Anointing by God’s Spirit
Text: 1 Samuel 11
Intimidation by the enemy (vss 1-3)
- Coiling serpent
- Nahash means serpent which is appropriate since this general is characteristic of the devil. Enemy hisses at Israel.
- The enemy finds his prey. The men of Jabeshgilead failed to show up to battle previously. It was during a civil war in Israel 250 years before this time when the men of Jabeshgilead were characterized as cowardly because they failed to put down national social unrest caused by sex perverts and sodomites.
- The enemy knew the this group of people didn’t have the stomach to fight so he planned his attack here.
- Compromise with the devil
- These weak Israelites try to compromise with this devil. Nahash, the wicked general, says the condition is that I put all your eyes out. In other words, how about I make you all blind for the rest of your miserable lives. For fear of their lives, these Israelites bargain for time.
- Compromise with the devil is the path to bondage and the inability to serve God.
Indwelling by God’s Spirit (vss 4-11)
- Crisis is broadcast
- Messengers come return to tell what’s going on in Jabesh.
- The people are horrified to hear it.
- Character of God imparted to Saul
- The LORD is furious at this enemy and He’s equally frustrated with His own people who are cowering in the presence of the enemy. What the LORD does is unique; Saul gets a taste of God’s perspective on this situation. When the Bible says the Spirit of God came upon Saul it means Saul began to see things the way God sees them, He begins to feel the way God feels about the situation. This happens because God gives His Spirit to Saul so Saul will get a taste of His perspective on this.
- Why doesn’t God just rain down fire on His enemies? He could, but here’s why He doesn’t. The LORD just answered Israel’s demand for a king. The LORD is not going back on that decision. Israel has the leadership they want and God will now work through that throne in Israel.
- Leadership matters. If 2020 taught you nothing else it should teach you that leadership actually matters.
- This week I heard Christians say I’m going to keep serving God no matter who is president. That sounds real noble, but tell that to the Israelites under Pharaoh in Egypt. GOD had to tell Pharaoh, Let my people go so that they may serve me. Pharaoh said, Nah. Don’t pretend like leadership doesn’t make a difference. We have a very hypocritical way of pretending leadership doesn’t affect us when we don’t like it, but relying heavily on it when we do like it. Paul said you need to pray for those in authority for the express purpose that you might have religious liberty where you live. He said that in 1 Timothy 2:1-4.
- Command is given
- With wisdom from God, Saul now leads Israel. By God’s Spirit Saul does three things:
- He RALLIES the Israelites with a reasonable argument. If you don’t fight for your brethren now, the enemy will eventually take what you have too.
- He ENCOURAGES those in the fight with help from those he’s assembled.
- He ORGANIZES the troops into fighting units.
- Make no mistake about this, it is the Spirit of God that gets credit for the victory here. BUT, Israel will not see it that way.
Identifying the source of strength
- Credit given to Saul – Israel credits Saul for victory. But Saul credits the LORD, and rightly so.
- Credit given to God
- Early on the LORD will sometimes give the victory so you know it’s Him doing the work. Then there comes the day when He wants you to make the decision to rely on Him.
- Zecheriah 4:6 Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts.
- You and I need the Spirit of God and the blessing of God.
- Coronation of the king… again
- Samuel does something interesting in verse 14. Let’s renew the kingdom under victorious circumstances since the first time Saul was announced he was hiding. Here’s a second chance.
- Saul was anointed with oil the first time and presented to the people. Now he’s been anointed by the Spirit of God, and that’s the one that will make the difference.