Wow. I just had a wrestling match with Scripture. Have you ever questioned something you read in God’s Word that you could not get past? I had that experience in verse 10 of this chapter:
The next day an evil spirit from God came forcefully upon Saul.
I don’t know about you, but major questions come to mind when the Bible tells me anything evil came from God. Verses like I John 1:5, “God is light and in Him is no darkness at all,” and James 1:13, “Let no one say when he is tempted, ‘I am tempted by God’; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone,” come to mind. But here it is in black and white. An evil, or distressing spirit FROM GOD was thrown at Saul.
I went to commentaries on my shelf and on the internet to try to makes sense of this. And I’m glad I did.
Why would the Spirit of God come upon Saul in a distressing way? I was reminded that Saul had chosen sin over obedience. He chose his own desires over repentance. And in doing so, the Spirit of God had left Him. (16:14)
Here is what I think God would have us consider today: When we disobey, when we choose sin over purity, and then when God removes Himself and His blessings from us, we should expect to feel crummy about it. We should never imagine that God is going to watch us walk away from Him and not convict us.
Saul was under major conviction. His soul was at war within him. Of course Saul was distressed.
Friend, God does not cause anyone to sin. He is Holy. But He is not going to sit back and watch you throw your life away. Expect conviction. Expect distress. Expect to feel uncomfortable, depressed, anxious, if you are harboring sin in your life.
Saul’s response to this great conviction from God was to pick up a spear and throw it at David. Saul held on to his jealousy and anger instead of repenting. As we read on, we’re going to find out this is not the last time God will send His convicting Spirit to Saul. God is never one and done. (I praise Him for being the God of second and third… chances)
God is working in the hearts of every person on this planet. Don’t think that doesn’t mean you. God loves you enough to make you feel miserable when you sin.
Expect it. Then repent and experience the joy that will follow, the sweet fellowship with the God of the Universe who loves you to death.