1 Samuel 16:1-13 (NRSV)
The shepherd David is anointed
The Lord said to Samuel, "How long will you grieve over Saul? I have rejected him from being king over Israel. Fill your horn with oil and set out; I will send you to Jesse the Bethlehemite, for I have provided for myself a king among his sons." Samuel said, "How can I go? If Saul hears of it, he will kill me." And the Lord said, "Take a heifer with you, and say, 'I have come to sacrifice to the Lord.' Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you what you shall do; and you shall anoint for me the one whom I name to you." Samuel did what the Lord commanded, and came to Bethlehem. The elders of the city came to meet him trembling, and said, "Do you come peaceably?" He said, "Peaceably; I have come to sacrifice to the Lord; sanctify yourselves and come with me to the sacrifice." And he sanctified Jesse and his sons and invited them to the sacrifice.
When they came, he looked on Eliab and thought, "Surely the Lord's anointed is now before the Lord." But the Lord said to Samuel, "Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for the Lord does not see as mortals see; they look on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart." Then Jesse called Abinadab, and made him pass before Samuel. He said, "Neither has the Lord chosen this one." Then Jesse made Shammah pass by. And he said, "Neither has the Lord chosen this one." Jesse made seven of his sons pass before Samuel, and Samuel said to Jesse, "The Lord has not chosen any of these." Samuel said to Jesse, "Are all your sons here?" And he said, "There remains yet the youngest, but he is keeping the sheep." And Samuel said to Jesse, "Send and bring him; for we will not sit down until he comes here." He sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, and had beautiful eyes, and was handsome. The Lord said, "Rise and anoint him; for this is the one." Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the presence of his brothers; and the spirit of the Lord came mightily upon David from that day forward. Samuel then set out and went to Ramah.
Today’s devotional is a vivid reminder that God looks at the heart of a human being, rather than the outside physical characteristics!
I don’t know about you, but I am glad that God does not judge me in the same way that the world does. When human beings judge each other we look to see how beautiful, handsome, well dressed, and/or well coifed an individual is. We examine the outwards signs available—car, house, job, clothes, and shoes, to see how much money a person possesses. We even examine physical characteristics such as race, gender, or ability to ascertain whether someone is smart, safe, or strong.
Human beings are constantly judging each other through the use of characteristics that can be seen with the eyes. God, however, judges us by looking into our hearts!
When God looks at us, God wants to know whether we posses: love, joy, peace, patience, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness and self control. God wants to know whether we truly love God with all our heart, mind, soul, and strength and love our neighbors as ourselves. God wants to know whether we truly desire to love, serve, and please God.
These are not attributes that are necessarily celebrated on the Earth, but they are characteristics that are celebrated in the Kingdom of Love. When God looks into the heart of one who truly loves God, God sanctifies that person, or sets them apart, for a special Kingdom-Come work.
David, was set aside to be king. I have been set aside as a proclaimer of GOOD NEWS. My friend has been set aside as a church cook. What have you been set aside to share with God’s children?
Isn’t it amazing that God calls us by name, that God’s grace calls us, sanctifies us, and anoints us for God’s work? In my church we say, “Marked with the cross of Christ forever, we are claimed, gathered, and sent for the sake of the world.”
Little David, a lowly shepherd boy, had the characteristics necessary to be God’s next appointed king over Israel. Little Yolanda, a lowly girl from St. Louis, Mo, had the characteristics to be sent out as an evangelist to the world. And you, my friend, have the characteristics to be used by God to bring GOOD NEWS to those in need of it!
Although scripture says that David was ruddy, handsome, and had beautiful eyes, this is not why he became king. After all, I am sure his brothers were probably equally handsome!
God asked Samuel to anoint David the next king of Israel, because he had the attributes of a shepherd. He must have been loving, compassionate, brave, smart, strong, tenacious and loyal. When God examined David’s heart, God was pleased with what was inside!
Today, God is peering into our hearts as well, and what will God find there? I believe—by faith-- that God will find a man or woman with a deep and abiding desire to know and love God more. The very fact that you are taking time, right now, to read scripture and to pray, means that you desire to know and to please God.
And my friend, please do not despair if God sees unconfessed sin in your heart as well. That can be rectified! You can ask God to forgive your sin and God who is faithful and just will forgive your sin and cleanse you of all unrighteousness.
Do not carry the burden of sin in your life, dear ones. Where there is sin, confess it to God and be set free! There is no need for you to be burdened by guilt and shame.
Jesus already paid the price for our sins when he died on Calvary’s tree. The bill we owed has been stamped, “PAID IN FULL!”
Because of Jesus’ shed blood on the cross, we are now gifted with the forgiveness of sin and eternal life that comes from believing in Jesus!
Like David, Jesus, is a good shepherd, in fact he is THE GOOD SHEPHERD, who laid down his life for the sheep.
You are beloved by God! You are a treasure beyond measure! God is looking into your heart on this day and declares, “This is my beloved son or daughter, in whom I am well pleased!”
Doesn’t this Truth make you glad today? Won’t you share it with others?
Eternal God, please look into my heart and help me to celebrate that which pleases you and to repent of that which does not. I thank you that Jesus died on the cross allowing me to confess my sin with the blessed assurance that I will be immediately forgiven. I am glad that you do not judge me by what is on the outside, but rather, by what is on the inside. Please make my heart pleasing in your sight, and please help me to share your love, care, and forgiveness with others! I am honored that Grace has called my name! I gladly answer, “Yes!” in Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Congratulations to the people who have recently put all of their faith in Jesus! We are so excited about your new-found faith in Jesus! You are in our thoughts and prayers!
If you would like to put all of your hope in Jesus today, please visit my blog entitled, “Putting All Your Hope In Jesus” located at
If you have additional questions about how to become a friend and follower of Jesus, please see the devotion entitled, "Come to Jesus"
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From Pastor Yolanda's blog http://aintathatgoodnews.blogspot.com