1 Samuel 12 (ESV)

12 And Samuel said to all Israel, “Behold, I have obeyed your voice in all that you have said to me and have made a king over you. And now, behold, the king walks before you, and I am old and gray; and behold, my sons are with you. I have walked before you from my youth until this day. Here I am; testify against me before the Lord and before his anointed. Whose ox have I taken? Or whose donkey have I taken? Or whom have I defrauded? Whom have I oppressed? Or from whose hand have I taken a bribe to blind my eyes with it? Testify against me and I will restore it to you.” They said, “You have not defrauded us or oppressed us or taken anything from any man’s hand.” And he said to them, “The Lord is witness against you, and his anointed is witness this day, that you have not found anything in my hand.” And they said, “He is witness.”

And Samuel said to the people, “The Lord is witness, who appointed Moses and Aaron and brought your fathers up out of the land of Egypt. Now therefore stand still that I may plead with you before the Lord concerning all the righteous deeds of the Lord that he performed for you and for your fathers. When Jacob went into Egypt, and the Egyptians oppressed them, then your fathers cried out to the Lord and the Lord sent Moses and Aaron, who brought your fathers out of Egypt and made them dwell in this place. But they forgot the Lord their God. And he sold them into the hand of Sisera, commander of the army of Hazor, and into the hand of the Philistines, and into the hand of the king of Moab. And they fought against them. 10 And they cried out to the Lord and said, ‘We have sinned, because we have forsaken the Lord and have served the Baals and the Ashtaroth. But now deliver us out of the hand of our enemies, that we may serve you.’ 11 And the Lord sent Jerubbaal and Barak and Jephthah and Samuel and delivered you out of the hand of your enemies on every side, and you lived in safety. 12 And when you saw that Nahash the king of the Ammonites came against you, you said to me, ‘No, but a king shall reign over us,’ when the Lord your God was your king. 13 And now behold the king whom you have chosen, for whom you have asked; behold, the Lord has set a king over you. 14 If you will fear the Lord and serve him and obey his voice and not rebel against the commandment of the Lord, and if both you and the king who reigns over you will follow the Lord your God, it will be well. 15 But if you will not obey the voice of the Lord, but rebel against the commandment of the Lord, then the hand of the Lord will be against you and your king. 16 Now therefore stand still and see this great thing that the Lord will do before your eyes. 17 Is it not wheat harvest today? I will call upon the Lord, that he may send thunder and rain. And you shall know and see that your wickedness is great, which you have done in the sight of the Lord, in asking for yourselves a king.” 18 So Samuel called upon the Lord, and the Lord sent thunder and rain that day, and all the people greatly feared the Lord and Samuel.

19 And all the people said to Samuel, “Pray for your servants to the Lord your God, that we may not die, for we have added to all our sins this evil, to ask for ourselves a king.” 20 And Samuel said to the people, “Do not be afraid; you have done all this evil. Yet do not turn aside from following the Lord, but serve the Lord with all your heart. 21 And do not turn aside after empty things that cannot profit or deliver, for they are empty. 22 For the Lord will not forsake his people, for his great name’s sake, because it has pleased the Lord to make you a people for himself. 23 Moreover, as for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by ceasing to pray for you, and I will instruct you in the good and the right way. 24 Only fear the Lord and serve him faithfully with all your heart. For consider what great things he has done for you. 25 But if you still do wickedly, you shall be swept away, both you and your king.”

 

