Ep. 083: Saul’s Disobedience

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Ep. 083: Saul’s Disobedience

One day Samuel went to Saul with instructions from God. “The Amalekites attacked my people when I brought them out of Egypt. Therefore, go to battle with them and destroy everything. Kill all the people and all of their livestock. Don’t leave anything alive.”
So Saul took his army and attacked the Amalekites. He defeated them, but didn’t kill everything. Saul’s men kept the best of the livestock for themselves. They also captured king Agag and didn’t kill him.
The Lord said to Samuel, “I regret that I made Saul king over Israel. He doesn’t follow me and he doesn’t do as I say.”
Samuel grieved in his spirit, and prayed all night. The next morning, he went and found Saul. As the prophet walked up, the king said, “The Lord bless you. I’ve done what God asked me to do.”
Samuel looked at him. “Then why do I hear the sounds of sheep and cattle?”
“Oh, the men saved the best livestock so we could sacrifice them to the Lord. But we destroyed the rest.”
Samuel said, “Stop talking! I’ll tell you what God thinks of what you’ve done. When you were humble, God made you the leader over his people. He then gave you a job to do. He said, ‘Go kill this extremely sinful people. Don’t let any person or animal live.’ Why did you make him angry by not doing what he said?”
Saul said, “I did obey him. I killed everyone except Agag, their king. And then I killed all the animals except these few. We kept the best for a sacrifice.”
Samuel said, “Do you think the Lord wants sacrifice more than obedience? No! To obey is better than a sacrifice. Rebellion is like the sin of witchcraft. Stubbornness is as bad as worshiping idols. You rejected God’s command. Therefore, he’s rejected you as king over Israel.”
Saul said, “I’ve sinned! I can now see clearly that I ignored the Lord’s command, and didn’t listen to you. I was afraid of the people, and obeyed them rather than God. Please forgive my sin. Come. Let’s worship the Lord together.”
Samuel turned away, “No, I won’t go with you. You rejected the Lord. Now he’s rejecting you as king.”
Saul grabbed Samuel’s robe and it tore as he turned away. Samuel stopped and looked at the rip. He said, “The Lord has ripped the kingdom of Israel away from you today. He’s given it to your neighbor, who’s better than you. God isn’t like men. He won’t change his mind.”
Saul yelled, “I’ve sinned! All I ask is that you honor me in front of the people. Come, worship with me.”
So Samuel went with him and allowed him to bow down before the Lord. The prophet then said, “Bring me Agag, king of the Amalekites.”
Agag came before Samuel, not knowing what to expect. Samuel took a sword and said, “You’ve made many women childless. Now your mother will be childless.” The prophet then killed Agag and cut him into pieces.
Then Samuel returned to his home. He never again visited Saul as long as he lived. Still, he grieved over him constantly.


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