Summary: Part 12 our 1 Samuel series

Real People – Real Problems

A study of 1 Samuel

Part 12

“Can’t or Won’t”

In the John Wayne movie the “Cowboys”

Asa Watts also known as the “man with the long hair” played by Bruce Dern

And his rag tag band of outlaws

Show up at

The Andersen ranch looking for work

Wil Andersen played by John Wayne

Askes Asa where all he has worked and quickly catches him in a lie

As admits to the lie and also admits that he has spent the last several years in jail

Wil says sorry

I can’t use you

Asa says what do you mean you can’t use us

To which Wil answers

I won’t use you

Many times, in our lives we use the words


When what we really mean is won’t

Can’t means we don’t have the ability

Won’t means we are unwilling

As we continue our study of 1Ssamuel

We come to the story of someone who would

Let me quickly recap

Samuel had stepped aside

Saul had taken his place as King

And then he quickly forgot about the fact that it was God who appointed him

And he started doing things his own way

He refused to wait on God

He stepped into the role of priest and he was forever punished for his disobedience

To tie into today’s topic

He could have waited on Samuel

He could have waited on God

But he chose instead to do it his own way

As a result

The Philistine army was growing bolder

The Israelite army was growing smaller

And the Nation was in a bad spot

They were already the underdog in the fight

The Philistines had many chariots and more warriors than the grains of the sand

The Israelites only two swords

The rest were armed only with farming tools


Shovels and such

And the small force of men that had showed up to fight

Were quickly leaving and hiding

All hope seemed to be lost

But Saul and the nation of Israel were not counting on the power of 1

You see

When God is involved

1 person becomes a mighty army

Let’s read about Saul’s brave son Jonathan

This morning

Please turn to 1 Samuel chapter 14

I will begin in verse 1

As you are turning there

Let me tell you

This is our first official introduction to Saul’s son Jonathan

We will study much more about him when we begin our series on the life of David some time later

But for today

I want you to see him as someone who would

Reading from 1 Samuel 1:14

Beginning in verse 1-15

14 One day Jonathan said to his armor bearer, “Come on, let’s go over to where the Philistines have their outpost.” But Jonathan did not tell his father what he was doing.

2 Meanwhile, Saul and his 600 men were camped on the outskirts of Gibeah, around the pomegranate tree[a] at Migron. 3 Among Saul’s men was Ahijah the priest, who was wearing the ephod, the priestly vest. Ahijah was the son of Ichabod’s brother Ahitub, son of Phinehas, son of Eli, the priest of the LORD who had served at Shiloh.

No one realized that Jonathan had left the Israelite camp. 4 To reach the Philistine outpost, Jonathan had to go down between two rocky cliffs that were called Bozez and Seneh. 5 The cliff on the north was in front of Micmash, and the one on the south was in front of Geba. 6 “Let’s go across to the outpost of those pagans,” Jonathan said to his armor bearer. “Perhaps the LORD will help us, for nothing can hinder the LORD. He can win a battle whether he has many warriors or only a few!”

7 “Do what you think is best,” the armor bearer replied. “I’m with you completely, whatever you decide.”

8 “All right, then,” Jonathan told him. “We will cross over and let them see us. 9 If they say to us, ‘Stay where you are or we’ll kill you,’ then we will stop and not go up to them. 10 But if they say, ‘Come on up and fight,’ then we will go up. That will be the LORD’s sign that he will help us defeat them.”

11 When the Philistines saw them coming, they shouted, “Look! The Hebrews are crawling out of their holes!” 12 Then the men from the outpost shouted to Jonathan, “Come on up here, and we’ll teach you a lesson!”

“Come on, climb right behind me,” Jonathan said to his armor bearer, “for the LORD will help us defeat them!”

13 So they climbed up using both hands and feet, and the Philistines fell before Jonathan, and his armor bearer killed those who came behind them. 14 They killed some twenty men in all, and their bodies were scattered over about half an acre.[b]

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