"Psalm 23," John August Swanson. Used by permission from the artist.
Image © by John August Swanson. Artwork held in the Luther Seminary Fine Arts Collection, St. Paul, Minn.
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Call of David
1 Samuel 16:1-13; Psalm 51:10-14 Commentary
by Beth L. Tanner
Most people have fond memories of David from Sunday school: shepherd, singer of psalms, king, brave warrior.
He is the quintessential example of what it means to be a follower of Yahweh. These texts focus on two disparate events in his life.
The first is David’s initial appearance in the text. Yet, this section begins with the trouble of the previous one. God speaks to Samuel, now all grown up, and tells him that God’s favor is withdrawn from Saul. In the previous chapter, Samuel rejected Saul’s confession of sin and his pleading to be restored (1 Samuel 15:24-25). God is sending Samuel to anoint another.
Just as last week, the easy reading is to condemn Saul and move on to David. Yet, the Saul chapter remains unresolved. It is not tidy. What can we learn from this? Basically, the world is not tidy. Stories do not end the way we wish, and falls from leadership are often ragged and painful. God and Samuel and Saul all look bad here. We serve a God who is present in the jagged endings in our lives, making God sometimes seem different than we expect. God cannot repair everything ...
| Bible Text
2019-20 Worship resources
The narrative lectionary is a four-year cycle of readings. Read more.
Narrative Lectionary 096: Call of David
October 20, 2013
Join Profs. Rolf Jacobson, Craig Koester, and Kathryn Schifferdecker for "I Love to Tell the Story," a conversation on Year 4 of the narrative lectionary. This podcast covers texts for Oct. 20, 2013: 1 Samuel 16:1-13,
Psalm 51:10-14 (corresponding Gospel: John 7:24).