sorry for this being so late today; one word -technology. lol
Scripture: 1 Samuel 15 focusing on verses 17-23
17 And Samuel told him, “Although you may think little of yourself, are you not the leader of the tribes of Israel? The Lord has anointed you king of Israel. 18 And the Lord sent you on a mission and told you, ‘Go and completely destroy the sinners, the Amalekites, until they are all dead.’ 19 Why haven’t you obeyed the Lord? Why did you rush for the plunder and do what was evil in the Lord’s sight?”
20 “But I did obey the Lord,” Saul insisted. “I carried out the mission he gave me. I brought back King Agag, but I destroyed everyone else. 21 Then my troops brought in the best of the sheep, goats, cattle, and plunder to sacrifice to the Lord your God in Gilgal.”
22 But Samuel replied,
“What is more pleasing to the Lord:
your burnt offerings and sacrifices
or your obedience to his voice?
Listen! Obedience is better than sacrifice,
and submission is better than offering the fat of rams.
23 Rebellion is as sinful as witchcraft,
and stubbornness as bad as worshiping idols.
So because you have rejected the command of the Lord,
he has rejected you as king.”
Observation: our human nature is so on display here in this story. Saul is given clear instructions from God to destroy all the people as well as every last animal of the Amalakites. However, he kept the king alive as well as the best of their livestock, to keep for themselves. When Samuel confronts Saul, an interesting reply by him. First he greets Samuel and tells him right away that he did what he asked. As if trying to convince or distract Samuel from the truth. He then claims he kept the livestock so they could offer them as sacrifices to the God. He clearly didn’t do what God asked of him, but he tried justifying it by doing something else that seemed very spiritual. But doesn’t the bible say that “God cannot be mocked”? This was disobedience, which Samuel called rebellion, “as sinful as witchcraft” Justifying actions by the appearance of good. Do we do that? Do we do things differently than we clearly know God is calling us to do, because we don’t want to, but still want to look good? I can think of all too many examples of this over the years I my own life.
Application: What is it God is asking me to do? Am I afraid or unwilling in any area? I want God to continually search my heart, and reveal where I am weak, where I am rebelling. Am I justifying disobedience with good deeds?
Prayer: Lord you rejected Saul because of disobedience. I confess I have done this in the past, so forgive me. I thank you that you sent us a king that does not fail, and that because of that, you do not reject us when we fail. But Lord, I want to always live in your will and in your blessing, help me always to have the courage and willingness to do what I know you have asked of me. Thank you for your unending grace. In Jesus name, amen.