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The Lord's Anointed

Daily Reading: 1 Samuel 26

Scripture Focus: The Lord forbid that I should put out my hand against the Lord's anointed. (1 Samuel 26.11)

Devotional Thought: Every day, you and I are placed in circumstances that will test our faith in God and our obedience to his principles. We may justify acting in ways that violate our principles: “He did it to me first…” “God wouldn’t put this feeling in my heart if he didn’t want me to act on it…” “No one will get hurt…” “Nobody will ever find out…” Yet, we discover something very satisfying when we stand on our principles.

On two occasions, God gave Saul into David’s hands. But, in his heart, David knew that it would not be right to strike Saul. On each occasion, David refused to put out his hand against the Lord's anointed.

For David, the principle was that King Saul had been anointed by God himself to rule over Israel, and it would have to be God who removed him; David wouldn’t lift a finger against him. Many issues were involved: the political ramifications, his friendship with Saul’s son, Jonathan, the strife in his own family that would inevitably come when Michal – David’s wife and Saul’s daughter – found out her husband had killed her father. All of these were important factors, but paramount in David’s mind was the fact that Saul was anointed by God. David couldn’t violate this.

David recognized an important principle, but Saul missed it. Saul did not want to accept the fact that David was anointed, too. How much better things could have gone for Saul and for the nation, if only he had operated by the same principle David held. The Bible says that believers are the anointed of God (1 John 2.20). Let's be very careful how we treat the Lord's anointed!

Prayer: Thank you, Lord, for the anointing I have received from you. Other believers share that privilege as well. When I am tempted to "put out my hand against" brothers and sisters in Christ, stay my hand by allowing me to see that they are your anointed. Amen.

Psalm of the Day: Psalm 83.9-18

9 Do to them as you did to Midian, as to Sisera and Jabin at the river Kishon, 10 who were destroyed at En-dor, who became dung for the ground. 11 Make their nobles like Oreb and Zeeb, all their princes like Zebah and Zalmunna, 12 who said, “Let us take possession for ourselves of the pastures of God.”

13 O my God, make them like whirling dust, like chaff before the wind. 14 As fire consumes the forest, as the flame sets the mountains ablaze, 15 so may you pursue them with your tempest and terrify them with your hurricane! 16 Fill their faces with shame, that they may seek your name, O Lord. 17 Let them be put to shame and dismayed forever; let them perish in disgrace, 18 that they may know that you alone, whose name is the Lord, are the Most High over all the earth.

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