Tuesday, July 24, 2018

60IN60 Day 23 - Tues Jul 24

It's Day 23 and we're in 1 Samuel 19.

Where God Spoke To Me:
- Nothing really jumped out today.

- Verses 8-10 - A couple issues here, which I've also addressed in previous days. First, "an evil spirit from the Lord" most likely means that God had authorized Satan to send a demon to torment Saul. God obviously doesn't have an evil spirits who are "on His side." Second, why was David back in Saul's presence when Saul had tried to kill him before (18:11). We don't know for sure, but some thoughts: a. There may have been a presumption that Saul was suffering from a mental illness that made him better sometimes and worse sometimes; b. Because the king's word was law, David's two options were to continue to be around Saul as one of his military men or to flee and essentially declare himself to be in open rebellion against the king - pursuing the second path was a big step; c. Like in domestic abuse situations we see today, we know that people don't always immediately remove themselves from dangerous situations the way you think they would.
- Verse 13 - "the household idol" - The presumption would be that it was Michal's and not David's, since we think of David as someone who served God. Still, it's troubling that he allowed that idol worship to happen within his home.
- Verse 17 - She is lying to protect herself. The fact that the Bible tells us about it does not mean that the Bible authorizes it.
- Verse 23 - In the Old Testament, the Spirit of the Lord coming on you was not a salvation event, but one that usually accompanied receiving power from God or having a special manifestation of the presence of God (as here). It is odd that Saul received it too, but it was apparently something that happened to anyone who was there. An imperfect analogy to today would be how even a non-Christian can be in a worship service where God is moving and be aware of the presence of the Spirit there even though the Spirit is not within them.
- Verse 24 - "stripped," "naked" - Yeah, that's weird.

Your Comments and Questions:
- "Can you explain 10 please?  Is it the same type of occurrence that happened to Pharoah's heart being hardened by God?  I can't wrap my head around either.  Did God cause these things or allow Satan to do them?" - This is a hard verse that has been a challenge for Bible students for centuries.  One good principle to use in situations like this where you have an obscure, difficult verse is to start with Bible truths that are clearly taught in other verses.  One such idea is that God does not have any "evil spirits" working for Him.  Evil spirits are on the enemy's side.  Another idea (that we learn from Job and other places) is that God has the ability to limit what Satan and his demons have permission to do.  When you take both those ideas and apply them to this passage, it leads me to interpret the verse something like this: "Satan had asked God for permission to allow an evil spirit to torment Saul.  Given Saul's evil actions, God granted the request.  The fact that Saul was doing what was wrong meant that he was open to the ideas and promptings from the evil spirit."  Therefore it was "an evil spirit from God" only in the sense that God has authorized Satan's request to torment Saul, not in the sense that God would have demons working for Him.

If you want to read the chapter online, here's a link.

If you have a question or comment, email me at butcher@ymail.com.

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