Lent Day 14: Who is Jesse?
Luke 3:32 “the son of Jesse”
His name means ‘firm’ or also ‘wealthy’ and it would appear he was both.
His wealth and position is seen in that he supplied David with a haulage of food to take to his brothers who were supposedly fighting the Philistines in 1 Samuel 17; he also came from a good lineage himself, seen in the genealogy in Ruth 4 where it states that his ancestor was chief of the tribe of Judah in the time of Moses, Nahshon; finally, David entrusted his parents to the King of Moab in 1 Samuel 22 when Saul was pursuing him and this would indicate it could only have happened if Jesse had some kind of prominence.
But he was firm and no more is this seen than with his 8th son, David.
Nobody but God would have guessed that David would be God’s chosen leader, Jesse certainly didn’t.
- a) Jesse did not consider David ready for anything of importance. (1 Samuel 16:5) When Samuel consecrated Jesse’s family, David wasn’t there. Consecration involved the preparation of washing and putting on clean clothes before attending a sacrifice.
- b) Jesse considered his youngest irrelevant, 1 Samuel 16:11. The Message says “Well, yes, there’s the runt.” David was not important in Jesse’s eyes.
- c) Jesse didn’t consider David at all. 1 Samuel 16:10-11. Jesse didn’t offer David to Samuel. Samuel had to remind Jesse of David’s existence. David was being overlooked and rejected. This is the life of Jesus, “The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone” Matthew 21:42.
People will always see and maybe say that you’re not ready. God is looking for a heart that has experienced that. According to the world’s standards you may appear foolish, weak, lowly, despised and a person who has not and is not. You may have been overlooked and not considered. God is looking for you!
The Apostle Paul in Romans 15 quotes Isaiah 11:1 “A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse; from his roots a Branch will bear fruit.”
Throughout David’s life he is known as ‘David son of Jesse’ and often in derision, “Who is this David? Who is this son of Jesse?” 1 Samuel 25:12.
Just like our Lord’s title, ‘Jesus of Nazareth’.
Grace makes you become all that you can become.
At the end of David’s life the Chronicler writes, “David son of Jesse was king over all Israel” 1 Chronicles 29:16.
The contrast is huge. It brings us right back to the beginning. To the place of ordinariness, shepherding the sheep, playing the harp. The place of rejection, the youngest lad, the irrelevant son, the one not even asked to be present at the meeting with Samuel. But it does more than speak of the potential of David. It tells of the potential fulfilled. David became all that he could become. He became king. How did that happen? Primarily it happened because of God’s grace. David was because God is. David would never have made it to kingship without God.
Jesse could not stop God’s plans for his 8th son. No man (or woman) can stop God’s plans for your life either. You may have a firm rogue in your family tree but that doesn’t mean this is who you will become. You may be known as coming from a bad stock or even an irrelevant one but with God you can become famous!