  1. A Farewell Address from Samuel
    1. Stepping down as Judge
    2. A fuller account of 1 Sam 11:14-15 Covenant Pledge to be God’s People and obey the Word of the Lord
    3. Covenant Renewal PLUS Covenant Renewal
    4. Covenant is both good news and bad news for God’s People
  2. Underlining Idolatry (1-12)
    1. What faults did they find in his service?
    2. They justify him but he accuses them.
    3. Review of history (8-12)
      1. Deliverance from Egypt
      2. Days of the Judges
        1. Forgot God
        2. Come under bondage (Sisera, Midinaites, Phillistines, etc)
        3. Cry out to God
        4. Sends a Deliverer
  • But Nahash the Ammonite came against them and NOW they wanted a King
    1. But God was their King and he had always delivered
    2. No crying out to God – just “We Need a King!”
    3. It’s like Sesame Street – One of these things is not like the other
  1. The CRIME is that they don’t call out to God but call for a new SYSTEM of government.
    1. Their oppression was never the result of bad government but due to idolatry.
    2. There was no repentance and calling out to God.
  • Their idolatry remained.
  1. Our idolatry is similar
    1. Look for practical solutions in the home or Church instead of looking to Chrsit.
    2. Look for more things for contentment instead of finding it in Christ.
  • Look to counselors or physicians instead of confessing our sins.
  1. God has no provision for me in this.
  1. Jesus Walking on the Water in Matt 14
    1. Disciples in Trouble.
    2. Who is it who walks on the water in the OT?
  • Job 9:8 (ESV) – who alone stretched out the heavens and trampled the waves of the sea
  1. If Jesus was competent to feed 5000 he was competent to save them.
  2. Jesus is competent for this problem too!
  1. Tremble Before a frightening God (v13-19)
    1. V 13-15 Reasserts basic Covenant terms
      1. If you and the King obey then God will be with you.
    2. V16: But NOW, Today, let’s press the point
      1. It’s time of wheat harvest
      2. It’s May or June
  • God is going to send rain
  1. Weather is predictable at that time.
  2. It’s like 18 inches of snow in Orlando on July 4th
  3. Storm would ruin the wheat crop
  • Wants them to see God’s displeasure
  • God has the power to impose Covenant curses
  1. The people are still guilty of their idolatry and have not repented about the attitude of idolatry that caused them to call for a King.
  2. Samuel is helping them to see how their Sin looks to a Holy God
  3. Leads them to repentance and trembling in v18
  1. This is the God of the Bible and not just the OT
    1. Luke 12:4–7 (ESV) – “I tell you, my friends, do not fear those who kill the body, and after that have nothing more that they can do. But I will warn you whom to fear: fear him who, after he has killed, has authority to cast into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him! Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? And not one of them is forgotten before God. Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows.
    2. Our God is a fearful God. A consuming fire.
  • We need to learn to tremble before a holy God.
  1. God sets our secret sins before Him.
  1. Walk Now in Grace (v20-25)
    .” 20 And Samuel said to the people, “Do not be afraid; you have done all this evil. Yet do not turn aside from following the Lord, but serve the Lord with all your heart. 21 And do not turn aside after empty things that cannot profit or deliver, for they are empty. 22 For the Lord will not forsake his people, for his great name’s sake, because it has pleased the Lord to make you a people for himself. 23 Moreover, as for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by ceasing to pray for you, and I will instruct you in the good and the right way. 24 Only fear the Lord and serve him faithfully with all your heart. For consider what great things he has done for you. 25 But if you still do wickedly, you shall be swept away, both you and your king.”

    1. V20 – Don’t be afraid. Don’t trun away from following Yahweh
    2. V22 – Yahweh will never forsake His people
    3. V23 – My ministry is faithful. I’m going to continue to pray for you.
      1. I’m going to continue to intercede.
    4. V24 – Fear Yahweh and serve Him – look how faithful he has been
    5. It all rests on v22 – God’s faithfulness.
    6. God’s judgment is to press us to turn from our idolatry and sin and unto His faithfulness.
    7. God has committed Himself to us.
    8. You don’t wallow in guilt but recognize it and turn afresh to Him.
  2. We have better Promises in Christ.
    1. Our faith is built on better Promises
    2. We still need faithful ministers to point us to Christ
      1. Pastor Bailey
      2. Pastor Kitredge
    3. We still need to be reminded of our idolatry.
    4. We still need to be reminded that God is a consuming fire.
    5. We need to be pressed down with the guilt of our sin
    6. But we do not wallow in our guilt.
    7. Christ has put our sins to death and risen again and has ascended.
    8. Don’t go probing the wound. You can’t reverse the consequences or cleaning up your sin.
    9. You walk on in unchangeable grace.
    10. Christ has determined to make you His Bride.
    11. God hates divorce.
    12. The God Who exposes you, frightens you, and holds you fast.
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