I’m Glad You Asked!!!

I Samuel 7

As a reminder, the early chapters of I Samuel chronicle the ordaining & calling of Samuel as the next leader of Israel and the final events of a 20 year run of Israel’s national sin and rebellion against God. Chapter 6 ends with the realization of their sin against God when the people say, “Who is able to stand before the Lord, this holy God?” Therefore, chapter 7 begins with national repentance and humility before God; “and all the house of Israel lamented,” v2. “Then Samuel spoke to all the house of Israel, saying ‘if you return to the Lord with all your heart, remove the foreign gods ….and direct your hearts to the Lord and serve Him alone, He will deliver you from the hands of the Philistines,” v3. For the first time in 20 years, the people listened, repented and obeyed. “We have sinned against the Lord.” Meanwhile, the Philistines are once again planning to attack Israel. BUT, as opposed to earlier times when they devised their own plans without consulting God, this time they asked Samuel to pray and seek Gods favor and blessing. What a novel idea. God’s people, seeking God and calling upon Him for guidance and help. Maybe I should try that!

Let’s break the pattern

God confused the Philistines in battle and they are routed by the Israelites. Vs15 says “and Samuel judged (led) Israel all the days of his life”. There was a pattern that Israel repeated over and over throughout the Old Testament. Sin and apostasy followed by judgement followed by repentance and then deliverance. I guess in varying degrees, it’s the pattern of our lives. Unfortunately for some of us, the times of sin and self-serving goes on too long. Even though in our heart of hearts, we know it never ends well. Lord, I’m going to struggle and sin, however may it be short-lived and may I quickly humble myself before you, repent immediately and consequently enjoy your gracious and merciful deliverance. You are always kind and good to forgive me and restore me. Praise You always! Note to self: talk to God throughout the day; whisper prayers to Him all the time. Nothing is too small. Talk to Him, listen to Him, enjoy Him, follow Him and obey Him.