Tag: Bible

1 Samuel 13-14 Deep Diving Bible Study by Gordon Ramsay

1 Samuel 1-3 Deep Diving Bible Study


 

GOOD MORNING!

Today’s readings are: 1 Samuel 13-14

Rabbit Trails 

🌿1 Samuel 13:4  In today’s passage, one translation says Israel had become obnoxious to the Philistines. I thought this was strange so I checked out some other translations and a more common interpretation was “abomination” but I encourage you to dig in for yourself. Either way, what they are referring to is that Saul stirred them up, kicking a hornet’s nest so to speak, in order to get them good and fired up so that he could get the Israelites good and fired up to fight for him.

🌿Sidenote that is always helpful:
Sometimes when a chapter doesn’t start out making sense it is helpful to go back and read the previous chapter and then continue into that next chapter. Remember that chapter and verse numbers were not part of the original text and it often happens that text is divided in awkward places that disrupts rather than helps the flow of a story, making it appear to be two different sections when it was originally written as one. It is surprising how many times doing this simple thing helps the text to make so much more sense.

🌿We open today with Saul picking fights with the Philistines, putting himself and his soldiers in precarious situations, and then deciding he might wanna think about seeking God’s favor and blessing. Umm, yeah, Saul, good idea.

🌿But he takes this further because Samuel does not arrive in what Saul deems to be a timely fashion so he decides to take matters in his hands again (as he did with going off to battle) and make the sacrifice himself, rather than to wait on YHWH’s priest to do it. Note that only priests were allowed to make sacrifices and this had been made very clear so in doing this Saul showed a complete disregard for YHWH’s ordinances. This can be seen as a “This doesn’t apply to me because I’m special” type attitude.

13 And Samuel said to Saul, “You have done foolishly. You have not kept the command of YHWH your God, with which he commanded you. For then YHWH would have established your kingdom over Israel forever. 14 But now your kingdom shall not continue. YHWH has sought out a man after his own heart, and YHWH  has commanded him to be prince over his people, because you have not kept what YHWH commanded you.” 1 Samuel 13:13-14

🌿Now, I want us to be mindful of something here. There is a temptation for us to see this as harsh on the part of YHWH and I want to urge you to move past that because that is the worldliness in us telling us to feel that way. Move past the feelings and into the wisdom of YHWH. How many times has He shown us that DETAILS MATTER TO YHWH? How many times have we seen it? When He says don’t do something, He doesn’t mean don’t do it until you really really want to do it. When He says to obey Him, He doesn’t mean to obey Him only if it feels right to you. DETAILS MATTER TO YHWH – and He has given us those details repetitively, through His words and examples and words again. When a parent tells a child to do or not do something time and time again, and that child chooses to disregard that directive, the hammer will come down. 

🌿We go on to see Jonathan has more faith in YHWH than His father, and YHWH responds accordingly. 

🌿I just want to point out that the vow Saul made his soldiers take not to eat, drink, or rest until he had finished taking vengeance on his enemies was a rash, impulsive, and unwise vow. It showed no regard for his men. Further, notice that in 1 Samuel 14:24 Saul said they weren’t to eat until HE had taken vengeance on HIS enemies. This was not a mission for YHWH, nor was it sanctioned by Him. 

🌿When we later see Jonathan eating the honey he was not breaking any vow. Since he was not around when his father inflicted it on the men so not only did he not hear it, he did not agree to it either. This was just one more of the immeasurable gifts of grace from YHWH.

🌿Why did people suddenly start killing animals? Saul had worked them hard and not given them food, drink, or rest. The vow had been for that day and once evening came, it was a new day for them. Clearly, they were ready for some food! They were so hungry, in fact, that they did not take time to properly drain each animal of the blood, which is a commandment from YHWH. (Lev 17:10) The people of Israel no doubt knew this was a sin but they had been worked up into such a hunger that they did not care at this point. While they were still responsible for their own sin, their leadership (Saul) also bears the responsibility of this as well.

🌿The stone Saul had brought was for the animals to be killed on, if you laid an animal upon it and slit it’s throat you could hang the head off the edge and the blood would drain properly. Anyone who has butchered an animal knows this is a fairly simple process.

