By Appointment Only
1 Samuel 16:1-13
Message No. 0541 | Twitter @GodandUs | www.wisdom-speaks.ca
There are various ways through which people are chosen to occupy leadership positions. One is by election. In politics, election means that people choose to contest for positions, work hard to educate electors on the reasons why they are to be elected instead of their opponents. We are all familiar with the way elections are run as, in many democratic societies, this happens for various positions, on the average, every four years. Another method of choosing leaders is by interview. With this method, a panel is created to interview candidates and, depending on preset criteria, one of the candidates is chosen to occupy the vacant position. This is the common method used in corporate and governmental institutions. A third method that is used is appointment. With this method, a powerful person (or group of persons) decides who will occupy the vacant position and that’s it, no contest. To be chosen this way, the chosen usually stands in a position of favor or grace.
In the Bible, very rarely were leaders chosen by any other method than the third, for obvious reasons, of course; how would it be if the Holy Spirit did not know who the best person is to occupy a position. Amazingly, however, the Holy Spirit sometimes showed no respect for cultural orders, often choosing the younger over the elder. This sometimes made no sense to people, as they expected that all protocols would be observed, especially by using age to select leaders.
Abraham was not the eldest of the children of Terah, but in Genesis chapter 12, God singled him out by pulling him from among his brothers and deciding to make him the foundation of His chosen generation. The Bible even mentioned his name first while listing the children of Terah in Genesis 11:26. From that moment on, Abraham became the leader and point man of his family. I pray in Jesus’ name that God will single you out and make you the leader in your generation. As Abraham was appointed by God, you will be appointed in your office, in your business and in your career.
Just as God did not show respect for age while choosing leaders in the Bible, He also did not show respect for earthly qualifications. Wouldn’t you want the person with the most excellent Resume to occupy the position for which you are hiring? Well, qualifications are good, but God looks, beyond those glorious tributes, straight into the heart of the candidate. Even those who were chosen often made excuses, tried to talk God out of His decisions, citing obvious lack of qualification. Moses was a stutterer; his elder brother, Aaron, was fluent and should have been able to use oratory to lead people, but he was a coward, caving in to pressure from the people to create a golden god for them when Moses was on the mountain with God. Gideon was not the bravest of men in his family when God chose him to save Israel from the Midianites. Look at what he said in Judges 6:15 when God told him he had been chosen:
“Pardon me, my lord,” Gideon replied, “but how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family.”
Perhaps one of the most glaring of God’s appointments in the Bible was that of David. This was one guy no one paid any attention to. When Samuel came to Jesse and asked him to consecrate himself and his sons and come to the ‘sacrifice,’ Jesse excluded David. Jesse must have thought to himself, how could that smallish shepherd of a boy be in consideration for leader of the whole nation. David only commanded the herd, how could he qualify for the job of commander-in-chief? Even Samuel, God’s anointed spiritual leader, missed this part. When he saw Eliab, Jesse’s first son (1 Samuel 16:6-7), he decided in his heart that he was the chosen of God:
But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
Earthly qualification is good, but the most important qualification anyone could aspire for is the favor of God. If God has appointed you to a position, who can depose you from that position? God appointed Paul, perhaps the most unqualified of all human beings on earth, to be the most influential of all of the apostles. He didn’t even see Jesus physically, but he testified more of Him than those who did. He was the undisputed giant of his era.
Paul’s appointment was an outlier, in that, he was actually working very hard in the opposite direction to where God wanted to use him, but God saw something in him and decided he was the right choice. If God were to look into our hearts today, would He find something that would make Him take a decision to appoint us? To be appointed of God, it is necessary for Him to see a heart that exhibits or is ready to exhibit obedience, humility, love and holiness. Will He see these in us if He places us under the X-ray?
Perhaps you read this message and think it’s not for you, because, in your heart, you feel that you are a nobody. Well, that might be one qualification that God is actually looking for. You may currently be a million miles away from leadership, but, so was Joseph, so was Moses, so was David and other people that God appointed and used. Get ready because you may be the next appointee. When God needs somebody He can trust, may you be the chosen person, in Jesus’ name. Amen. Have a wonderful week!
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