A Distressing Spirit from the Lord?

Discussion in '2005 Archive' started by Ben W, May 12, 2005.

  1. Ben W

    Ben W
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    1Sam 16:14-16

    "But the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul, and a distressing spirit from the Lord troubled him. And Saul's servants said to him, Surely a distressing spirit from the Lord is troubling you. Let our master now command your servants who are before you, to seek out a man who is a skillfull player on the harp, and it shall be that he will play it with his hand, when the distressing spirit from God is upon you and you shall be well".

    So what exactly is a "Distressing Spirit"? Why would God send somebody a distressing spirit? Why would music soothe that spirit?
     
  2. richard n koustas

    richard n koustas
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    I am iterested to see the answers to these questions. I think that the first part of verse 14 is key. In the OT, the Spirit of the Lord came on people and departed from them (unlike today where were are 4ever indwelt by the Holy Spirit).

    In the chapters leading up to the Spirit departing Saul, we read about Saul's demise that culimated with the visit to the witch of endor. Looks like God had enough. God probably sent the distressing spirit because Saul deserved it...
     
  3. av1611jim

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    Not really sure what a "distressing spirit" is.
    As to why?
    Perhaps we can glean some insight in Paul's testimony.
    2Co 12:7
    And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.
    2Co 12:8
    For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.
    2Co 12:9
    And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

    This thing came from God also. It was given to Paul to keep him humble. Perhaps that thing given to Saul was for similar reasons. The difference lies in their acceptance/reaction to it.
    One should notice that Saul listened to his servants about a "cure" for the distress, rather than seeking God. Paul sought God.
    Just a thought.

    In HIS service;
    Jim
     
  4. Paul of Eugene

    Paul of Eugene
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    The understanding of the people who were writing our scriptures in the days that verse was written was less than it is today in that they were unaware that there was a Satan and that there are evil spirits. And because they knew that God is the ultimate source of all things, they truly wrote that the spirit came, ultimately, from God. But evil such as this is within God's permissive will, but not in God's active will.

    Today we would call it severely depressive state combined with paranoia, hence the occasional spear thrown at David. Just think how the history of Israel could have been so different if only they had been able to give him a little prozac.

    But it certainly remains a perfectly true verse, don't get me wrong about that.
     
  5. av1611jim

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    I disagree Paul.
    The book of Job is considered by most to be much older than the Pentateuch. In it we have the episode of Satan appearing at the counsel among the other "sons of God".
    Aside from that, in 1 Chron 21 we have Satan putting into David's heart to number the children of Isreal.

    No, my friend, the folks back then knew who Satan was and they fully undserstood demonism. Perhaps much better than we do. As you illustrated, we tend to chalk it up to "mental illness", while they OTOH, knew the spirit world as being much more real than we.

    And concerning "prozac"; I submit they would have rejected it since it is sorcery. You do know that drugs are "pharmakia" don't you?

    In HIS service;
    Jim
     
  6. Ben W

    Ben W
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    When Jesus went around casting out demons the people were well aware of what demons where and what was happening. That seems clear in the New Testament.

    Yet I what bugs me is that if it was an illness, I would expect it to be described as such, yet the term used is spirit which seems to me to be an entity from the Spiritual real, yet in this case one from God.
     

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