The Philistines declare war. Is David caught on the wrong side (I Sam. 28:1-2)? See chapter 29. Saul consults a witch (28:7-20). Saul's death foretold (28:19). Israel is defeated and Saul and his sons die tragically (31:2-6).
Verses for Today:
The Lord is departed from thee, and is become thine enemy . . . Because thou obeyedst not the voice of the Lord (I Sam. 28:16,18).
After Samuel became judge, the Philistines were so badly defeated because of his prayer meeting at Mizpeh that they came no more into the coast (territory) of Israel: and the hand of the Lord was against the Philistines all the days of Samuel (7:13). But, there was sore (severe) war against the Philistines all the days of Saul (14:52).
God had given Saul the unique privilege of being the first king to reign over His people. But he misused this privilege because of his continual disobedience.
In the final year of Saul's reign, the Philistines gathered together all their armies to Aphek (29:1). Saul panicked when he realized the size of the Philistine armies that were ready to attack. Could Saul forget Samuel's words: Because thou hast rejected the Word of the Lord, He hath also rejected thee from being king (15:23)? In desperation, Saul inquired of the Lord (28:6). After murdering all the priests of God, how could he expect an answer? Saul frantically sought counsel from a witch in Endor. Saul knew that all mediums, witches, and fortune-tellers are an abomination unto the Lord (Deut. 18:10-12). Earlier Saul had banished them from the land (I Sam. 28:3). This fortune-teller was no help. Instead Saul's fears were increased after seeing Samuel, who said: Wherefore then dost thou ask of me, seeing the Lord is departed from thee, and is become thine enemy? (28:16). The next day Saul and three of his sons died in battle. Saul reaped what he had sown. Saul's worst enemy was himself. He lived to serve self. Power, wealth, popularity, and talents are often great hindrances to a spiritual life.
All who reject the Truth of God easily become victims of false prophets, fortune-tellers, and astrologers, and God shall send strong delusion that they should believe a lie (II Thess. 2:11; Matt 24:24; I John 4:1).
Astrology columns, palm readers, and fortune-tellers violate the Word of God, and expose one to satanic forces. In contrast, true success comes from seeking the Lord's will through reading His Word and praying to the Lord for guidance.
Thought for Today:
No good thing will He withhold from them that walk uprightly (Ps. 84:11).
Through the Urim (I Sam. 28:6), which was used to determine the will of God. Today Christ speaks to us through His Spirit when we read His Word. God . . . Hath in these last days spoken unto us by His Son (Heb. 1:1-2). When He, the Spirit of Truth, is come, He will guide you into all Truth: for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatsoever He shall hear, that shall He speak: and He will shew you things to come (John 16:13).
28:2 keeper of mine head =permanent captain of my bodyguard; 28:7 familiar spirit =demonic spirit that works through a medium, spiritualist, witch, or fortune-teller (Lev. 19:31; 20:6,27; Deut. 18:9-12); 28:14 mantle =robe; 28:15 sore =deeply; 28:21 sore =severely; 29:3 fell unto me =joined me; 30:12 his spirit came again to him =be revived; 30:21 saluted =greeted; 30:31 wont to haunt =accustomed to stay; 31:2 followed hard upon =overtook; 31:3 sore =sadly.
Pray for Country: Egypt (66 million) in northeastern Africa • Major languages: Arabic and English • Christians are not permitted to evangelize Muslims • 87.5% Muslim; 12% Christian; .5% Other • Prayer Suggestion: Give thanks to the Lord for all things (Eph. 5:19-20).
Optional Reading: Acts 11
Memory Verse for the Week: