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Julie Ferwerda Christian Blog and Commentary

OYB May 11

  • Julie Ferwerda
    Are you ready for change in 2009? Grab a One Year Bible (NLT), commit to reading it daily, and join Julie Ferwerda on an extraordinary adventure that will transform your life as you experience its relevance in a fresh, understandable way. In addition to 20+ years in Bible teaching ministry, Julie is a professional speaker and writer. Her works have appeared in publications such as Focus on the Family, Discipleship Journal, Christianity Today, Marriage Partnership, Brio, and Revolve Biblezines & Devotional Bible (for teens). She's also the author of "The Perfect Fit: Piecing Together True Love," and also the upcoming book, "One Million Arrows for God: Raising Your Children to Change the World." Learn more at www.JulieFerwerda.com.
  • 2009 May 11
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Today's One Year Bible Reading

1 Samuel

10:8 "Then go down to Gilgal ahead of me. I will join you there to sacrifice burnt offerings and peace offerings. You must wait for seven days until I arrive and give you further instructions." This is a significant verse to note for coming readings. These specific instructions to Saul are given just before he becomes king, and are referring to an event coming up shortly after his coronation. We will see soon that Saul does not obey God through Samuel, and hence he is rejected as king.

Since Saul is appointed by God to rule just before David (the most pronounced Christ-type in the Bible), and since Saul is all about himself, disobedient, also tried to destroy David, it got me wondering if he was therefore an "anti-Christ type." After a little research, I found that there were many who concur. Here was some commentary:

Let us talk about the anointing of the Antichrist: "Now in a large house there are not only gold and silver vessels, but also vessels of wood and of earthenware, and some to honor and some to dishonor" (2 Tim 2:20). All powers are ordained of God and all powers are subject unto the Lord. People are set aside or ordained to fulfill their purpose, even the Sons of Perdition. Judas was set aside, chosen, and anointed with the power that it would take to fulfill his purpose.

David and Saul both were anointed as kings to fulfill a purpose in God's plan. Saul's seed would not be the seed that Jesus Christ would come through. However remember that Saul was a great king and the power of God was upon him many times. Saul is a type and shadow of Antichrist and shows how that the seed that is not of God will always perish. Saul's seed would not [continue to] rule God's people. Antichrist, the carnal mind, or the flesh will never rule in the Kingdom of God.

Another site makes the following points:

God gave them a king, Saul, a man that was after their own hearts (1 Samuel 9:16). David, by contrast was called by God, "A man after [God's] own heart." 1 Samuel 13:14

Standing head and shoulders above everyone else, Saul looked the part of a king. After he disobeyed God and lost his authority in the Kingdom, God sent Samuel to find a new king, saying "...look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature...for the Lord sees not as man sees: for man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart." 1 Samuel 16:7

When Jesus came the first time, he didn't look the part of a King. Born in a barn, the son of a common laborer, he nevertheless fulfilled manifold Messianic prophecies. He came not to set up an earthly kingdom, but to be the spiritual King of the Jews. But just as they had rejected God as their King once before, they would once again reject Him and choose another, an earthly king to make them like all the other nations. Saul is a picture of the man that Israel will accept as king (the Anti-Christ) during the coming tribulation. The people's choice, one who is accepted by the vast majority, a man with a mouth speaking great things.

Saul feigned humility but was in reality proud to a fault. Daniel 11:21 describes the entrance of the Anti-Christ onto the world stage. "He shall come in peaceably and obtain the kingdom with flatteries."

Saul at one point offers a burnt sacrifice which was expressly forbidden, setting himself up as a religious figure, a priest, for which he was rebuked by God and lost his kingdom (1 Samuel 13:13). [Julie adds: he also set up a monument to himself in 1 Samuel 15:12. The Anti-Christ too will set up the "Abomination of Desolation" in the Temple in Jerusalem (see Daniel 11:31).]

Saul's continual deadly opposition to David whom he seeks to destroy shows that he was certainly the Anti-David. And since David is a picture of the Messiah it shows a true picture of Saul as being a type of the Anti-Christ.

Ultimately Saul is killed and his body burned. The Anti-Christ will be cast "...into a lake of fire..." Revelation 19:20

Saul, in a picture of Satanic fury against the Jews, commanded the slaughter of 85 priests of God who had unwittingly aided David in his flight from Saul. 1 Samuel 22:18

10:20 So Samuel brought all the tribes of Israel before the Lord, and the tribe of Benjamin was chosen by lot. I found this verse fascinating after recent readings on the choosing process that God enlists for all people. Even though Samuel had already anointed Samuel as king, he still cast sacred lots (sort of like dice) and the lots still fell "randomly" on Saul. It was as if God wanted to prove to the general public that Saul was his chosen for the job even though He had already spoken to Samuel.

John

6:66 As a result of this many of His disciples withdrew and were not walking with Him anymore. Jesus said a lot of hard things—hard to understand, hard to accept. Because of this, He became quite unpopular among His followers. If we are following Jesus and not traditions of men, we will likely encounter the same problem.

Psalm

107:9-31 I have been thinking a lot lately about the illusions people have of God that keep them from loving Him or wanting to be with Him. I asked, "What would make a person lose their incorrect illusions of God and see Him for who He really is-see how loving and good and kind He is?" I thought about all the people I know who fight against God, and who don't trust Him, don't love Him, and don't want Him in their lives. All because they believe lies about God and have never experienced an authentic relationship with Him. Each and every one of these people has miserable lives, trying to solve all their own problems, but never really getting anywhere. They try filling up on worldly pleasures and activities, but are never satisfied.

And then the light went on as to the way God shows His children who He really is (from my own life and from this Psalm). He lets His rebellious, unbelieving, deceived children go off looking for answers in futile places until they are so broken by their sin and independent pride, that they only place they have to go is back to Him. As soon as they ask for help, He offers His mercy and love, and they are finally able to receive it because they have been broken of every other way. And this is exactly the loving path to mercy that I saw in this Psalm. And the last verse is just the whipped cream to top it off:

107:43 Those who are wise will take all this to heart; they will see in our history the faithful love of the Lord.