Archive for the ‘Philistines’ Tag

Overnight Overkill   Leave a comment


By Lori Rodeheaver

In 1 Samuel 14, we find that God’s people had just won a battle against their enemy.  Saul’s army was so faint from fighting and lack of food that immediately after they won, they sinned against God by eating meat with the blood still in it.  Now, their leader expects them to carry on fighting, plundering, and pursing the enemy all night.

Then Saul said, “Let us go down after the Philistines by night and plunder them until the morning light; let us not leave a man of them.” And they said, “Do whatever seems good to you.” But the priest said, “Let us draw near to God here.” 37 And Saul inquired of God, “Shall I go down after the Philistines? Will you give them into the hand of Israel?” But he did not answer him that day. ~1 Samuel 14:36-37

Any fool could see that these men needed rest as much as they had needed food.  Yet this leader was blind to the needs of his own people.  There is but one concern in Saul’s heart – self.

As he seeks to pursue an already defeated enemy with an already defeated army, a conflict arises between this leader and his spiritual authority.  Saul wants to use his ready-to-flat-line subjects to collect his booty, but his priest urges him to wait and pray.

Note, where foolish, unspiritual leaders selfishly disregard the needs of God’s people, spiritual leaders will step up to challenge them.  Our weakness often leads to sin when and if we become severe and desperate enough in our infirmities.  When the health and safety of God’s people is at stake, God’s glory is also at stake.

So, for fear of men and to avoid looking bad, Saul prays to see whether he ought to carry out his plan or not.  But God did not answer.  Saul knows that sin is at the root of this silent treatment.  What he fails to recognize is that it’s his sin, not the sin of his people.

Of course, the lot falls to Jonathan,  his son, and Jonathan was indeed the one guilty of breaking Saul’s oath of fasting…but Jonathan was not even informed about the oath.  He was ignorant of his father’s foolish directive when he ate.  He was not rebellious or disobedient.  If charged with any crime, it might only be hunger.

 Then Saul said to Jonathan, “Tell me what you have done.” And Jonathan told him, “I tasted a little honey with the tip of the staff that was in my hand. Here I am; I will die.” ~1 Samuel 14:43

Even still, Jonathan accepts his own guilt.  He does not justify himself.  He pleads neither his case nor his innocence.

Oh!  If Saul would have just been examining his heart!  If Saul had been doing what Jonathan did here all along, God’s people wouldn’t be in this mess.  If he had been examining his own heart for wickedness, he would have saved his kin from guilt.

Instead, Saul heartlessly and disaffectionately charges his very own son with the death penalty.  How willing he is to sacrifice anyone and anything to stay in charge and be in the right – even his very own son!  But, as Matthew Henry said, “Justice is debased when it is administered with wrath and bitterness.”

But Saul’s son was beloved among the people.  He was their hero; their savior; their deliverer.  He was a young man full of courage, honor, and integrity.  There was no way they were going to let him die for a nicety.

This is amazing.  These people were willing to starve.  They were willing to obey when corrected.  They were willing to fight all night if so instructed by their leader.  But there was one thing they were wholly unwilling to do.  There was one thing for which they stood up and said, “NO!”  That thing was selling out their friend – their rescuer who had so valiantly fought for them.

Jonathan was a type of Christ.  When conflict arises, we must never allow man’s religion to put to death our Savior.  Yet, “they did not rescue him by violence, but by reason and resolution.” ~Matthew Henry

Note, any time we see gross injustice among God’s people, we must not resort to violence, hostility, anger, or force in order to correct it.  Instead, we must pursue peace through reason, truth, prayer, and the scriptures.

Then Saul went up from pursuing the Philistines, and the Philistines went to their own place. ~1 Samuel 14:46

Finally, what we find as a result of all this in-house conflict is the enemy getting away.  The enemy escaped.  No heaping spoils of war after this victory.  Just a bunch of exhausted, post-traumatic stress suffering soldiers in desperate need of rest and recovery.

That’s what foolish, unspiritual leaders produce.  Be careful who you follow.

Everyday Encounters with the Creator

I am Baptized in the Holy Ghost and with Fire!   3 comments

Samson with the jawbone of an ass

Dreams from the LORD 2003-2006
24 March 2005

John 4: 23-24: “But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship. God is a spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.”

