King Saul was the King before David. Up until the time when Saul became King, God’s people Israel, hadn’t had a King. They had had leaders and judges, but God was their King – this is what set them apart from other nations. But at the beginning of the book of 1 Samuel the people of Israel come to Samuel (who was their leader) and request a king.
They’ve seen that all the other nations around them have a king – they want to be like them! But by doing this they are effectively rejecting God as their King.
However, despite this, God gives them what they ask for, and Saul is chosen by God to be the first King of Israel. Saul starts out well and follows Gods way, but unfortunately throughout his time as king he becomes quite conceited and full of himself, and he begins to stop following the Lord’s commands…
Because of his disobedience and arrogance, the Lord ends up rejecting him as the King of Israel:
“You have done a foolish thing,” Samuel said. “You have not kept the command the Lord your God gave you; if you had, he would have established your kingdom over Israel for all time. But now your kingdom will not endure; the Lord has sought out a man after his own heart and appointed him ruler of his people, because you have not kept the Lord’s command.” 1 Samuel 13:13-14
And so God chooses a new King – which is David
Read 1 Samuel 16:1-13
No one expected that David would be the one chosen to be King! He wasn’t even invited to join his brothers to be paraded in front of Samuel. His own Father didn’t even think that he might be the one that God had chosen!
But even though he was overlooked by people – David wasn’t overlooked or forgotten by God!! In fact, he was the one that God had chosen to be the next King of Israel.
“Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7
Unfortunately, as humans, we do often look at and judge things by their outward appearance. Not only can we feel overlooked by others, like David was, but sometimes we can even ‘overlook ourselves’ and think that God couldn’t possibly choose to use us to do his work – because we’re not good enough.
“After removing Saul, he made David their king. God testified concerning him: ‘I have found David son of Jesse, a man after my own heart; he will do everything I want him to do.” Acts 13:22
He was a ‘man after God’s own heart’. He was willing to follow the Lord’s commands and do things his way. That is the reason he was chosen by God to be King! Our hearts are what are most important to God. Not our outward appearances/qualities.
In a Journal answer:
- If you were going to choose a new king or leader for the country, what would be the qualities you’d be looking for in the person?
- Why did everyone overlook David?
- What are some of the ‘outward qualities’ or reasons that people can think of as reasons why God wouldn’t choose to use them?
Create a list: “God wouldn’t use me because….” (e.g. age, knowledge about God/Bible/Church, how ‘Spiritual’ we are, skills, confidence, mistakes/sin etc.)
Comment below with your reflections