1 Samuel 16 | Jesus Changes Hearts

by | Dec 26, 2020

READ 1 Samuel 16

The Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or his stature because I have rejected him. Humans do not see what the Lord sees, for humans see what is visible, but the Lord sees the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:6-7)

Even the influential prophet of God was tricked by looks. Today’s chapter teaches us how different and limited we are compared to God. Our confidence in ourselves or in another person is often influenced by appearances and abilities, because we’re unable to know what’s going on in the secret places of the heart, but the Lord sees the heart. God is able to look deeper than a strong jawline, a standout resume, and charm. God “weighs the heart” (Prov. 21:2). He knows the underlining motives for why we do what we do.

In Chapter 16, we see the authors begin to contrast Saul and David. Saul was chosen based on his physical features, because this is what the people requested (1 Sam. 8:20, 9:2). But although David was considered handsome, he was still last on the list compared to his seven older brothers (16:11). David was an overlooked shepherd boy. A nobody, but he was a somebody to the Lord. Then the Spirit of the LORD came powerfully on David to anoint him, while the Spirit of the LORD had left Saul. (16:13-14). The continued contrasts will show the differences between these two hearts.

What’s interesting is that God can see that layer of scum and selfishness crusted around our private thoughts, desires, and intentions, and the span of David’s life reveals his heart has this sickness too. So then, what’s so different about David’s heart that made God choose him over Saul? What did God see? 1 Samuel 13:14 tells us that David was a man after God’s own heart.

What’s the one thing God is looking for in your heart? Himself. God is not looking for sinless people, but people who actually desire him. People who fall into the trap of pursuing their own name, but then repent, get back up, and run hard after God’s glory again. Isn’t this what the gospel empowers us to do? It allows sinners to hit the reset button of new mercies every morning (Lam. 3:23). This is what David continually did.

The truly Anointed One, Jesus Christ, he is the only person to perfectly be a man after God’s own heart. And if you stay close and learn from this Anointed King, he will change your heart, day by day, and it will begin to look like his heart. So stay close to Jesus, and you will be a man or woman after God’s own heart (Jn. 4:34).

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