The Thunder and Rain
Scripture reading for March 19th: 1st Samuel 9-12
Does God ever get sad at the behavior of His people? Does God ever cry? Jesus wept at the tomb of Lazarus and cried out in mourning over Jerusalem as he entered it during Passover week. We know that God’s heart is full of love for His people and He is sad when they reject Him and His love.
Samuel had faithfully led the people of God for many years. He had tried to set his sons over them, but the sons were not of the same character as Samuel and the people cried out for a king like the other nations. (1st Samuel 8:5-7) God told Samuel that it was not him they were rejecting, but God Himself! He instructed Samuel to give them what they wanted!
The search for a king went forth under God’s direction and the story of how Saul was chosen is an interesting one. Saul was out looking for lost donkeys and decided to go to Samuel for wisdom. God had spoken to Samuel a day earlier that a man from Benjamin would approach him and that was the man to anoint as king. (1st Samuel 9:15-16) I find it amusing that the man looking for lost donkeys was placed by God over a bunch of lost “sheep”! Samuel told him that his donkey’s had been found and now he had a new job of leading the people of Israel!
As a final act after confirming Saul as king, Samuel confronted the people concerning their wicked request for a king. He pointed out that they had a King in the Lord and had rejected Him. Samuel warned them not to turn away from the Lord but to serve Him with all their hearts. The king and people would be shown the seriousness of their ways by a special sign during the normally dry season of wheat harvest. As Samuel called upon the Lord, He sent thunder and rain upon the land and the people stood in awe of Samuel and the Lord! (1st Samuel 12:15-18)
This thunder and rain reminds me of God’s heart of weeping over His people when they sinned or rejected Him. Jesus wept over Jerusalem as He entered it on Palm Sunday! They missed the time of their King’s coming! (Luke 19:41-44) Would that we would remain true to our King and serve Him wholeheartedly!