in matters, and a comely person, and the LORD is with him. 16:19Wherefore Saul sent messengers unto Jesse, and said, Send me David thy son, which is with the sheep.

16:20 And Jesse took an ass laden with bread, and a bottle of wine, and a kid, and sent them by David his son unto Saul. 16:21 And David came to Saul, and stood before him: and he loved him greatly; and he became his armourbearer. 16:22 And Saul sent to Jesse, saying, Let David, I pray thee, stand before me; for he hath found favour in my sight.

When Saul was troubled, David’s playing calmed him and brought Saul peace of mind and rest.

16:23 And it came to pass, when the evil spirit from God was upon Saul, that David took an harp, and played with his hand: so Saul was refreshed, and was well, and the evil spirit departed from him

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