ADVENT 1, WEDNESDAY December 1, 2021
1 SAMUEL 16:1-13
Now the LORD said to Samuel, “How long will you grieve over Saul, since I have rejected him from being king over Israel? Fill your horn with oil, and go; I will send you to Jesse the Bethlehemite, for I have selected a king for Myself among his sons.” 2 But Samuel said, “How can I go? When Saul hears of it, he will kill me.” And the LORD said, “Take a heifer with you, and say, ‘I have come to sacrifice to the LORD.’ 3 “And you shall invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you what you shall do; and you shall anoint for Me the one whom I designate to you.” 4 So Samuel did what the LORD said, and came to Bethlehem. And the elders of the city came trembling to meet him and said, “Do you come in peace?” 5 And he said, “In peace; I have come to sacrifice to the LORD. Consecrate yourselves and come with me to the sacrifice.” He also consecrated Jesse and his sons, and invited them to the sacrifice. 6 Then it came about when they entered, that he looked at Eliab and thought, “Surely the LORD’s anointed is before Him.” 7 But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.” 8 Then Jesse called Abinadab, and made him pass before Samuel. And he said, “Neither has the LORD chosen this one.” 9 Next Jesse made Shammah pass by. And he said, “Neither has the LORD chosen this one.” 10 Thus Jesse made seven of his sons pass before Samuel. But Samuel said to Jesse, “The LORD has not chosen these.” 11 And Samuel said to Jesse, “Are these all the children?” And he said, “There remains yet the youngest, and behold, he is tending the sheep.” Then Samuel said to Jesse, “Send and bring him; for we will not sit down until he comes here.” 12 So he sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, with beautiful eyes and a handsome appearance. And the LORD said, “Arise, anoint him; for this is he.” 13 Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the midst of his brothers; and the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon David from that day forward. And Samuel arose and went to Ramah.
Paul, a bond-servant of Christ Jesus, called as an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God, 2 which He promised beforehand through His prophets in the holy Scriptures, 3 concerning His Son, who was born of a descendant of David according to the flesh, 4 who was declared the Son of God with power by the resurrection from the dead, according to the Spirit of holiness, Jesus Christ our Lord, 5 through whom we have received grace and apostleship to bring about the obedience of faith among all the Gentiles, for His name’s sake, 6 among whom you also are the called of Jesus Christ; 7 to all who are beloved of God in Rome, called as saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
17 Therefore all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations; and from David to the deportation to Babylon fourteen generations; and from the deportation to Babylon to the time of Christ fourteen generations. 18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows. When His mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child by the Holy Spirit. 19 And Joseph her husband, being a righteous man, and not wanting to disgrace her, desired to put her away secretly. 20 But when he had considered this, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife; for that which has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. 21 “And she will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for it is He who will save His people from their sins.”
IN THE NAME OF JESUS.
From the time of the first sin in the Garden of Eden, we are looking for the promised Savior. Where is he? We keep looking and anticipating, generation after generation.
With Jesse and his family, it’s getting narrowed down. The One who is to come, the promised Anointed One to take away the sin of the world, is making his entrance, is coming among sinners, and it’s all getting narrowed down to the coming Christ.
It started out wide. The Savior would be of the lineage of Eve—that was the promise given in the Garden. But that’s everyone. Eve knew that the One who would atone for her sins would come from her lineage, but she knew not much more.
From Eve it gets narrowed down to Noah and his family. The promised one would come from Noah’s lineage. But that’s everyone who lives in the generations after the flood.
Then it gets narrowed down more. The coming Savior would come from the lineage of Abraham. But Abraham had more than one son, so it gets narrowed even more—it would be from the lineage of Abraham’s son Isaac.
But Isaac had two sons, Jacob and Esau, so it gets narrowed more. The promised Christ would come from Jacob’s lineage, not Esau’s.
Then, the Lord narrows it more. Of Jacob’s twelve sons, it’s narrowed to just one, until finally in a later generation the promised one will come from the sons of Jesse. But not from just any of Jesse’s sons, but the youngest, the least likely one, the one sent out to watch over the sheep. 1 Samuel 16:10:
10 Thus Jesse made seven of his sons pass before Samuel. But Samuel said to Jesse, “The LORD has not chosen these.” 11 And Samuel said to Jesse, “Are these all the children?” And he said, “There remains yet the youngest, and behold, he is tending the sheep.” Then Samuel said to Jesse, “Send and bring him; for we will not sit down until he comes here.” 12 So he sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, with beautiful eyes and a handsome appearance. And the LORD said, “Arise, anoint him; for this is he.”
So we end up with David. That’s unexpected—we would have expected one of the more qualified brothers, we would have expected even a different lineage. But we are given David. From David’s lineage, generations later, it is again an unexpected one. Joseph, a carpenter of the lineage of David is engaged to a Virgin named Mary. Joseph will be the earthly father. The Father is God the Father in Heaven, for the one who comes in the flesh is God the Son, but while the Father is the heavenly father, on Earth, in the office of father, we are given an unlikely Joseph.
It’s all seems so unlikely to us.
That God would have mercy on those who set themselves at enmity with him, that he would give his mercy by using the blood of a sacrifice to bring forgiveness to Adam and Eve, later to Abraham and Isaac, later to Moses and the Israelites, all the way up until that day when God himself came in the flesh to give the full sacrifice, that by that mercy God would be delivering the sinner from sin and death and into grace and righteousness and eternal life, that God would continue bringing his gift of the cross forward to our own generation by gathering us to his Name to receive his Body and Blood for the forgiveness of our sin—it is all unlikely in our way of figuring things out, totally unpredictable for anything we would have designed.
We would’ve expected the stronger sons.
We would have predicted the strong Esau over the weak Jacob. We would’ve never looked to an unknown carpenter in Bethlehem or Nazareth.
But the Lord chooses the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong. [1 Corinthians 1:27]
He chooses the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, the base things of the world and the despised—lowly things he chooses as his instruments to bring salvation to the sinner!
Not what we would expect, but it is God bringing gifts to those who have sinned against him, showing mercy to those living in shame, justifying the unclean. It is God’s grace; it’s our salvation.
This is God’s Gospel, which he promised beforehand through his prophets in the holy Scriptures. It’s his promise of his own Son, whom he gave to be born as a descendant of David according to his flesh. Through him, we receive grace, we are declared holy, called saints. Through him, Jesus Christ, son of David, the unexpected one according to our human accounting of things, through him, Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. [Romans 1:7]
IN THE NAME OF JESUS.