The true worshippers. The full Gospel. The Holy Ghost and Scripture. Shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth. There is a powerful balance when you have the power of the Holy Ghost and the knowledge of Scripture engrafted into your Spirit man. The Holy Ghost and Scripture is a two-edged sword that Satan hates. Satan can find ways to inflict damage on someone who is only in the Holy Ghost or who is only into Scripture. I think it is interesting to note that the word “spirit” precedes the word “truth”. We can’t get the cart before the horse. We need the Holy Ghost to teach us the Scripture. How can you understand Scripture if you are not born again? Then when you get baptized in the Holy Ghost with the evidence of speaking in tongues, the Bible becomes an even more living, breathing document.

When Adam was in the Garden of Eden (before he sinned), he did not have the Law, the Prophets or the New Testament, but he did have the unbroken Presence of God (the Holy Ghost) to guide him and sustain him. The Lord did not have to give him a written book to tell Adam what to do, the Lord spoke to Adam in his spirit: Spirit to spirit: perfect communion.

And they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth. It doesn’t say you must worship Him in a building. If a building has a pastor in it that is submitted to the Holy Ghost, then the congregation is in good hands. The congregation is in the building not because of the building, but because of the Holy Ghost.

When I meet people on the road, I don’t care if they are Pentecostal, Methodist, Roman Catholic, Baptist or non-churchgoers. I tell them about Jesus, the Word of God and the Holy Ghost. Let’s get the horse before the cart. Without a horse, the cart is dead in its tracks; without the cart, you can still ride the horse. John Wesley rode on horseback all over England: he didn’t need a cart. Wouldn’t it be beautiful if the Lord told some Holy Ghost believer to buy a horse and go on horseback and preach the Gospel in England? Or maybe it would be easier to hitchhike. America owes so much to England and the rest of Great Britain—a lot of powerful saints came out of Scotland and Wales. Get on your horse and ride in the power of the Holy Ghost. The Holy Ghost Riders.

I Kings 18: 46: “And the hand of the Lord was on Elijah; and he girded up his loins and ran before Ahab to the entrance of Jezreel.” In the back of my Bible I have a map of Israel and the distance between Mt. Carmel and Jezreel is about 25 miles. This old man named Elijah outran the king’s chariots in the power of the Holy Ghost. Some people hitchhike in the Holy Ghost, some people ride horses in the Holy Ghost and some people run in the Holy Ghost.

Sans teeth, sans taste, sans horse, sans everything.

I was working for Pike Construction back in Ames, Iowa and I was doing demolition work: I would use a sledgehammer and break down these brick and mortar walls, shovel it up into a garbage can and haul it out to this dump truck. One morning we got this new guy and he worked with me his first day. He was built like a brick house: he was around 5’ 9”, 235 pounds, had 19-inch biceps (that’s what he told me—maybe he only had 18-inch biceps)—he was a body builder. The second day he came to the job site, he said that he couldn’t keep up with me, so he would do carpenter work. That was okay with me because he had more experience than me in carpenter work. After about a week, this guy said to me, “Tim, how do you do it? You’re swinging that sledgehammer all day long and you don’t let up. Look at me; look at the size of my arms. Now look at you; look at the size of your arms (at the time I was 5’11” and 175 pounds). How do you do it? You never get tired.”

I looked at him and exclaimed, “Because I am baptized in the Holy Ghost and with Fire!”

The guy about had a heart attack. He didn’t know what to think. From that time on he would ask me questions about the Bible and spiritual things. So the moral of the story is: if you swing your sledgehammer in a responsible, Holy Ghost manner, someone eventually may enter into the Kingdom of Heaven.

Elijah . . . ran before Ahab to the entrance of Jezreel in a responsible, Holy Ghost manner.

I came, I saw, I swung my sledgehammer in the power of the Holy Ghost. With the sledge of a hammer, heaps upon heaps, with the sledge of a hammer, have I slain a thousand men. And he cast the sledgehammer out of his hand and called that place Ramath-sledgehammer.

Judges 13: 25: “And the spirit of the Lord began to move him at times in the camp of Dan between Zorah and Eshtaol.”

One thing about Samson: at least he slew the Philistines in a responsible, Holy Ghost manner.

God’s battle axe
Please don’t feminize Christ
The Spirit of might

Posted November 16, 2012 by Tim Shey in Uncategorized

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