THE MYSTERIOUS WAYS OF GOD

Scripture Reading: I Samuel 28:8-25

“Then the woman said, ‘Whom shall I bring up for you?’ He said, ‘Bring up Samuel for me.’ When the woman saw Samuel, she cried out with a loud voice. And the woman said to Saul, ‘Why have you deceived me? You are Saul.'” (I Samuel 28:11,12)

In his desperation, Saul turned to the witch of En-dor for guidance. This was the low point in Saul’s life. He turned to Satan and to the occult for help.

I must confess that this is a very difficult passage to understand. God allowed something very strange and totally unusual to happen. I do not have a good explanation for why God allowed this to occur. There are many mysteries associated with God. All we can do is accept them even though we may not fully understand them.

The witch of En-dor called up Samuel, who appeared to Saul and told him his fate (vs. 9-14). Obviously the woman was shocked when Samuel appeared (v. 12). I doubt she really expected this to happen. Samuel asked her, “What do you see?” She replied, “I see a god coming out of the earth.” She went on to say, “An old man is coming up, and he is wrapped in a robe.” Saul knew that it was Samuel.

Samuel spoke to Saul — “Moreover, the Lord will give Israel also with you into the hand of the Philistines, and tomorrow you and your sons shall be with me. The Lord will give the army of Israel also into the hand of the Philistines” (v. 19). When Saul heard these words, he was devastated.

God sometimes acts in mysterious ways. There are things we will not understand this side of heaven. When Paul wrote about some of the mysteries of God that he did not fully understand, he simply stopped and praised God with a doxology. On one such occasion, he wrote, “Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and how inscrutable His ways! For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been His counselor? Or who has given a gift to Him that He might be repaid? For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen” (Romans 11:33-36). There are things about God that we will never be able to comprehend. We are called to accept them by faith and to yield to His will and ways.

Lord God, when I face things I do not understand about You, all I can do is admit that I am finite and You are infinite. Like Paul, I confess how unsearchable are Your ways! I bow before You as the One who is all wise and all powerful. Give me grace to accept the things I do not understand about You or about Your ways. Who am I to ever question You?

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