Big Apple Chapel is a New Testament based church in New York City, modeled after the pattern of the early church, with a strong emphasis on following Christ as a community of His disciples.

  • Sunday - 10:30 am
  • 520 8th Ave, 16th floor
    New York, NY
  • phone: +1 (973) 837-1041


BAC Sermons

1 Samuel Survey: Winners & Losers

1996-06-01 1 Samuel

Hannah the True

winner because when barren, bitter, and besieged...she prayed, promised, produced and praised.

1:11 And she vowed a vow 2:1 And Hannah prayed, and said, My heart rejoices in the LORD, my horn is exalted in the LORD: my mouth is enlarged over my enemies; because I rejoice in thy salvation. 2:21 And the LORD visited Hannah, so that she conceived, and bore three sons and two daughters.

Eli the Ineffectual

loser because although he knew what was right, he lacked the self discipline to discipline his sons.

2:12 sons of Eli worthless men; they knew not the LORD. 17 the sin of the young men was very great before the LORD: for men abhorred the offering of the LORD. 2:22 Now Eli was very old, and heard all that his sons did to all Israel; and how they lay with the women that assembled [at] the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. 23 And he said to them, Why do ye such things? for I hear of your evil dealings by all this people.


Prophet, Preacher & Poor Parent: 1-1-1 spoke fully for God but failed to make disciples of his children 3:9...Speak, LORD; for thy servant hears...13...I will judge his house for ever for the iniquity which he knows; because his sons made themselves vile, and he restrained them not...18 And Samuel told him every thing, and hid nothing from him.   8:1 And it came to pass, when Samuel was old, that he made his sons judges over Israel. 3 And his sons walked not in his ways, but turned aside after money, and took bribes, and perverted judgment.

Israel the Kingless & Clueless

losers because they failed to prepare their hearts to serve only God. 7:3 And Samuel spoke to all the house of Israel, saying, If ye do return to the LORD with all your hearts, [then] put away the foreign gods and Ashtaroth from among you, and prepare your hearts to the LORD, and serve him only: and he will deliver you from the hand of the Philistines. 8:4 Then all the elders of Israel gathered themselves together, and came to Samuel to Ramah, 5 And said to him, Behold, you art old, and thy sons walk not in thy ways: now make us a king to judge us like all the nations. 6 But the thing displeased Samuel, when they said, Give us a king to judge us. And Samuel prayed to the LORD. 7 And the LORD said to Samuel, Hearken to the voice of the people in all that they say to you: for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them. 8 According to all the works which they have done since the day that I brought them out of Egypt even to this day, by which they have forsaken me, and served other gods, so do they also to you. 9 Now therefore hearken to their voice: yet protest solemnly to them, and show them the manner of the king that shall reign over them...19 Nevertheless the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel; and they said, Nay; but we will have a king over us 20 That we also may be like all the nations; and that our king may judge us, and go out before us, and fight our battles.

                12:7 Now therefore stand still, that I may reason with you before the LORD of all the righteous acts of the LORD, which he did to you and to your fathers 14 If ye will fear the LORD, and serve him, and obey his voice, and not rebel against the commandment of the LORD, then shall both ye and also the king that reigns over you continue following the LORD your God 15 But if ye will not obey the voice of the LORD, but rebel against the commandment of the LORD, then shall the hand of the LORD be against you, as [it was] against your fathers...19 And all the people said to Samuel, Pray for thy servants to the LORD thy God, that we die not: for we have added to all our sins [this] evil, to ask us a king. 20 And Samuel said to the people, Fear not: ye have done all this wickedness: yet turn not aside from following the LORD, but serve the LORD with all your heart; 21 And turn ye not aside: for [then should ye go] after vain [things], which cannot profit nor deliver; for they [are] vain. 22 For the LORD will not forsake his people for his great name's sake: because it has pleased the LORD to make you his people. 23 Moreover as for me, Far be it from me that I should sin against the LORD in ceasing to pray for you: but I will teach you the good and the right way: 24 Only fear the LORD, and serve him in truth with all your heart: for consider what great [things] he has done for you. 25 But if ye shall still do wickedly, ye shall be consumed, both ye and your king.

