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A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things. – Matthew 12:35

Text: 1 Samuel 16:1-13

Prop: a cantaloupe or melon

Summary: The Lord does not judge by outward appearance, but by the character and thoughts of a person.

Some things are hard to figure out until you take a look inside. Most car buyers look under the hood to see the condition of the engine and parts before buying a car. But what if you cannot see what is inside? Take a look at this melon. (Show the cantaloupe or melon.) I would not be allowed to cut it in half before I buy it. How can I tell if it is ripe and ready to eat? There is an old saying, “Never judge a book by its cover.” That means the content of a book may be better than the book cover suggests. You would have to take a look inside and read some of it to find out. All of these things remind me of a story in the Bible about the young boy David.

Do you remember the story of David and Goliath? Well, before that story in the Bible we find out that God chose David to be the next king of God’s people. God told the prophet Samuel that it was time to select the next king. He told Samuel to stop being sad that King Saul would not be the king much longer. God sent Samuel to the home of a man named Jesse in the little town of Bethlehem. (Yes, the same town where Jesus was born many years later.)

Then Samuel prepared a sacrifice to God and invited Jesse and his sons. Jesse had eight sons. David, being the youngest, was left in the field to tend the sheep. Then Samuel began to look at the sons of Jesse, beginning with Eliab. Samuel thought that Eliab was the one God would choose to be king.

But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart. – 1 Samuel 16:7

Jesse called his sons one at a time, until Samuel had seen seven sons, but the one the Lord had chosen to be king was not among them. Then Samuel asked if this was all, and Jesse told him that the youngest son was watching over the sheep. David was brought in from the field to stand before Samuel. And the Lord said, Arise, anoint him: for this is he. (verse 12) So it was that the last of Jesse’s sons was to be the next king of Israel. God looked at David’s heart, his inward thoughts and his character, and judged him to be fit to rule the people.

We are unable to look inside a person like God and to know what to think of them. So we should not judge them at all. We can tell what sort of person someone is by their actions. The Lord Jesus says the tree is known by his fruit. (Matthew 12:33) Jesus says a good person with good thoughts will do good things, but a bad person with bad thoughts will do bad things. (verse 35) Let’s decide today that we will be like Jesus and do good things.

Let us pray. Dear Lord Jesus, help me to have good thoughts and teach me to do good things. Amen.

©2005 by Jim Kerlin. All rights reserved.

This article was written by Jim

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