Keep Looking Unto Jesus

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KJB Daily DevotionFollowing Jesus Through Every Chapter
Date: Thursday, April 12, 2018
Chapters: I Samuel 15-17
Message: Keep Looking Unto Jesus

Hello My Friend,

In case you have not noticed, Christianity is on a decline, in fact, many people frown at those who say they are Christian because the truth is, some Christians are more corrupt than those who live in the world. We put so much faith in man that we often forget that they have the same flesh as we do, and while I do admit I cannot understand what possesses some people to do the things they do, we who are faithful Christians are just as capable of committing some unthinkable sins as the worldly. Our only defense is Jesus Christ, and let’s face it, we are weak in our flesh, if we do not keep our eyes on Jesus, we will succumb to that weakness, which is why we need Jesus every hour of every day. “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” – Hebrews 12:1-2.

For some reason yesterday I thought this chapter was apart of its reading, so we have a repeat today, I guess God wanted to remind me to remind the world than better than a sacrifice is obeying His voice. Saul was quick to offer punishment for those who disobeyed his orders, but gave one excuse after another when he was caught disobeying God’s. God declared a war on Amalek, Saul was commanded to destroy the entire city and take nothing for themselves. Saul takes the king prisoner and kept the best livestock for themselves, when Samuel confronts him about it he blamed it on his army, and even said it was used for God.

Wherefore then didst thou not obey the voice of the LORD, but didst fly upon the spoil, and didst evil in the sight of the LORD? And Saul said unto Samuel, Yea, I have obeyed the voice of the LORD, and have gone the way which the LORD sent me, and have brought Agag the king of Amalek, and have utterly destroyed the Amalekites. But the people took of the spoil, sheep and oxen, the chief of the things which should have been utterly destroyed, to sacrifice unto the LORD thy God in Gilgal. And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king. And Saul said unto Samuel, I have sinned: for I have transgressed the commandment of the LORD, and thy words: because I feared the people, and obeyed their voice. Then he said, I have sinned: yet honour me now, I pray thee, before the elders of my people, and before Israel, and turn again with me, that I may worship the LORD thy God. So Samuel turned again after Saul; and Saul worshipped the LORD. And Samuel came no more to see Saul until the day of his death: nevertheless Samuel mourned for Saul: and the LORD repented that he had made Saul king over Israel.” – I Samuel 15:19-24,30-31,35.

as in obeying the voice of the LORD?Obeying God’s voice includes those little nudges that tell us we need to be doing something and those subtle hints telling s not to do something. In fact, it is those subtle hints that shout out at us more than anything. Whenever we choose to disobey God’s voice through rebellion or pure stubbornness we can expect challenges until we repent, and if we have no intention of repenting He will take away the things that mean the most to us. “Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent.” – Revelation 2:5.

Disappointments come when we are let down by those we had so much faith in, but there comes a time when we must move on. God knows every heart, and if they turn their heart away from Him He will find someone else willing to do what they will not. Samuel saddened and disappointed over Saul, mourned, but now the time came for him to anoint a new king, God told him to snap out of it and sent him to a mans house who had eight sons.

And the LORD said unto Samuel, How long wilt thou mourn for Saul, seeing I have rejected him from reigning over Israel? fill thine horn with oil, and go, I will send thee to Jesse the Bethlehemite: for I have provided me a king among his sons. And Samuel did that which the LORD spake, and came to Bethlehem. And the elders of the town trembled at his coming, and said, Comest thou peaceably? And he said, Peaceably: I am come to sacrifice unto the LORD: sanctify yourselves, and come with me to the sacrifice. And he sanctified Jesse and his sons, and called them to the sacrifice. And it came to pass, when they were come, that he looked on Eliab, and said, Surely the LORD’S anointed is before him. But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart. Again, Jesse made seven of his sons to pass before Samuel. And Samuel said unto Jesse, The LORD hath not chosen these. And Samuel said unto Jesse, Are here all thy children? And he said, There remaineth yet the youngest, and, behold, he keepeth the sheep. And Samuel said unto Jesse, Send and fetch him: for we will not sit down till he come hither. And he sent, and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, and withal of a beautiful countenance, and goodly to look to. And the LORD said, Arise, anoint him: for this is he.” – I Samuel 16:1,4-7,10-12.