🌿I’ll leave you with this challenge and promise. Write the following verse down today and post a picture on the comment thread in the fellowship group. When you’re done, tuck it away in your Bible as a blessing to find another day. 

If you seek Him, He will be found by you  ~1 Chronicles 28:9


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1 Samuel 9-12 Deep Diving Bible Study by Gordon Ramsay

1 Samuel 1-3 Deep Diving Bible Study


 

Good Morning! 

Today’s readings are 1 Samuel 9-12

🌿FEAST TIME!  1 Samuel 9:1-2 Meeting Saul – Today we meet the first king of Israel, Saul. From the first two verses we are told that he is tall, incredibly handsome, and taller than all the others. Well, that is one way to please the folks whose values have lined up with the world! 

🌿1 Samuel 9:3-4 details the search for the donkeys of Saul’s dad. I was reading all the places they had traveled through and thinking “Man, these are some special donkeys!” 

🌿1 Samuel 9:15 flash backs and tells us that YHWH had told Samuel that the future king would arrive the following day. When we read in 1 Samuel 9:13 that Samuel was preparing to make a sacrifice, the original text denotes the type of sacrifice as one made in an offering of thanksgiving to YHWH, that is then allowed to be eaten in a feast of Thanksgiving. (You can dig into this on Biblehub.com with the interlinear option)

It is entirely possible, probable, and highly likely that Samuel was making this sacrifice in response to the news YHWH gave him the previous day. We further see proof that this was the case when we find that Samuel had a special portion put back for Saul’s arrival.
Now that’s some faith, trust, and obedience!

🌿1 Samuel 9:27 has a line I just love… 

…stop here yourself for a while, that I may make known to you the word of God. 

Doesn’t that just feel like balm to your soul. Y’all, that is what we do each day in this group. We stop a while while the Father makes known to us His word. Shalom washes over my soul just thinking about it.

🌿1 Samuel 10:1-8 I also love how specific Samuel was as to all of the signs the Father was going to send to prove to him that he was the anointed king of Israel! I mean, read these and see how incredibly specific, one after the other, each sign was. In fact, they grew MORE specific from start to finish! Recall that in order to be a prophet of YHWH all things prophesied must come true, with this knowledge it is easy to see that Samuel was close indeed to the Father and his faith was great! WOW! 

🌿1 Samuel 10:9 “When he turned his back to leave Samuel, God gave him another heart…” 

Directly following that sentence we will read of an encounter in which the response within Saul  was this “and the spirit of God rushed upon him.”.

This is so akin to the new covenant (Jeremiah 31:33) ! Wherein the Father gives us a new heart to WANT to obey His law and then equips us with His spirit to help us do just that!

Do we have a new heart? Do we want to obey the Father or do we make excuses as to why we don’t need to? That question can quickly determine where our heart lies. 

🌿1 Samuel 10 marks  the first time we read of someone being anointed with oil outside of the priesthood.

🌿God gave Saul a new heart after he was anointed with oil. Think of this in terms of our concept of being born again. Saul was now a new person, with a heart for God! 🙌🏻❤️

🌿10:18 “This is what the Lord says….” Or to translate more accurately “This is what YHWH says…”
Pay attention to statements like this because it lets us know that YHWH Himself is speaking. It is important in our reading to always be aware of who is speaking. Obviously, not every statement in the Bible can be attributed to YHWH but those that are His certainly should be. Conversely, when mere men are speaking their own words, they should never be given the authority of YHWH’s. That has already got us into a whole heap of trouble.

🌿We have another if/then statement today in 1 Samuel 12:14-15 . Check it out and see that the pattern of YHWH’s if/then statement has been established. Recall that YHWH has told us, through His words and His repeated actions, that He does not change (Malachi 3:7).  Based on that, we can easily imagine (and most definitely should) that these if/then statements were spoken directly to us.

Are we somehow the only people in history that the Father does expect to obey Him? Did Messiah truly die for us so that we could live however we wanted? If these are still unanswered questions in your mind, I want to encourage you to keep reading. Regardless of how many times the Father has already answered these questions, He is going to continue to repeat those answers time and again – and we will see Messiah do the same, with the same answers as the Father. Keep reading, keep praying, keep seeking. If the light hasn’t come on yet, and you are truly seeking Him with your whole heart, it is just a matter of time. For some, the pieces have fallen into place, but others are still collecting pieces and just now beginning to assemble the puzzle – and that is okay. He reveals in His time, according to His will, and for His good purpose. Keep reading, set your heart to understand, and show up – every day. He will meet you there. 