Almighty Ark

winner (ringer) 4:11 And the ark of God was taken; and the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, were slain...22 And she said, The glory has departed from Israel: for the ark of God is taken. 5:3...next day, behold, Dagon [had] fallen upon his face to the earth before the ark of the LORD. And they took Dagon, and set him in his place again. 6:19 And he smote the men of Bethshemesh, because they had looked into the ark of the LORD

Saul the Faithless & Shameless

loser because he failed to fear God enough to trust and obey Him

1. Poor self-image 9:21 Saul...my family the least of all the families of the tribe of Benjamin? why then speak you so to me? 10:6 And the Spirit of the LORD will come upon you, and you shall prophesy with them, and shall be turned into another man.

S2. Impatient disobeyer 10:8 And you shall go down before me to Gilgal; and, behold, I will come down to you, to offer burnt offerings, [and] to sacrifice sacrifices of peace offerings: seven days shall you tarry, till I come to you, and show you what you shall do. 10:9 And it was [so], that when he had turned his back to go from Samuel, God gave him another heart: and all those signs came to pass that day. 13:10 And it came to pass, that as soon as he had ceased offering the burnt offering, behold, Samuel came; and Saul went out to meet him, that he might bless him.

S3. People pleaser 13:11 What have you done? Saul said, I saw that the people were scattered from me, and [that] you came not within the days appointed

S4. Excuse Maker 12 The Philistines will now come down upon me, and I have not made supplication to the LORD: I forced myself therefore, and offered a burnt offering. 13 And Samuel said to Saul, You have done foolishly: you have not kept the commandment of the LORD thy God, which he commanded you: for now would the LORD have established thy kingdom upon Israel for ever. 14 But now thy kingdom shall not continue: the LORD has sought him a man after his own heart, and the LORD has commanded him [to be] captain over his people, because you have not kept [that] which the LORD commanded you.

S5. Self-deceived irresponsible blamer 15:3 Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have...9 But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best...11 I repent that I have set up Saul [to be] king: for he is turned back from following me, and has not performed my commandments. And it grieved Samuel; and he cried to the LORD all night. 13 And Samuel came to Saul: and Saul said to him, Blessed [be] you of the LORD: I have performed the commandment of the LORD. 14 And Samuel said, What [meaneth] then this bleating of the sheep in my ears, and the lowing of the oxen which I hear? 15 And Saul said, They...the people spared the best of the sheep and of the oxen, to sacrifice to the LORD thy God; and the rest we have utterly destroyed. 17 And Samuel said, When you [were] little in thy own sight, [were] you not [made] the head of the tribes of Israel, and the LORD anointed you king over Israel? 18 And the LORD sent you on a journey, and said, Go and utterly destroy the sinners the Amalekites, and fight against them until they are consumed.          

S6. Stubborn Rebel 19 Why then did you not obey the voice of the LORD, but did fly upon the spoil, and did evil in the sight of the LORD? 20 And Saul said to Samuel, Yea, I have obeyed the voice of the LORD... 21 But the people took of the spoil...to sacrifice to the LORD thy God in Gilgal. 22 And Samuel said, Has the LORD [as great] delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey [is] better than sacrifice, [and] to hearken than the fat of rams. 23 For rebellion [is as] the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness [is as] iniquity and idolatry. 35 And Samuel came no more to see Saul until the day of his death: nevertheless Samuel mourned for Saul: and the LORD repented that he had made Saul king over Israel.

S7. Jealous and fearful 18:9 Saul kept a jealous eye on David from that day and onward. 12 Saul was afraid of David, because the LORD was with him

S8. Schemes to harm 18:17 And Saul said to David, Behold my elder daughter Merab, her will I give you for a wife: only be you valiant for me, and fight the LORD'S battles. For Saul said, Let not my hand be upon him, but let the hand of the Philistines be upon him.  19:1 And Saul spoke to Jonathan his son, and to all his servants, that they should kill David.

S9. Promise breaker 18:19 But it came to pass at the time when Merab Saul's daughter should have been given to David, that she was given to Adriel the Meholathite for a wife. 20 And Michal Saul's daughter loved David: and they told Saul, and the thing pleased him. 21 And Saul said, I will give her to him, that she may be a snare to him, and that the hand of the Philistines may be against him. 25 desires not any dowry, but an hundred foreskins of the Philistines, to be avenged of the king's enemies. But Saul thought to make David fall by the hand of the Philistines.

S10. Self-destructive 31:3 And the battle went heavily against Saul, and the archers hit him; and he was grievously wounded by the archers. 4 Then said Saul to his armourbearer, Draw thy sword, and thrust me through with it; lest these uncircumcised should come and thrust me through, and abuse me. But his armourbearer would not; for he was exceedingly afraid. Therefore Saul took a sword, and fell upon it. 6 So Saul died, and his three sons, and his armourbearer, and all his men, that same day together.

