April 10, 2012

99 - The decline of Saul

Kathleen's thoughts

1 Samuel 13,14,15

Saul's son Jonathan decided to go out on his own with his attendant who carried his weapons to fight the Philistine garrison on the other side, but he did not tell his father.
What he said to his attendant was this... Lets cross over to the garrison of these uncircumcised men perhaps the Lord will help us then his attendant responded "do what is in your heart you choose. So Jonathan said we'll cross over to the men and then let them see us. If they say, "wait until we reach you' then we will stay where we are and not go to them' but if they say, "Come on up, then we'll go u, because the Lord has handed them over to us and that will be our sign. And so the latter happened and Jonathan told his armor bearer the Lord has handed them over to Israel. The earth shook and caused confusion and terror from God and it spread Saul's watchmen saw the confusion and panicking of the troops which scattered in all directions so Saul helped to destroy the enemies by calling the priests and the ark which caused panic in the Philistine camp. When Saul told to stop what they were doing and Saul and his troops marched to battle and the philistines were fighting against each other in great confusion. The Lord saved Israel that day.
In chapter 14: 23 - 35 Saul told the soldiers not to eat and he also said this Cursed is the man who eats food before evening, before I have taken vengeance on my enemies. and none of the troops ate. but this curse was unknown to Jonathan he did not know this and dipped his staff into honey and ate and gained strength When Jonathan found out he replied "My father has brought trouble to the land, just look how much better I am that I have gained strength I can now continue to fight and his fathers troops were weak from fighting. Because of exhaustion they rushed to the plunder and ate and this was reported to Saul.
When Saul found out he was greatly troubled and told them to bring the food to him and not to sin against the Lord by eating meat with blood in it. So every one of the troops brought his ox that night and slaughtered it there. It was the first time Saul built an altar to the Lord.

Chapter 14: 36 -46 Jonathan is set free from the curse

The fight between the Philistines continued - The conflict with the Philistines was fierce all of Saul's days, so whenever Saul notice any strong or brave men, he enlisted them.

Chapter 15; 1-9 Samuel's instructions to Saul...The Lord of Hosts says; ;I witnessed what the Amalekites did to the Israelites when they opposed them along the way as they were coming out of Egypt now go and attack the Amalekites and completely destroy everything they have Do not spare them Kill men women, children, infants, oxen's and sheep camels and donkeys
Saul disobeys the orders by capturing the King Agag of Amalek alive and keeping the the best sheep cattle and fatlings, as well as the young rams and the the best of everything else. they were not willing to destroy them.

Chapter 15: 10-21 The word of the Lord came to Samuel. I regret that I made Saul King for he
has turned away from following Me and has not carried out My instructions. Samuel became angry and cried to the the Lord the whole night!.
Samuel challenges Saul and Saul says he has obeyed the Lord and the troops brought back the sheep cattle fron the plunder and the best is set apart to sacrifice to the Lord you God at Gilgal and he also told Samuel he captured king Agag

So here we see disobedience brings the wrath of God on oneself.

Samuel speaks to Saul with these words Chapter 15: 22-23 (KJV)
Hath 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 hearken than the fat of rams...For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubborninness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou has rejected the word of the Lord, he hath also rejected thee from being king.

That must have been a true wake up call to Saul.

Saul confesses I have sinned, I have transgressed the Lord's command and your words. Samuel also said to Saul he would not return with him because of him rejecting the Lord. When Saul turned to go Saul crabbed the hem of his garment and it tore. Saul cried out to Samuel and asked him to honour him by coming back with him before the elders of his people and before Israel. Samuel did go back with him. Saul then bowed down and worshiped the Lord.

Samuel then told Saul to bring Agag kin of Amalek when he came in from of Samuel, Samuel said to him As you sword has made women childless, so your mother will be childless among women. and he then hacked Agag to pieces before the Lord of Gilgal.

Samuel left Saul and never returned to him again. Samuel mourned for Saul and the Lord regretted He had made Saul king over Israel.


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