HEARING; Jonathan did not hear this

Israel was up against the Philistines under Saul’s leadership. While preparing for battle, he had flouted a rule; he offered sacrifices to God – something Samuel should have done. Samuel subsequently rebuked him and cursed him. 

I started the story there to let you understand Saul’s mental state prior to the battle – he was confused and quite helpless. Jonathan, his son, on the other hand, was just free-minded and enthused as youthful as he was.

The Initial Fight

Jonathan, with his armour bearer, had troubled the Philistines by killing 20 of their men. Saul wasn’t aware of this. This sparked the battle between Saul’s army and the Philistines. God had mercy on Israel so they won that day. But a series of events had occurred behind Jonathan. Saul had placed a curse on any man who eats prior to their next battle. Jonathan didn’t hear this.

Honey Dip

“But Jonathan had not heard that his father had bound the people with the oath, so he reached out the end of the staff that was in his hand and dipped it into the honeycomb. He raised his hand to his mouth, and his eyes brightened.”- 1 Samuel 14:27

On their way to battle, Jonathan dipped some honey and ate. His countenance rose (he gained strength). The army revealed the oath Saul had placed on them. Jonathan began to complain about the mistake his father had made by placing such an oath on the army. To him, eating the honey could have helped the army energy-wise, to easily win the battle. 

You see, Jonathan was able to eat the honey because he didn’t know about the oath. He wouldn’t have eaten if he knew, for fear of the oath. Faith comes by hearing (1 Corinthians 10:17a). The army feared the oath because they heard it. Jonathan did not fear because he did not hear.

What you hear affects your decisions and actions. If you hear your friend is a witch, just hearing it will definitely affect your relationship with your friend, while prior to the hearing, you were cordial with your friend. That’s what happened to Saul’s army. 

The Abominable!

Then someone said to Saul, “Look, the men are sinning against the Lord by eating meat that has blood in it.” You have broken faith,” he said. “Roll a large stone over here at once.” – 1 Samuel 14:33

When the battle was over, the army was really exhausted. They now had the right to eat something because Saul’s oath was lifted over them. As I said, the oath was not God-given so there was no divine direction for the aftermath. The army ate the animals they had plundered together with their blood. That is a serious sin against the Lord according to the Law of Moses (Leviticus 7:26).

So now, an oath that weakened the army has now led them to sin. Sometimes what you don’t hear helps you; what you don’t hear does not affect you.

If you don’t hear it, you don’t believe it, if you don’t believe it you don’t act on it.

The word of God gives a formula for what you can think about, believe, or act upon when you hear – Philippians 4:8 – “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things”

May the Lord Mend our Nets!

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