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Touch Not My Anointed


In many churches and ministries, this phrase "touch not My anointed" is often quoted and used by self-styled leaders as a means of exercising and maintaining control over their members or assemblies. In simple words, they are saying "I am one of the Lord's anointed. No matter what I do or say, don't utter a word against me."
 
But what does the Bible say about touching not God’s anointed?
 
It’s not our opinion that matters; but what God says about this matter that really counts.
 
First we need to know what anointing is, and what it means to be anointed.
 
To anoint means to "rub oil or ointment on" or "to put oil on in a ceremony of consecration." So, to anoint someone or something is simply applying oil on that person or object in a ceremony of consecration.
 
In the Bible, the following people and objects are anointed by the Lord for specific purposes:

1. Prophets were anointed to proclaim God's word faithfully.

1 Kings 19:16
Also you shall anoint Jehu the son of Nimshi as king over Israel.
And Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel Meholah you shall anoint as prophet in your place.

2. Priests were anointed to carry out their holy duties of worship and sacrifice.

Exodus 40:13
You shall put the holy garments on Aaron, and anoint him and consecrate him, that he may minister to Me as priest.

3. Kings were anointed to rule in righteousness.

1 Samuel 15:1
Samuel also said to Saul, “The Lord sent me to anoint you king over His people, over Israel. Now therefore, heed the voice of the words of the Lord.

4. People were anointed for healing.

Mark 6:13
And they cast out many demons, and anointed with oil many who were sick, and healed them.

5. Objects were anointed for use in the house of God.

Leviticus 8:10
Also Moses took the anointing oil, and anointed the tabernacle and all that was in it, and consecrated them.

6. Jesus was anointed for ministry.

Luke 4:18-19
18 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,
Because He has anointed Me
To preach the gospel to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set at liberty those who are oppressed;
19 To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.”

If Jesus needed to be anointed before His ministry, so do we. Jesus said that He would send us His Holy Spirit who would teach us all things. He will anoint us with His Holy Spirit!

John 14:26
But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.
 
1 John 2:27

But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him.

The anointing we have received is the Holy Spirit. He will teach us all things and will guide us in the Truth as we abide in Christ!
 
Let us now explore the true meaning of not touching His anointed ones.

Psalm 105:11-15
11 Saying, “To you I will give the land of Canaan
As the allotment of your inheritance,”
12 When they were few in number,
Indeed very few, and strangers in it.
13 When they went from one nation to another,
From one kingdom to another people,
14 He permitted no one to do them wrong;
Yes, He rebuked kings for their sakes,
15 Saying, “Do not touch My anointed ones,
And do My prophets no harm.”

In the Old Testament, "the Lord's anointed" is a reference to the kings and prophets of Israel. And the prophets in these above verses refer to the patriarchs, and it is most likely a reference to Genesis 20:2-3 that Abimelech king of Gerar was rebuked by the Lord in a dream not to touch Sarah, the wife of Abraham.

The word "touch" actually means physical harm. David did not harm King Saul.

I Samuel 26:7-12
7 So David and Abishai came to the people by night; and there Saul lay sleeping within the camp, with his spear stuck in the ground by his head. And Abner and the people lay all around him.
8 Then Abishai said to David, “God has delivered your enemy into your hand this day. Now therefore, please, let me strike him at once with the spear, right to the earth; and I will not have to strike him a second time!”
9 But David said to Abishai, “Do not destroy him; for who can stretch out his hand against the Lord’s anointed, and be guiltless?”
10 David said furthermore, “As the Lord lives, the Lord shall strike him, or his day shall come to die, or he shall go out to battle and perish.
11 The Lord forbid that I should stretch out my hand against the Lord’s anointed. But please, take now the spear and the jug of water that are by his head, and let us go.”
12 So David took the spear and the jug of water by Saul’s head, and they got away; and no man saw or knew it or awoke. For they were all asleep, because a deep sleep from the Lord had fallen on them.

David came to King Saul by night. He could have killed the sleeping king. But he just took Saul’s spear and water jug. And he said this: “As the Lord lives, the Lord shall strike him, or his day shall come to die, or he shall go out to battle and perish." And this saying came true.
 
David did not harm Saul physically but he did say something against Saul!
 
Even the prophet Samuel said something against Saul, the anointed king:

1 Samuel 15:17-19, 22-23
17 So Samuel said, “When you were little in your own eyes, were you not head of the tribes of Israel? And did not the Lord anoint you king over Israel?
18 Now the Lord sent you on a mission, and said, ‘Go, and utterly destroy the sinners, the Amalekites, and fight against them until they are consumed.’
19 Why then did you not obey the voice of the Lord? Why did you swoop down on the spoil, and do evil in the sight of the Lord?”

22 So 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 heed than the fat of rams.
23 For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft,
And stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry.
Because you have rejected the word of the Lord,
He also has rejected you from being king.

Samuel and David didn't touch Saul or cause him any physical harm but it didn’t stop them from telling the truth about the unrighteous king.
 
Today, we have a lot of so-called anointed "prophets" and apostles" who uses this phrase "touch not the Lord's anointed" for their own self-protection and also to enslave their followers. Many of their followers are so afraid of touching the Lord's anointed that they dare not speak the truth even when confronted with the facts and reality. They think they are doing God’s work. They refuse to face the truth. They continue to listen to their false teachers, prophets and apostles. They do not want to hear the other side of the story. They cut themselves off from hearing the truth. They continue to be trapped in those false teachings, dreams, visions and prophecies. They become their own worst enemies!
 
Loyalty is a good thing if it is for the Truth. But it becomes plain foolishness when one continues to pledge undying allegiance to something that is false.

