Fourth Sunday of Lent: 1 Samuel 16:1,6-7,10-13; Ephesians 5:8-14; John 9:1-41

Don't settle for second best... ‘Samuel did what the Lord commanded’ (1 Samuel 16:4). Real obedience comes from ‘the heart’. It is more than just ‘keeping up appearances’(1 Samuel 16:7). ‘The heart of the matter is the matter of the heart’ – This is something we must never forget!’. ‘It’s the presence of Your Spirit, …

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A baby was born – and everything was about to change!

1 SAMUEL  1:1-28 -  Hannah ‘wept’. Hannah ‘was no longer sad’ (7,18). What made the difference? No child had been born. She had not even conceived. These things did not happen until later (21). Why was there such a change in Hannah? She believed. God’s Word had been spoken (17). Hannah believed His Word. She …

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The light of the righteous shines brightly.

1 Samuel 14:24-15:35; John 14:1-31; Proverbs 12:28-13:9 “To obey is better than sacrifice” (1 Samuel 15:22). “Whoever has My commands and keeps them is the one who loves Me … Anyone who loves Me will obey My teaching” (John 14:21,23). “In the way of righteousness there is life; along that path is immortality” (Proverbs 12:28). …

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A heartfelt prayer that was heard and answered (Part Two)

Thinking about Hannah's story (1 Samuel 1-2) makes us think about our own story. What kind of people are we? What kind of people are we becoming? As we think about the past that lies behind us and the future that lies ahead of us, we must ask ourselves an important question, "Where do we …

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A heartfelt prayer that was heard and answered (Part One)

1 Samuel, chapters 1 and 2 History is full of stories about people. They are people from whom we can learn lessons for our our life in today's world. In 1 Samuel, we read about Hannah, Samuel, Saul, Jonathan and David. History tells us about God. It is His Story. This is important. We will …

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Speak, for Your servant is listening.

1 Samuel 1:1-2:26; John 10:22-42; Psalm 63:1-11 “Eli’s sons were wicked men; they had no regard for the Lord” (1 Samuel 2:13). They “sinned against the Lord” – “they did not listen to their father’s rebuke” (1 Samuel 2:25). God is calling us back from this way of living. He is showing us the better …

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Listening to God and speaking for him (Travelling Through God’s Word: 1 and 2 Samuel)

1 and 2 Samuel In 1 Samuel 3, we read about the boy, Samuel, responding to the call of God: "Speak, for your servant is listening." Towards the end of 2 Samuel,, we read these words of David, "The Spirit of the Lord speaks through me; His word is on my tongue." If we are …

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Remember the Lord’s past blessings, and let them inspire you to step into the future with him.

"The Lord who rescued me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will rescue me from the hand of this Philistine" (1 Samuel 17:37). David looked back - and remembered what the Lord had done for him. Then, he looked at Goliath - and he declared his faith in the Lord: what …

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Chosen by God, Challenged by Goliath; Our God will give us the victory.

David was the one, chosen by God, to be king - “Anoint him.He is the one” (1 Samuel 16:12). This was for the future. For the present, there was the challenge of Goliath. God’s will had been made known to David. Now, through his victory over Goliath, the will of God would become clear to …

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The Word of the Lord was rare – but the lamp of God had not yet gone out.

1 Samuel 2:27-4:22; John 11:1-44; Psalms 64:1-10 In the days of Samuel’s youth, “the word of the Lord was rare” (1 Samuel 3:1). Nevertheless, “the lamp of God had not yet gone out” (1 Samuel 3:3). God began to do a new work, with Samuel at the very heart of it. This new work was …

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Every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord – to the glory of God the Father.

1 Samuel 5:1-7:17; John 11:45-12:11; Proverbs 12:18-27 In Samuel’s day, there was conflict between the god of the Philistines (Dagon) and the God of Israel. It was no contest – “there was Dagon, fallen on his face on the ground before the ark of the Lord!” (1 Samuel 5:3-4). In Jesus’ day, there was conflict …

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In the place of prayer, we are empowered for service.

