[Announce text] Please look with me in Scripture at 1 Samuel 16:1-13.
[Scripture introduction] First Samuel records the establishment of Israel’s monarchy, about 1050 B.C. Samuel led Israel for many years in the combined roles of prophet, priest, and judge. After the people demanded a king like those of the other nations (ch. 8), God directed Samuel to anoint Saul as Israel’s first king. When Saul turned from God, David was anointed by Samuel to succeed him.
[Reannounce and read text] Read with me these words of when Samuel was sent to anoint a man after God’s own heart from the town of Bethlehem 1 Samuel 16:1-13. [The preacher reads the Scripture passage out loud.]
[Prayer for illumination] Pray with me as we ask God to direct our hearts and minds into his sacred word. [The minister offers a brief prayer asking the Holy Spirit to bless the understanding of the preacher and hearers as God’s Word is proclaimed.]
[Introduction] Did you know your heart is roughly the size of a fist and sits in the middle of your chest, slightly to the left. It's the muscle at the center of your circulation system, pumping blood around your body as your heart beats.
It is the organ that symbolizes our deepest desires, motivations, and love. Without the heart, we cease to live. In biblical terminology, the heart is the centre of our humanity and is a window into the soul. You cannot see the beauty of a person without first looking into their heart. Inside this little organ contains all the elements which makes one’s being: emotion, intelligence, discernment, wisdom, commitment, and character - we can call it for what it is - the soul.
Which raises a modern problem with our society. Why does tends to elevate what’s on the outside rather than what’s within? Everything you watch online, on see television or read in books focus on the beauty that’s outside the heart.
Unfortunately, I believe we are caught up in focusing on the non-essentials. If the bible is correct and the heart is the center of who we are, why are we everyone so fixated on the outside appearance? Perhaps I can say it like this instead...
“Why do we focused on the wrong part of the soul?” [FCF]
It is as the world and often the church focuses get caught staring at only the external qualities of an individual i.e., height, strength, charisma, and looks. Does God really care about your appearance?
Thankfully, the Scriptures are introducing a new perspective on how we should view humanity in 1 Samuel 16 [Scripture bond].
Which that in mind, we turn to Samuel’s story of how...
[Main Point 1] Saul is rejected by the Lord...
for letting his servants keep the livestock of the Amalekites. The consequence of Saul's leadership is that he loses his kingdom and it will be given to another (1 Sam 15: 22-23).
The prophet Samuel because he grew fond of Saul. He anointed him as king, watched his grow into the leadership role as king and yet, saw the Lord reject him. Samuel grieves over his lost relationship.
[Subpoint 1] God sees the next anointed king in Bethlehem.
God knows the heart of the man who loves him. Which Samuel must learn God’s ways. The Lord see the beauty that none can recognize.
[Main Point 2] Samuel the seer cannot see all.
When he gets there he thinks the oldest son will be chosen. He looks at his skin, figure, muscles and believes surely this is the one who God has appointed, just look at Saul!
[Subpoint 1] Samuel focused on the appearance alone.
Even as the prophet of God, Samuel failed to see what God see - the heart.
[Subpoint 2] God reveals the truth of what he sees (1 Samuel 16:7).
What does God see? He sees the shepherd boy who was forgotten by his father. “Arise, anoint him, for this is he.”
[Subpoint 3] The heart of God is unseen by man.
David is anointed as the next king of Isreal. The Lord makes a commitment to him and gives him the greatest gift - the Holy Spirit. In this story, God was teaching the prophet on how we should view people. What is most important? The heart of man!
[Proposition] Since God views people by their hearts, I should too.
Instructions: God require you to adjust your perception of yourself and others. You should be more interested of the inner soul than outward appearance of man.
Situations: When selecting friends....befriend those with God's heart. When preparing for the day...dress yourself with God's heart. When judging people....discern people with God's heart.
Motivation: The grace-motivations for obedience are implicitly found when Samuel anointed David with oil and the Spirit rushed upon him. When you focus on the heart of man, God's Spirit begins his work on you and others.
Enablement: Write down what the Lord said to Samuel, "For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart (1 Samuel 16:7) and hang up the scripture wherever you'll see it.
[Conclusion] Your interior world is worth investing in daily. I can say this because Christ came to change the hearts of men. Jesus took your death and sins away so you can have a beautiful heart. All we have to do is accept the grace of God and walk by faith.
[Prayer for Transformation] Pray with me as we ask the Lord to transform us. [The minister prays for the congregation to reflect, repent, and renew themselves to Lord and to drink of the salvation of Christ.]