Proverbs 17:15
He who justifies the wicked, and he who condemns the just,
Both of them alike are an abomination to the Lord.

To find out what is true or false, one must look into the matter and hear both sides before they make a final judgment.

Proverbs 18:15
The heart of the prudent acquires knowledge,
And the ear of the wise seeks knowledge.

As it is not easy to confront falsehood today, what are we supposed to do? Let us take a look at the believers in Berea.

Acts 17:10-11
10 And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews.
11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.

The apostle Paul praised the Bereans as they were more noble than the others. They would search the Scriptures to see if Paul's teachings were true. Paul never said, “Touch not God’s anointed” or “do God's prophets no harm.” Never will we find an apostle say or teach "touch not My Anointed" in the whole New Testament! Not once! Even though Paul's teachings were questioned, he didn't defend himself. He willingly let the people seek the Truth themselves. The Bereans were more noble than the others because they cherished the Truth! Are we willing to take a stand for the truth of the Word of God?

John 17:17
Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth.
 
John 7:24
Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment.

If someone is truly anointed, they would encourage the believers to discern what is true and what is not. They would encourage people to pursue and embrace the truth. They would protect the sheep from falsehood, desiring to see them grow strong in Christ. They would allow their sheep to follow the Good Shepherd and become more like Him each day. They would not demand that their sheep should dress, speak, talk, walk, preach, pray, prophesy or act like them. They would not threaten their sheep with curses and punishments if the sheep say anything true against them or if the sheep choose to leave them.
 
We are not touching the Lord's anointed when we expose false teachings and prophecies by telling and declaring the truth!
 
However we must not backbite by telling lies and half-truths because of selfish ambitions and jealousies.

2 Corinthians 12:20-21
20 For I fear lest, when I come, I shall not find you such as I wish, and that I shall be found by you such as you do not wish; lest there be contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, backbitings, whisperings, conceits, tumults;
21 lest, when I come again, my God will humble me among you, and I shall mourn for many who have sinned before and have not repented of the uncleanness, fornication, and lewdness which they have practiced.

Why did God give us the five-fold ministry? Simply for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.

We should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting. But, speaking the truth in love, we may grow up in all things into Him who is the head - Christ.

Ephesians 4:-11-16
11 And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers,
12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ,
13 till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ;
14 that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting,
15 but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ—
16 from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love. 

A good question is this: Who are the anointed ones today?

2 Corinthians 1:20-22
20 For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen, to the glory of God through us.
21 Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and has anointed us is God,
22 who also has sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.

God has anointed all of us with the same Holy Spirit!

1 John 2:27
But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him.

He will teach us the Truth - the Word of God. And by the Truth, we will know what is true and what is false.
 
After the death of Saul, David became the king of Israel. David didn't use "don’t touch God’s anointed” to defend himself when the prophet Nathan confronted the anointed king with the truth about his adultery with Uriah's wife and the murder of Uriah!

2 Samuel 12:7-13
7 Then Nathan said to David, “You are the man! Thus says the Lord God of Israel: ‘I anointed you king over Israel, and I delivered you from the hand of Saul.
8 I gave you your master’s house and your master’s wives into your keeping, and gave you the house of Israel and Judah. And if that had been too little, I also would have given you much more!
9 Why have you despised the commandment of the Lord, to do evil in His sight? You have killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword; you have taken his wife to be your wife, and have killed him with the sword of the people of Ammon.
10 Now therefore, the sword shall never depart from your house, because you have despised Me, and have taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your wife.’
11 Thus says the Lord: ‘Behold, I will raise up adversity against you from your own house; and I will take your wives before your eyes and give them to your neighbor, and he shall lie with your wives in the sight of this sun.
12 For you did it secretly, but I will do this thing before all Israel, before the sun.’”
13 So David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the Lord.”

We can either be like Saul or David. If we are like Saul, we would deny the truth, and reject the rebuke and correction of the Lord. If we are like David, we will embrace the truth, and accept the rebuke and correction of the Lord!
 
If we are truly anointed, we will be like David - a man after God's own heart who would do everything God wanted him to do.

Acts 13:22
And when He had removed him, He raised up for them David as king, to whom also He gave testimony and said, ‘I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after My own heart, who will do all My will.

Psalm 139:23-24
23 Search me, O God, and know my heart;
Try me, and know my anxieties;
24 And see if there is any wicked way in me,
And lead me in the way everlasting. 

If we are truly anointed, we will not be afraid of what people will do to us or say about us because God will save His anointed:

Psalm 20:6
Now I know that the Lord saves His anointed; He will answer him from His holy heaven With the saving strength of His right hand.

If we are truly anointed, we will be true servants of the Lord who will serve others and not to be served by others.

1 Peter 2:18-24 
18 Servants, be submissive to your masters with all fear, not only to the good and gentle, but also to the harsh.
19 For this is commendable, if because of conscience toward God one endures grief, suffering wrongfully.
20 For what credit is it if, when you are beaten for your faults, you take it patiently? But when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God.
21 For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps
22 “Who committed no sin,
Nor was deceit found in His mouth”;
23 who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously;
24 who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed.

If we are truly anointed, we will follow the example of Christ, the Anointed One, who endured the cross, despising the shame.

Philippians 2:1-11
1 Therefore if there is any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and mercy,
2 fulfill my joy by being like-minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.
3 Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself.
4 Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.
5 Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus,
6 who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God,
7 but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men.
8 And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.
9 Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name,
10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth,
11 and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
 
Hebrews 12:1-3
1 Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,
2 looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
3 For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls.


Source: http://www.letusreason.org/Pent47.htm

Written on: 8 May 2015