1 Samuel 19:1-20:42; John 17:6-26; Psalm 68:7-14 In the story of David and Jonathan, we have a great picture of human friendship. In Jesus’ prayer (John 17), we learn so much about our friendship with God. When we have been with God in the place of prayer, as Jesus was, we are empowered for service: “The Lord …

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The light of the righteous shines brightly.

1 Samuel 14:24-15:35; John 14:1-31; Proverbs 12:28-13:9 “To obey is better than sacrifice” (1 Samuel 15:22). “Whoever has My commands and keeps them is the one who loves Me … Anyone who loves Me will obey My teaching” (John 14:21,23). “In the way of righteousness there is life; along that path is immortality” (Proverbs 12:28). …

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Does God have a special purpose for you? Is He preparing you for something special?

"The boy Samuel continued to grow in stature and in favour with the Lord and with people" (1 Samuel 2:26). "The Lord was with Samuel as he grew up, and he let none of Samuel’s words fall to the ground" (1 Samuel 3:19). Samuel was only a boy - but the hand of the Lord …

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There is no ‘Goliath’ too strong for the Lord.

1 Samuel 16:1-17:37; John 15:1-16:4; Psalm 67:1-7 David was able to face Goliath with confidence in God – “The Lord will deliver me” (1 Samuel 17:37). Saul, then, said to him, “Go, and the Lord be with you” (1 Samuel 17:38). Jesus’ disciples were able to go forward in their mission with confidence in God, since Jesus …

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Are we trying to impress other people? or Are we seeking to please God?

"Appoint a king to lead us, such as all the other nations have" (1 Samuel 8:5). Why did the people of Israel want to have a king? - They wanted to be like "all the other nations." Why do we do the things that we do? Are we trying to impress other people? or Are …

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Jesus Christ – the King of the Jews: going to the Cross for a world of lost sinners

1 Samuel 26:1-28:25; John 19:1-27; Psalm 68:21-27 To be “the King of the Jews” was a great honour. David recognized this when he said, “But the Lord forbid that I should lay a hand on the Lord’s anointed” (1 Samuel 26:11). Pilate didn’t. He sent Jesus “to the cross” with this “notice … Jesus of Nazareth, the …

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Overview Of The Old Testament: 1 Samuel

1 Samuel 1-7 Hannah ‘prayed to the Lord’ (1:10-11). God answered her prayer (1:20). God does not always answer our prayers in the way that we want. Sometimes, rather than changing our circumstances, He simply speaks His Word to us: ‘My grace is sufficient for you’ (2 Corinthians 12:7-9). Always, He ‘gives grace to the …

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Second Sunday after the Epiphany: 1 Samuel 3:1-10, (11-20); Psalm 139:1-6, 13-18; 1 Corinthians 6:12-20; John 1:43-51

Second Sunday after the Epiphany: 1 Samuel 3:1-10, (11-20); Psalm 139:1-6, 13-18; 1 Corinthians 6:12-20; John 1:43-51 God is restoring His glory among His people. The call of Samuel is a vivid example of what God can do in the lives of children. Samuel’s early response to God set in motion a whole process of …

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Our God reigns – and He saves.

1 Samuel 24:1-25:44; John 18:25-40; Psalm 68:15-20 “The Lord… has appointed David leader over Israel” (1 Samuel 25:30). Christ’s Kingship is far greater than David’s – “My Kingdom is not of this world… My Kingdom is from another place” (John 18:36). Our God reigns (Psalm 68:16). His reign is seen in His work of salvation: “Praise be …

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Success as a military leader, failure as a spiritual leader

Saul enjoyed success as a military leader: “Wherever he turned, he was victorious” (1 Samuel 14:47). He was a failure as a spiritual leader: “Then the Lord spoke to Samuel, “I regret that I made Saul king. He turned away from Me and did not carry out My instructions” (1 Samuel 15:10-11). God’s Word of …

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Two very different attitudes to life – trusting the Lord and taking things into our own hands

The story of David and Saul is a story of two very different men. David recognized that the Lord was in control. Saul, on the other hand, was trying to keep himself in control. There are two very different attitudes to life - trusting the Lord and taking things into our own hands. We see …

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Jesus’ death was a triumph – not a tragedy.