🌿At the end of chapter 12 we see Israel begin to understand that in demanding a king they were actually rejecting  the kingship of YHWH, and the awareness of the gravity of that sin is sinking in. I don’t know about you but I know that feeling all too well.

🌿We finish our reading with yet another reminder that YHWH wants our whole hearts, not just part time devotion. When does a parent repeat themselves? When it is important. 

24 Only fear YHWH and serve him faithfully with all your heart. For consider what great things he has done for you. 1 Samuel 12:24

I’m so glad you are here today. So thankful for the blessing of this group and the ability to read the word together with such amazing people who act as iron sharpening iron with one another!!!


Begin at the beginning with our Genesis notes


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1 Samuel 4-8 Deep Diving Bible Study by Gordon Ramsay

1 Samuel 1-3 Deep Diving Bible Study


 


GOOD MORNING SIBLINGS! 

Today’s readings are 1 Samuel 4-8
There is a LOT to glean from today’s readings. I love these historical books because there is so much information to dig into. However, like most of the Bible, there is so much that we can’t possibly cover it on one go around so I’ll just pick some highlights. 

🌿Israel decided to go to battle with the Philistines and it says nothing of them consulting with YHWH on this, so we can surmise that they went of their own accord. It is made clear that they knew their defeat did not come at the hands of the Philistines themselves but from YHWH directly and so they then decide to bring Him into their plan in hopes of victory by bringing the ark.

How often do we go off on our own accord, fail miserably since we chose to step outside of YHWH’s will, guidance, and wisdom, and only THEN decide that we should bring Him into the picture? YHWH is not content to sit around and be an afterthought or a genie in a lamp.

🌿It is heartbreaking that the Philistines, who were no doubt very aware of the Israelites, believed them to worship multiple gods and therefore even attributed multiple gods as helping them in battle (1 Samuel 4:8). You would think that in a society in which all other cultures worshiped multiple gods the Israelites would stand out and be known for worshiping the one true God – but as we’ve noted before their assimilation and syncretism was so complete that at this point, Israel was  indiscernible from the world.

🌿The Ark

Today we read the Biblical equivalent of “hot potato” in which the power of the almighty is so strong and people are so taken aback by it that all they want to do is get it out of their presence. The hot potato is, of course, the Ark of the Covenant.

🌿1 Samuel 4:4 Look who is bringing the ark into the camp, Eli’s sons Hophni and Phinehas. This is not a good thing as we have already read that these men do not revere YHWH, His temple, or His property. 

🌿In 1 Samuel chapter 5:1-5 we see an account of the ark being placed in the house of Dagon. This was one of the primary gods of the Philistines. So mighty was this god considered to be that it was even cited in the famous law code of King Hammurabi when he listed Dagon as his creator. This is such a prominent god that it is cited several other times in the Bible but you may miss it if you aren’t looking for it: Joshua 19.27 & Judges 16:23. Also referenced in 1 Maccabees 10:83, and 1 Maccabees 11:4. You can read more on Dagon on Wikipedia by clicking here. *Maccabees are historical books that used to be in our Bibles and are still in the Bibles of some denominations.

My point is, do not read through and miss the significance of Dagon being found bowing before the ark of YHWH, nor of his hands and head being removed. 

🌿1 Samuel 6:4-5 When the Philistines decide to return the ark, they decide to include offerings to the God of the ark in hopes of appeasing Him. They made five golden tumors and five golden mice. The term used for tumors is one to represent a hill, city, or stronghold according to the interlinear (see here) but some people believe they were to represent the tumors and other afflictions that had come upon them, same as with the mice. I can see either one working with the context. Either way, this was a gesture of acknowledgment that the people knew these afflictions were the work of the God of Israel. 

🌿I LOVE what they said in 1 Samuel 6:6 

Why should you harden your hearts as the Egyptians and Pharaoh hardened their hearts? After he had dealt severely with them, did they not send the people away, and they departed?

Here we see an example of people knowing what YHWH has done in response to disobedience and heeding that wisdom so as to avoid it happening to them. These were not even worshippers of YHWH and they have more respect for His power than His followers. 

