One Reign Begins, Another Begins to Crumble (1 Samuel 16)

1 Samuel 16 begins with a stark statement by the Lord:  16:1 “Now the Lord said to Samuel, ‘How long will you mourn for Saul, seeing I have rejected him from reigning over Israel? Fill your horn with oil, and go; I am sending you to Jesse the Bethlehemite. For I have provided Myself a king among his sons.’”

This was the watershed moment determining that Saul’s reign was about to end and a new king was coming into prominence.  God even gave him a ruse whereby to visit Jesse, that being a sacrifice unto the Lord.  Once they were at the sacrifice, Jesse’s sons began to pass in front of Samuel, one by one.  Eliab, Abinadab, Shammah, and the rest of the seven sons.  Although Samuel thought that God would surely choose some of the sons because of their strength or appearance, God said, “Do not look at his appearance or at his physical stature, because I have refused him. For the Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart (v. 7).”  Finally, Samuel asks if there were any other sons.  Jesse intimated that the youngest was in the field keeping the sheep.  Samuel instructed them to send for him.  Once David came in, Samuel heard the Lord say, “Arise, anoint him; for this is the one! (v. 12)”  So Samuel anointed him, and the Spirit of the Lord came upon him from that day forward.

In the same chapter, it is said that the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul, and a distressing Spirit from the Lord troubled him.  His servants suggested he hire a musician to soothe his spirit.  They found David, of all people, to play and comfort him.  Jesse sent a donkey loaded with food and gifts with him, and Saul love him and made him his armorbearer.  From that time, when Saul felt anxiety or stress, David would play and Saul would be refreshed.

Just a few thoughts:  Anointing is not guaranteed.  God operates in seasons in life.  Calling is without repentance, the Bible says (irrevocable), but anointing for a particular position or ministry is not guaranteed.  When you cease being available in every way to God, the anointing can pass to another.  It happened right here in 1 Samuel 16.  David was open and available to God, even to serve the very king that he would one day replace.  Saul, on the other hand, had strayed into his own way of looking at things, and was distressed instead.  Another thought is this: music, especially under the anointing, can sooth the troubled soul.  When you are stressed or anxious, play, sing, or hum a song of the Lord, and his Spirit will soothe your troubled soul!

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