1 Samuel 29:1-31:13; John 19:28-20:9; Psalm 68:28-35 The contrast between the death of Saul, the first king of the Jews, and Jesus, the true King of the Jews, is striking. Saul’s death was a tragedy. Jesus’ death was a triumph. The contrast is the difference between a man who said, “it is enough” (Saul had had enough …

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The victory belongs to the Lord – not to Satan!

Jonathan’s faithfulness to David arose from his love for him (1 Samuel 20:17). This is true of God. He loves us. He is faithful to us. The story of David runs parallel to the story of Saul. It highlight. the continuous conflict between God and Satan. David was God’s man. Saul had become Satan’s tool. …

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Don’t settle for “second-best.”

Fourth Sunday in Lent: 1 Samuel 16:1-13; Psalm 23; Ephesians 5:8-14; John 9:1-41 Don’t settle for “second-best”. ‘Samuel did what the Lord commanded’ (1 Samuel 16:4). Real obedience comes from ‘the heart’. It is more than just ‘keeping up appearances’ (1 Samuel 16:7). ‘The heart of the matter is the matter of the heart’- This …

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The life which glorifies God – love God and love your neighbour.

1 Samuel 10:9-12:25; John 12:37-13:17; Psalm 66:1-12 Jesus washed the disciples’ feet (John 13:5). Samuel prayed for the people (1 Samuel 12:23). Those who truly love will, like Jesus and Samuel, live to serve others. This life of service is to be combined with a life of worship. We are to “shout with joy to …

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In this world, you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.

1 Samuel 17:38-18:30; John 16:5-17:5; Psalm 68:1-6 At the heart of David’s triumph over Goliath, there is this great testimony: “it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord’s, and he will give all of you into our hands” (1 Samuel 17:47). When we face ‘Goliaths’ in our own …

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We must learn from those who fell from the Lord.

1 Samuel 13:1-14:23; John 13:18-38; Psalm 66:13-20 We must never be proud, taking the grace and power of God for granted. We must learn from those who fell from the Lord: (a) Saul did “a foolish thing” – he did not keep the command which had been given to him by the Lord his God …

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What we do for God can never compare with what He has done for us.

"Be sure to fear the Lord and serve Him faithfully with all your heart; consider what great things He has done for you" (1 Samuel 12:24). What we do for God cannot even begin to compare with what He has done for us.  Anything that we do - fearing the Lord and serving Him faithfully …

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King Jesus – so much greater than king David

1 Samuel 21:1-23:29; John 18:1-24; Proverbs 13:10-19 David was delivered from his pursuer, Saul. David became the king of Israel. Jesus was delivered into the hands of His enemies. Following His resurrection, Jesus was declared to be the King of kings. “The teaching of the wise is a fountain of life, turning a person from the snares …

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No human king can compare with Jesus – the King of kings.

1 Samuel 8:1-10:8; John 12:12-36; Psalm 65:1-13 Saul was an unworthy king. Jesus is the King who is altogether worthy – “Blessed is the King of Israel” (John 12:13). We are to bring “praise” to “God our Saviour”. We are to “shout for joy and sing” (Psalm 65:1,5,13). He is worthy of all praise, glory …

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The Holy Spirit – Learning from 1 Samuel

Everyone was so happy - ‘Long live the king! (1 Samuel 10:24). Everything seemed to be so promising - ‘The Spirit of God came mightily upon Saul’ (1 Samuel 11:6). God’s people were victorious (1 Samuel 11:11). God’s people ‘rejoiced greatly’ (1 Samuel 11:15). This is not, however, the whole story. Things were to get …

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