How long wilt thou mourn for Saul,” We have to move on, we cannot mourn forever over God’s judgments. I was just thinking about all my relatives, aunts, uncles, grandparents, all raised Catholic, wondering how many of them actually got to say they believed Jesus was their only way to heaven. I was only three years old when I witnessed my grandmother’s death, I still see that image as clear as the day I saw my mother trying to help my grandmother as she laid on the floor. She died so suddenly that she never got the chance to have the priest talk to her about Jesus (they actually did back then). God does not choose us based on our appearance, He chooses us based on our heart. And let me tell you, when He accepts you, there will be some challenges. Little did David know that being anointed king would come with some a great challenge, the biggest being that he was actually hired by king Saul to be his armourbearer.

But the Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the LORD troubled him. And Saul’s servants said unto him, Behold now, an evil spirit from God troubleth thee. Let our lord now command thy servants, which are before thee, to seek out a man, who is a cunning player on an harp: and it shall come to pass, when the evil spirit from God is upon thee, that he shall play with his hand, and thou shalt be well. And Saul said unto his servants, Provide me now a man that can play well, and bring him to me. Then answered one of the servants, and said, Behold, I have seen a son of Jesse the Bethlehemite, that is cunning in playing, and a mighty valiant man, and a man of war, and prudent in matters, and a comely person, and the LORD is with him. Wherefore Saul sent messengers unto Jesse, and said, Send me David thy son, which is with the sheep. And it came to pass, when the evil spirit from God was upon Saul, that David took an harp, and played with his hand: so Saul was refreshed, and was well, and the evil spirit departed from him.” – I Samuel 16:14-19,23.

That evil spirit was none other than the devil himself. No, God did not send the devil to mess with Saul because he rejected God’s Word, the devil went there himself to keep Saul from looking to God. I am sure that David really did not understand what was going on when he was anointed as king, but imagined it a great privilege to work for the king. The first challenge, become a soldier. There stood the over nine foot tall giant challenging Israel to a duel, everyone was afraid to accept the challenge, except David who was not even a soldier, but sent there to bring food for his three elder brothers who were soldiers.

And there went out a champion out of the camp of the Philistines, named Goliath, of Gath, whose height was six cubits and a span. And he stood and cried unto the armies of Israel, and said unto them, Why are ye come out to set your battle in array? am not I a Philistine, and ye servants to Saul? choose you a man for you, and let him come down to me. If he be able to fight with me, and to kill me, then will we be your servants: but if I prevail against him, and kill him, then shall ye be our servants, and serve us. And David spake to the men that stood by him, saying, What shall be done to the man that killeth this Philistine, and taketh away the reproach from Israel? for who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God? And Eliab his eldest brother heard when he spake unto the men; and Eliab’s anger was kindled against David, and he said, Why camest thou down hither? and with whom hast thou left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know thy pride, and the naughtiness of thine heart; for thou art come down that thou mightest see the battle. And David said, What have I now done? Is there not a cause? David said moreover, The LORD that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine. And Saul said unto David, Go, and the LORD be with thee.” – I Samuel 17:4,8-9,26-29,37.

Go, and the LORD be with thee.”You see, Saul was not stupid, he knew the power of God just as much as David did, but he let his pride take over and never did return to the LORD. David did not fear Goliath because he knew that God was with him and would give him the strength to do exactly what Goliath proclaimed to do to anyone who fought him. God gives you strength that you cannot believe given the right timing and faith. I have never had kids, but I have very protective instincts when it comes to protecting children, God is the same way with us, His protective instincts kick in when we put our trust in Him, especially when it looks hopeless for us. “Blessed be the LORD my strength, which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight: My goodness, and my fortress; my high tower, and my deliverer; my shield, and he in whom I trust; who subdueth my people under me.” – Psalms 144:1,2.

Jesus Christ Magnified: “And also the Strength of Israel will not lie nor repent: for he is not a man, that he should repent.” – I Samuel 15:29.

Today’s Prayer: God, Thank You for Your mercy, grace, and for the liberty You have given me when I accepted Your Son as my Saviour. You know that I want to live my life according to Your Word, if you were to evaluate me right now I know You will find a willing heart, but I also know there are some things that I need to work on. There are no excuses for disobeying Your commands, especially when I learn of something You do not approve of. Lord, open my heart, reveal to me anything that I need to repent of, and forgive me of my sins, Give me Your power, lead me and guide me, train me how to increase my skills to serve You with all my heart, mind, and soul, and let me only walk in Your strength. Keep my eyes on You so that I do not let pride, stubbornness, or rebellion be apart of my walk with You. I love You, and pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.

God Bless You, I am praying for you,

Christina

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