1 & 2 Samuel Part One Dive
THE SAME YESTERDAY, TODAY & FOREVER
As you read 1 & 2 Samuel you are going to hear about people and stories that you probably have known for a while. We all love the stories of David and Goliath that we heard at Sunday school, the stories of God talking to Samuel, we all laughed in juvenile delight as we were told about the King that was so happy to have the presence of God back in his city that he danced in his underwear. You find these all in 1 & 2 Samuel and you are going to relive and love them all over again, but what we weren’t told is the 'real-life' stories that you find in these books, the mistakes and failures, the fact that the King that built the most incredible Temple of Worship for God Almighty then fell in sin later in his life and didn’t follow the ways of God. The Bible really is the first reality TV show ever! In these stories, you are going to get to see their human side, but don’t be disappointed. I am reminded as I read 1 & 2 Samuel of the one person that remains faithful, remains in control and remains the same – Yahweh the LORD God Almighty.
As you read the Old Testament you have to constantly remind yourself to find the intervention of God in the stories you are reading, because I am not going to lie to you, when you get to the end of 2 Samuel, it gets pretty out of control, incest, murdering each other – who needs a television when you have this history in our Bibles!
As I read 1 & 2 Samuel, I am reminded of the God who is the same yesterday, today and forever. Notice and highlight the revelations of God throughout the text, his words, his nature revealed in his actions, when he saves, when he resists. And as you go through, remember that this is the same God that sent his son Jesus to die for us. When you read these stories and God keeps forgiving, saving, rescuing, sending them words of direction, he keeps guiding, he keeps establishing their kingdoms, he is faithful to his promises and covenant agreement no matter how much betrayal he faces, let it encourage you and frustrate you. Because the historian who wrote these books wanted that reaction to happen in you.
The author has written these books so that you can listen, learn and take the encouragement and warning of the history of Israel. He focuses us in on three main characters: Samuel, Saul and David, and their interaction with the other nations, their good and bad points, their triumphs and failures, for a reason. Not to do as they did but to learn from their mistakes in your own life. TYB you are going to love these books, these are trashing heaven – imagine yourself in these stories, write the warnings that you are getting from their lives, it reminds me of that quote: "Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it."
My heart burns as I read these books as I know the end of the story, we know that Jesus comes to set us free so that we can have reconciliation with God despite our mistakes and then at the end of all time, we get back to the original plan in Genesis walking with God in the garden. You can imagine God’s heart through these books breaking for his people but expectantly waiting for the future.
You are going to love reading these books, fall in love with the grandeur of the Temple, this is the first Temple in Jerusalem and fall in love with its extravagance! Notice the importance and presence of God that fills the temple, the same power that was contained in that Ark, is the same power that filled that Temple, is the same power that raised Jesus Christ from the dead and the New Testament tells us is the same power that lives in us! How amazing is that!
The other thing that stirs me as I read 1 & 2 Samuel is how diverse our God is. We have all seen the movies about people who have been frozen in time and when they wake up they find it really hard to assimilate back into the culture. We are the way we are because of the culture that we have lived in. I’m not going to lie, I’m an 80’s girl through and through, I love 80s music, I loved the fluoro outfits, the balloon skirts, the whole 80s shebang. The thing I notice about 1 & 2 Samuel is God is not one time period, not one culture, he is across all cultures, across all nations, across all times, the same God that walked with Abraham, is the same God that is with King David, which is the same God who is in the 1st Century with Jesus and the same God that is with us today. Oh, my goodness how many cultures, how many changes, how many different fashion styles and how many nations has God seen and been involved in and he hasn’t changed. You can imagine him looking down on the fashion of history and saying “never thought they would use a safety pin as a dress?” That’s creative! Or hey Jesus they are bringing back the bell bottom jeans again! Actually, he is the one who gave us the gift of being creative so the bell bottom jeans are all his idea. Even in the midst of moving culture, moving fashion, moving economies, he is still slow to anger abounding in love, he is still Lord God Almighty maker of heaven and earth, he is still in control and faithful to his promises.
It makes Hebrews 13:8 'Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever' come alive.
So venture in, get to love our history and the history of Christianity but this is really the history of our God! Fall in love with his nature, with his unfailing love for his people, for his heart to have them reflect his glory and venture into these incredible books that will captivate you and your children for years to come!