I don’t think about fairy tales too often. I watch them with my kids and know most of them from my own childhood, but I’ve never given them much thought outside of that. Yesterday I was reading in 1 Samuel and realized I was basically reading the story of Cinderella. It makes me wonder if the bible was the inspiration for the well-known story, and if it was, I wonder how many other stories used scripture for inspiration.
There was this boy . . .
Once upon a time there was a man named Samuel who God sent into the town of Bethlehem to find and anoint the next king. The only information given to Samuel, the messenger, was that he would find the next king among one of Jesse’s sons and to listen for God to tell him which son was “the one.”
Samuel met 7 young men who all looked the part, but God told him none of them were right and not to be taken in by their appearance. Samuel asked Jesse, “Is this everybody? You don’t have any more sons?” paraphrased, of course.
Jesse answered that his youngest son was out working in the field tending sheep, so Samuel asked for him to be brought in.
When David arrived, the Lord said, “This is the one,” and David was anointed as king.
A Cinderella Story
Although it’s not exactly the same, I couldn’t help but to see the similarities as I read. The “glass slipper” was designed to fit one person, and no matter how pretty the other girls were, the prince only wanted the messenger to choose the one whose foot fit perfectly into the slipper. The person who the slipper belonged to was left working and wasn’t even brought in for consideration until asked by the messenger.
In David’s story, the anointing was for one person only, and no matter how handsome the other brothers were, God only wanted Samuel to choose the one he indicated. The anointed one was left outside working and not brought in for consideration until asked by Samuel.
David’s story continues full of ups and downs where Cinderella’s story ends at the Happily Ever After moment, but the beginning of their stories sound a lot alike to me.
What do you think?