Wednesday, February 1, 2012

That's It, Saul. You're Done

By Mary Vee
I Samuel 15

From Samuel's Journal

The word of the Lord came to me last night. He said, "I greatly regret that I have made Saul as king, for he has turned away from following me. He has not kept my commandments."

My heart ached as if someone had stabbed my own child. 

I cried to God all night, weeping and sobbing. Oh how my heart ached. I didn't sleep even for a moment. All I could think--all that flowed in my mind were the disappointed words from God. 

My eyes stung and my stomach had gnarled into a tight ball. Oh how the words grieved my soul.

The next morning I rose early from my bed and looked for Saul. He wasn't anywhere near. A villager told me Saul had gone to Mt. Carmel where he'd made a monument for himself before continuing on to Gilgal. 

Seriously? He made an monument for himself? I grabbed my staff and journeyed to Gilgal. Saul stood when he saw me walking close to him. He bowed and said, "Samuel, Blessed are you of the Lord! I have performed the commandment of the Lord."

How could he lie? Rage boiled deep in my soul. I turned to the side because I didn't really want to look at him. "Oh, really, Saul? What then is this bleating of the sheep in my ears, and the lowing of the oxen which I hear?"

Saul laughed "Oh that? Well, the troops brought them from the Amalekites. The people spared the best of the sheep and the oxen to sacrifice to the Lord your God. But...the rest we completely destroyed." He folded his arms and nodded with a disgustingly smug look.

That's it. I couldn't take it any longer. "Be quiet! I'll tell you what the Lord said to me last night."

Saul rolled his eyes and smirked. "Okay. Tell me."

I had to take a breath before saying another word. "When you were little in your own eyes, weren't you the head of the tribes of Israel? Didn't the Lord anoint you king over Israel? Now the Lord sent you on a mission to completely destroy the Amalekites. Why didn't you obey the voice of the Lord. Why did you take the spoils and do evil in the sight of the Lord?"

Saul held his hands out toward me. "What. I obeyed the voice of the Lord. I brought back Agag and utterly destroyed the Amalekites. But the soldiers took the plunder, sheep, oxen, and the best of the things that should have been destroyed to sacrifice them to the Lord your God."

I shook my head in disbelief. "Do you think the Lord prefers offerings and sacrifice over obedience? To obey is far better than to sacrifice. Rebellion is the sin of witchcraft and stubbornness is as sin and idolatry. 

"Because you've rejected the word of the Lord He has also rejected you from being king."

Saul's smugness finally fell away. He pressed his hands together. "Okay. You're right. I've sinned against the commandment of the Lord and your words. But, Samuel, I did it because I was afraid of the people and obeyed their voice. Please forgive me and return with me that I may worship the Lord."

I couldn't do it. This time he went too far. "No, Saul. I won't return with you. You have rejected the word of the Lord and now the Lord has rejected you from being king over Israel. Bring me Agag."

King Agag was brought to me. He seemed way to confident. He knew Saul had spared his life.

Agag said, "Surely the bitterness of death is past."

Nope. Wrong answer. God said to destroy everything. If Saul wouldn't do the job, I would. I turned to Agog, "As your sword has made women childless, so shall your mother be childless." I took a sword and killed Saul should have done.

I went home...

and wept for the king of Israel.

1.  What did the Lord tell Samuel in the night?
2.  How did Samuel respond?
3.  Where did Samuel go?
4.  What did he tell Saul?
5.  What was Saul's answer?
6.  Samuel told Saul __________ is better than sacrifice.
7.  What job did Samuel do since Saul had not finished the work?
8.  What was Saul's punishment?

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