Jul 21, 2019. I Samuel 13:16-14:10, Jonathan Makes His Move

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JONATHAN MAKES HIS MOVE. I Samuel 13:16-14:10. 07/21/2019. #40.

I Samuel 13:16-14:10 [New King James Version (NKJV)]

16 Saul, Jonathan his son, and the people present with them remained in Gibeah of Benjamin. But the Philistines encamped in Michmash. 17 Then raiders came out of the camp of the Philistines in three companies. One company turned onto the road to Ophrah, to the land of Shual, 18 another company turned to the road to Beth Horon, and another company turned to the road of the border that overlooks the Valley of Zeboim toward the wilderness. 19 Now there was no blacksmith to be found throughout all the land of Israel, for the Philistines said, “Lest the Hebrews make swords or spears.” 20 But all the Israelites would go down to the Philistines to sharpen each man’s plowshare, his mattock, his ax, and his sickle; 21 and the charge for a sharpening was a pim for the plowshares, the mattocks, the forks, and the axes, and to set the points of the goads. 22 So it came about, on the day of battle, that there was neither sword nor spear found in the hand of any of the people who were with Saul and Jonathan. But they were found with Saul and Jonathan his son. 23 And the garrison of the Philistines went out to the pass of Michmash.

1 Now it happened one day that Jonathan the son of Saul said to the young man who bore his armor, “Come, let us go over to the Philistines’ garrison that is on the other side.” But he did not tell his father. 2 And Saul was sitting in the outskirts of Gibeah under a pomegranate tree which is in Migron. The people who were with him were about six hundred men. 3 Ahijah the son of Ahitub, Ichabod’s brother, the son of Phinehas, the son of Eli, the Lord’s priest in Shiloh, was wearing an ephod. But the people did not know that Jonathan had gone. 4 Between the passes, by which Jonathan sought to go over to the Philistines’ garrison, there was a sharp rock on one side and a sharp rock on the other side. And the name of one was Bozez, and the name of the other Seneh. 5 The front of one faced northward opposite Michmash, and the other southward opposite Gibeah. 6 Then Jonathan said to the young man who bore his armor, “Come, let us go over to the garrison of these uncircumcised; it may be that the Lord will work for us. For nothing restrains the Lord from saving by many or by few.” 7 So his armorbearer said to him, “Do all that is in your heart. Go then; here I am with you, according to your heart.” 8 Then Jonathan said, “Very well, let us cross over to these men, and we will show ourselves to them. 9 If they say thus to us, ‘Wait until we come to you,’ then we will stand still in our place and not go up to them. 10 But if they say thus, ‘Come up to us,’ then we will go up. For the Lord has delivered them into our hand, and this will be a sign to us.”

  1. Saul waits
    1. Saul has no ability to initiate an attack against Philistines
      1. He has 600 men against thousands
      1. Saul has no idea as to what to do (he waits)
      1. Samuel has left Saul and most volunteers have left
    1. Situation is desperate (outnumbered and out-equipped)
      1. No weapons—just farm implements
      1. No blacksmiths—Israel 90 Philistines to sharpen tools
    1. Philistines moved to Michmash in battle array (split forces in three groups to raid supplies and cut Saul off)
      1. Ahitub is priest (Ichabod’s brother), son of Phineas and grandson of Eli (Ichabod born as ark was taken) —all
      1. the priests except one were later killed by Saul
  2. Jonathon takes initiative again
    1. Jonathon had attacked the Philistines at Geba, apparently without Saul’s knowledge
      1. This is why the Philistines attacked
      1. No recording of Saul dealing with his son
    1. Jonathan runs into Philistines at Mich. where he wanted to cross
    1. Jonathan was of a different nature than his father
      1. Unlike Saul, Jonathan was fearless and courageous
      1. Jonathan was more sensitive to God than Saul
        1. “God can save by many or a few”
        1. Man of great faith
      1. Jonathan disregarded Saul’s authority (insubordinate through acting without obtaining permission)
        1. Does not respect Saul by informing him
        1. Even if Saul does wrong, he is still the king and in charge
  3. Jonathon, an army of one
    1. Jonathan is bold and perhaps sensitive to God’s leading
      1. It is hard to say if God prompted Jonathan or simply used his actions to achieve victory for Israel
      1. Neither Saul nor God condemn Jonathan for his forwardness, but the results were favorable
    1. It is commendable to take initiative within context and proper order
      1. Every person is a part of a larger unit and must work within the confines of the organization
      1. Jonathan moves on his own with regard to any chain of command or due deference to superiors
      1. Jonathan does not respect Saul as father and king, though he stays loyal to dad to the end
    1. There is no indication of coordinated planning (perhaps Jonathan could not get his father to advance a strategy)
    1. Was the Lord in Jonathan’s actions?
      1. The results were positive
      1. Often the Lord uses us even if we do not do well (Paul, Jonah, Joshua, Moses, Samson)
    1. Note that the unnamed armor bearer is as brave as Jonathan and completely loyal to him (also, a confident)-many great things are done due to unsung support agents
    1. Was Jonathan justified in going over Saul’s head?
    1. There is a context in which subordinates should compensate for incompetent leadership w/out a coup