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How the Mighty Have Fallen

June 13, 2021 | 1 Samuel 31 | exposition

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The original game of thrones goes all the way back to the beginning of humanity. For it was Adam and Eve who first “rejected God from being king over them.” And as a result humanity has fallen. Since then, humanity has continually struggled against God in a kind of game of thrones. Now Saul, the man who would not surrender his throne to God, has fallen. O how the mighty have fallen!

Who sits on the throne of your life? Is it you? How’s that working for you? Have you got everything under control? Or are things flying apart? And what about tomorrow? Can you see the future? Are you ready for tomorrow? Even more important, are you ready for eternity? Because there’s no sugar coating this last chapter of 1 Samuel. It’s about Saul’s fall, his death.

In the final chapter of 1 Samuel, the Lord brought Saul’s life and kingdom to an end, preparing the way for His anointed king, David. We can learn several important spiritual lessons from Saul’s death.

Finding Strength in the Lord

June 6, 2021 | 1 Samuel 29-30 | exposition

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Does anyone need strength today? Do you need encouragement? Many are feeling weak and discouraged today. Are you discouraged? The dictionary defines discouragement as a loss or lack of confidence or enthusiasm. To feel dispirited, demoralized, despair, despondent, or disheartened. It is the loss or lack of strength and courage to go on.

David was struggling with discouragement too. But that’s when he turned to the Lord! In the book of 1 Samuel 29-30, when David was at his weakest, he found strength in the LORD his God. We can find our strength in the Lord.

The Dangers of Fear and Doubt

May 30, 2021 | 1 Samuel 27-28 | exposition

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When we doubt God’s Word or when we fear others more than we fear God, we fall into a world of dangers. One of the dangers is that fear and doubt affects how we think––how we think of ourselves, how we think of God and how we think of others.

How do you think about your identity? Do you let fear and doubt shape who you are, what you believe, the decisions you make? Or do you trust God for your thinking and your decisions?

In 1 Samuel 27-28, both David and Saul go awry. It starts with fear and doubt and goes down hill from there. In 1 Samuel chapters 27-28, both David and Saul experienced the dangers of giving in to fear and doubt instead of trusting in God. We can avoid the dangers of giving in to fear and doubt by trusting in God.

Depending on God For Deliverance

May 23, 2021 | 1 Samuel 26 | exposition

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How do you respond when trouble comes your way? Some of us question God asking, “Why me Lord, why’s this happening to me?” Some of us try running away, hoping that trouble won’t be able to find us. Some of us get angry and embittered and just wallow in our pain. Others become immobilized with fear and stick our heads in the sand, hoping trouble will just go away. But trouble always finds us doesn’t it?

God was preparing David to be king and he was being persecuted by the king who opposed him. Let’s see how David responded to trouble. In the book of 1 Samuel 26, David again spares Saul’s life, depending on God to deliver him from all his trouble. We can depend on God to deliver us from all our trouble.

Putting Everything In God’s Hands

May 16, 2021 | 1 Samuel 23:15-24 | exposition

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Are you ever tempted to take matters into your own hands? Sometimes it may seem to be your only recourse, but most of the time it only leads to more trouble. This is especially true when we become impatient with how things are going with our finances or in our relationships. We know what God’s Word says about debt and being a good steward, but we think we know a better way. So we take it into our own hands by going into debt to buy a new car or a new house, but then we can’t even enjoy them because of the financial stress. Or a single person becomes so lonely and worried about not finding a certain someone, that they take matters into their own hands and compromise on matters of faith and end up feeling even more miserable. The temptation to take matters into our own hands usually comes from a lack of patience and trust for those in authority over us. This is especially true in our willingness to trust God and to put things in his hands.

In the book of 1 Samuel, while fleeing from Saul in the wilderness, David learned to put everything in God’s hands. We can learn to put everything in God’s hands.

Dear Abby

May 9, 2021 | 1 Samuel 25 | exposition, mother's day

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Where do you get your advice? Is it from a newspaper column or a horoscope? Is it from your parents, your mom or dad? Your grandparents? Many get their advice from peers or from the culture or from a Hollywood star or a sports hero. The truth is though, most of us just follow our own advice. We do what we want to do. But the Bible says: Proverbs 3:7 (ESV) Be not wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord, and turn away from evil.

This is the better way. We can get wisdom from the Lord. We can live by godly wisdom. In the book of 1 Samuel 25, the Lord gave a woman named Abigail godly wisdom to prevent David from killing her foolish husband. We too can live by godly wisdom.

Trusting God in the Wilderness

May 2, 2021 | 1 Samuel 21 - 23:14 | exposition

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How many of you in going through a time of wilderness today? You’ve been asking those same wilderness questions, like, “Where are You, God?” Or maybe you’ve been running so long, trying to find your own way, that you just feel so lost that you don’t know where to turn. Some of you may be feeling like you’re in a great place today, but be certain of this, we will all face times in the wilderness at some time in our lives. That’s where David is in our reading today. He’s on the run and living in the wilderness.

In the book of 1 Samuel, David learned to trust the Lord more than he ever had, while living on the run from King Saul in the wilderness. We can learn to trust God when we feel like we’re living in the wilderness.

Who Loves God’s Anointed?

April 25, 2021 | 1 Samuel 18-20 | exposition

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We all want to be loved. God made us that way. We were created to love and be loved. We were created to love God. Yet, we have rebelled and rejected His love. And this has led to the sin and suffering we see in our world today. And God demonstrated His own love for us by giving us His anointed, Jesus, to pay for our rebellion and to reconcile us to God. Why? Because God loves us.

Do you love Him with all your heart, your soul, your mind and your strength? Do you love Him above all others? Above your spouse, your children, your friends? Above your self? Do you love Him enough to surrender the throne of your life to Him and to put Him ahead of yourself and all others? In the book of 1 Samuel, people responded to David in many ways, but a man named Jonathan responded to God’s anointed with steadfast love. We can respond to God’s anointed Jesus with steadfast love.

When You’re Facing a Giant

April 18, 2021 | 1 Samuel 17 | exposition

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What giants are you facing today? Something that seems so big and overwhelmingly scary that you’re afraid to face it? A giant can be a problem or a person that you are “all to pieces” about facing. Giants make us want to run away in fear or feel so dismayed that we can’t move. What giant are you facing? Maybe it’s someone you need to confront with a problem or an offense. How do you face them? You’re losing sleep over it. What will you do? How will they react? Maybe it’s an addiction. Every time you try to overcome it, you lose. You’ve almost given up. Maybe it’s a bad medical diagnosis. There was a spot on the X- ray. Your doctor has scheduled tests. You don’t know if you can face it.

There are many kinds of giants. What do you do when you’re facing a giant?
In the book of 1 Samuel, David had faith in God to overcome a Philistine giant named Goliath who threatened Israel. We can have faith in God to overcome the giants we face.

The Heart That Responds to God’s Call

April 11, 2021 | 1 Samuel 16:1-23 | exposition

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Do you have a heart for God? A heart that yearns to know Him and to please Him in all things? Or do you have a heart for something or someone else? All of us begin life with a heart for ourselves. We want our own way, not God’s way. And the longer we say “yes” to self and “no” to God, the more our hearts harden towards Him.

The Lord still seeks those who have a heart for Him. Those who will respond to His call and obey His Word. In the book of 1 Samuel, the Lord sent the prophet Samuel to anoint a man after his own heart named David to be the new king that God called to replace Saul. We can learn how to respond to God’s calling as we consider this story.