David the Faithful

WINNER!! because his fear of God controlled his actions toward others.

D1. Good heart, kept spirit 16:7 But the LORD said to Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for [the LORD sees] not as man sees; for man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart. 13 Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the midst of his brethren: and the Spirit of the LORD came upon David from that day onward.

D2. Musician 16:14 But the Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the LORD troubled him...16:17 And Saul said to his servants, Provide me now a man that can play well, and bring [him] to me. 18 (David) skilful in playing, and a mighty valiant man, and a man of war, and prudent in matters, and a handsome person, and the LORD [is] with him.

Goliath: big loser-mocked God 17:4 And there went out a champion from the camp of the Philistines, named Goliath, of Gath...

D3. Concern for God's reputation 17:26...who [is] this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God? 17:26 And David spoke to the men that stood by him, saying, What shall be done to the man that kills this Philistine, and takes away the reproach from Israel? for who [is] this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God?

D4. Track record with God 17:37 David said moreover, The LORD that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine. 45 Then said David to the Philistine, You come to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield: but I come to you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. 46 This day will the LORD deliver you into my hand; and I will smite you, and take thy head from you; and I will give the carcasses of the host of the Philistines this day to the fowls of the air, and to the wild beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. 47 And all this assembly shall know that the LORD saves not with sword and spear: for the battle [is] the LORD'S, and he will give you into our hands.

D5. Soul friend 18:1...the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul. 3 Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul. 23:16 Jonathan rose, and went to David into the wood, and strengthened his hand in God.

D6. Wise guy 18:5 David went out wherever Saul sent him, behaved himself wisely: and Saul set him over the men of war, and he was accepted in the sight of all the people, and also in the sight of Saul's servants. 14 And David behaved himself wisely in all his ways; and the LORD [was] with him.  15 Wherefore when Saul saw that he behaved himself very wisely, he was afraid of him. 18:30 David behaved himself more wisely than all the servants of Saul; so that his name was much esteemed. {chose the right objectives and right means of obtaining them}

D7. Humble 18:18 And David said to Saul, Who [am] I? and what [is] my life, [or] my father's family in Israel, that I should be son in law to the king?

D8. Does more than asked 18:27 David went and slew of the Philistines two hundred men; brought their foreskins...that he might be the king's son in law

D9. Examined conscience 20:1 And David fled from Naioth in Ramah, and came and said before Jonathan, What have I done? what [is] my iniquity? and what [is] my sin before thy father, that he seeks my life?

D10. Creative 21:2 And David said to Ahimelech the priest, The king has commanded me a business, and has said to me, Let no man know any thing of the business about which I send you, and what I have commanded you: and I have appointed [my] servants to such and such a place.

D11. Actor 21:13 he changed his behavior before them, pretended to be mad in their hands, and made marks on the doors of the gate, and let his spittle fall down upon his beard. 15 Have I need of mad men, that ye have brought this [man] to play the mad man in my presence? shall this [man] come into my house?

D12. Union organizer 22:2 every one in distress, debt, and discontented, assembled to him; and he became a captain over them: about four hundred men. 

D13. Sought, waited for and followed God's direction 23:2 Therefore David enquired of the LORD, saying, Shall I go and smite these Philistines? And the LORD said to David, Go, and smite the Philistines, and save Keilah. 4 Then David enquired of the LORD yet again.

D14. Protected by God 23:14 And David abode in the wilderness in strong holds, and remained in a mountain in the wilderness of Ziph. And Saul sought him every day, but God delivered him not into his hand.

D15. Waits on God 24:4 men of David said to him...the LORD said to you, Behold, I will deliver thy enemy into thy hand, that you may do to him as it shall seem good to you. Then David arose, and secretly cut off the skirt of Saul's robe. 6 And he said to his men, The LORD forbid that I should do this thing to my master, the LORD'S anointed, to stretch forth my hand against him, seeing he [is] the anointed of the LORD. 7 So David restrained his servants with these words, and permitted them not to rise against Saul.

D16. Peacemaker 24:8 David went out of the cave, and cried after Saul, saying, My lord the king. And when Saul looked behind him, David stooped with his face to the earth, and bowed himself.

