*David is Chosen*
1 Samuel 16:1-13 (The Message)
“God addressed Samuel: ‘So, how long are you going to mope over Saul? You know I’ve rejected him as king over Israel. Fill your flask with anointing oil and get going. I’m sending you to Jesse of Bethlehem. I’ve spotted the very king I want among his sons.’ ‘I can’t do that,’ said Samuel. ‘Saul will hear about it and kill me.’ God said, ‘Take a heifer with you and announce, ‘I’ve come to lead you in worship to God, with this heifer as a sacrifice. Make sure Jesse gets invited. I’ll let you know what to do next. I’ll point out the one you are to anoint.’ Samuel did what God told him. When he arrived at Bethlehem, the town fathers greeted him, but apprehensively. ‘Is there something wrong?’ ‘Nothing’s wrong. I’ve come to sacrifice this heifer and lead you in the worship of God. Prepare yourselves, be consecrated, and join me in worship.’ He made sure Jesse and his sons were also consecrated and called to worship. When they arrived, Samuel took one look at Eliab and thought, ‘Here he is! God’s anointed!’ But God told Samuel, ‘Looks aren’t everything. Don’t be impressed with his looks and stature. I’ve already eliminated him. God judges persons differently than humans do. Men and women look at the face; God looks into the heart.’ Jesse then called up Aminadab and presented him to Saul. Samuel said, ‘This isn’t God’s choice either.’ Next Jesse presented Shammah. Samuel said, ‘No, this man isn’t either.’ Jesse presented his seven sons to Samuel. Samuel was blunt with Jesse, ‘God hasn’t chosen any of these.’ Then he asked Jesse, ‘Is this it? Are there no more sons?’ ‘Well, yes, there’s the runt. But he’s out tending the sheep.’ Samuel ordered Jesse, ‘Go get him. We’re not moving from this spot until he’s here.’ Jesse sent for him. He was brought in, the very picture of health – bright-eyed, good-looking. God said, ‘Up on your feet! Anoint him! This is the one.’ Samuel took his flask of oil and anointed him, with his brothers standing around watching. The Spirit of God entered David like a rush of wind. God vitally empowering him for the rest of his life. Samuel left and went home to Ramah.”
God chose His man and prepared him, long before he became a national figure. The anointing would give David a sense of his destiny and he would receive careful training from Samuel as the coming ruler. The Lord looks on the heart, not the outward appearance. Eliab was not chosen despite his good looks, nor any of the other six. Why was David kept in the background? He was least in his father’s esteem. His father, Jesse, thought him of too little account to present to Samuel. But as soon as he saw him, Samuel knew that this was to be the future king of Israel. Was any explanation given for this strange choice? David’s father and brothers didn’t understand what was going on. If they had, someone would have run off and told Saul.
The Lord is still looking for men and women after His own heart. Only that life can stand the attacks on our faith and principles. The elect of God today are known by their transformed lives. With Christ in our heart each of us is a new creation. God’s choice is often contrary to human reason.
In 1 Cor 1:27-29 Paul said God has chosen the foolish things of the world. You may not be well-thought of in your family, you may be despised by others for your faith. But God thought of you before He flung the stars into space. He wrote your name on His heart. He engraved it on the palm of His hand.
Regardless of your capabilities, or lack of training, you are in His divine plan. And one day there is a crowning day coming for us also (2 Tim 4:8).
Today, recite Psalm 23 as a prayer.