<<selected, chosen one>>
Often a smearing of sacred oil was applied to people or objects in the OT as a visible symbol to signify holiness or separation unto God for a special function (Ex 29:7,21). Throughout Scripture, oil symbolises the Holy Spirit. When the Bible says to anoint the sick with oil, the ‘power’ is in the prayer offered in faith because of what Jesus accomplished for us, not in the oil as such (Mk 6:13; Jas 5:14-16; 1 Jn 3:8). Anointing the head with oil was a custom of hospitality shown to honoured guests (Ps 23:5; Mk 14:3-9; Lk 7:46).
Although Saul had been chosen, because of bad leadership decisions was later rejected by God to continue as king of Israel (1 Sam 9:16, 10:24, 15:1,11,23,26,28). Although He continued in the office as king for several years after his last chance, it revealed the folly of a life lived without the anointing touch of God. David, the new future King would “not touch the Lord’s anointed” choosing rather to continue to respect Saul even though he had several opportunities to pay him back for the assassination attempts made on his life (1 Sam 24:10, 26:9-11). God finally had Saul killed while in battle, then David took on the kingly role. David had been anointed as a shepherd boy, and from that day forward the Spirit of the Lord rested powerfully on his life (1 Sam 16:13; Ps 89:20).
In the same way we should not wish harm on or criticise those God has placed in leadership for they are His representatives or delegated authority (1 Chr 16:22; Ps 105:15). To maintain control over their followers some leaders have used this verse as manipulation, ‘abusing their power in the gospel’ (1 Cor 9:18). However, no leader is above being held accountable or asked for an explanation of their teaching though any genuine concern must be addressed humbly and with witnesses (1 Tim 5:19).
Jesus said, “The spirit of the Lord is on me, because He has anointed me to preach good news to the poor [what is beyond our grasp or ability to obtain], freedom for the prisoners [from Satan’s bondage, in whatever form and measure he has held us captive], recovery of sight to the blind [from impairment, putting right what has been affected particularly broken emotions], to release the oppressed [freedom from situations that oppress and would keep us from living to our potential], to proclaim the Lord’s favour [that God is ready to give blessings to all who come to Him]” (Lk 4:18,19). Am I receiving these provisions that Jesus died to provide for me?
The anointing is for His Kingdoms benefit
was with Him” (Act 10:38). He proved His anointing through the miracles He performed and the life He sacrificed as Saviour of the world. The Lord said of Paul, “He is my chosen instrument…” (Act 9:15). As the followers of Christ, we are given an anointing and authority to use His name to enforce His decisions, doing what God would have us do as we advance His Kingdom. We must be walking in obedience by doing what He has already instructed – to responsibly use His name and enforce His will. That anointing is the coming of the Holy Spirit upon a person, equipping them with the authority and power to accomplish a specific job or ministry. To receive more anointing use what God has already given and live in humble submissive obedience and relationship with Him. Do not seek the anointing as such, rather surrender yourself to Him.
Jesus depended upon God to empower Him – no miracles happened till He was anointed (Lk 4:1,14,32).
We receive through surrender
power changed the previously timid apostles into bold declarers of the gospel (Act 2:1-4,14,37-41). The anointing is the rub-off of God on humanity. Are we living out of the overflow of the anointing of Jesus? Do people realise what we do and say is because we have been with Jesus in ‘heart to heart’ intimate relationship and so changed for the better (Act 4:13). The more time we spend with Jesus, the more anointing will rub off onto us. The Bible’s instruction is “Be filled with the Spirit” (Eph 5:18).
The anointing of the Holy Spirit breaks the yoke of sin and bondage (Isa 10:27). “You have an anointing from God” refers to the Holy Spirit residing within each believer with whom we should co-operate and not snub because He wants to guide us into all truth. The flow-on result will be we are continually entering into a greater connection of awareness and pliability with an increased effectiveness in His service for His glory (2 Cor 1:21,22; 1 Jn 2:20,27). "His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness" (2 Pet 1:3). Since all believers are God's anointed, although we suffer the effects of living in a fallen world, Satan can't touch us without God's explicit permission for God who has begun a good work in us will bring it to completion (Job 1:12, 2:6; Phil 1:6).
Sometimes people speak of an 'anointed' preacher, sermon song or ministry, meaning there is a powerful outpouring of the Spirit on them. As with all that God graciously does He must receive all the glory (Isa 48:11).
See also: Holy Spirit, hands/laying on of, surrender.