When they came, he looked on Eliab and thought, “Surely the LORD’S anointed is before him.” 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 sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.” Then Jesse called Abinadab and made him pass before Samuel. And 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.” And Jesse made seven of his sons pass before Samuel. And Samuel said to Jesse, “The LORD has not chosen these.” Then Samuel said to Jesse, “Are all your sons here?” And he said, “There remains yet the youngest, but behold, he is keeping the sheep.” And Samuel said to Jesse, “Send and get him, for we will not sit down till he comes here.” And he sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy and had beautiful eyes and was handsome. And the LORD said, “Arise, anoint him, for this is he.” Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the midst of his brothers. And the Spirit of the LORD rushed upon David from that day forward. And Samuel rose up and went to Ramah.
Comment: Saul seems to have been chosen previously by his physical stature and good looks. It seems as if somehow God is at Samuel’s right shoulder whispering into his ear don’t do the same thing again. Eliab, Abinadab and in total six handsome manly sons of Jesse are introduced to Samuel. The voice at his shoulder keeps saying ‘No, not him.‘
Obviously Samuel had said something to Jesse because as the sixth is passed over, Samuel mutters that God had not chosen any of these and asked ‘Are there no more?’ The youngest, the shepherd son, is called from the field and in the what seems like one having the glory of adolescence, David is announced by God and then Samuel as the one!
Like Saul he has a private anointing as the future king. Samuel goes back home, David, for that was the youngest son’s name, goes back to the sheep. One is left to wonder what feelings of fatherly pride, of brotherly jealousy, of uncertainty and questionings in David’s heart are left behind as Samuel says his farewells. Was the coming of the Spirit of God upon him, enough to settle David’s heart?
Prayer: Help me to faithfully accept the surprises which come into my life, O God.
One thought on “1 Samuel 16: 6-13… Another king chosen.”
Thank you Barry for your comments on this passage. I often remember, and quote the verse, “Man looks on the outward appearance, but God looks on the heart.” Underneath the outward “trappings” is where God is most interested. What is my heart like? Where is my heart’s passion? Where do I place God in my heart? Is He first, or is He last? Or is He not there at all? It doesn’t matter to God what we look like on the outside. It is the “inside” which is the vital part. God bless you.