Reading for Today: 1 Samuel 29:1–31:13

Reading for Today:

1 Samuel 29:1–31:13
Psalm 61:5
Proverbs 16:7-9
John 3:19-36

1 Samuel 30:6 distressed…grieved. Arriving home to the reality of their great tragedy caused David immense distress and provoked the wickedness of his men to entertain the treasonous idea of stoning him. Having not inquired of the Lord before his departure to support Achish in battle, David was in need of God’s getting his attention. strengthened himself in the LORD his God. This was the key to David’s being a man after God’s heart (1 Sam. 13:14; Acts 13:22).

1 Samuel 30:19 nothing…was lacking. In spite of David’s previous failures, God showed Himself to be more than gracious and abundant in His stewardship of the wives, children, livestock, and possessions of David and his men.

Proverbs 16:9 Sovereign God overrules the plans of men to fulfill His purposes. (See Gen. 50:20; 1 Kin. 12:15; Ps. 119:133; Jer. 10:23; Dan. 5:23–30; 1 Cor. 3:19,20.)

DAY 14: How did John the Baptist respond to the growing ministry of Christ?

The potential conflict between John and Jesus as depicted in John 3:26 was heightened by the fact that both were engaged in ministry in close proximity to each other. Because baptism is mentioned in v. 22, Jesus may have been close to Jericho near the fords of the Jordan, while John was a short distance north baptizing at Aenon. John’s followers were especially disturbed by the fact that so many were flocking to Jesus whereas formerly they had come to John.

John’s response was to emphasize God’s sovereign authority in granting any ministry opportunity (v. 27). It must be “given to him from heaven.” And he conveyed his understanding of his own role through the use of a parable (v. 29).The “friend of the bridegroom” was the ancient equivalent of the best man who organized the details and presided over the Judean wedding. This friend found his greatest joy in watching the ceremony proceed without problems. Most likely, John was also alluding to Old Testament passages where faithful Israel is depicted as the bride of the Lord (Is. 62:4,5; Jer. 2:2; Hos. 2:16–20).

In vv. 31–36, John the Baptist gave 5 reasons for Christ’s superiority to him: 1) Christ had a heavenly origin (v. 31); 2) Christ knew what was true by firsthand experience (v. 32); 3) Christ’s testimony always agreed with God (v. 33); 4) Christ experienced the Holy Spirit in an unlimited manner (v. 34); and 5) Christ was supreme because the Father sovereignly had granted that status to Him (v. 35).

In a fitting climax to the chapter (v. 36), John the Baptist laid out two alternatives, genuine faith and defiant disobedience, thereby bringing to the forefront the threat of looming judgment. As John faded from the forefront, he offered an invitation to faith in the Son and clearly expressed the ultimate consequence of failure to believe, i.e., “the wrath of God.”

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