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Daily Devotion for March 16, 2010
I have fixed the poll (I hope!) so it will not reject valid usernames. Please vote in the survey at the bottom of the page, concerning what we will read after we finish 1 Samuel.
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come; Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever.
Prayer for the Morning
Oh Lord, most heavenly Father, Almighty and everlasting God, who has safely brought me to the beginning of this day; I give you thanks for my creation, preservation, and all the blessings of my life. Grant that this day I fall into no sin, neither run into any kind of danger; but that all my doings, being governed by your will, may be righteous in your sight. Through Christ our Lord, I pray.
Prayer from Psalm 86Give ear, O Lord, to my prayer; and attend to the voice of my supplications.
In the day of my trouble I will call upon you: for you will answer me.
Among the gods there is none like you, O Lord; and no works like those you have done.
All nations whom you have made will come and worship before you, O Lord; and will glorify your name.
For you are great, and do wondrous things: you are God alone.
Teach me your way, Lord, and I will walk in your truth: unite my heart to fear your name.
I will praise you, O Lord my God, with all my heart: and I will glorify your name forever.
Community of Prayer
May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be among the community of all who pray in the name of Christ this morning, and remain among us always.
Think of the day ahead in terms of God with you, and visualize health, strength, guidance, purity, calm confidence, and victory as the gifts of His presence.
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. (James 4:7-8)
1 Samuel 13:15-22Then Samuel left Gilgal and went up to Gibeah in Benjamin, and Saul counted the men who were with him. They numbered about six hundred. Saul and his son Jonathan and the men with them were staying in Gibeah in Benjamin, while the Philistines camped at Micmash. Raiding parties went out from the Philistine camp in three detachments. One turned toward Ophrah in the vicinity of Shual, another toward Beth Horon, and the third toward the borderland overlooking the Valley of Zeboim facing the desert. Not a blacksmith could be found in the whole land of Israel, because the Philistines had said, "Otherwise the Hebrews will make swords or spears!" So all Israel went down to the Philistines to have their plowshares, mattocks, axes and sickles sharpened. The price was two thirds of a shekel for sharpening plowshares and mattocks, and a third of a shekel for sharpening forks and axes and for repointing goads. So on the day of the battle not a soldier with Saul and Jonathan had a sword or spear in his hand; only Saul and his son Jonathan had them.
Notes on the Scripture
Things keep getting worse for Saul, who must be regretting that he ever agreed to be king. He was already stuck out in the middle of nowhere, facing a Philistine army many times larger than his own, his men hiding in cisterns and caves to avoid the enemy. Now, he is down to six hundred men; the Philistines who are hunting him have perhaps fifty times that many.
And even worse, his little company does not even have weapons; they apparently have farming implements that need to be sharpened, and the Philistines have apparently killed or neutralized all the Jewish blacksmiths. They can't even get their sickles and mattocks sharpened unless they pay a Philistine blacksmith an exhorbitant amount.
On top of all that, Samuel has disavowed Saul and basically cursed his kingship.
The last sentence promises us a battle tomorrow. Is this the end of Saul's brief reign?