A King Unlike the Nations Around Us

1 Samuel #10: an exposition of 1 Samuel 10:17-27. This message by Pastor Rod Harris was delivered at Trinity Baptist Church on Sunday evening, January 29, 2012.

It was a dramatic moment.  Tensions ran high following the fiery sermon from God’s prophet.  The people had demanded a king.  A king like the nations surrounding them.  Though it was a rejection of God’s sovereign reign, God gave them a king.  In dramatic fashion old Samuel told the people to assembly by tribes.  Through the casting of lots the tribe of Benjamin was selected.  From the tribe of Benjamin the clan of the Matrites was taken.  Finally the family of Kish and that dramatic moment when Israel’s new king was introduced…hello.  Is anyone home?  You must picture this scene.  Imagine a dramatic fanfare as the king is announced.  Every head turns the people straining for a glimpse of his royal majesty and no one appears.  His name is called again.  Nothing.  A search is made – nothing.  Finally they resort to prayer as they inquire of the Lord, “Can you please help us find our king?”  “He is over there hiding in the baggage!”  Israel has her king but perhaps he’s not like the kings of her neighbors.  Our text this evening is found in 1 Samuel chapter 10 and verses 17-27.

Text: 1 Samuel 10:17-27

1 Samuel is not about Samuel, or Saul, or David or even the kingdom…it is about God.
It is about His sovereignty, His rule, His reign, His character.
It is a reminder to us that God will accomplish His purpose in the earth.
God has a people and He has entered into covenant with them.
While they may violate that covenant, He never will.
While they may prove unfaithful, He will remain forever faithful.

In their lust to be like everyone else the people of God forgot His ways are not our ways neither are His thoughts our thoughts.  The people of God, then and now, are often blind to their own wickedness and folly.  Out of their own sinful hearts they clamored for a king and rejected the only rightful king.  Yet even in their sin they served God’s sovereign purpose.

This passage serves to remind us that God’s will is done in spite of us.
God’s plans cannot be thwarted.
What is clear in this text is that…

Thesis: Saul’s public coronation as king makes it clear that Israel’s king is like no other king.

Chapter 10:1-16 introduces us to Saul.
A handsome young man who is literally head and shoulders above all others.
His father Kish had some runaway donkeys and Saul is sent to look for them.
But we learner the seeker is actually the one sought!
Lost donkeys were just part of God’s sovereign plan.
There was a private ceremony in which Saul is anointed king.
Then he goes home and tells no one!

This is where I know Saul is different.
I don’t think I could have kept such a thing a secret.
“Hey, don’t tell anybody but I’ve been declared king.”
Saul is even asked directly – “What did Samuel tell you?”
“Oh, he told us the donkeys had been found.”

I would have taken the question to be a clear sign that God wanted everyone to know I was their new king!

As we consider this text I want to point out three things to you.  Things that are important for us to understand.

  1. In their rush to be like everyone else Israel was rejecting their standing as God’s unique people.  (10:17-19)
  2. God’s choice of a king and his appointment underscores Israel’s ultimate dependence upon God.  (10:20-24)
  3. As Samuel establishes Israel’s monarchy, he establishes the priority of God’s law and brings division among the people.  (10:25-27)

Israel’s king is like no other.

When God’s people long to be like everyone else they abandon God and His calling.
When God appoints His leader – He underscores our dependence upon Him.
We have no king other than Jesus.

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