“The Coming and Going of God’s Spirit” – 1 Samuel 16:21-23

1 Samuel 16:21-23

“And David came to Saul and entered his service. And Saul loved him greatly, and he became his armor-bearer. And Saul sent to Jesse, saying, “Let David remain in my service, for he has found favor in my sight.” And whenever the harmful spirit from God was upon Saul, David took the lyre and played it with his hand. So Saul was refreshed and was well, and the harmful spirit departed from him.”

Ronald Youngblood calls this passage the “literary, historical, and theological crux of 1 Samuel as a whole.”* It is the literal middle of 1 Samuel and the crossing point of leadership as Saul began his descent and David his rise as Israel’s ruler.

One of the markers in this transition was the mention earlier in the text that God had removed His spirit from Saul and placed His power on David. In a subtle turn, God moved so this young shepherd was brought into the palace to bring solice to the troubled king. In the Old Testament, the mention of God’s Spirit coming on someone didn’t refer to salvation, but the presence of power of God in order to carry out a certain task. It showed God’s favor but also equipped one for service to others in a mighty way. 
Even at an early age, with God’s Spirit, David was able to bring relief to the troubled King. And we will see as we read through the account of David’s life that this was just the beginning of what God would accomplish through David. 
*Expositor’s Bible Commentary, Vol 3. 1992, p. 682.
Use the HEAR method while spending time with today’s passage. 
Highlight – what words or phrases jump out at you? 
Explain – what does the passage mean? 
Apply – how does the passage intersect with your life today? 
Respond – how is God leading you to respond?
Jon Price, Associate Pastor

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