1 Samuel 11 – Treaty with the Enemy 

Good evening y’all. We are continuing our study of 1st Samuel with Good Morning Girls and will be looking at chapter 11 today

I pray you are blessed as you read 🙂

“About a month later, King Nahash of Ammon led his army against the Israelite town of Jabesh-gilead. But all the citizens of Jabesh asked for peace. “Make a treaty with us, and we will be your servants,” they pleaded. “All right,” Nahash said, “but only on one condition. I will gouge out the right eye of every one of you as a disgrace to all Israel!”  “Give us seven days to send messengers throughout Israel!” replied the elders of Jabesh. “If no one comes to save us, we will agree to your terms.”(v1- 3 NLT)

In todays’ chapter we see the inhabitants of Jabesh -Gilead entering into a treaty with Nahash; king of the Ammonites. It seems to me the people would rather make a treaty with Nahash than attempt to even fight Him. They have been so subdued to the extent that they forgot to call on God for help. Instead they chose to take matters into their own hands.

Commentary from David Guzik on verse 2  says: “At the same time, where was their trust in God? Yes, they were in what seemed to be in an impossible place, but that is where the power of God can shine the brightest. “Instead of humbling themselves before God and confessing the sins that had brought them into trouble, they put God altogether aside, and basely offered to become the servants of the Ammonites … We see here the sad effect of sin and careless living in lowering men’s spirits, sapping courage, and discouraging noble effort. Oh, it is pitiable to see men tamely submitting to a vile master! Yet how often is the sight repeated! How often do men virtually say to the devil, ‘Make a covenant with us, and we will serve thee’!” (Balike)

Nahash agreed to their treaty but on only one condition that he would be allowed to gouge out the right eye of every single person. The people of Jabesh were happy with that. They would rather be slaves with one eye than be dead.  They proceeded to ask Nahash for 7 days to see if any of the other towns in Israel will be willing to help them. Nahash agreed to their request.

This got me wondering, “why the condition of gouging out their right eye?” I later found out that in battle, the men used their left shield to defend their left eye which leaves them with the right eye to see with. Nahash removing their right eye leaves them useless and helpless in the face of battle. Also Nahash wants to use it as a sign to show Israel’s weakness.

How often do we make deals with the devil just because we feel helpless? Instead of turning to God and asking for His help.

I will leave us with this summary of verses 1 – 3 by David Guzik-

“We can see in this account a similarity between Satan, our spiritual enemy, and Nahash, the enemy of Israel.

i. Satan attacks us, but cannot do anything against us without our agreement. He asks for, and requires our surrender.

ii. Satan wants us to serve him, and will attempt to intimidate us into giving in to him.

iii. Satan wants to humiliate us, and exalt himself over us. Through humiliating one saint, Satan wants to bring reproach on all God’s people.

iv. Satan wants to take away our ability to effectively fight against him.

v. Satan wants to blind us, and if he cannot blind us completely, he will blind us partially”

It is my hope that when it seems like we are between a rock and hard place, our hearts will quickly run to God for help rather than make deals with the devil. I pray it will be so for us all, in Jesus Name. Amen.

Thanks for joining today. Pls feel free to leave your thots on the chapter in the comments section.

Have a blessed evening 🙂

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