When Samuel anoints Saul as king of Israel, he performs three rituals. First he annoints his head with oil with spices. Next, he kisses him on the cheek. Finally, he pronounces him as the “king who will reign over the people of the Lord and will save them from the hand of their enemy.” After the anointing and the kiss, Samuel asked the question “Has not the Lord anointed you to be prince over his people Israel?” The correct answer of course is “Yes!” Although Samuel was the human instrument, God was the one who chose him.

I find it interesting that although Israel rejected Jesus as the Messiah after his triumphal entry we can see that unbeknownst to the participants, Jesus was anointed as King with all three rituals. In Bethany his head was anointed with oil containing fragrant spices. In the Garden of Gethsemane Judas kissed in on the cheek and called him “Lord.” Pilate had a sign hung up on the cross announcing in three languages that this is “The King of the Jews.”

God is the one who chooses and anoints! In the New Testament we read that Jesus was the anointed one. That’s what Messiah, or Christ, means. Jesus was the one God chose to save his people from their enemy. The greatest enemy of us all: Death!  Although the woman, Judas, and Pilate had no idea what they were doing, God was behind it all accomplishing his purposes in His only begotten son. “For God so loved the world, that he sent his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him will not perish but have everlasting life.”