10/10 Reading (1 Samuel 10-12; 1 Corinthians 13)

1 Samuel 10: Saul is anointed king by Samuel. Samuel explains some of the signs he will see and tells Saul to wait 7 days for him. Samuel brings all of the tribes together and initially admonishes them again for selecting a human king over God. He then brings forward the Benjamin tribe, then the Matri family, and then selected Saul. Not everyone was happy with this decision, with some refusing to give him any gifts of appreciation.

I noticed a strange paragraph at the end of this chapter:

Nahash the Ammonite king had been severely oppressing the Gadites and the Reubenites. He gouged out everyone’s right eye, thereby not allowing Israel to have a deliverer. There wasn’t a single Israelite left across the Jordan River who hadn’t had their right eye gouged out by the Ammonite king Nahash. But seven thousand people had escaped from the Ammonites’ power and fled to Jabesh-gilead.”

This just didn’t seem to align with the rest of this chapter. I noticed the following note in the NRSV study bible: “This paragraph was lost from the Hebrew text and has been restored from a Dead Sea Scroll fragment of Samuel” (p. 415). THAT’S AWESOME!!!

1 Samuel 11: The chapter is a continuation of thee Ammonite siege on Jabesh-gilead. When Saul hears about this, God’s spirit came over him and he became enraged. He threatened to kill the oxen of any Israelites who don’t come to fight with him and save the people of Jabesh-gilead. The people come, they destroy the Ammonites, and free the people of Jabesh-gilead. After this victory the people are excited to have Saul as their new king and he is made king in Gilgal.

1 Samuel 12: Samuel gives one more speech to the people warning them of the dangers of taking a human king over God. Samuel reminds the people of what their ancestors experienced all the way back to Joseph when he was in Egypt. He reminds them of the importance of worshiping God and only God. He makes it clear that if Saul and the people continue to worship just God, all will be well. However, if they don’t worship God, he will not be there for them when they are in need.

1 Corinthians 13: This is one of my absolute favorite chapters in the Bible. It is the one that focuses on the spiritual gift of love. Unless I’m mistaken, part of this chapter was read at my wedding. I want to include the full chapter here for future reference:

If I speak in the tongues of mortals and of angels, but do not have love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. ² And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. ³ If I give away all my possessions, and if I hand over my body so that I may boast,a but do not have love, I gain nothing. ⁴ Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant ⁵ or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; ⁶ it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. ⁷ It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. ⁸ Love never ends. But as for prophecies, they will come to an end; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will come to an end. ⁹ For we know only in part, and we prophesy only in part; ¹⁰ but when the complete comes, the partial will come to an end. ¹¹ When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; when I became an adult, I put an end to childish ways. ¹² For now we see in a mirror, dimly,a but then we will see face to face. Now I know only in part; then I will know fully, even as I have been fully known. ¹³ And now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; and the greatest of these is love. (1 Cor. 13; NRSV version)

I said for chapter 12 my spiritual gift is teaching. But I must acknowledge something: I believe that teaching would be very challenging if not impossible without love in my life. The love I have for my wife and the love she has for me as well as the love we both have for our children and the love they have for us. I know, kinda cheesy. But it’s true. So well said Paul!

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