Thursday, September 13, 2007

Interpretation and acronyms

True Discernment, in the process of looking at 1 Samuel 28:7-14, states the following:

The key phrase in this passage is: Saul perceived that it was Samuel. However it was not Samuel it was a lying spirit. Saul had violated a specific commandment from God not to seek out and inquire of Mediums because Mediums were not of God and could only call up lying spirits.

While I'll agree that mediums cannot create truth, I don't think that God is limited by the power of mediums. In this particular case, I'm going to quote from the NKJV, which uses the word "perceive" (NIV says "knew"). Let's look at the passage, starting with verse 12, and continuing after verse 14.

1 Samuel 28:12-19 (New King James Version)
New King James Version (NKJV)
Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

12 When the woman saw Samuel, she cried out with a loud voice. And the woman spoke to Saul, saying, “Why have you deceived me? For you are Saul!”
13 And the king said to her, “Do not be afraid. What did you see?”
And the woman said to Saul, “I saw a spirit[a] ascending out of the earth.”
14 So he said to her, “What is his form?”
And she said, “An old man is coming up, and he is covered with a mantle.” And Saul perceived that it was Samuel, and he stooped with his face to the ground and bowed down.
15 Now Samuel said to Saul, “Why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?”
And Saul answered, “I am deeply distressed; for the Philistines make war against me, and God has departed from me and does not answer me anymore, neither by prophets nor by dreams. Therefore I have called you, that you may reveal to me what I should do.”
16 Then Samuel said: “So why do you ask me, seeing the LORD has departed from you and has become your enemy? 17 And the LORD has done for Himself[b] as He spoke by me. For the LORD has torn the kingdom out of your hand and given it to your neighbor, David. 18 Because you did not obey the voice of the LORD nor execute His fierce wrath upon Amalek, therefore the LORD has done this thing to you this day. 19 Moreover the LORD will also deliver Israel with you into the hand of the Philistines. And tomorrow you and your sons will be with me. The LORD will also deliver the army of Israel into the hand of the Philistines.”

To me, verse 12 is the one that truly displays God's power. Normally, when mediums bring up spirits (or pretend to do so), they don't shriek and accuse their clients of deceiving their true identity. The reason that the medium shrieked was because she was scared - and she was scared because she saw something she didn't expect - namely, the real Samuel. God is not bound by human limitations and inadequacies, and he chose this moment to not only get the attention of the witch of Endor, but to get the attention of Saul.

The medium's fright was nothing like the fright that Saul was about to get when Samuel spoke. And this was not a lying spirit giving the word of Satan - this was the Word of God that was being spoken here.

I should note that this minor quibble with the beginning of the True Discernment post doesn't at all detract from the main message about being watchful about practicing other religions.

And the end of the post gets off a little zinger about some people who buy time on Paul Crouch's network:

None of them wanting to be booted off of the trough of Total Biblical Nonsense that is TBN?

Although perhaps the "Biblical" part doesn't apply.

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That man will not look towards men but towards Jesus! said...

Hey whats a little quibble between kindred spirits! No pun intended there :^)

Yes I thought about that TBN acronym afterwards and thought nahh that doesnt sound right, its not Biblical Nonsense! Its Non-Biblical nonsense but that would have been TNN or TNBN and would have ruined my whole punch line!

Oh well.

Thanks for the comment and insightful input, it is always welcome!

Ontario Emperor said...

Hmmm...complete non-Biblical nonsense...heh.