Archive for June 20th, 2021

Sunday, June 20, 2021

1 Chronicles 10

Mattia Preti: Samuel Anoints David

Mattia Preti: Samuel Anoints David


Thus Saul died because of his rebellion against the Lord . . .

It is difficult to wait for God’s time to unfold and it takes patience to understand our place in God’s timeline. It takes a great deal of trust to rely on God and his economy because there are so many times when we think we have a better solution, a kinder consequence, a more comfortable method for a more sensible solution. In all of this kind of thinking we stray from our true origin, purpose and destination. David and Saul provide us with an opportunity to reflect on who we are and how we interact with God.

David has been anointed by Samuel, the prophet, as the new King of Israel; yet Saul, the present King, still holds the reins of power. The relationship of trust once shared between David and Saul has ruptured and now Saul hunts David down, all the while sinking deeper into paranoia. David might have killed Saul a number of times yet he does not, choosing instead to witness, to watch and to wait. The story of this conflict can be read in the closing chapters of 1 Samuel. What we spend time with today is this: We separate ourselves from God when we anticipate God’s plan and move forward with our own. We divide ourselves into two camps. We split ourselves into two beings, and then we make ourselves unhappy and blame circumstances, others and even God himself for our unhappiness.

Rebellion is good when it brings us the strength to take action against abuse or corruption. Rebellion is not good when it draws us into ourselves, and away from common sense and good advice. Rebellion is our ruin when it bolsters pride, inflates our ego and enables narcissistic blindness to our separation from good.

In this Old Testament story, God is a judge standing over all and deciding “thumbs up or thumbs down” on each action. The New Testament expression of God’s love for us, Jesus, moves us beyond this simplistic way of evaluating our behavior. Rather than recommend that we ought not rebel, the new message is: Why are you terrified, O you of little faith? We have in Christ one who rebukes storms, calms seas, heals wounds and shows pity. With Saul, rebellion lured him into the arms of those who bolstered his illness and took advantage of his distress. With David, rebellion moved him away from abuse and toward God.

Rebellion is good when it brings us the courage to speak out against abuse or corruption. Rebellion is not good when it draws us into anger and away from the light. Rebellion is our ruin when it feeds our selfishness. We must decide how to best use rebellion in our lives.

Image from: http://imaginemdei.blogspot.com/2018/01/samuel-discovers-and-anoints-david.html

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