Summary: What kind of people are we?
We end our study of 1 Samuel this morning. Next week, Lord willing, we will start a series of messages from the Letter of James in the New Testament.
Before we read the final chapter, let us remind ourselves of who the Israelites were, their enemy the Philistines, and Saul.
God of course decided to create human beings to have a beautiful relationship with them, but sin severed that perfect relationship. But because God is a loving God and God created humans out of love, God provided a way to solve the broken relationship with Jesus Christ, who is God but became human flesh. God always has a solution!
In order to bring Jesus Christ into this world, God had to choose a people, a nation. Let’s start at the very beginning… Genesis 1:1… Everything starts with God!
Then, out of love, God created Adam and Eve who walked with God on earth until they disobeyed God; But God’s promise told them Adam and Eve to multiply and so they had Cain and Abel. Cain allowed sin to rule in his life and so he killed his brother Abel who tried his best to be godly!
But again because of God’s promises to the human race, Adam and Eve bore another son, Seth, who was godly!
Turn briefly with me to the Gospel of Luke Chapter 3… v23….
God chose Israel as His people to reveal Himself and the ultimate revelation of God’s love through Jesus Christ.
God always has a solution but because He wants people to live in truth, God will challenge people’s belief in Him! In God’s plan, as He loves and reveals Himself to people, God allows evil to test people’s faith in God. Let us quickly note that God tells us in Scriptures that He will never test people to a point in which they cannot resist! (1 Corinthians 10:13)
God tested Adam and Eve by allowing the devil to tempt them. Cain was tested with his own pride. As the nation of Israel revealed itself to the world, there were many nations who hated Israel and God. The Philistines was one of the nations who did not believe in the true God, had their own idols, and hated the Israelites. God allowed the Philistines to be enemies of Israel to test them.
God also allowed within Israel, leaders like Saul who turned evil.
How does this apply to us today? Does present day Israel have enemies? Do Christians today have enemies?
Does the Christian church today have to be alert of evil hearts in their midst? Let us again note: Whatever we will be faced with, God has a solution!
Let us now read what God wants us to know in 1 Samuel 31….
v1-3: Philistines overtook the Israelites (God’s chosen People) including Saul’s sons (remember, Jonathan was David’s Faith Partner) and Saul himself was wounded.
Look back briefly with me to 1 Samuel 28:18-19…
v4-6: Prophecy was fulfilled due to Saul’s sinfulness!
And what do we read in v7? God’s enemy took over the towns of His people!
Again, why did this happen??
Saul and God’s people disobeyed God! God tested Saul and Israel and they did not follow God, so the consequence of their sin was realized through the Philistines!
Not only were many Israelites killed, what do we note in v8-10? God’s enemy made a trophy of slained Saul and boasted about their gods! And so, a rhetorical question, What kind of testimony for God did the sins of Saul and Israel resulted?
But God finishes 1 Samuel in an interesting way doesn’t He? What is God trying to teach in v11-13?
The main thing we should note is that there were valiant men who risked their lives stealing the dead bodies of Saul and his sons from the Philistines. What do you was the intent of these valiant men??
v11-13: The Philistines made a mockery of Israel and God, brave men defied the odds and brought honor back to God!
What Biblical principles can we apply to our lives today?
Can there be evil people in organizations today including the church?
Can there be leaders in organizations today including the church who will go against God?
Can there be brave men and women today who will fight the good fight to keep honor to God!
What kind of people are we?
Is it possible we can be evil, an enemy of God?
Romans 5:10… For if, while we were God's enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life!
Before we accepted Jesus Christ as our only Savior and God, we were enemies of God.
If you are not a Believer of Jesus Christ, you are an enemy of God, in partnership with evil not goodness. Believe in Jesus Christ as your only Savior and God and you will restore an eternal relationship with God! Do it today before it’s too late!