Saul is a conflicted leader. He seems like the answer to the people’s demands for a strong king. God even allows Samuel to anoint him. The problems start after that. He serves as a king, but he can’t seem to trust God. He can’t leave things well enough alone. He keeps getting in the way with his own ideas about what he’s supposed to do. He sacrifices and offers worship to God when all the Lord wants is for him to be faithful.
When we bargain with God, do we do the same thing? Do we THINK God wants one thing when in reality God desires not fancy clothes, good church services and giving away a lot of money – God wants us to change our hearts, not our appearance, to give well, not necessary to give a lot. Something to think about, I guess. On to 1 Samuel!
- “Here I am…” Is there any more powerful words of acceptance in the Bible? Samuel is eager to serve, to help, and to be the minister/prophet he was dedicated to be. The problem with that? He’s going to get a tough prophetic assignment. Careful what you wish for, I guess.
- What a turn of events – The Israelites look like they’re going to lose, so they bring out their secret weapon: the ark of the covenant. This very presence of God will surely turn the tide…until it doesn’t. Israel still loses and now the ark is captured. Way to go, guys.
- Poor Eli. He falls over from the bad news and breaks his neck?
- Ichabod means “The glory has departed from Israel.” I never knew that one. So, why would you name your son Icahbod? Mr. and Mrs. Crane must not have thought too fondly about the good news of becoming parents.
- Is there anyone over the age of 12 who doesn’t see this picture when they think of the power of the ark of the covenant? I’ll spare the face melting stuff but you know you remember it.
- Everybody seems to want a king. Why? What is it about doing things your neighbors are doing that makes it so attractive? I love that Samuel warns them over and over again, but they still choose monarchy. How’s that gonna work out? Let’s go find a king!
- Hello, Saul.
- Qualifications for Saul as king? 1 Samuel 9:2 – “There was not a man among the people of Israel more handsome than he; he stood head and shoulders about everyone else.” So, he’s good looking and really tall. That makes sense. Maybe that’s how I’ll vote in the next election.
- “Is Saul also among the prophets?” That became a proverb…or so we are told in 1 Samuel 10:12. This march toward the throne is certainly less traditional than one would expect. Still, here comes the handsome, tall, prophesying Saul, ready to take charge.
- 1 Samuel 13 begins with a very curious verse that is missing words. The length of Saul’s reign is unknown in this verse. Acts 13:21 notes Saul reigned for 40 years.
- Saul loses his kingdom when he sacrifices to God, rather than trusting God would fulfill the promises made to Saul. Trust and faith…that’s more important here than right worship.
- Much like Saul, Jonathan’s introduction includes him traveling with an unknown companion. Who are these people?
- It seems like Saul has been at war since he first came on the scene. Rough time to be the kind, I’d say.