| 23 April 2013 |



/Samuel Anoints Saul/

*9* There was a Benjamite, a man of standing, whose name was Kish son
of Abiel, the son of Zeror, the son of Becorath, the son of Aphiah of
Benjamin. 2 He had a son named Saul, an impressive young man without
equal among the Israelites—a head taller than any of the others.

3 Now the donkeys belonging to Saul’s father Kish were lost, and
Kish said to his son Saul, “Take one of the servants with you and go
and look for the donkeys.” 4 So he passed through the hill country
of Ephraim and through the area around Shalisha, but they did not find
them. They went on into the district of Shaalim, but the donkeys were
not there. Then he passed through the territory of Benjamin, but they
did not find them.

5 When they reached the district of Zuph, Saul said to the servant who
was with him, “Come, let’s go back, or my father will stop
thinking about the donkeys and start worrying about us.”

6 But the servant replied, “Look, in this town there is a man of
God; he is highly respected, and everything he says comes true.
Let’s go there now. Perhaps he will tell us what way to take.”

7 Saul said to his servant, “If we go, what can we give the man? The
food in our sacks is gone. We have no gift to take to the man of God.
What do we have?”

8 The servant answered him again. “Look,” he said, “I have a
quarter of a shekel of silver. I will give it to the man of God so
that he will tell us what way to take.” 9 (Formerly in Israel, if a
man went to inquire of God, he would say, “Come, let us go to the
seer,” because the prophet of today used to be called a seer.)

10 “Good,” Saul said to his servant. “Come, let’s go.” So
they set out for the town where the man of God was.


Here we are introduced to Saul – a man who stood out from the crowd; a
man the Bible calls “impressive”, “without equal”. This
particular introduction to the life of Saul may seem fairly random.
Afterall, how interesting can it possibly be to read about a man who
goes to look for his father’s sheep and then ends up having a
conversation with his servant about a “man of God”.

But this introduction tells us a little about what was normal in the
culture of the day (which is still relevant today) and the kind of
things Saul valued at the outset.

When Saul couldn’t find the sheep, his servant suggested they go to
a nearby town where “a man of God” could help them. Saul’s first
concern: “what can we give the man?”.

There is a principle in Saul’s question: A workman is always worth
his toil. Or, in English we understand, when someone does something
good for us, they deserve to be honoured. This applies /especially/ to
“the man of God”, or people who are supported through ministry and
full time service to God.

Very often, there is an expectation that because people are serving
God, they should do things for free. This may sound noble, but it is
not biblical.


Those who serve God on a full-time basis (pastors, administrators,
worship leaders, missionaries etc) are tasked with looking after
(shepherding) God’s people. Very often this is a thankless job,
requiring long hours, taking time from their families, and eating into
their personal resources. But full time service is a calling, one that
brings great joy amidst the difficulties. Some of the greatest joys
experienced are the blessings through the people those in ministry
serve. Have you thought how you could be a blessing to someone who
serves in a full time capacity? Why not do something today that will
be a blessing to your pastor, worship leader, missionary etc?


Lord thank you for the people in my church and ministries I’m part
of that serve you in the way that they do. Please help me to find ways
to show my appreciation and to be a blessing to them. Amen.

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