Wednesday, September 16, 2020

2020.09.16 Hopewell @Home ▫ 1 Samuel 17

 Read 1 Samuel 17

Questions from the Scripture text: What was the arrangement of the camps of the Philistines and Israelites in 1 Samuel 17:1–3? Who went out from the Philistines (1 Samuel 17:4)? What was he like (1 Samuel 17:4-7)? What challenge did he make (1 Samuel 17:8-10)? How do Saul and Israel respond (1 Samuel 17:11)? What is Jesse’s condition (1 Samuel 17:12b)? What are his sons doing at this time (1 Samuel 17:12-14)? What did David sometimes do (1 Samuel 17:15)? What does Jesse have him do on one of these occasions (1 Samuel 17:17-19)? What is happening when David arrives (1 Samuel 17:20-23)? How do the men of Israel respond (1 Samuel 17:23-24)? What additional info do they give us in 1 Samuel 17:251 Samuel 17:271 Samuel 17:30? Why is David incredulous at this reward offer (1 Samuel 17:26)? Who is irritated at this, and what does he say (1 Samuel 17:28-29)? Who hears and sends for David (1 Samuel 17:31)? What does David say to him (1 Samuel 17:32)? But what does Saul say (1 Samuel 17:33)? What has David done (1 Samuel 17:34-36), and why is he certain that this will be the same (1 Samuel 17:36-37a)? How does Saul respond (verse 37b)? What does Saul try to give him, and why doesn’t it help (1 Samuel 17:38-39)? What does David take instead (1 Samuel 17:40)? What does the Philistine think of David (1 Samuel 17:41-42)? What does he say to/about him (1 Samuel 17:43-44)? How does David respond in 1 Samuel 17:45? What does he say Yahweh will do, and what does David say that he himself will do (1 Samuel 17:46)? What will this assembly then know (1 Samuel 17:47)? How does David respond when the Philistine approaches (1 Samuel 17:48)? What does he do in 1 Samuel 17:49? But what did David not have (1 Samuel 17:50)? So, whose does he use to do what in 1 Samuel 17:51? And how do the Philistines respond? How do the Israelites respond (1 Samuel 17:52-53)? What does David do with the Philistine’s head (1 Samuel 17:57)? Armor (1 Samuel 17:54)? What (kind of odd, considering chapter 16) question does Saul ask Abner in 1 Samuel 17:55 and David in 1 Samuel 17:58?

This is one of the most famous stories in the Bible, and in a way that’s the challenge for us: is our view of God being formed from 1 Samuel—and the rest of Scripture—in such a way that what we see here is not so much the famousness of the details, the actors, the actions, and the outcomes, but rather… is what we see most of all the fame—the honor and glory—of our God?

We’ve had Saul (1 Samuel 9:2) and Eliab (1 Samuel 16:6–7) described to us as physically impressive, so the Holy Spirit has prepared us not to be as impressed with Goliath as everyone else is. Israel, Philistia, Saul, Eliab, and Goliath himself all seem quite impressed with him. But David’s big problem is that none of them seem to be impressed enough with God (1 Samuel 17:261 Samuel 17:36). Goliath, Saul, and Eliab may be on different sides, but they all seem to agree about David, because they’re all failing to see the greatness of David’s God.

Let us not make the same mistake—whether with Goliath, or with David. It’s God with Whom David was impressed when it came to the lion and the bear (1 Samuel 17:39), and it’s God with Whom David expects us all to be impressed by the time this is over (end of 1 Samuel 17:46). If we come away satisfied with being impressed with David, 2 Samuel is going to end up to be a rather deflating experience. 

But, if we come away impressed with God, we will come away impressed by far more than the courage He worked in David through faith in Himself. We will come away sobered that He does not take despising Him lightly. We will come away encouraged that He destroys all of His and our enemies. We will come away remembering that this was one event, among many, by which He Himself was coming in Christ to be our Savior. We will come away reverencing and trusting and worshiping. 

1 Samuel 17 is not telling us to identify our Goliaths, or even so much to be swift and courageous like David, so much as to behold our God, and trust in Him, and honor and serve Him, regardless of what faces us or comes to us in the process.

How is God being underestimated by the culture? By the church? By your own heart?

Suggested songs: ARP45A “My Heart Is Greatly Stirred” or TPH45A “My Heart Is Greatly Stirred”

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