The story of King Saul and the medium of Endor (1 Samuel 28) is a fascinating story. King Saul had earlier failed to carry out the Lord’s instructions regarding the destruction of the Amalekites (1 Samuel 15), taking the king prisoner instead of killing him with the rest of the Amalekites. God was angry with Saul because he refused to obey everything he had commanded him and therefore Samuel prophesied the kingdom would be taken away from Saul.
In chapter 28 Saul is again facing a war with the Philistines. He seeks God’s face, but God is silent. Saul, because God is silent, consults with a medium at Endor. This medium summons the spirit of the dead Samuel who further rebukes Saul who ultimately dies in the ensuing battle with the Philistines.
Saul compounded one act of disobedience by committing another. He should have destroyed all the Amalekites and he knew he should not have consulted a medium. His excuse was that God was silent. He wanted clear instruction from God, yet he already knew what was expected of him.
Today there are many times when we would like to hear from God. Maybe we are facing a life changing decision such as taking up a new job or moving to a new house. It could be we are deciding what college or university we should choose to attend, or what career we should follow. For some we sense God’s call on our lives into a new ministry or a new way to serve in the church and we would like clarity from God. Yet God is silent.
The truth is we will never open our bibles and find clear instructions on any of these life choices.
Some of us will be facing illness, persecution or injustice and we to want to hear from God. We open our bible and read promises that God will be our refuge, shelter and rock. Yet the injustice continues. God appears silent, or at least incapable or unwilling to act. How do we cope with such situations?
This Sunday as we continue to look at the life of Joseph we discover God was also silent when Joseph was imprisoned for a crime he did not commit. Yet in the silence God is faithful to his promises. It is God’s faithfulness to promises he has already made that brings us comfort, not a new revelation from God. Discipleship, faith is learning to trust God’s faithfulness despite the injustice in the sure and certain hope that God has already honoured his word in the person of Jesus Christ.
Come along this Sunday and hear more about God’s faithfulness and why not stay after church to join our church family for lunch at the manse. Julia, Robin, Jacob and I will be delighted to spend time with you and get to know you.