D17. Non-avenger 24:12 The LORD judge between me and you, and the LORD avenge me of you: but my hand shall not be upon you. 24:13 As saith the proverb of the ancients, Wickedness proceeds from the wicked: but my hand shall not be upon you.

D18. Righteous interpersonally 24:17 David, You're more righteous than I: for you have rewarded me with good, though I have rewarded you with evil.

Nabal the Numbskull

loser, self-centered ingrate;

Abigal the Happy, Humble Hostess

winner 25:3 the man [was] Nabal; and his wife Abigail: and [she was] a woman of good understanding, and of a beautiful countenance: but the man [was] churlish and evil in his doings

D19. Faithful with others' possessions 25:21 David said, Surely in vain have I kept all that this [man] has in the wilderness, so that nothing was missed of all that [pertained] to him: and he has repaid me evil for good.

D20. Teachable  25:32 David said to Abigail, Blessed [be] the LORD God of Israel, who sent you this day to meet me: 33 And blessed [be] thy advice, and blessed [be] you, who have kept me this day from coming to [shed] blood, and from avenging myself with my own hand. 39...Blessed [be] the LORD, that has pleaded the cause of my reproach from the hand of Nabal, and has kept his servant from evil: for the LORD has returned the wickedness of Nabal upon his own head. And David sent and talked with Abigail, to take her to himself for a wife.

D21. Polygamist 25:43 David also took Ahinoam of Jezreel; and they were also both of them his wives. 25:44 But Saul had given Michal his daughter, David's wife, to Phalti the son of Laish, who [was] of Gallim.

D22. Fear of God 26:9 And David said, Destroy him not: for who can stretch forth his hand against the LORD'S anointed, and be guiltless? 26:10 David said furthermore, [As] the LORD lives, the LORD shall smite him; or his day shall come to die; or he shall descend into battle, and perish. 11 The LORD forbid that I should stretch forth my hand against the LORD'S anointed

D23. Respectful 26:18 And he said, Why does my lord thus pursue his servant? for what have I done? or what evil [is] in my hand? 21 Then said Saul, I have sinned: return, my son David: for I will no more do you harm, because my soul was precious in thy eyes this day: behold, I have played the fool, and have erred exceedingly. 23 The LORD render to every man his righteousness and his faithfulness: for the LORD delivered you into [my] hand to day, but I would not stretch forth my hand against the LORD'S anointed. 24 And, behold, as thy life was precious this day in my eyes, so let my life be precious in the eyes of the LORD, and let him deliver me out of all tribulation.

D24. Refused to assert rights 27:1 And David said in his heart, I shall now perish one day by the hand of Saul: [there is] nothing better for me than that I should speedily escape into the land of the Philistines; and Saul shall despair of me, to seek me any more in any part of Israel: so shall I escape from his hand. 

D25. Journalist and Plumber 27:10 And Achish said, Where have ye plundered to day? And David said, Against the south of Judah...11 And David saved neither man nor woman alive, to bring [tidings] to Gath, saying, Lest they should inform against us...

D26. Self-renewing 30:6 And David was greatly distressed; for the people spoke of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: but David encouraged himself in the LORD his God.

D27. Initiating Leader 30:8 And David enquired of the LORD, saying, Shall I pursue this troop? shall I overtake them? And he answered him, Pursue: for you shalt surely overtake [them], and without fail recover [all]. 18 And David recovered all that the Amalekites had carried away: and David rescued his two wives. 19 And there was nothing lacking to them, neither small nor great, neither sons nor daughters, neither spoil, nor any [thing] that they had taken to them: David recovered all.

D28. Understanding, fair and generous 30:23 Then said David, Ye shall not do so, my brethren, with that which the LORD has given us, who has preserved us, and delivered...


winners with bold loyalty 31:11 And when the inhabitants of Jabeshgilead heard of that which the Philistines had done to Saul; 12 All the valiant men arose, and went all night, and took the body of Saul and the bodies of his sons from the wall of Bethshan, and came to Jabesh, and burnt them there. 11:1; 2Sa 2:5

Questions for Reflection/Discussion/Response:

1. Which of the win/lose characteristics could be most/least likely seen walking the streets of NYC?

2. Which of Saul's characteristics were the most damaging to him? Why?

3. Which of David's characteristics were the most beneficial to him? Why?

4. How can you takes steps to eschew what is evil and imitate what is good?

5. Do you "only fear the LORD, and serve him in truth with all your heart"?