🌿Note that all of Samuel’s warnings about a king came true. This is one of the ways in which we are taught to know a prophet is a true prophet of YHWH, ALL of His or her predictions must come true to be of God. All. Not most, not half, not every now and then, but all. YHWH does not make mistakes and He does not change.

Deut 17:14 17  predicted they would ask for a king:

Now Samuel called the people together to the Lord at Mizpah. 18 And he said to the people of Israel, “Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, ‘I brought up Israel out of Egypt, and I delivered you from the hand of the Egyptians and from the hand of all the kingdoms that were oppressing you.’ 19 But today you have rejected your God, who saves you from all your calamities and your distresses, and you have said to him, ‘Set a king over us.’ Now therefore present yourselves before the Lord by your tribes and by your thousands.” 

You can read a lot more about this in my Deuteronomy 17-20 notes so I encourage you to check those out for a fuller picture. Just click here and scroll down until you see the 🔥 which I put there to make it easier for you to jump to the relevant section. I ended the pertinent section with another 🔥 symbol. 

🌿1 Samuel 6:7-15 is the account of how they sent the ark back. There are a few things not to overlook here. 

  • The cows had never been under a yoke. These cows were not likely to take to the yoke easily, nor work together pulling a wagon. They had never done either of these things, worked with another cow, or pulled a wagon. Therefore, only YHWH could lead them to do so.
  • The cows were still nursing calves and were separated from their calves, with the calves being sent back home. A nursing cow would immediately go right back to her calf. Therefore, if they are to do otherwise, it would only happen by the hand of YHWH. 

🌿What happened when they hooked the cart up to the cows? They worked together perfectly and set out straight for Beth Shemesh, without hesitation or without turning to the right or the left. Ironically, the Philistines showed more faith in YHWH than His own people have at many times. 

🌿Beth Shemesh was a key Israelite city on the border of Philistia. 

🌿1 Samuel 7:3 has one of those pivotal combinations that we need to sit up straight and pay attention to whenever we see it in the Word of the Father. It is an If/Then statement. If you do this, then YHWH will do this.  There are many of these statements throughout the Bible but mankind tends to overlook the “if” part, because that requires an action on our part, while still expecting the Father to follow through with the “then” part.

In this case, the statement is, if you are actually returning to YHWH, then show it. Put away your idols. Stop being unfaithful. Stop committing adultery against Him.

Now, keep in mind that Samuel has already proven himself to be a true prophet of YHWH as he speaks this, so we know this directive comes from YHWH Himself, plus it passes the Deut 13 test: 

And Samuel said to all the house of Israel, “If you are returning to the Lord with all your heart, then put away the foreign gods and the Ashtaroth from among you and direct your heart to the Lord and serve him only, and he will deliver you out of the hand of the Philistines.” 1 Samuel 7:3

🌿In Chapter 8 we further see Israel seeking to be like other nations. 1 Samuel 8:4-5

Then all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah and said to him, “Behold, you are old and your sons do not walk in your ways. Now appoint for us a king to judge us like all the nations.” 

Why did they want a king? They wanted to fit in and be esteemed by the world. Again, those Deut 17-20 notes go deeper into this. 

Do we see ourselves in all that we are reading? I sure do.

1 Samuel 8:7-9 And the Lord said to Samuel, “Obey the voice of the people in all that they say to you, for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected me from being king over them. According to all the deeds that they have done, from the day I brought them up out of Egypt even to this day, forsaking me and serving other gods, so they are also doing to you. Now then, obey their voice; only you shall solemnly warn them and show them the ways of the king who shall reign over them.”

Wow. They hadn’t rejected Samuel, but YHWH. I doubt they even realized it. But they had not put their faith in the Father, even after all that He had done and shown to the house of Israel. How often do we put our faith in other things? We have faith in our job, in our paycheck, in our ability to pay the mortgage, in our ability to put food on the table, we have faith in our own work, we have faith in our own intellect to advance ourselves and our career, we have faith in our talent, in our skill, in our friends, in our degrees and certifications. We place our faith in our leaders, in our teachers, in our managers. At the end of the day, though, who controls all of that? Who has the ability to cause everything to multiply or disappear? Who has the ability to shower favor or displeasure on us in all things? Who owns all the cattle on the hills? (Psalm 50). Who commands the sun to rise and the moon to set, the trees to bear fruit and the land to lay dormant or bring forth a harvest? 

