Thursday, August 31, 2017

Obedience? Or politics?

In the first book of Samuel, the sea-people represent in some sense Israel’s fear. Thus, one of the central issues of chap. 7, as in so many other passages of the Old Testament, is the issue of trust. In whom does Israel put their trust? The foreign gods of a technologically more advanced people, a tangible symbol such as the ark, or their covenant God who delivered their fathers from Egypt? The reader knows from chaps. 4–6 that Philistine power rests on idolatrous loyalties that cannot save. Israel has little choice than to take refuge in Yhwh. Samuel’s intercession is in some sense detached from the world of warfare and politics, it is an act of obedience and courage in the face of a real danger and threat.—Standing in the Breach, page 188

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