DAY FIVE – Take Saul’s Armour Off!
One phrase God used to teach me what the Great Pit-Stop Pause was all about, was that it was a RESET time (Hence my book The Divine Reset!*) God is Resetting us, as individuals and as churches, like resetting your smart phone back or computer back to factory settings.
You know when computerised gadgets get a bit clunky, slow, apps are struggling to open or it all crunches and crashes too often. You know you need a reset, when you turn your laptop on, and go make a cup of tea while it loads up!
I wonder if that’s how many of our Christian lives, churches and ministries have become in recent decades? Clunky, slow, bogged down, sluggish? It’s affecting our authority, joy, fruitfulness and ability to take new ground.
You don’t have the strength to take new ground, if you’re slow, sluggish and bogged down!
There’s a great picture about this in the Old Testament life of David:
God said to me the other day “I’m taking Saul’s Armour off the Church!”
What does that mean? Well, when no-one in the Israelite army was bold enough to take on the giant Goliath, young David stepped forward, sling in hand, and said “I’ll take him!”
Saul proceeded to dress David in his own kingly armour, but David said, “I cannot go in these, I haven’t tested them!” Removing the armour, David runs at Goliath, praises God, swings his sling and hits his target – BOOM! (1 Samuel 17).
Demanded or Beloved?
The names in this story are prophetic:
SAUL means “demanded” – as he was the king the crowd demanded, even though God didn’t want them to have an earthly king.
However, DAVID means “Beloved”. He was a God-lover, abandoned to worship, a man after God’s heart.
Here’s a thought: Saul was bogged down by the necessities of a king, dressed in all the expected finery and polished weaponry – but did not have the power to take out Goliath. In fact, for 40 days solid, the entire Israelite army ran every time Goliath bellowed.
They were armed to the teeth but terrified!
David was just a God-lover, moving in simple gifting, and the Name of the Lord. He was not bogged down by the expectations of expectation. He was walking freely with his God!
Which of the two would take the enemy out and take ground? Not the one who lived under the demands of culture, but the one who was the Beloved of God!
Stripping Away Saul’s Armour
I believe God has been stripping away all the layers of religious demands we’ve learned to live under, as modern, western Christians. The ways things should be done, the demands of consumer Christians, the shiny sophistication of what some insist church must be. God is bringing us back to our first love, the things he’s truly wired us uniquely to do, the genuine heavenly call, rather than the copying and pasting of other Christian ministries or models.
It’s time to be You! God-You, Called You, Beloved You. And guess what – THAT You, free from religious clutter, will enter the good-lands of heaven and take long-awaited new ground!
Do The Things You Did At First!
Revelation 2:4-5 says “You have forsaken the love you had at first. Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first.”
Maybe some of us who have been overly focussed on building ministries, just need to fall in love with Jesus again? Maybe some churches need to get back to the simplicity and power of Acts chapters 2 to 4? Some need to get back to power of prayer, instead of relying on stagecraft and entertainment. Some of us need to stop comparing and competing and start thriving in our hearts again.
Time to get back to factory settings. A divine reset. Take off Saul’s armour and get back to your first love. How about you?
MEDITATE ON THESE SCRIPTURES
“I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first. Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place.” Revelation 2:4-5
“David said to Saul, “Let no one lose heart on account of this Philistine; your servant will go and fight him.”
Saul replied, “You are not able to go out against this Philistine and fight him; you are only a young man, and he has been a warrior from his youth.”
But David said to Saul, “Your servant has been keeping his father’s sheep. When a lion or a bear came and carried off a sheep from the flock, I went after it, struck it and rescued the sheep from its mouth. When it turned on me, I seized it by its hair, struck it and killed it. Your servant has killed both the lion and the bear; this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, because he has defied the armies of the living God. The Lord who rescued me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will rescue me from the hand of this Philistine.”
Saul said to David, “Go, and the Lord be with you.”
Then Saul dressed David in his own tunic. He put a coat of armour on him and a bronze helmet on his head. David fastened on his sword over the tunic and tried walking around, because he was not used to them.
“I cannot go in these,” he said to Saul, “because I am not used to them.” So he took them off. 1 Samuel 17:32-39
The Divine Reset*
The Divine Reset is written as a combination of prophetic insight, theological discussion and personal testimony. It is packed with prophetic wisdom from global prophets and it will lead you through the changes and pivots required to enter this new era with God’s favour.