Therefore they inquired further of the LORD, “Has the man come here yet?” So the LORD said, “Behold, he is hiding himself by the baggage.”So they ran and took him from there... I Samuel 10.23-24
Saul had been anointed king in chapter 10 and now it was time for the coronation. Problem was, when they went to look for the guy who was to wear the crown, he was nowhere to be found; he was hiding in the baggage.
Hmmm interesting word, but more on that in a minute.
My friends and I have had several intriguing debates over this passage; was Saul simply exhibiting humility? He had, after all, said at the time he was anointed,
“Am I not a Benjamite, of the smallest of the tribes of
Perhaps his reluctance to step forward indicated a genuine feeling of unworthiness for the task.
Could be. And if that is the conclusion that we are to draw, well, well enough. Certainly it is true that none of us are “worthy” for the slightest responsibility that the Lord entrusts us with, of that we can be assured.
On the other hand…
There were two significant chinks in the armor of Saul’s life, his soul, his heart. One was a disconnection from the God who called him and the second is fear.
I believe that this is the first indication we have of a personal attribute that will haunt Saul for the rest of his life; fear in general, fear of man specifically.
The fear of man brings a snare, but he who trusts in the LORD will be exalted.
God had chosen Saul, anointed Saul, empowered Saul, etc. God had given Saul a specific job to do, “he will deliver My people from the hand of the Philistines” (9.16). It seems to me to hardly be the time to be hiding.
I so appreciate Paul. He was a man who understood where he came from; where the Lord found him; what he was doing when God called him. In fact it is Paul who wrote:
“I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has strengthened me, because He considered me faithful, putting me into service” I Tim 1.12
And yet it is Paul who also wrote:
Paul, an apostle (not sent from men nor through the agency of man, but through Jesus Christ and God the Father, who raised Him from the dead), and all the brethren who are with me...
Paul says over and over; I am an apostle, I was given that job and that title by God himself. So, in the authority that God has given me and in obedience to the responsibility I have been entrusted with, I am writing to you. I have a job to do and I am doing it in the strength God himself supplies, in the authority that comes directly from the Lord, for the glory of the One who has entrusted me with this ministry.
No apology, no extraordinary explanation, no excuses, no fear!
What have you been assigned? How about me? Shame on us if we are hiding in the baggage when we ought to be getting on with it.
And let’s not let our baggage keep us from being obedient to what the Lord has called us, anointed us and empowered us to do… whatever that might be. Do I have some hang up, some “history”, anything hanging around in piles; the
Times-a-wastin’! Take your baggage to the airport and leave it there, it will be the last time you see it :), and get to work!
The Lord knew what he was doing when He assigned us the task, He knows how weak we are, how insufficient our abilities, but if He called us, we best be about the Fathers business!