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Wednesday, June 17, 2020

2020.06.17 Hopewell @Home ▫ 1 Samuel 10:17–27

Questions from the Scripture text: To whom did Samuel call the people in 1 Samuel 10:17? Where? Whose words was He delivering (1 Samuel 10:18)? What does He say that He has done? But what does He say that they have done (1 Samuel 10:19)? Despite what? By doing what? What does He now command them to do (end of verse 19)? Who had come near in 1 Samuel 10:20? Who was chosen? Who came near in 1 Samuel 10:21? What family was chosen? What man was chosen? What logistical problem did this present? Who solved this “game” of “hide and seek” in 1 Samuel 10:22? What did they observe about Saul, when they had retrieved him (1 Samuel 10:23)? What does Samuel ask the people in 1 Samuel 10:24? How do they respond? What does Samuel remind them in 1 Samuel 10:25 (cf. Deuteronomy 17:14–20)? Where did Samuel send the people? Where does Saul go (1 Samuel 10:26)? Who goes with him? Why? What does 1 Samuel 10:27 call the complainers? What is their complaint? What do they do/not do? How does Saul respond? 
The Lord’s people are a mess, but the Lord is gloriously merciful.

The passage reminds us that they have rejected their God in asking for this king (1 Samuel 10:19), but as the lot clearly falls down to Saul, everyone can see that God has picked for them just the “man” for the job (1 Samuel 10:24)? Israel’s a mess, but Yahweh is merciful.

They can’t even find the biggest guy in the land, but Yahweh Himself outs Saul from among the baggage (1 Samuel 10:21-22). Israel’s a mess, but Yahweh is merciful.

They can’t even agree (1 Samuel 10:27a) on this man, who’s the obvious (humanly speaking) choice (God’s, not theirs) for king. But in God’s providence, Saul isn’t just giant but also (for now) patient (verse 27b).  Israel’s a mess, but Yahweh is merciful.

Even though Saul doesn’t end up being what he ought to be, the Lord faithfully gives him His Word concerning kings (1 Samuel 10:25a, cf. Deuteronomy 17:14–20), and does use him to deliver His people (cf. chapter 11, 1 Samuel 10:11 Samuel 9:16). The Lord’s people are a mess, but the Lord Himself is gloriously merciful!

Now, we don’t aim to be a mess. The Lord is worthy of the best worship and service and obedience. But, we still are. Our life is not just a life of continually renewed faith, but also of continually renewed repentance. And through it all, the Lord always chooses what is best for us, always does by His strengthy what we can’t do in our utter weakness, always faithfully gives us the Word that we need to correct the sinners that we are.

So, let us keep turning to Him, because He is worthy. And He is able. And He is gloriously merciful!
In what situation are you most “a mess” right now? In what situations are the Lord’s people a mess right now? From this passage, what do you expect that the Lord is doing in all those situations?
Suggested songs: ARP51A “God, Be Merciful to Me” or TPH51C “God, Be Merciful to Me”

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