What do we have faith in? Whatever it is, that is our god. 

🌿We have seen a cycle develop that keeps repeating itself:

-Sin, Judgement, Repentance.

-Some refer to this as Apostasy, Servitude, Restoration.

-Some break down restoration into Repentance and Deliverance.

I see this as:

Sin

⬇️

Judgement or conviction which brings about awareness of the sin

⬇️

Decision: at this point we end up at a fork in the road where we have to choose to go the stiff necked route and turn away from reproach or go the repentance route and seek forgiveness.

⬇️

Outcome: Whether or not we are delivered and reach restoration depends largely on which direction we go in at that fork in the road – and believe me we will find ourselves at that fork countless times in our lives as Believers!

Either way, we can look back over our reading and see this cycle taking place numerous times already and we’ll see it plenty of times in our future reading – but it is interesting to look into our world today and consider where we are in that cycle in both our personal lives, as a country, as a world, etc.

(Note: political comments will have you hung up by your pinky toes on the clothes line out back.)

🌿Let me be totally straight with you: It is not fun being convicted of sin and it is sure not easy when YHWH shows you that He wants you to leave behind the world’s ways (which we tend to favor) and follow Him in His ways. Because by doing this, often, people see you and begin to feel convicted themselves but they tend to blame you rather than YHWH for that conviction. You don’t even have to say a word, all you have to do is live your life differently from how they live theirs and the Father, if it is His leading, will drop the hammer. The reaction is not pleasant.

That is part of why it is so important not to tell people what YHWH says but to get them read it for themselves, because if they attribute YHWH’s words to you they can easily turn away from them, but turning away from YHWH Himself is, hopefully, a more difficult decision to make.

~Oh goodness, Christy is still just a talking…~

At this point in my walk, I am not a big believer in actively trying to convert others. Firstly, I see this as me trying to convince folks that they should walk out their faith exactly like I do mine – and I understand that YHWH has a specific path for everyone so by trying to get them on my path I am depriving them of their intended journey, purpose, and the opportunity to be in YHWH’s will. Secondly, YHWH plants the seeds and I have no way of knowing where that seed is in its development – only He does.

Therefore, my goal is to behave in a manner in line with the fruits of the spirit so that no matter where someone is in their walk, an interaction with me will leave them stronger, more nourished, and a little better off than they were before. If we go after everyone with the intent of yanking them off the path YHWH has them on and with the ultimate goal of bringing them around to our way of thinking – we will most likely poison the soil that the Father has so lovingly tended.

It is a process and sometimes, in our good intentions, we may not realize that we are impeding someone’s process rather than helping it.

I’m not saying not to answer questions posed with a sincere heart or to have conversations with people about the Father, and certainly we are to always answer as to the source of our hope and joy. But our lives should be the greatest testimony, not our voices as we yell at folks while standing on top of a park bench as they walk by (extreme example here).

You may feel differently and that is okay – you and I are different people – and that is okay, too.😉But let us encourage one another. Though our walk may look different, we are each seeking to follow in the footsteps of our Messiah and so there is common ground there. Let us meet on that common ground and help build one another up. As for others, not yet on this path, instead of directing them to follow us, let us take them directly to the Father, introduce them to Him through His Word, rather than our retelling of it. People are intelligent, they need to be treated like they are. Rather than us summarizing and cherry picking what we, in our own wisdom, deem most important. Lead them to the book and, in doing so, know that you are leading them into direct relationship with the Father. 

Whew. I guess I had a lot to talk about today. I apologize for being so long winded but I felt the urging to share these things.

🌿The world is growing increasingly darker but His light is shining brighter each day. That He has us here, deep in the Word, diligently studying to show ourselves approved by Him is a tremendous honor. I mean, WOW!!! Can you believe He is using us?? That we get to read words spoken in His own voice and glean from fields He Himself has planted?🌾

HE IS SO GOOD TO US 

It’s so exciting I can’t even think too long on it or I’ll have to shout with joy (and that scares the dogs). 🐶


 

Begin at the beginning with our Genesis notes

 


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