As an INFP (on the MBTI) I naturally tend to avoid obvious solutions in favour of more “creative” ones – often to the exasperation of innocent bystanders, like parents, spouse, colleagues and in more recent days children. As a preacher, this tendency means that I have seldom treated the familiar Sunday School Story passages. I even once did a series on “The Censored Bible: Books you have never before heard preached“. We (or I at least) had great fun with Obadiah, Song of Songs, and the like :) I even once preached on the stirring story of Micah (no, not the prophet, the hero in Judges 17-18 ;)
This failure means that it comes as quite a shock working through the E100 series of readings for my 5 Minute Bible podcasts. First it was stories like the escape from Egypt, with the slaughter of innocent Egyptian babies, now it’s David and Goliath (well actually it’s 1 Sam 16, but the two are part of the same E100 reading, picked so the titles suggest because of the good old sunday school story). 1 Sam 16 uses the word רוַּח “spirit” more often than any other chapter. Clearly the divine spirit leaving Saul, and inspiring David, is a major theme. But perhaps more striking is the use here (and only elsewhere in the fun story of Micaiah ben-Imlah) of terms like “evil spirit” and “evil spirit from God”.
Oops! Now how will I discuss that one in 5 minutes?
What would you say to people using E100 to get a quick overview of the Bible about Saul’s “evil spirit of God” (1 Sam 16:16)?