First Samuel 28 Commentary
Thanks to Saul, and because of him we can learn something about the way the LORD spoke to his people back in time: by dreams, or Urim and Thummim, or by prophets. The Urim and Thummim were dice-like objects that would be used to determine the will of the LORD. But not for Saul. The LORD remained quiet. The stranded Saul has an option: consult a medium. So he disguises himself and finds his way to Endor where the woman spiritist resided.
Saul should have known better. God is option 1 and option 2 and option 3. It should end there.
Saul reaches his lowest point here. Saul wants to talk to the dead prophet Samuel. The LORD intervenes and Samuel does speak. The message is the same. Mene, mene tekel parsin. Saul had been weighed and found wanting. And his time was up. The kingdom would be given to David, but where is David?
On the LORD’s program, David should be taking over the kingdom. While the arisen prophet Samuel is delivering the LORD’s verdict, David is plotting an assault on Israel from the enemy camp. But the LORD is merciful. Achish’s plan to have David accompany the Philistines in the battle against Israel fails. How thankful the saint is when the LORD intervenes to prevent this kind of a mess. We have more details on this story tomorrow.
We can go back to Endor where Saul is consulting the medium. This very strange event may raise questions. Can the dead be consulted? It would be wrong to formulate a rule based on a one-off event, just like one wouldn’t want to conclude that donkeys speak simply because Balaam’s donkey spoke. The shocked medium probably didn’t expect her trick to amount to anything as real as she eventually got. Suffice to say the LORD intervened and the impossible happened.
We are quickly winding down a rather sad story of Saul’s downfall. A man who started off with huge promise and under the power of the Spirit is now nothing but a pile of flesh on the floor in medium’s hut. How you wish this was the floor of the temple! Then you can hope the unending compassion of the LORD would have saved the day for him. But there is no temple. His own hand had brutally killed the very means of his personal restoration.
In the unlikely event that the saint finds himself in this position, don’t go to the nightclub. Go to the temple. The mercies of the LORD are new every morning.
Saul lies down without strength on the floor of the spiritist, having eaten nothing all that day. You can be the wrong person but ensure to lie prostrate in the right place. Ensure the right time. It should be in the morning when the mercies are new. There is something like being late. Ensure the motive is right. The brokenness of heart in repentance is the right motive; not fear of personal loss.
This man Saul is impossible to understand. We don’t want to emulate him by being stubborn even when the writing is on the wall.
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