Sermon Passage: 1 Samuel 13:12-14
Sermon Title: The Fall of Saul
Sermon By: Pastor Davy (Youth)
To this point in 1 Samuel, there has not been anything negative about King Saul. And this is quite interesting because to many Christians, Saul is the “bad king”. King David is the “good king”.
Chapter 13, as well starts out with a phrase that might introduce an accomplishment of the king. But the narrative suddenly take a turn and begins to show us how inadequate and unqualified a human king may be to lead God’s people.
When Saul takes matters into his own hands and offerings a sacrifice to YHWH in fear of the Philistines’ massive army, Saul’s actions show that he no longer trusts YHWH and that he is no longer operating under the commandments of God. And Samuel shows up to tell Saul of this truth. Samuel’s words in this passage shows that Saul’s reign over the nation of Israel is coming to an end after only 2 years of reign.
St. Athanasius calls human beings the “inventor of evil” with an “insatiable thirst to sin”. You see, sin has corrupted our nature. Often times, in our conversations, sinning equates to lying, disobeying our parents, not reading the bible, not praying before we eat a meal, and at worst stealing or fighting with our parents/siblings. But sin is not just the unacceptable actions. Sin is a poison that has corrupted us to the core.
And Saul is no exception. In this corrupt nature, Saul has an unquenchable thirst for power, influence, fame, self-glory and self-worth. And in light of this sin, the heart of the problem is this. “Who is your king?”. We ask Saul, “who is your king? who put you on the throne? did you earn your throne? or was it given to you by YHWH?”
The Fall of Saul could happen to any of us. But there is hope still! No matter how much we sin, Christ overcomes. God never forsakes us.
“And Samuel said to the people, "Do not be afraid; you have done all this evil. Yet do not turn aside from following the LORD, but serve the LORD with all your heart. And do not turn aside after empty things that cannot profit or deliver, for they are empty. For the LORD will not forsake his people, for his great name's sake, because it has pleased the LORD to make you a people for himself.” | 1 Samuel 12:20-22
Sermon Passage: 1 Samuel 10:17-27
Sermon Title: Long Live the King
Sermon By: Pastor Davy (Youth)
In this last episode of three account of Saul becoming the king of Israel, we see the whole tribes of Israel gathered together by Samuel to choose a king for Israel.
At the beginning of this event, with the whole nation gathered and excited to see who the first king will be, Samuel opens up the ceremony by reminding Israel of the great sin that they committed. They have rejected their true King. They have rejected YHWH and that is why they have gathered at this place. It’s not because they have earned a great king as a nation. This is not a favor of YHWH. It’s a cause of their sin.
During the ceremony, Saul is chosen by lot to be the first king of Israel. But ironically, he is nowhere to be found. And instead of sending a search party or asking around the tribe of Benjamin for his whereabouts, Israel consults God for the whereabouts for their king. After having rejected God as their king, and after having received a human king from YHWH, they prove how dependent they still are on YHWH. They can’t even find the king that they asked for without YHWH.
Then Samuel reminds the nation once again that even though they now have a King, this king must and is inevitably still under the laws and commandments of God. Samuel is desperate to remind the Israelites that their true king is God. He is desperate to point God’s people back to him.
Are we rejecting our King as well? Are we rejecting our Creator?
Sermon Passage: 1 Samuel 10:11-12
Sermon Title: Anointed One
Sermon By: Pastor Davy (Youth)
When we say “the Anointed One” we are referring to Jesus Christ. In Hebrew, “messiah” literally means “the anointed one” and “Christ” is the Greek translation of the Hebrew word “messiah”. So yes, of course, we use the word “Messiah” and we are always referring to Jesus Christ. But back in the days of ancient Israel, the “anointed one” referred to the King of Israel who was anointed by oil on his head. And Saul as we see in our chapter, is the first King of Israel. The first “anointed one”.
From this passage, we take away two lessons. 1) Consider the Source and 2) God’s work is invisible but evident.
The proverb, in verse 12, “is Saul also among the prophets?” is meant to be to be used when someone sees something unexplainable and amazing. It’s amazing to the seer because the person who performs whatever it is that amazed should not be able to do it in the first place. Like if a young man who is horrible at math actually got a 100 on a difficult math exam. And this proverb turns the credit, in this case after Saul is seen prophesying, back to YHWH. It’s to say that Saul, from the tribe of Benjamin, son of Kish, is not known to be a prophet but if YHWH opens his mouth, if YHWH uses Saul, what can he not do. And it is this YHWH who is using us as well. No matter what kind of person we are, no matter how much we sin, how weak we are, we are able because YHWH is able. Consider the source of Saul’s anointing. Saul is a sinner just like us. But the source of his anointing is YHWH who is all knowing, all present and all powerful.
Second, we need to know that God’s saving work is almost always invisible. But it truly is evident. In chapter 10, there are so many “signs” that Samuel prophesies over Saul. And they all come to pass just as he said it. But even more important is the fact that the first King of Israel was anointed and no one knows of it. Only Samuel and Saul know of this amazing fact. Even when Saul was prophesying with the prophets, people just thought he was now a prophet or YHWH was just using him in that way for that particular hour. But no one knew that God was actually working his deliverance of his people. And ironically, this is usually how it works. The saving work of God is, though so evident, almost always invisible. We almost never see that God what God is doing. We always complain, we always cry out saying “Where is God? Why can’t I see Him?” but the Bible tells us, history tells us time and time again. that God’s work is invisible yet evident.