1 Samuel 28:5-7 (NIV) 5When Saul saw the Philistine army, he was afraid; terror filled his heart. 6He inquired of the LORD, but the LORD did not answer him by dreams or Urim or prophets. 7Saul then said to his attendants, "Find me a woman who is a medium, so I may go and inquire of her." "There is one in Endor," they said.
When man becomes unrepentant and justifies his flesh, he will abandon his standards to get what he wants. To the very end, Saul remained unrepentant and proud. Faced with a united army of the Philistines, and having banished David and his men, he began to fear the outcome of the approaching battle. In fear for his physical life, he inquired of God, but God wouldn't answer him.
It is interesting to note the usual ways in which the LORD did speak to him in the past. Dreams are one way in which the LORD communicates with us then and now. When we don't have the exact instruction in God's word, the LORD may reveal His direction in a dream. The Urim is believed to have been stones in the breastplate of the High Priest that would glow in answer to yes or no questions. Finally, the prophets are listed. A prophet would have a word from the LORD for Saul as Samuel had done in the past.
Saul had become the enemy of the LORD by disobedience and pride. He went against the Word of God in calling on a witch to bring up the spirit of Samuel. When we know we are out of God's will and that God is silent toward us, desperate people will try forbidden means to see the future. If God does not tell you, it is better for you not to know. Do not try to find out the secrets of God through mystical means. It only compounds the sin of rebellion against God. If you are not hearing from God, search out the issues in your heart that must change.
Remember: If you aren't hearing God's instruction, the problem may be in your own heart.
John 1:14-16 (NIV) 14The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. 15John testifies concerning him. He cries out, saying, "This was he of whom I said, 'He who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.'" 16From the fullness of his grace we have all received one blessing after another.
The Logos became flesh. (see May 24 evening) That is the greatest of all miracles. If you can accept that miracle, then all others naturally follow. If you can't, then you have no hope of ever being right with a holy and just God. This is the truth upon which the Bible hinges. The eternal reality of God became a human being. The last half of that first sentence means He pitched His tent among us. The worship of God that Moses established was done in a tent. There the glory of God resided. Then the glory of God moved to the temple that Solomon built. Eventually the glory and presence of God left that temple because of the peoples' rebellion against God. In the passage for today, the glory of God returned to the tent, but this time it was the tent of a human body.
The first tent of worship was built under the direction of the Holy Spirit. This tent was also, as the Holy Spirit came upon Mary. When we see the life of Jesus, we see the glory of God. The Jews thought of the glory as a shining light or illuminated cloud. Glory is a life entirely yielded to God. It is a life filled with grace and truth. We can see the glory of God in every action and statement of Jesus.
John the Baptist came to tell the world that the Messiah was coming. Though John was born and began his ministry before that of Jesus', Jesus eternally existed in the Father. He is the I Am and lives in the eternal now.
It is the super-abounding grace of the Eternal One that brings blessing after blessing into our lives. It was this same wonderful grace that led to the incarnation, display of glory, death and resurrection of Jesus. Do you see your life being filled with one blessing after another? It is! Open your eyes to this grace that we so often take for granted, and bless the Lord.
Sing: Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me. Bless His holy name!