Then it came about when they entered, that he looked at Eliab and thought, “Surely the Lord’s anointed is before Him." 1st Samuel 16:6 (New Revised Standard Version)
Believing is seeing, or so people say. When Jesse brought his sons before the prophet Samuel to choose one to be king in Saul’s place the first thing the prophet did was judge with his sight and his own evaluation. These 7 sons were splendid specimens of physique and bearing. What subject wouldn’t look on one of these fine boys as a king and not be impressed and humbled? The Lord corrected Samuel’s judgment by telling him not to look at appearance or the height of Eliab’s stature for God does not look on the outward but judges the inner heart of a person. In doing so He had rejected all 7 of Jesse’s older sons as king over Israel.
The truth of this verse caught me off guard. I tend to do the same thing as Samuel when I meet others. I’ll believe what I see instead of seeing the inward beauty and strength within the person that God has anointed. I do struggle with judging on outside appearance and hate that I need to fight this continual urge. Any judgment I make that lessens the significance of another person in any way is judging with the eye and the desire of my own heart.
Samuel said to Jesse “The Lord has not chosen these. Are these all your children?” Well, no, I’ve got my youngest tending sheep in the pasture. Samuel ordered David brought before him and the Lord confirmed His choice to Samuel telling him to anoint this humble shepherd as the new king of Israel. It was David’s time, a time prepared by God Himself. When Samuel anointed him before his brothers the Holy Spirit fell mightily on David from that day forward and he fulfilled the purpose God had for him. Seeing might make us believe or beauty may be in the eye of the beholder, or whatever, but God sees beyond muscle or personality. I may regard a person’s God-given gifts to be weaknesses but thankfully He doesn’t. A humble and worshipful heart is better in His sight than anything else. Anyone I disregard as unimportant in the family of Christ may be gifted far and above anything I could perceive. The least appreciated can have the heart of a king.